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Listen to Your Inner Voice, and the World Will Hear You” -- Spiritual Lecture at Taylor's University

6 p.m., April 19, 2017, Ven. Chang Zao (Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia) gave a spiritual lecture on “Listen to Your Inner Voice and the World Will Hear You” at Taylor’s University. She explained in details the causes of vexation as well as methods to overcome them.

Ven. Chang Zao began the lecture by asking the audience to define “satisfaction”, “vexation”, as well as “success” in their lives. Thereafter, she explained that all of us want to be happy, yet in our pursuit of happiness, we often ended up with vexations instead. We get what we do not want and do not get what we want.

Causes of Vexations and Methods to Overcome Them

Ven. Chang Zao added that while it is important to aim for external success as our life goal, it is even more important to strive for lifelong inner success; inner success can only be achieved by a calm mind that is not easily disturbed by external stimulus.

Vexation arises from looking at situations superficially as well as interpreting words or actions from our own perspectives; all these aggravation results from our negative thoughts. On the other hand, the effect of a negative situation can be mitigated by choosing to have a positive viewpoint, that is, by seeing the un-repulsive in the repulsive.

In addition, Ven. Chang Zao explained that meditation on causality places more emphasis on causes, rather than on effect. We reap what we sow; keeping this in mind, we would be more mindful of our actions, choosing right actions instead of reacting emotionally. Moreover, vexation could be reduced if we redirect our focus to sowing seeds rather than fixating on the harvest; that is, focusing on the process itself instead of the final destination or outcome.

Finally, Ven. Chang Zao encouraged the audience to try and understand that we cannot escape our karma even though it is not clearly manifested; as such, we have to be true to ourselves and let right actions guide us instead of reacting to external factors; only then, can we truly be our own master.

During the Q & A session, an audience asked: How do we deal with the negative emotion that arises from the death of a loved one? Ven. Chang Zao responded that we should accept and face our feelings, not suppress it. We can only be truly happy once we have overcome our adversity. She also urged everyone to continuously develop mindfulness and practice meditation to overcome vexation.

Photo/ Text: Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Centre Malaysia
Translation: DDM Translation Team
Editor: Leefah Thong

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