Finally I have a good meditation

Since 1994, I have attended the 7-day Chan retreats for college students held by Nung Chan Monastery, Dharma Drum Mountain. After 21 years, I have finally had a good mediation at this 3-day Chan retreat.

For a long time, I could not count the number of my breaths and I had a problem with either counting the breath or feeling sleepy while practicing meditation. Fortunately, an interview with the monastic at this retreat helped me realize something about mediation.

In the interview, I asked Monastic Guo-Huei(果暉法師) about these issues he told me that I could employ the method of chanting the Buddha’s name. One idea suddenly came to my mind was that I can use chanting practice all the time while walking and eating, not merely in sitting meditation. I continued using this chanting practice until the next day and after practicing Eight-Form Moving Meditation in the morning session, I could feel relaxed completely so that I felt at peace and ease in sitting mediation. I felt extremely light from my head to toes and even though I still knew my legs existed, there was no pain at all.

When Monastic Guo-Huei gave the inspiring lecture, he compared the differences between the methods of silent illumination and huatou as follows: Silent illumination is relaxed whilst huatou is tensed; silent illumination places regard on space as hautou does with time. What the monastic said reminded me of the application of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP). We all have mind mappings and sensations. When unpleasant things or people came to us, we can enlarge the time and space of mind mappings so that the unpleasant ones become like trivial dust and particles.

In her TED Talks, Jill Bolte Taylor (Jill Bolte Taylor’s stroke of insight, a neuro-atanomist, shared the beautiful world she experienced in her stroke . She explained how the human brain has right and left hemispheres. Most of us operated excessively from our left hemisphere and ignored our right hemisphere. The right hemisphere is the brain for practicing. I hope that someday I can experience the beauty of my right brain because of consistent practicing.

Before coming to this 3-day retreat, I had set goals firstly, to have enough energy to deal with the daily errands and second to have a sense of peace. At the end of the 3-day retreat, I not only achieved the goals I had set but also gained extras that I did not expect. That is, I got back my health. It is said that medicine supply is less than food supply; food supply is less than exercise; working-out is less than Chi improvement. I had a pain with my belly on the first day of registration. I felt painful until the last day of the 3-day retreat. The acupuncture did not work with the bad circulation of my hands and legs, but the problem had been solved unexpectedly in the 3-day meditation retreat.

Written by Lo Huei-Ping (Kuo-Hsian) / Translated by Kate W. Huang/ Edited by DDM Australia Editing Team

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