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Oh Teik Bin
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CONTENTS
Message Page Inspirational Pic Page
1 1 Wisdom Tells Me That… (1) 5
2 6 Wisdom Tells Me That… (1) 9
3 10 Formula For Success 13
4 14 A Story of Terrific Thinking 19
5 20 A Story of Wisdom 25
6 26 Teachings of Wisdom 29
7 30 A Touching Story 37
8 38 Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow 44
9 45 10 Favorite Axioms 53
10 54 A Thought-Provoking Story 61
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Message 1
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
So many things are happening in our beloved nation.
Needless to say, there is much uncertainty, stress or tension.
From politics, health to economy there’s apprehension.
Hope you can stay peaceful amidst many a tribulation.
This COVID pandemic challenge, what will be its duration?
No one can tell despite hearing many a declaration.
Seeing Dukkha and Anicca with a clear comprehension
can certainly help us cope better with any vexation.
To Dana, Sila, Bhavana we must give very great attention.
It pays to practice Dhamma mindfully with dedication.
My you all reap the fruits of your good mental cultivation.
******************************************
When there is hardship, many fall victims to practices of
delusion.
When the Dhamma is lacking, many resort to superstition.
When conquered by Mara, many make very foolish decision.
When desperate, many turn to gods in acts of supplication.
When the mind’s ignorant, many seek out the occult
dimension.
Through un-Dhammic ways, many suffer for their deluded
action.
********************************************
What then should be done by us, the young or old
generation?
2
The Buddha taught this so clearly: “Dukkha and its
Cessation”
* Know this: The cause of Dukkha is Craving, a ‘Mental
Poison’
* Know this: Practice the Noble 8-Fold Way for Liberation.
In our Dhamma practice give the following great attention:
* Take Refuge in the Triple Gem with sincere dedication.
* Observe the moral precepts with very strong resolution.
* Strive to have great patience, diligence and determination.
* Constantly do remember to do Dhamma contemplation.
* Watch mindfully the mind to rid of Greed, Hate and
Delusion.
* Always practice mindfulness, heedfulness, and wise
reflection.
* Practice Dana – with a good heart of Metta and
compassion.
* Do Metta, Samatha and Vipassana Meditation.
************************************************
For our character and mental development, it is good to
retrospect from time to time – to check our weaknesses and
then take steps to overcome them with Dhamma ways.
Some years ago, I did a PowerPoint Presentation - A Fun
Psychological Personal Profile Test based on one's choice of
his favorite color. The link is at:
https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/clean-color-fun
It may not be fully accurate ... if any points do apply to you,
reflect. Do not grow in pride with praises ... just try to further
enhance your strengths. If weaknesses are pointed out
accurately, don't feel bad ... just try to improve! Have fun!
3
And Grow in Wisdom!
************************************************
I’d like to pen my thoughts on
“Right View”
* Right View or Understanding is Samma Ditthi.
To attain this, Noble Ones practice ardently.
* Develop Right View in Walking the Path.
Learn the Dhamma well and practice with heart.
* Right View arises when the 4 Noble Truths are SEEN
clearly-
Dukkha, its Cause, its End, and The Way to end it finally.
* Deluded ones believe there is no Kamma.
Such a wrong view will lead them to much Dukkha.
* Deluded ones dismiss Rebirth in Samsara.
They are very easily conquered by Mara.
* Deluded ones believe that Noble Ones are non-
existent.
Those with Right View know that Noble Ones exist – this
they’re certain.
* Awaken, develop Right View, do not wait!
Right View will lead you to Liberation Gate.
***********************************************
For this week, I’d like to pen some good wishes for you.
My Wish for You…
4
* Where there is sickness or undue pain,
may you be calm with health soon regained.
* Where there is any worry or anxiety,
may you SEE the futility of worry.
* Where there is much self-doubting in the mind,
may your faith or confidence grow with time.
* Where there is sheer exhaustion or tiredness,
may you rest and sleep well to curb weariness.
* Where there is setback, failure or a loss,
may you be patient and learn from the cause.
* Where there is a feeling of being so down,
may you note and KNOW that things will turn around.
* Where there is a negative encounter,
may you SEE that transient is this matter.
* Where there is any mental state of dis-ease,
may you strengthen your Dhamma practice for peace.
***********************************
I would like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on
“Impermanence”.
Things arise and then die, at times slow at times fast.
It is Nature, wise ones know it’s not theirs to ask.
Knowing transiency, worldly things - do not amass.
The foolish ones crave, cling, grasp and so strongly lust.
Soon they’ll suffer much, this for sure one can forecast.
It means nothing, your possessions, status or class.
Even your body. into dust it will be cast.
When your WISDOM SEES that nothing can truly last,
you’d strive to gain qualities that remain steadfast.
‘What is it that’ll go on, not lost or away pass?’
It is your Kamma and the Dhamma unsurpassed.
5
Inspiration 1
Inspiration 1
Message 2
6
Dear Friend in the Buddha-Dhamma,
In these challenging times, I hope you’re well and living
peacefully.
Dukkha there’ll be but the Dhamma will help us cope
beautifully.
Amidst the tribulations we can still live most meaningfully.
Dana, Sila and Bhavana must be practiced unceasingly.
At the end of the day, we’d have lived without regret
certainly.
My warmest regards and Metta go to you and your family.
******************************************
Anxiety, stress, problems and worry we do have to a degree.
In this Message I’d like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on
“Cutting Worry”.
* The more you understand and SEE the nature of the mind,
the better you’ll cope with the stress that comes from time to
time.
* When the Truth of ANICCA is realized clearly,
the mind will have less and less thoughts of undue
worry.
* Constant Dhamma contemplation helps in ‘Letting Go’.
Your mind will be more calm and peaceful in Life’s
Flow.
* Projecting to the future or dwelling in the past
Message 2
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can propel the mind to negative states very fast.
* We must watch ‘the monkey mind’ of ours constantly.
Cut negative thoughts, practice Right Thought
mindfully.
* Being always centered on the ‘Self’, ‘I’ or ‘Me’
will give rise to mental ‘dis-ease’ undoubtedly.
Give, serve, help … this is an antidote for worry.
* Live a life of Sila or good Morality.
Your conscience’s clear, your mind more peaceful
certainly.
* Practice Meditation on Metta, Samatha and Vipassana.
Your mind will be free from Dukkha, you are on the
way to Nibbana.
*********************************************
In the past and perhaps more so now, many are facing stress.
Covid-19 has given us many challenges and tests.
Loss of jobs, poverty, sickness … many have become
depressed.
This happens all over the world, in the East and in the West.
To relieve their pain, some seek out foolish ways, they are
hard pressed.
Some fall victims of scams and con men who know how to
impress.
Some seek out cultist groups and they get into a greater
mess.
All people want good fortune, happiness, peace and to be
Blessed.
8
There’s no short cut – best prayers or chants as some
preachers attest.
The Way is: Do more good; Develop the mind … give this
your best.
This is what any wise Dhamma teacher would surely
suggest.
Soon you’ll get a happiness and peace that surpasses the rest!
*******************************************
I would like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on
Right Thought.
* Right Thought in the 8-Fold Path is Samma
Sankappa.
It’s the second factor in the Path to end Dukkha.
* Right Thought follows from Right Understanding or
Right Vision.
This Clear Thinking will pave the Way to our Liberation.
* Positive states must be developed in the mind
strongly. Thoughts of harmlessness must be cultivated
mindfully.
* The mind must constantly be imbued with thoughts
of Metta.
We should wish for all beings to be out of Samsara.
* Right Thought also entails eliminating thoughts of
cruelty.
Evoke Compassion towards all beings in misery.
* Right Thought needs cultivating thoughts of
detachment.
Craving and Attachment obstructs Enlightenment.
* With Right Understanding and Right Thought or
Right Intention,
may our Wisdom help lead us all to Dukkha’s Cessation.
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Inspiration 2
Message 3
Dear Friend in the Sublime Dhamma,
Another week has passed us by so very speedily.
I do hope all things are fine with you and your family.
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Message 3
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
From time to time people bemoan with many a query:
“Why is this unfortunate thing happening to poor me?”
“Why is life so full of pain, suffering and misery?”
“ Why is the Heavenly God showing me little mercy?”
“I have prayed hard, why are things for me turning out
badly?”
“I have practiced Dana, Sila, Bhavana constantly.
“Why then am I still suffering in my mind and body”?
“I have learnt about the fact of Dukkha and transiency.”
“I have learnt I must be mindful and think positively.
Yet, why is my mind still filled with much dis-ease and
worry?”
“Why, Why Why …when can my troubles and problems end
quickly?”
*******************************************
Not understanding the Sublime Dhamma sufficiently
will bring doubts and failure to cope with life’s uncertainty.
We’ve spun in Samsara for a long time undoubtedly.
We’ve done unwholesome things in the past inevitably.
How long the results of Kamma will last no one can SEE.
We need to endure, practicing the Dhamma patiently.
All conditioned things will pass, tell yourself confidently.
So what should we do to keep the mind peaceful and steady?
The Buddha in the Suttas gave a good analogy.
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Think of a lump of salt – salt that’s salty naturally.
If the salt’s put into a bowl of water carefully,
the taste of the water will be very salty surely.
If lots of water are added to the bowl mindfully,
the saltiness is hardly felt, what a change this will be!
‘Salt’ is the ‘bad kamma’ from deeds done intentionally.
‘Water’ is the good kammic action you do knowingly.
The ‘taste’ is the result that befalls unavoidably.
Dhamma Friends, I hope you see the message very clearly.
“Keep on doing good, your mind can still shine very
brightly!”
**********************************************
Some years ago in my website “Quora”, I answered an
interesting and practical question. The question was:
“What are some of the short bits of wise advice you have
received?”
I wrote and submitted a suggested answer in Quora.
Here are some of the very short bits of advice I consider
wise:
* Be in the NOW.
* Do not Procrastinate.
* Have Quiet Time.
* Have Enough Rest.
* You Must Exercise.
* Help The Needy.
* Learn To Meditate.
* Read Very Widely.
* Always Be Polite.
* Be Always Mindful.
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* Do Not Worry.
* Learn From Mistakes.
* Use Time Wisely.
* Work With Diligence.
* Shun All Vices.
* Lead By Example.
* Radiate Constantly Loving-Kindness.
* Earn People’s Respect.
* Be Very Responsible.
* Do Dhamma Contemplation.
* Do Good, Avoid Evil and Purify the Mind.
You might want to check-out the Presentation:
https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/3word-wisdom-
reflections
******************************
Sila or Morality is an essential aspect of our Dhamma
practice.
There are 7 Ariyan (Noble) Precepts from the Noble 8-
Fold Path we should observe the best we can, namely:
* No Killing
* No Stealing or Taking what is not given
* No Sexual Misconduct
* No Lying
* No Slander or Malicious Speech
* No Harsh Speech or Foul Speech that hurts
* No Frivolous Talk or Gossip
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Inspiration 3
14
Message 4
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
I hope this message finds you joyful and happy.
It’s important to keep body and mind healthy.
When one knows and applies the Dhamma correctly,
he will not think, speak, behave or act foolishly.
His mind will be more calm and peaceful certainly.
It’s The Middle Way he must walk diligently.
The end of Dukkha he’ll start to see more clearly.
His faith in The Triple Gem will grow steadily.
He will then live life righteously and most wisely.
********************************************
So much misery and pain come from wrong view and
thinking.
The Dhamma runs opposite to the likes of the worldling.
We crave for riches, status and many a sensual thing.
When will we realize or SEE that all these are not lasting?
The impermanence of all things will lead to suffering.
What is wise to do is Dhamma learning and mind training.
In these troubled times, do step up Dhamma understanding.
States of peacefulness arise when our Wisdom keeps
growing.
*********************************************
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I would like to share an experience which I wrote about in
one of my earlier free Dhamma books. I titled it
“Of 5 C’s and the Dhamma”.
‘One of the interesting things in our Buddhist Association’s
Annual Dhamma Youth Camp is to decide on the names of
the Groups of participants in the Camp.
I remember one year there was a student who suggested that
we should name the five Groups using the 5 C’s, which
according to him are:
• CASH
• CAREER
• CAR
• CONDOMINIUM
• CREDIT CARD
Ha! Such is the tremendous influence of the materialistic
world. Naturally we could not use these names. We
explained to the student (and his friends) that there are far
more important and meaningful things in life than those 5
C’s which do not guarantee a person happiness, peace and
wisdom. Of course, as lay people, there is nothing wrong
with earning some cash honestly, have a career based on
Right Livelihood, own a car for use, have a house for shelter
and using a credit card to facilitate things in our mundane
living. The problems and negative effects arise when one
• Spends one’s life chasing the 5 C’s with little time
for Dhamma. (Many of us would say: Well, we’ll wait until
we are older when we have more material comfort before we
learn and practice Dhamma. But we forget this
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IMPORTANT POINT: We can’t be sure that there’ll be a
time and opportunity in the future for us to learn and practice
Dhamma. Life is Uncertain but Death is Certain.
Reflecting on this, wouldn’t it be wiser for us to integrate
Dhamma into our life, work and our family NOW?)
• Attaches and clings on to the 5 C’s. Do not forget
that attachment, craving and clinging are the root cause of
Dukkha or Suffering.
• Is ‘ambushed’ or overwhelmed by more and more
greed, anger and delusion in the mad pursuit of these 5 C’s.
After explaining to the student and his friends the dangers of
these 5 C’s, we assure them that we would use 5 C’s to name
the Groups but in a different way. For the Dhamma Youth
Camp that year, the Groups were named as follows:
• Calmness Group
• Charity Group
• Compassion Group
• Clarity Group
• Confidence Group
Calmness
A big problem today among the young and old alike is that
there is a greater and greater degree of restlessness, agitation
and boredom in our mind. When will we learn to tame this
mind of ours so that it is more concentrated, calm, mindful,
peaceful and wise? It is urgent that we start NOW and the
best way is The Dhamma Way.
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Charity
Reaching out to others is an integral and essential aspect of
Dhamma practice. It is indeed sad to see people becoming
more greedy, selfish, self-centered and “Kiasu”. The practice
of Dana or Charity is greatly emphasized by the Buddha and
Dana is the first of the ten Paramis or Perfections and it is a
most meritorious action.
Compassion
Karuna or Compassion is one of the 4 Brahma Viharas (The
Four Sublime States or Divine Abodes). The cultivation and
growth of compassion leads one on the Path to liberation of
the mind and perfect bliss. The world would be a better,
happier and more peaceful place if more people show
compassion to all living beings.
Clarity
To develop a clear and wise mind is one of the most
important objectives of a good Buddhist. One walks the
Buddha-Dhamma Path cultivating compassion and wisdom
until the goal of Nibbana is realized.
Confidence
Saddha or Confidence is one of the Five Spiritual Powers.
One must have confidence in the Triple Gem – The Buddha,
Dhamma and Sangha. The only true Refuge is Refuge in the
Triple Gem.
If we base our life on the wrong 5 C’s, we will for sure be
afflicted more and more with five more C’s:
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* Confusion
* Conflict
* Calamity
* Chaos
* Clashes
Let us aspire to have or practice the good 5 C’s of:
*Calmness *Charity *Compassion *Clarity *
*Confidence
***********************************************
Recently I came upon a teaching by Tulku Thondup, a
Tibetan monk, scholar and writer. There is much Dhamma in
it for reflection:
“If we ponder on the imminence of death
repeatedly, arriving at some understanding of it,
then the obstructions to practice such as laziness,
attachment to pleasure, and procrastination will
automatically be dispelled, and one will not remain
without practicing from this moment on, just as one
would not remain comfortable if one’s head were on
fire.”
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Inspiration 4
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Message 5
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
Before long we will see the end of Twenty Twenty.
So much has happened in the world you can clearly see.
With the Pandemic on, we have a new normalcy.
Applying Dhamma, hope you can live most happily.
The more Dhamma is realized, the more peaceful you’ll be.
When you contemplate in these times of uncertainty,
you’ll know that Dhamma practice pays off ultimately.
Keep at Dana, Sila and Bhavana constantly.
******************************************
Superstition, Delusion and Wrong Understanding
brings to many, anxiety, fear and worrying.
It is sad that there is so much needless suffering.
Let your Wisdom grow with more and more Dhamma
learning.
**********************************************
For more than 20 years I have been involved in our Buddhist
Association outreach work of conducting Buddhist Wake
and Funeral Services. Over the years, I have learnt good
Dhamma from this …. particularly the Truth of Anicca,
Dukkha and Anatta.
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I have also seen so much fear and suffering arising from
delusion and superstitious beliefs.
I would like to share an interesting incident from one of the
Buddhist Funeral Services we conducted. (I wrote about this
in my first free Dhamma book “Dhamma Matters” in a
chapter titled “Dhamma Lessons from Coffin Incidents”.)
“There is so much fear, negative thought and taboo
associated with death and coffins among many people.
This is born out of ignorance, superstition, conditioning and
a lack of clear understanding of Dhamma. Isn’t it strange or
ironical that, among many other things -
• Many are afraid to look at coffins or dead bodies (these
can’t harm you) but yet are so ‘brave’(or rather
foolhardy) to do foolish things like speeding recklessly,
going to dangerous places at night, indulging in liquor,
drugs, risky sexual behavior, committing crimes etc.?
• Many turn their backs towards the coffins (isn’t that
disrespectful to the deceased?) at certain times during the
funeral services?
• Many burn lots of paper paraphernalia, joss sticks to
‘benefit’ the dead when in actual fact they are harming
poor Mother Earth?
• Many carry out so many meaningless funeral rites and
rituals (There is so much unnecessary expenditure…the
money is better utilized for the needy.) and the poor
family members suffer so much more?
• So much commercialization has gone into funeral rites
and ceremonies?
In one of the ‘Coffin incidents’, we were conducting
Buddhist funeral rites for a deceased Buddhist member. We
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followed the hearse to the Kampar crematorium for the
cremation. When the hearse reached the place, a few of us
had to carry the coffin down from the hearse. The family
members and relatives of the deceased were afraid to come
near. They were a distance away, with their backs turned. I
was at the tail part of the hearse getting ready to help to pull
the coffin down the rail in the hearse. The coffin was quite
heavy, and we needed more helpers. The worker at the head
part of the coffin up on the vehicle called out to the family
members to come and help. I was distracted and turned to
look at the family members who were at a small distance
away. My mindfulness and concentration at that moment was
broken…I didn’t realize that the worker at the head part had
already started to push the coffin down the rail! My left little
finger got caught between the coffin bottom and the rail…it
was painful. I quickly pulled my hand away. There was a
bad wound on the finger (luckily it was not severed!) and the
blood was gushing out. Well, I asked our other Association
members to continue with the last rites while I thumbed a lift
to a clinic in Kampar town to seek medical assistance. After
being tended to by the doctor, I returned to the crematorium
to join the others. They had just finished the cremation. Well,
many were very concerned about me, but they kept on saying
and believing very illogical and superstitious things like:
“It’s bad luck to touch a coffin or a dead body.” (Ha! If it
were so, then doctors, the police, the firemen, the
undertakers etc must be the most miserable people!
Incidentally, our local Cantonese undertaker and his wife,
who are very nice and happy people that I know, are blessed
with many good things …wealth, health, and successful
children who are professionals overseas.)
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“He got this accident because he was not given an “Ang
Pow” before the funeral ceremony.” (Ha! After the incident,
many started putting ‘Red Packets’ in my pocket! They
meant well but sad to say, they did not understand the
Dhamma.)
“His ‘Oon’(spiritual level?) is bad this year…he must not get
involved in ‘white matters’ (meaning deaths and perhaps
other not so happy occasions).”
“Perhaps the time chosen for cremation is not auspicious!”
Blah! Blah! Blah! Imagine how our minds can be so clouded
and deluded. The accident was just a case of cause and
effect. It was perhaps mainly my own fault. There was a
break in my judgment and mindfulness. Anyway, I count my
blessings… it could have been worse. My little finger could
have been entirely severed. Now there is a scar on the finger
to remind me of so many Dhamma things like:
• Everything is impermanent. Learn to forget and forgive.
• Death: all have to face it one day. (We don’t know when.)
Make good use of our life now as a human being.
Remember this motto: Serve to be perfect. Be perfect to
serve.
(‘Reaching Out, Looking In ’?)
• Mindfulness. (Sati) True liberation of the mind will be
attained as we practice Right Mindfulness.
• The problems that we face or the hardships we have are
actually quite small compared to so much suffering in the
world today…natural calamities, wars, famines, terrible
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sicknesses and diseases, tragic accidents etc. Learn to
appreciate what we have and count our blessings.
• When our minds lack training, cultivation and clarity,
(lack of wisdom) we suffer even more. We merely react
according to our habits and conditioned thinking.
• As the point of our transition is uncertain (There is no
bargaining with ‘Prince Death’.), there is an urgency for
us to practice the Dhamma.
(DANA, SILA and BHAVANA)”
You know, there is so much we can learn in this life. We
should strive towards a growth of our compassion and
wisdom. It is always good to reflect and contemplate on
the Buddha’s last words before He passed into
Parinibbana:
“Behold, O disciples, I exhort you. Subject to
change are all component things. Strive on with diligence.”
25
Inspiration 5
26
Message 6
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
With the current CMCO in our country,
I hope you are coping with life most peacefully.
At such times, there is a lot of uncertainty.
No longer can we do all the things so freely.
Buddha taught Anicca and Dukkha so clearly.
Contemplate on this constantly and mindfully.
When Wisdom arises, peace comes more easily.
Are we dealing with the hindrances most wisely?
It does matter to practice Dhamma ardently.
Sense desires we need to restrain certainly.
Anger and hate are cut with Metta constantly.
The restless mind needs watching and stilling daily.
Worry lessens if our Dhamma grows steadily.
Laziness we need to check with more energy.
Refuge in the Dhamma do take confidently.
With Wisdom, be ‘kindful’, heedful and act safely.
***************************************
Last week I answered a question on Quora.
The Question was:
“How do I know if the advice or teachings of motivators
and 'spiritual' leaders are truly wise and to be followed?”
I penned the following answer:
27
‘Indeed, today we have so many religious/spiritual teachers
and motivational/inspirational speakers / leaders who advice,
teach ‘life lessons’ and persuade us to be their followers.
To my mind, we need to investigate and check things out
carefully and wisely with a calm, composed and focused
mind using certain criteria or guidelines.
The spiritual teachers, motivators, inspirational leaders and
advisors themselves must have the following (to a good
degree):
1 Great Virtues and Moral Character
2 Loving-kindness
3 Compassion
4 A mind of calmness, serenity and tranquility
5 A mind of equanimity
6 Non-Greed and Non-Covetousness
7 Non-Anger, Non-Ill-will and Non-Hatred
8 Patience and Understanding
9 A life of non-attachment and the spirit of letting go.
10 Insights / Wisdom into the true nature of things
The teachings / advice given to us must NOT be
1 increasing our greed, craving and attachment
2 ineffective in cutting our anger, ill-will and hatred
3 increasing our ego and the delusion of an important self
4 increasing our superstitions and irrational beliefs and fear
5 making us less at peace within ourselves, with others and
the environment.
On the contrary, the teachings / advice given should help us
to
1 reduce the mental defilements that cause us suffering:
Greed, Anger, Delusion and Fear
2 grow in love, compassion and wisdom
28
3 live righteously and wisely
4 develop the mind so that it will have more calmness,
mindfulness, concentration, happiness, joy, peace and
equanimity.
5 live a life of meaning and moral purpose
You might want to check out the presentation “Check it out
Wisely” at the Link:
https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/check-it-out-wisely
***********************************
Some time back, I penned some couplet lines on the
importance of Patience and Endurance.
This was what I wrote:
“Patience and endurance are most praiseworthy.
They are true hallmarks of spirituality.
Be patient when blessings do not come quickly.
Good kamma seeds need time to sprout certainly.
Be patient when problems ‘stress’ you heavily.
The good, the bad will pass inevitably.
Endure the ‘pain’ of good effort mindfully.
Enlightenment is attained most gradually.
Endure suffering or dukkha steadily.
Your good deeds will bear good fruits undoubtedly.
Do good, avoid bad, strive on diligently.
May you be calm, peaceful, healthy and happy.”
29
Inspiration 6
30
Message 7
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
My wishes of Joy, Metta and Peace to you and your family.
I hope your practice of Dhamma is going on very smoothly.
Patience, discipline and persistence are needed naturally.
The forces of Mara can conquer all of us so easily.
Among Buddhists backsliding and downfall have happened
to many.
We have to be mindful lest later we regret and feel guilty.
Ardent and diligent Dhamma practice makes human life
worthy.
May we strive on The Noble Eightfold Path most
conscientiously!
*************************************
A very important aspect of Buddhist Practice is
Contemplation on the Dhamma. Done with a mind that is
quite still, composed or focused, it can help us to gain some
insights into the true nature of things or physical and mental
phenomena. Wisdom or discernment can steadily arise in
the mind. With more wisdom, there will be a lessening of
craving and attachment, the root cause of Dukkha. The mind
will be brighter, clearer and be more able to embrace
peacefully the things that come according to causes and
conditions. There will be less and less mental suffering and
31
the practitioner is on the way to Liberation.
The Dhammapada (‘The Way of Truth’), a scriptural book
in the Khudaka Nikaya, is one of the best known books in
the Buddhist Pali Canon. It contains a wealth of verses
uttered by the Buddha. They point to great Dhamma
Teachings.
Two of the very profound and meaningful ones I find in
Verse 62 and Verse 290. A few years ago, I pen some
contemplative thoughts based on these two verses.
I would like to reproduce them here for us to contemplate on
from time to time.
Dhammapada Verse 62
"I have sons, I have wealth";
with this (feeling of attachment)
the fool is afflicted. Indeed, he
himself is not his own,
how can sons and wealth be his?
* Empty into the world we come, empty we go.
Craving and attachment brings Dukkha, wise ones know.
* Impermanent are all conditioned things, it’s ANICCA.
Things arise, then they fall away, this is Truth or
Sacca.
* All worldly possessions are not truly our own.
It’s a matter of time before we walk alone.
* It is Kamma and Dhamma that matters ultimately.
Seeing this, the Wise strives to live virtuously and wisely.
Dhammapada Verse 290
32
“If by giving up small pleasures, great happiness is to be
found, the wise should give up small pleasures seeing (the
prospect of) great happiness.”
* Sacrifice is needed in the Spiritual Path.
It’s urgent to train the mind and open the heart.
* Foolish ones think worldly pleasures are a real gain.
Wise ones know unchecked sensual pursuits lead to pain.
* We must reflect most constantly on the Sublime
Dhamma.
True Dhamma will lead us to the Cessation of Dukkha.
* When we see clearly transience and Life’s uncertainty,
we’ll give up more worldly things for spirituality.
*************************************************
I would like to pen here some reflective thoughts on two
very important matters in our Dhamma Practice. They are
I The Ten Unwholesome Actions ( Dasa Akusala Kamma )
II The Ten Wholesome Actions ( Dasa Kusala Kamma )
As to the 10 Unwholesome Actions we must strive with
diligence and mindfulness to avoid them. I have done over
the years a few posts on this; anyway, I list them here again
as an important reminder.
One can do unwholesome actions with the body, speech, and
mind.
The ten immoral deeds are grouped into three categories as
follows:
Three unwholesome actions done with the mind:
33
(mano sankhara)
* covetousness; strong greed for others’ things (Abhijja )
* ill-will, hatred (Vyapada)
* wrong views (Micca Ditthi)
Four unwholesome actions done with the speech:
(vaci sankhara)
* lying (Musavada)
* slander or divisive speech (Pisunavaca)
* harsh speech (Parusavaca)
* gossip or frivolous talk (Sampappalapa)
Three unwholesome actions done with the body:
(kaya sankhara)
* killing (Panatipata)
* taking what is not given (Adinnadana)
* sexual misconduct, and also excessive indulgences of
sense pleasures (Kamesu Miccacara)
Unwholesome Actions lead to Dukkha – Suffering; Pain;
Grief; Sorrow; Stress; Misery; Mental Dis-Ease
*************************************************
For this Friday Message, I’d like to write more on the 10
Wholesome Actions we should strive to do again and again.
( We must constantly reflect on the factors that lead to
Dukkha and rebirths in the woeful states. They are
* Greed, Unwholesome Desires
* Covetousness
* Craving, Attachment (to views, people and worldly
things)
34
* Anger, Ill-will, Hatred, Jealousy, Aversion, Enmity
* Ignorance, Delusion, Ego / Conceit
* Causes and Conditions associated with past Kamma
* Depletion or Diminishing Blessings in our ‘storehouse’
merits / good kamma
On the matter of Kamma-Vipaka (Kammic actions and
results) , in the Lonaphala Sutta of the Anguttara Nikaya,
The Buddha gave a beautiful simile.
‘A grain of salt cast into a small cup of water renders it
undrinkable, but such is not the case if it be cast into a river.’
{The grain or lump of salt represents the unwholesome
kamma accumulated over so many lives; the water represents
the good kamma or merits we have. The taste of the water
represents the results …. how unpleasant it is … the more
water there is, the less saltish is the water … less unpleasant,
more bearable albeit the salt present (the bad kamma ).
Upon reflection, wise ones will constantly ‘add water to the
container’ … that is, to do more and more good kamma /
actions. The Dukkha effects will be diminished (‘diluted’)
So we see how wise it is to ‘enrich our storehouse of Merits’
through doing constantly the Ten Wholesome Actions!
*****************************
Let us now do reflections, make aspirations and strive to
actualize the ‘Ten Wholesome or Meritorious Actions’.
1 Giving / Generosity (Dāna)
“Dana cuts the Self or Ego.
More joy we will have in Life’s flow.
May my giving steadily grow.”
2 Morality (Sila)
35
“Sila is the foundation for happiness.
Harming other beings destroys peacefulness.
May I keep all my Precepts with mindfulness.”
3 Mental development (Bhāvanā)
“The mind needs constant training with good attention
This practice is essential for Liberation.
May I learn Dhamma well and do meditation.”
4 Respect, Reverence and Honoring (Apacayana)
“A most important virtue to have is humility.
It helps us cut self-centeredness and conceit certainly.
May I always show respect and reverence mindfully.”
5 Rendering Service (Veyyāvaca)
“Helping others is an action very praiseworthy.
It evokes kindness and compassion undoubtedly.
May I to the best I can offer service selflessly.”
6 Dedication or Transference of Merits (Pattidāna)
“Gratitude and concern for others is Dhamma practice.
Do Metta, direct kind thoughts to lessen mental
dis-ease.
May I share, transfer merits to help others’ Dukkha
cease.”
7 Rejoicing in others’ merits (Pattanumodana)
“Altruistic Joy is Mudita in Pali.
Beware of the taints of jealousy and envy.
May I be happy too when others are happy.”
36
8 Listening to the Dhamma (Dhammasavana)
“Listening to the Dhamma is a practice of Bhavana.
With wise reflection it gives Right View, the start to
end Dukkha.
May I not swerve from this Path that will lead us to
Nibbana.”
9 Expounding the Dhamma (Dhammadesana)
“What surpasses all other gifts is the Dhamma.
Teaching or sharing the true Dhamma brings Sukha.
May I promote the Dhamma to lessen Dukkha.”
10 Straightening one’s views (Ditthijjukamma)
“The First Factor of the Middle Way is Samma Ditthi.
Right View is understanding the 4 Noble Truths
clearly.
May I practice the Noble 8-Fold Path diligently.”
More than 6 years ago I did a PowerPoint and Video
Presentation titled “The Ten Meritorious Actions” using the
Hokkien dialect. The texts in Romanized Hokkien have the
English caption translation. For the Video, the audio
narration of the poetic Verses is in Hokkien.
You can check out the following Links:
On YouTube
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tqwr7OB8dGU
On Slideshare
https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/the-10-meritorious-
actions-a-hokkien-poem-with-eng-trans
37
Inspiration 7
38
Message 8
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
To you, a very happy and most peaceful morning.
Friday is with us again so quickly like lightning.
Time indeed zooms by all of us just like an eye blink.
How have you and your family members been keeping?
I hope each and every one of you is in the pink.
My Metta to you all for your constant well-being.
It’s important to avoid any unwholesome thing.
Wholesome deeds we must do to receive many a Blessing.
Do not slacken when it comes to Dhamma practicing.
Keep at ardent Dhamma learning and contemplating.
Sila, Samadhi and Panna – sustain this doing.
Before long may you conquer all forms of Suffering!
*********************************************
I would like to remind you of our conditioned mind and
attitude propelling us to doing many a foolish or
unwholesome deed, deeds that have their roots in greed,
anger, hatred, delusion and fear. In one form or other I have
written on this matter a number of times. It is good to reflect
on this time and again and break the chains that bind us to
Samsaric suffering:
“ We are all creatures of habits and conditioning.
39
We’ve been conditioned in our attitudes and thinking.
Conditioning can bring about a good or bad thing.
A bad thing has its roots in greed, ego and hating.
This will cause us or others much pain and suffering.
Dhamma practice can cut the bad conditioning link.
To keep the good and wipe out the bad conditioning,
be determined and diligent in the following:
1 Learn and understand the Dhamma constantly.
2 Never fail to stop your deed of charity.
3 Keep your practice of morality strongly.
4 Contemplate on the Dhamma unceasingly.
5 Do good, shun evil, train the mind mindfully.
6 Send Metta to one and all regularly.
7 Set aside time to meditate patiently.”
************************************************
Doing introspection from time to time is a very good
spiritual practice – to reflect and self-check as to how our
Dhamma practice is going on, whether we are declining or
growing stronger in Dhamma learning and KNOWING/
SEEING the way things really are.
I would like to pen a list of questions where we can
introspect and reflect upon:
* Dana, Sila, Bhavana - do we always remember?
* On ‘Dhamma Matters’ dates, do we set up a reminder?
* Kamma and Dhamma - do we SEE that they truly
matter?
40
* On Dana, have we been a better Giver and Helper?
* On Metta, have we been doing well … friendlier and
kinder?
* On keeping Precepts, are we getting better and better?
* On Sadha in the Triple Gem, is there any waver?
* Are we still strong and ardent as a good Dhamma learner?
* With others can we in harmony work well together?
* Relating with others, are we often a Fault-Finder?
* At Dhamma Centers, are we a dedicated member?
* Against the evil Mara, are we still a good ‘Fighter’?
* On the Dhamma, have we declined as a ‘Dhamma lover’?
* Have our indulgences in sensual pursuits grown weaker?
* On unwholesome desires, has our restraint grown
stronger?
* As Buddha’s Disciple, are we a worthy follower?
* In our practice, has our mind become more calm and
clearer?
* Walking the Path, are we more compassionate and wiser?
41
* Can we say that ‘Forsaking the Dhamma we will
NEVER!’
* Diligent in our Practice, is Enlightenment nearer?
**********************************************
Doing Dhamma Reflections and Making Positive
Aspirations throughout the year is a very beneficial spiritual
practice. Such a good action, if consistently repeated will
steadily over time bring about good mental development
when we find our thinking, attitudes and views becoming
wiser and our practice of Dana, Sila and Bhavana
intensifying.
Some years ago, I did a set of Dhamma Reflections and
Aspirations we can carry out from time to time. I would
like to share this with one and all after having done some
minor editing and adjustments.
* Do contemplate on the Dhamma and make positive
aspirations constantly.
This, followed by practice helps to cut Greed, Anger,
Delusion and Fear certainly.
* Good Aspirations for daily living
can build mental states of well-being.
* May we all grow in the mind.
May we reach the Truth Sublime.
* May more wholesome thoughts and good Dhamma
advice
help me to be more happy, peaceful and wise.
42
* Counting our Blessings is a wise practice.
It leads to contentment and mental peace.
* When the mind is heedless and lacks clarity,
one can expect actions of stupidity.
* Amidst our ‘busyness’, do find time
to be in solitude to train the mind.
* For true peace to prevail in the mind,
you need to have meditation time.
* When the mind is trained to be more mindful,
it’ll go into a state that’s more peaceful.
* May we learn and help spread the Dhamma
to young and old everywhere, near and far.
* Beyond Ignorance, there is Enlightenment.
May we grow in Compassion and Wisdom.
* Peace develops with less expectation.
Be present, be aware, pay attention.
* May we all stay mindful and clear
as we live wisely year to year.
* Unwholesome speech, action or mind
will lead to spiritual decline.
* When we spread Dhamma and Loving-kindness,
we fill our hearts with peace and happiness.
* Selfless giving is a great spiritual practice
43
In true giving, joy arises and there is peace.
* May our mind dwell in calm and peace.
May all our stress and worry cease.
* When one has great compassion for every being,
one kills the ‘Self’ that is a root of all suffering.
* Beware of all anger, ill-will and hate.
The pain and suffering they bring is great.
* Striving on mindfully with Right Vision
let’s conquer greed, hatred and delusion.
* May our Dhamma Practice bring mental peace.
May all our suffering lessen or cease.
44
Inspiration 8
45
Message 9
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
I hope all things with you are going on peacefully.
Some find that each day and week passes by so quickly!
Others might find the days dragging along so slowly.
Time is relative, it’s tied to our mind state so strangely.
A mind with Dhamma is superior undoubtedly.
Such a mind will know what to do, spending days wisely.
A mind of defilements will suffer miserably.
An idle mind attracts Mara very easily.
Why do good things or Blessings come to some frequently?
Why do bad things or misfortunes strike some constantly?
Blessings are outcomes of the good we do sincerely.
Dukkha is tied up with bad things of mind and body.
So, it’s not praying to a god that we turn ‘Lucky’.
‘Good Begets good, Bad Begets Bad’, do know this deeply.
It’s good Dhamma practice that will count ultimately.
So, let’s be wise and practice the Dhamma ardently!
***********************************************
46
I would like to give reminders of some important Dhamma
Gems for us to constantly contemplate upon and practice
diligently.
Some Dhamma Gems for Reflection and Practice
1 BE IN THE HERE AND NOW
Bring the mind to the Present Moment.
It will settle into a state of calm and peaceful
contentment.
2 PRACTICE CHARITY AND GENEROSITY
This helps to cut a root cause of Dukkha, our Ego.
There’ll be less mental suffering with our Letting Go.
3 DO THE MEDITATION ON LOVING-KINDNESS.
The benefits of this great meditation are many.
Within us and with others there’ll be better harmony.
4 PRACTICE GRATITUDE AS OFTEN AS WE CAN
When one is grateful, there is an uplifting of the mind.
Arising in us will be a spiritual joy sublime.
5 SET ASIDE TIME TO BE ALONE
In solitude contemplate on some Dhamma.
When Wisdom grows there’ll be a fall of Dukkha.
6 ALWAYS BE MINDFUL, GUARD YOUR
THOUGHTS
Our thoughts create our peace, our Dukkha,
Check the mind to keep away Mara.
47
7 PRACTICE PATIENCE AND FORBEARANCE
These are important virtues to cultivate.
All things will come to pass… to endure is great.
8 TODAY MATTERS, NOT SOMEDAY
In Dhamma practice do not procrastinate.
Life is uncertain, fools hesitate or wait.
9 LEARN FROM WRONGS AND MISTAKES
Wrong actions bring suffering and pain.
Learn from them and do not err again
10 LET IT BE, LET IT GO
There’re times when we have to let go or let it be.
This way we can keep the mind more peaceful and free.
***********************************************
Dhamma is everywhere. If we are observant and mindful of
what we see and hear, we can learn a lot of Dhamma from
the things that we experience or the happenings around us.
Upon reflection and contemplation on these, we can
gradually see and actualize the Dhamma.
In the 1990s, an interesting happening took place at our
Association, Persatuan Buddhist Hilir Perak. I wrote an
article on this and it was later published in two Free
Distribution Dhamma books “Crystals in The Sand” (Sukhi
Hotu) and “Why Like That One? – A Buddhist Reflects”
(Inward Path). The article was titled “Lessons from a Dead
Cat”.
I reproduce the article (with some minor editing and
adjustments) for your reflection.
48
(Some background info: For more than 20 years since 1987,
I used to give Community Guidance Classes in Chemistry
and English at our local Buddhist Association, Persatuan
Buddhist Hilir Perak. This was one of our outreach
programs.)
LESSONS FROM A DEAD CAT
Every day in the afternoon, a number of students would
come to our Buddhist Association to make use of our
Community Library facilities or to follow our Guidance
Classes for selected UPSR, PMR, SPM and STPM subjects.
There was an occasion a number of years ago when many
students complained about a horrible stench in the vicinity of
our Association. (It was a pity that none investigated to find
the cause and solve the problem.) I looked around the
Association premises to try to locate any dead body of an
animal – the stench was definitely due to a rotting carcass. I
could not find any dead body. The stench went on for a
couple of days.
One morning, one of our adult members who had been on
duty in the morning, phoned me to say that she had located
the carcass of a dead cat trapped in a narrow corridor behind
a row of 5 toilets. The corridor was filled with a lot of things
– containers, wooden chairs, boards and some other things.
She asked me to enlist the help of some students to clear the
mess in the afternoon.
At the end of my SPM English class that afternoon, I made
an announcement (an indirect way to ask for some volunteer
helpers):
49
“Are there any students who would like to gain some insight
experience into the recent Earthquake disaster in Turkey?
There is some DANA work from which you can gain some
wisdom.”
The students were curious as to what I was driving at. Three
boys and three girls volunteered for this ‘unknown Dana
work’. They followed me to the place where the carcass of
the dead cat was trapped in. On reaching the place and on
realizing the Dana work expected, most of them became
afraid, shocked and filled with aversion (and regret?). The
sight and smell of the rotting carcass was bad enough. Ha!
To remove the carcass and clear the mess was even worse!
Maggots were attacking the parts of the carcass and parts of
the dead body were strewn or stuck against some furniture
items. It was perhaps a gruesome sight for the students. I
suppose some of them must have regretted their curiosity as
they volunteered for this ‘mysterious Dana work’! One of
them, I noticed, had turned pale in his face. Anyway, to get
things going, I gave them some Dhamma points for
reflection:
“What you have here is nothing compared to the recent
Earthquake tragedy that struck Turkey. Imagine being buried
under tons of rubble – without water and food for hours or
days, not knowing whether you will be rescued. As the hours
pass, dead human bodies around you begin to decay and the
stench gets worse and worse. Did you read about the case of
the boy trapped under the rubble with some of his family
members? One by one, they perished, and the bodies rotted.
It must have been a real ordeal and trauma for this poor boy
who was later rescued. Have you reflected on how lucky we
50
all are, leading so comfortable lives? Have we learnt how to
count our blessings? This little Dana work that we are going
to do is a positive action – many are going to benefit from
it … and our Association will be a cleaner place!”
I suppose the students must have been inspired by this little
‘Dhamma Talk’. We got cracking at things; I too had to join
in – all in all, it took us about an hour to clear the mess and
put back things in order. We took the carcass of the cat to a
distant place for disposal.
You know, from this little incident, we can reflect on a lot of
good Dhamma.
• In the Dhammapada, the Buddha said:
“Behold this body – a painted image, a mass of heaped up
sores, infirm, full of hankering – of which nothing is
lasting or stable.”
“Fully worn out is this body, a nest of disease, and
fragile. This foul mass breaks up, for death is the end of
life.”
Such contemplation would not make us morbid, pessimistic
or depressed. On the contrary, it can ‘enlighten’ us a bit – we
will cling less, appreciate more of what we have, help us cut
so many of our defilements ~ greed, attachment, anger,
jealousy, ego, conceit and delusion.
• We are all subjected to decay, old age, disease and
death. It is strange that despite this fact of life, so many live a
life as if life is permanent. We spend so much time chasing
after wealth, power and sensual pleasures not realizing that
51
the ‘Prince of Darkness’ can, at any time, ‘tap us on the
shoulder’ and say, “It’s time to go.” And there is no
bargaining! Reflecting on this, shouldn’t we feel an urgency
to lead a life with Dhamma as the Guide and Light – a life of
kindness, compassion, Dana and striving to develop our
mind?
• Our ignorance and conditioned mind make fools of
us, and we suffer. Not understanding and realizing the Eight
Worldly Conditions we
- expect always to gain; we cannot accept or bear with
any loss.
- react adversely or in agony to “ugly sights”, “foul
smells”, “lousy tastes”, “horrible sounds”, “uncomfortable
feelings” , “bad mood” and “angry thoughts”.
- yearn for praise and cannot take any blame.
- pursue feverishly honor and fame with no realization
that this is fleeting.
When will we learn or practice patience? When can we take
things as they inevitably are or as they inevitably come
along? When will our minds develop the Brahma Vihara
qualities of Metta ( Loving-Kindness ), Karuna
( Compassion ), Mudita ( Altruistic Joy ) and Upekkha
( Equanimity )?
Let us reflect on the Buddha’s Last Words:
“Be diligent, mindful and extremely virtuous.
With thoughts collected, guard your mind.
In this Doctrine and Discipline, by living strenuously,
52
you will escape the Cycle of Rebirth and put an end to
suffering.
Think not that you have no Teacher after my death.
Regard the Dhamma and Vinaya I have taught you as
your Teacher. He who practices My Teaching best serves
Me most.
He who sees the Dhamma sees Me.
Transient are all component things. Strive on with
diligence.”
Stay Safe. Be Mindful, Peaceful and ‘Kindful’ .
With Metta,
Bro. Oh Teik Bin
53
Inspiration 9
54
Message 10
Dear Friend in the Dhamma,
I hope and pray that all is well with everybody.
Time passes by all of us so very speedily.
Things happen at times so very unpredictably.
Well, we know one thing that’s constant is uncertainty.
One of life’s three signs is Anicca or transiency.
The trained mind can cope better with this certainly.
Training the mind entails Dhamma practice constantly.
The best of ways is the 8-Fold Path undoubtedly.
Let us reflect on Panna, Sila and Samadhi.
Through mindful learning may we deepen Samma Ditthi.
Keep thoughts away from ill-will, attachment and cruelty.
Be mindful of the speech we all engage in daily.
No Lies, No Slander, No Gossip or Speaking Harshly.
Samma Kammanta points to actions of the body.
No killing, no stealing and acts of adultery.
Right Livelihood would mean not harming anybody.
Right Effort aims to purify the mind ardently.
Unwholesome thoughts we must dispel from the mind
strongly.
Let not wrong thoughts enter the mind so dangerously.
Wholesome thoughts we must all develop continually.
Maintain and nurture all the good thoughts you’ve already.
Right Mindfulness we call Samma Sati in Pali.
55
This has to be practiced by us very diligently.
Be mindful of feelings, mind, Dhamma and the body.
Right Concentration is known as Samma Samadhi.
Do this Stillness Meditation for tranquility.
May we walk this Noble 8-Fold Path most ardently!
*****************************************
When Ignorance is cut through with the sword of Wisdom,
the mind grows in joy, happiness, peace, tranquility and
equanimity. So, the development of Wisdom is a crucial
objective of Dhamma practice.
Many years ago, I did a presentation titled “Wisdom in Less
than 10 Words”.
I did a reflection and review on this again and decided to
* select some Dhamma Messages / Life Lessons
* do some editing and re-writing on some of what was
penned
* add further Dhamma reflections for the selected Wisdom
Teachings of less than 10-words
Below is the write-up for your reflection and actualization.
Wisdom in less than 10 Words
1 NOTHING WORTH HAVING COMES
EASY
Spiritual gains are what matter ultimately.
How can this come without striving
diligently?
56
2 DO MORE THAN EXIST
Is Human life just “Eat, Work, Have Fun
and Sleep?”
Wise ones know that ‘Life’s True Meaning’
they must seek’.
3 THE PAST IS GONE, THE FUTURE YET
TO COME.
The only true Reality is the NOW
MOMENT.
Being in the NOW gives us the Peace of
Contentment.
4 REALIZE HOW BLESSED YOU ARE
Gratitude is a great spiritual practice.
Growing within there will be more joy and
peace.
5 WHY STRESS OVER SOMETHING
YOU CAN’T CHANGE?
Things arise according to causes and
condition.
57
There’re times to Let Go, Let It Be, that’s
Liberation!
6 ONCE YOU NEED LESS, YOU WILL
HAVE MORE
Live a life of little wants, a life of true
Simplicity.
You’ll have a wealth of contentment, joy,
peace and serenity.
7 KINDNESS CHANGES EVERYTHING
The practice of Mindfulness, Heedfulness
and ‘Kindfulness’
will bring you a lot of joy, peace, wisdom
and happiness.
8 SO MUCH IN LIFE DEPENDS ON OUR
ATTITUDE
Strive to develop Samma Ditthi or Right
Understanding.
This is essential in the Middle Way to end
Suffering.
58
9 SIMPLE THINGS BECOME
COMPLICATED WHEN YOU EXPECT
TOO MUCH
Expectations oftentimes lead to
disappointment and misery.
Just do your best in righteous ways and you
will live much more peacefully.
10 GREAT THINGS OR ACHIEVEMENTS
NEVER COME FROM COMFORT ZONE
How can there be gain without any struggle
or some pain?
Success comes with diligence, trying again
and again.
11 STORMS DON’T LAST FOREVER
Have great patience and endurance to the
very last.
All is impermanent, everything will come to
pass.
12 YOU WILL RISE BY LIFTING OTHERS
59
The practice of Giving or Service is truly
uplifting.
It cuts the Self or Ego… joy and peace
suffuse your being.
13 CHANGE YOUR THOUGHTS AND YOU
WILL CHANGE YOUR WORLD
The World, happy or sad is created by your
inner mind.
Have thoughts of Love, Compassion, Letting
Go, a Heaven you’ll find.
14 THERE ARE ONLY 2 OPTIONS:
MAKE PROGRESS OR MAKE
EXCUSES
Excuses for laziness are the workings of
Mara.
Arouse your energy, be diligent to end
Dukkha.
15 HAVE A WARM HEART, COOL MIND,
A CARING TOUCH
Conquer Anger and Hatred, Be
Compassionate, the Wise Ones say.
60
With such ardent practice, you’ll be peaceful,
keeping Dukkha at bay.
“Time once gone off,
cannot be obtained back again.
The wise ones use their time well
in sunshine or rain.
May we strive on diligently
to end all pain.”
Live with mindfulness, gratefulness and
peacefulness.
Take care.
With Metta,
Bro. Oh Teik Bin
61
Inspiration 10

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Free eBook ~ 10 Past WhatsApp Dhamma Messages to Reflect Repeatedly.pdf

  • 2. 1 CONTENTS Message Page Inspirational Pic Page 1 1 Wisdom Tells Me That… (1) 5 2 6 Wisdom Tells Me That… (1) 9 3 10 Formula For Success 13 4 14 A Story of Terrific Thinking 19 5 20 A Story of Wisdom 25 6 26 Teachings of Wisdom 29 7 30 A Touching Story 37 8 38 Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow 44 9 45 10 Favorite Axioms 53 10 54 A Thought-Provoking Story 61
  • 3. 1 Message 1 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, So many things are happening in our beloved nation. Needless to say, there is much uncertainty, stress or tension. From politics, health to economy there’s apprehension. Hope you can stay peaceful amidst many a tribulation. This COVID pandemic challenge, what will be its duration? No one can tell despite hearing many a declaration. Seeing Dukkha and Anicca with a clear comprehension can certainly help us cope better with any vexation. To Dana, Sila, Bhavana we must give very great attention. It pays to practice Dhamma mindfully with dedication. My you all reap the fruits of your good mental cultivation. ****************************************** When there is hardship, many fall victims to practices of delusion. When the Dhamma is lacking, many resort to superstition. When conquered by Mara, many make very foolish decision. When desperate, many turn to gods in acts of supplication. When the mind’s ignorant, many seek out the occult dimension. Through un-Dhammic ways, many suffer for their deluded action. ******************************************** What then should be done by us, the young or old generation?
  • 4. 2 The Buddha taught this so clearly: “Dukkha and its Cessation” * Know this: The cause of Dukkha is Craving, a ‘Mental Poison’ * Know this: Practice the Noble 8-Fold Way for Liberation. In our Dhamma practice give the following great attention: * Take Refuge in the Triple Gem with sincere dedication. * Observe the moral precepts with very strong resolution. * Strive to have great patience, diligence and determination. * Constantly do remember to do Dhamma contemplation. * Watch mindfully the mind to rid of Greed, Hate and Delusion. * Always practice mindfulness, heedfulness, and wise reflection. * Practice Dana – with a good heart of Metta and compassion. * Do Metta, Samatha and Vipassana Meditation. ************************************************ For our character and mental development, it is good to retrospect from time to time – to check our weaknesses and then take steps to overcome them with Dhamma ways. Some years ago, I did a PowerPoint Presentation - A Fun Psychological Personal Profile Test based on one's choice of his favorite color. The link is at: https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/clean-color-fun It may not be fully accurate ... if any points do apply to you, reflect. Do not grow in pride with praises ... just try to further enhance your strengths. If weaknesses are pointed out accurately, don't feel bad ... just try to improve! Have fun!
  • 5. 3 And Grow in Wisdom! ************************************************ I’d like to pen my thoughts on “Right View” * Right View or Understanding is Samma Ditthi. To attain this, Noble Ones practice ardently. * Develop Right View in Walking the Path. Learn the Dhamma well and practice with heart. * Right View arises when the 4 Noble Truths are SEEN clearly- Dukkha, its Cause, its End, and The Way to end it finally. * Deluded ones believe there is no Kamma. Such a wrong view will lead them to much Dukkha. * Deluded ones dismiss Rebirth in Samsara. They are very easily conquered by Mara. * Deluded ones believe that Noble Ones are non- existent. Those with Right View know that Noble Ones exist – this they’re certain. * Awaken, develop Right View, do not wait! Right View will lead you to Liberation Gate. *********************************************** For this week, I’d like to pen some good wishes for you. My Wish for You…
  • 6. 4 * Where there is sickness or undue pain, may you be calm with health soon regained. * Where there is any worry or anxiety, may you SEE the futility of worry. * Where there is much self-doubting in the mind, may your faith or confidence grow with time. * Where there is sheer exhaustion or tiredness, may you rest and sleep well to curb weariness. * Where there is setback, failure or a loss, may you be patient and learn from the cause. * Where there is a feeling of being so down, may you note and KNOW that things will turn around. * Where there is a negative encounter, may you SEE that transient is this matter. * Where there is any mental state of dis-ease, may you strengthen your Dhamma practice for peace. *********************************** I would like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on “Impermanence”. Things arise and then die, at times slow at times fast. It is Nature, wise ones know it’s not theirs to ask. Knowing transiency, worldly things - do not amass. The foolish ones crave, cling, grasp and so strongly lust. Soon they’ll suffer much, this for sure one can forecast. It means nothing, your possessions, status or class. Even your body. into dust it will be cast. When your WISDOM SEES that nothing can truly last, you’d strive to gain qualities that remain steadfast. ‘What is it that’ll go on, not lost or away pass?’ It is your Kamma and the Dhamma unsurpassed.
  • 8. 6 Dear Friend in the Buddha-Dhamma, In these challenging times, I hope you’re well and living peacefully. Dukkha there’ll be but the Dhamma will help us cope beautifully. Amidst the tribulations we can still live most meaningfully. Dana, Sila and Bhavana must be practiced unceasingly. At the end of the day, we’d have lived without regret certainly. My warmest regards and Metta go to you and your family. ****************************************** Anxiety, stress, problems and worry we do have to a degree. In this Message I’d like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on “Cutting Worry”. * The more you understand and SEE the nature of the mind, the better you’ll cope with the stress that comes from time to time. * When the Truth of ANICCA is realized clearly, the mind will have less and less thoughts of undue worry. * Constant Dhamma contemplation helps in ‘Letting Go’. Your mind will be more calm and peaceful in Life’s Flow. * Projecting to the future or dwelling in the past Message 2
  • 9. 7 can propel the mind to negative states very fast. * We must watch ‘the monkey mind’ of ours constantly. Cut negative thoughts, practice Right Thought mindfully. * Being always centered on the ‘Self’, ‘I’ or ‘Me’ will give rise to mental ‘dis-ease’ undoubtedly. Give, serve, help … this is an antidote for worry. * Live a life of Sila or good Morality. Your conscience’s clear, your mind more peaceful certainly. * Practice Meditation on Metta, Samatha and Vipassana. Your mind will be free from Dukkha, you are on the way to Nibbana. ********************************************* In the past and perhaps more so now, many are facing stress. Covid-19 has given us many challenges and tests. Loss of jobs, poverty, sickness … many have become depressed. This happens all over the world, in the East and in the West. To relieve their pain, some seek out foolish ways, they are hard pressed. Some fall victims of scams and con men who know how to impress. Some seek out cultist groups and they get into a greater mess. All people want good fortune, happiness, peace and to be Blessed.
  • 10. 8 There’s no short cut – best prayers or chants as some preachers attest. The Way is: Do more good; Develop the mind … give this your best. This is what any wise Dhamma teacher would surely suggest. Soon you’ll get a happiness and peace that surpasses the rest! ******************************************* I would like to pen some Dhamma thoughts on Right Thought. * Right Thought in the 8-Fold Path is Samma Sankappa. It’s the second factor in the Path to end Dukkha. * Right Thought follows from Right Understanding or Right Vision. This Clear Thinking will pave the Way to our Liberation. * Positive states must be developed in the mind strongly. Thoughts of harmlessness must be cultivated mindfully. * The mind must constantly be imbued with thoughts of Metta. We should wish for all beings to be out of Samsara. * Right Thought also entails eliminating thoughts of cruelty. Evoke Compassion towards all beings in misery. * Right Thought needs cultivating thoughts of detachment. Craving and Attachment obstructs Enlightenment. * With Right Understanding and Right Thought or Right Intention, may our Wisdom help lead us all to Dukkha’s Cessation.
  • 11. 9 Inspiration 2 Message 3 Dear Friend in the Sublime Dhamma, Another week has passed us by so very speedily. I do hope all things are fine with you and your family.
  • 12. 10 Message 3 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, From time to time people bemoan with many a query: “Why is this unfortunate thing happening to poor me?” “Why is life so full of pain, suffering and misery?” “ Why is the Heavenly God showing me little mercy?” “I have prayed hard, why are things for me turning out badly?” “I have practiced Dana, Sila, Bhavana constantly. “Why then am I still suffering in my mind and body”? “I have learnt about the fact of Dukkha and transiency.” “I have learnt I must be mindful and think positively. Yet, why is my mind still filled with much dis-ease and worry?” “Why, Why Why …when can my troubles and problems end quickly?” ******************************************* Not understanding the Sublime Dhamma sufficiently will bring doubts and failure to cope with life’s uncertainty. We’ve spun in Samsara for a long time undoubtedly. We’ve done unwholesome things in the past inevitably. How long the results of Kamma will last no one can SEE. We need to endure, practicing the Dhamma patiently. All conditioned things will pass, tell yourself confidently. So what should we do to keep the mind peaceful and steady? The Buddha in the Suttas gave a good analogy.
  • 13. 11 Think of a lump of salt – salt that’s salty naturally. If the salt’s put into a bowl of water carefully, the taste of the water will be very salty surely. If lots of water are added to the bowl mindfully, the saltiness is hardly felt, what a change this will be! ‘Salt’ is the ‘bad kamma’ from deeds done intentionally. ‘Water’ is the good kammic action you do knowingly. The ‘taste’ is the result that befalls unavoidably. Dhamma Friends, I hope you see the message very clearly. “Keep on doing good, your mind can still shine very brightly!” ********************************************** Some years ago in my website “Quora”, I answered an interesting and practical question. The question was: “What are some of the short bits of wise advice you have received?” I wrote and submitted a suggested answer in Quora. Here are some of the very short bits of advice I consider wise: * Be in the NOW. * Do not Procrastinate. * Have Quiet Time. * Have Enough Rest. * You Must Exercise. * Help The Needy. * Learn To Meditate. * Read Very Widely. * Always Be Polite. * Be Always Mindful.
  • 14. 12 * Do Not Worry. * Learn From Mistakes. * Use Time Wisely. * Work With Diligence. * Shun All Vices. * Lead By Example. * Radiate Constantly Loving-Kindness. * Earn People’s Respect. * Be Very Responsible. * Do Dhamma Contemplation. * Do Good, Avoid Evil and Purify the Mind. You might want to check-out the Presentation: https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/3word-wisdom- reflections ****************************** Sila or Morality is an essential aspect of our Dhamma practice. There are 7 Ariyan (Noble) Precepts from the Noble 8- Fold Path we should observe the best we can, namely: * No Killing * No Stealing or Taking what is not given * No Sexual Misconduct * No Lying * No Slander or Malicious Speech * No Harsh Speech or Foul Speech that hurts * No Frivolous Talk or Gossip
  • 16. 14 Message 4 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, I hope this message finds you joyful and happy. It’s important to keep body and mind healthy. When one knows and applies the Dhamma correctly, he will not think, speak, behave or act foolishly. His mind will be more calm and peaceful certainly. It’s The Middle Way he must walk diligently. The end of Dukkha he’ll start to see more clearly. His faith in The Triple Gem will grow steadily. He will then live life righteously and most wisely. ******************************************** So much misery and pain come from wrong view and thinking. The Dhamma runs opposite to the likes of the worldling. We crave for riches, status and many a sensual thing. When will we realize or SEE that all these are not lasting? The impermanence of all things will lead to suffering. What is wise to do is Dhamma learning and mind training. In these troubled times, do step up Dhamma understanding. States of peacefulness arise when our Wisdom keeps growing. *********************************************
  • 17. 15 I would like to share an experience which I wrote about in one of my earlier free Dhamma books. I titled it “Of 5 C’s and the Dhamma”. ‘One of the interesting things in our Buddhist Association’s Annual Dhamma Youth Camp is to decide on the names of the Groups of participants in the Camp. I remember one year there was a student who suggested that we should name the five Groups using the 5 C’s, which according to him are: • CASH • CAREER • CAR • CONDOMINIUM • CREDIT CARD Ha! Such is the tremendous influence of the materialistic world. Naturally we could not use these names. We explained to the student (and his friends) that there are far more important and meaningful things in life than those 5 C’s which do not guarantee a person happiness, peace and wisdom. Of course, as lay people, there is nothing wrong with earning some cash honestly, have a career based on Right Livelihood, own a car for use, have a house for shelter and using a credit card to facilitate things in our mundane living. The problems and negative effects arise when one • Spends one’s life chasing the 5 C’s with little time for Dhamma. (Many of us would say: Well, we’ll wait until we are older when we have more material comfort before we learn and practice Dhamma. But we forget this
  • 18. 16 IMPORTANT POINT: We can’t be sure that there’ll be a time and opportunity in the future for us to learn and practice Dhamma. Life is Uncertain but Death is Certain. Reflecting on this, wouldn’t it be wiser for us to integrate Dhamma into our life, work and our family NOW?) • Attaches and clings on to the 5 C’s. Do not forget that attachment, craving and clinging are the root cause of Dukkha or Suffering. • Is ‘ambushed’ or overwhelmed by more and more greed, anger and delusion in the mad pursuit of these 5 C’s. After explaining to the student and his friends the dangers of these 5 C’s, we assure them that we would use 5 C’s to name the Groups but in a different way. For the Dhamma Youth Camp that year, the Groups were named as follows: • Calmness Group • Charity Group • Compassion Group • Clarity Group • Confidence Group Calmness A big problem today among the young and old alike is that there is a greater and greater degree of restlessness, agitation and boredom in our mind. When will we learn to tame this mind of ours so that it is more concentrated, calm, mindful, peaceful and wise? It is urgent that we start NOW and the best way is The Dhamma Way.
  • 19. 17 Charity Reaching out to others is an integral and essential aspect of Dhamma practice. It is indeed sad to see people becoming more greedy, selfish, self-centered and “Kiasu”. The practice of Dana or Charity is greatly emphasized by the Buddha and Dana is the first of the ten Paramis or Perfections and it is a most meritorious action. Compassion Karuna or Compassion is one of the 4 Brahma Viharas (The Four Sublime States or Divine Abodes). The cultivation and growth of compassion leads one on the Path to liberation of the mind and perfect bliss. The world would be a better, happier and more peaceful place if more people show compassion to all living beings. Clarity To develop a clear and wise mind is one of the most important objectives of a good Buddhist. One walks the Buddha-Dhamma Path cultivating compassion and wisdom until the goal of Nibbana is realized. Confidence Saddha or Confidence is one of the Five Spiritual Powers. One must have confidence in the Triple Gem – The Buddha, Dhamma and Sangha. The only true Refuge is Refuge in the Triple Gem. If we base our life on the wrong 5 C’s, we will for sure be afflicted more and more with five more C’s:
  • 20. 18 * Confusion * Conflict * Calamity * Chaos * Clashes Let us aspire to have or practice the good 5 C’s of: *Calmness *Charity *Compassion *Clarity * *Confidence *********************************************** Recently I came upon a teaching by Tulku Thondup, a Tibetan monk, scholar and writer. There is much Dhamma in it for reflection: “If we ponder on the imminence of death repeatedly, arriving at some understanding of it, then the obstructions to practice such as laziness, attachment to pleasure, and procrastination will automatically be dispelled, and one will not remain without practicing from this moment on, just as one would not remain comfortable if one’s head were on fire.”
  • 22. 20 Message 5 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, Before long we will see the end of Twenty Twenty. So much has happened in the world you can clearly see. With the Pandemic on, we have a new normalcy. Applying Dhamma, hope you can live most happily. The more Dhamma is realized, the more peaceful you’ll be. When you contemplate in these times of uncertainty, you’ll know that Dhamma practice pays off ultimately. Keep at Dana, Sila and Bhavana constantly. ****************************************** Superstition, Delusion and Wrong Understanding brings to many, anxiety, fear and worrying. It is sad that there is so much needless suffering. Let your Wisdom grow with more and more Dhamma learning. ********************************************** For more than 20 years I have been involved in our Buddhist Association outreach work of conducting Buddhist Wake and Funeral Services. Over the years, I have learnt good Dhamma from this …. particularly the Truth of Anicca, Dukkha and Anatta.
  • 23. 21 I have also seen so much fear and suffering arising from delusion and superstitious beliefs. I would like to share an interesting incident from one of the Buddhist Funeral Services we conducted. (I wrote about this in my first free Dhamma book “Dhamma Matters” in a chapter titled “Dhamma Lessons from Coffin Incidents”.) “There is so much fear, negative thought and taboo associated with death and coffins among many people. This is born out of ignorance, superstition, conditioning and a lack of clear understanding of Dhamma. Isn’t it strange or ironical that, among many other things - • Many are afraid to look at coffins or dead bodies (these can’t harm you) but yet are so ‘brave’(or rather foolhardy) to do foolish things like speeding recklessly, going to dangerous places at night, indulging in liquor, drugs, risky sexual behavior, committing crimes etc.? • Many turn their backs towards the coffins (isn’t that disrespectful to the deceased?) at certain times during the funeral services? • Many burn lots of paper paraphernalia, joss sticks to ‘benefit’ the dead when in actual fact they are harming poor Mother Earth? • Many carry out so many meaningless funeral rites and rituals (There is so much unnecessary expenditure…the money is better utilized for the needy.) and the poor family members suffer so much more? • So much commercialization has gone into funeral rites and ceremonies? In one of the ‘Coffin incidents’, we were conducting Buddhist funeral rites for a deceased Buddhist member. We
  • 24. 22 followed the hearse to the Kampar crematorium for the cremation. When the hearse reached the place, a few of us had to carry the coffin down from the hearse. The family members and relatives of the deceased were afraid to come near. They were a distance away, with their backs turned. I was at the tail part of the hearse getting ready to help to pull the coffin down the rail in the hearse. The coffin was quite heavy, and we needed more helpers. The worker at the head part of the coffin up on the vehicle called out to the family members to come and help. I was distracted and turned to look at the family members who were at a small distance away. My mindfulness and concentration at that moment was broken…I didn’t realize that the worker at the head part had already started to push the coffin down the rail! My left little finger got caught between the coffin bottom and the rail…it was painful. I quickly pulled my hand away. There was a bad wound on the finger (luckily it was not severed!) and the blood was gushing out. Well, I asked our other Association members to continue with the last rites while I thumbed a lift to a clinic in Kampar town to seek medical assistance. After being tended to by the doctor, I returned to the crematorium to join the others. They had just finished the cremation. Well, many were very concerned about me, but they kept on saying and believing very illogical and superstitious things like: “It’s bad luck to touch a coffin or a dead body.” (Ha! If it were so, then doctors, the police, the firemen, the undertakers etc must be the most miserable people! Incidentally, our local Cantonese undertaker and his wife, who are very nice and happy people that I know, are blessed with many good things …wealth, health, and successful children who are professionals overseas.)
  • 25. 23 “He got this accident because he was not given an “Ang Pow” before the funeral ceremony.” (Ha! After the incident, many started putting ‘Red Packets’ in my pocket! They meant well but sad to say, they did not understand the Dhamma.) “His ‘Oon’(spiritual level?) is bad this year…he must not get involved in ‘white matters’ (meaning deaths and perhaps other not so happy occasions).” “Perhaps the time chosen for cremation is not auspicious!” Blah! Blah! Blah! Imagine how our minds can be so clouded and deluded. The accident was just a case of cause and effect. It was perhaps mainly my own fault. There was a break in my judgment and mindfulness. Anyway, I count my blessings… it could have been worse. My little finger could have been entirely severed. Now there is a scar on the finger to remind me of so many Dhamma things like: • Everything is impermanent. Learn to forget and forgive. • Death: all have to face it one day. (We don’t know when.) Make good use of our life now as a human being. Remember this motto: Serve to be perfect. Be perfect to serve. (‘Reaching Out, Looking In ’?) • Mindfulness. (Sati) True liberation of the mind will be attained as we practice Right Mindfulness. • The problems that we face or the hardships we have are actually quite small compared to so much suffering in the world today…natural calamities, wars, famines, terrible
  • 26. 24 sicknesses and diseases, tragic accidents etc. Learn to appreciate what we have and count our blessings. • When our minds lack training, cultivation and clarity, (lack of wisdom) we suffer even more. We merely react according to our habits and conditioned thinking. • As the point of our transition is uncertain (There is no bargaining with ‘Prince Death’.), there is an urgency for us to practice the Dhamma. (DANA, SILA and BHAVANA)” You know, there is so much we can learn in this life. We should strive towards a growth of our compassion and wisdom. It is always good to reflect and contemplate on the Buddha’s last words before He passed into Parinibbana: “Behold, O disciples, I exhort you. Subject to change are all component things. Strive on with diligence.”
  • 28. 26 Message 6 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, With the current CMCO in our country, I hope you are coping with life most peacefully. At such times, there is a lot of uncertainty. No longer can we do all the things so freely. Buddha taught Anicca and Dukkha so clearly. Contemplate on this constantly and mindfully. When Wisdom arises, peace comes more easily. Are we dealing with the hindrances most wisely? It does matter to practice Dhamma ardently. Sense desires we need to restrain certainly. Anger and hate are cut with Metta constantly. The restless mind needs watching and stilling daily. Worry lessens if our Dhamma grows steadily. Laziness we need to check with more energy. Refuge in the Dhamma do take confidently. With Wisdom, be ‘kindful’, heedful and act safely. *************************************** Last week I answered a question on Quora. The Question was: “How do I know if the advice or teachings of motivators and 'spiritual' leaders are truly wise and to be followed?” I penned the following answer:
  • 29. 27 ‘Indeed, today we have so many religious/spiritual teachers and motivational/inspirational speakers / leaders who advice, teach ‘life lessons’ and persuade us to be their followers. To my mind, we need to investigate and check things out carefully and wisely with a calm, composed and focused mind using certain criteria or guidelines. The spiritual teachers, motivators, inspirational leaders and advisors themselves must have the following (to a good degree): 1 Great Virtues and Moral Character 2 Loving-kindness 3 Compassion 4 A mind of calmness, serenity and tranquility 5 A mind of equanimity 6 Non-Greed and Non-Covetousness 7 Non-Anger, Non-Ill-will and Non-Hatred 8 Patience and Understanding 9 A life of non-attachment and the spirit of letting go. 10 Insights / Wisdom into the true nature of things The teachings / advice given to us must NOT be 1 increasing our greed, craving and attachment 2 ineffective in cutting our anger, ill-will and hatred 3 increasing our ego and the delusion of an important self 4 increasing our superstitions and irrational beliefs and fear 5 making us less at peace within ourselves, with others and the environment. On the contrary, the teachings / advice given should help us to 1 reduce the mental defilements that cause us suffering: Greed, Anger, Delusion and Fear 2 grow in love, compassion and wisdom
  • 30. 28 3 live righteously and wisely 4 develop the mind so that it will have more calmness, mindfulness, concentration, happiness, joy, peace and equanimity. 5 live a life of meaning and moral purpose You might want to check out the presentation “Check it out Wisely” at the Link: https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/check-it-out-wisely *********************************** Some time back, I penned some couplet lines on the importance of Patience and Endurance. This was what I wrote: “Patience and endurance are most praiseworthy. They are true hallmarks of spirituality. Be patient when blessings do not come quickly. Good kamma seeds need time to sprout certainly. Be patient when problems ‘stress’ you heavily. The good, the bad will pass inevitably. Endure the ‘pain’ of good effort mindfully. Enlightenment is attained most gradually. Endure suffering or dukkha steadily. Your good deeds will bear good fruits undoubtedly. Do good, avoid bad, strive on diligently. May you be calm, peaceful, healthy and happy.”
  • 32. 30 Message 7 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, My wishes of Joy, Metta and Peace to you and your family. I hope your practice of Dhamma is going on very smoothly. Patience, discipline and persistence are needed naturally. The forces of Mara can conquer all of us so easily. Among Buddhists backsliding and downfall have happened to many. We have to be mindful lest later we regret and feel guilty. Ardent and diligent Dhamma practice makes human life worthy. May we strive on The Noble Eightfold Path most conscientiously! ************************************* A very important aspect of Buddhist Practice is Contemplation on the Dhamma. Done with a mind that is quite still, composed or focused, it can help us to gain some insights into the true nature of things or physical and mental phenomena. Wisdom or discernment can steadily arise in the mind. With more wisdom, there will be a lessening of craving and attachment, the root cause of Dukkha. The mind will be brighter, clearer and be more able to embrace peacefully the things that come according to causes and conditions. There will be less and less mental suffering and
  • 33. 31 the practitioner is on the way to Liberation. The Dhammapada (‘The Way of Truth’), a scriptural book in the Khudaka Nikaya, is one of the best known books in the Buddhist Pali Canon. It contains a wealth of verses uttered by the Buddha. They point to great Dhamma Teachings. Two of the very profound and meaningful ones I find in Verse 62 and Verse 290. A few years ago, I pen some contemplative thoughts based on these two verses. I would like to reproduce them here for us to contemplate on from time to time. Dhammapada Verse 62 "I have sons, I have wealth"; with this (feeling of attachment) the fool is afflicted. Indeed, he himself is not his own, how can sons and wealth be his? * Empty into the world we come, empty we go. Craving and attachment brings Dukkha, wise ones know. * Impermanent are all conditioned things, it’s ANICCA. Things arise, then they fall away, this is Truth or Sacca. * All worldly possessions are not truly our own. It’s a matter of time before we walk alone. * It is Kamma and Dhamma that matters ultimately. Seeing this, the Wise strives to live virtuously and wisely. Dhammapada Verse 290
  • 34. 32 “If by giving up small pleasures, great happiness is to be found, the wise should give up small pleasures seeing (the prospect of) great happiness.” * Sacrifice is needed in the Spiritual Path. It’s urgent to train the mind and open the heart. * Foolish ones think worldly pleasures are a real gain. Wise ones know unchecked sensual pursuits lead to pain. * We must reflect most constantly on the Sublime Dhamma. True Dhamma will lead us to the Cessation of Dukkha. * When we see clearly transience and Life’s uncertainty, we’ll give up more worldly things for spirituality. ************************************************* I would like to pen here some reflective thoughts on two very important matters in our Dhamma Practice. They are I The Ten Unwholesome Actions ( Dasa Akusala Kamma ) II The Ten Wholesome Actions ( Dasa Kusala Kamma ) As to the 10 Unwholesome Actions we must strive with diligence and mindfulness to avoid them. I have done over the years a few posts on this; anyway, I list them here again as an important reminder. One can do unwholesome actions with the body, speech, and mind. The ten immoral deeds are grouped into three categories as follows: Three unwholesome actions done with the mind:
  • 35. 33 (mano sankhara) * covetousness; strong greed for others’ things (Abhijja ) * ill-will, hatred (Vyapada) * wrong views (Micca Ditthi) Four unwholesome actions done with the speech: (vaci sankhara) * lying (Musavada) * slander or divisive speech (Pisunavaca) * harsh speech (Parusavaca) * gossip or frivolous talk (Sampappalapa) Three unwholesome actions done with the body: (kaya sankhara) * killing (Panatipata) * taking what is not given (Adinnadana) * sexual misconduct, and also excessive indulgences of sense pleasures (Kamesu Miccacara) Unwholesome Actions lead to Dukkha – Suffering; Pain; Grief; Sorrow; Stress; Misery; Mental Dis-Ease ************************************************* For this Friday Message, I’d like to write more on the 10 Wholesome Actions we should strive to do again and again. ( We must constantly reflect on the factors that lead to Dukkha and rebirths in the woeful states. They are * Greed, Unwholesome Desires * Covetousness * Craving, Attachment (to views, people and worldly things)
  • 36. 34 * Anger, Ill-will, Hatred, Jealousy, Aversion, Enmity * Ignorance, Delusion, Ego / Conceit * Causes and Conditions associated with past Kamma * Depletion or Diminishing Blessings in our ‘storehouse’ merits / good kamma On the matter of Kamma-Vipaka (Kammic actions and results) , in the Lonaphala Sutta of the Anguttara Nikaya, The Buddha gave a beautiful simile. ‘A grain of salt cast into a small cup of water renders it undrinkable, but such is not the case if it be cast into a river.’ {The grain or lump of salt represents the unwholesome kamma accumulated over so many lives; the water represents the good kamma or merits we have. The taste of the water represents the results …. how unpleasant it is … the more water there is, the less saltish is the water … less unpleasant, more bearable albeit the salt present (the bad kamma ). Upon reflection, wise ones will constantly ‘add water to the container’ … that is, to do more and more good kamma / actions. The Dukkha effects will be diminished (‘diluted’) So we see how wise it is to ‘enrich our storehouse of Merits’ through doing constantly the Ten Wholesome Actions! ***************************** Let us now do reflections, make aspirations and strive to actualize the ‘Ten Wholesome or Meritorious Actions’. 1 Giving / Generosity (Dāna) “Dana cuts the Self or Ego. More joy we will have in Life’s flow. May my giving steadily grow.” 2 Morality (Sila)
  • 37. 35 “Sila is the foundation for happiness. Harming other beings destroys peacefulness. May I keep all my Precepts with mindfulness.” 3 Mental development (Bhāvanā) “The mind needs constant training with good attention This practice is essential for Liberation. May I learn Dhamma well and do meditation.” 4 Respect, Reverence and Honoring (Apacayana) “A most important virtue to have is humility. It helps us cut self-centeredness and conceit certainly. May I always show respect and reverence mindfully.” 5 Rendering Service (Veyyāvaca) “Helping others is an action very praiseworthy. It evokes kindness and compassion undoubtedly. May I to the best I can offer service selflessly.” 6 Dedication or Transference of Merits (Pattidāna) “Gratitude and concern for others is Dhamma practice. Do Metta, direct kind thoughts to lessen mental dis-ease. May I share, transfer merits to help others’ Dukkha cease.” 7 Rejoicing in others’ merits (Pattanumodana) “Altruistic Joy is Mudita in Pali. Beware of the taints of jealousy and envy. May I be happy too when others are happy.”
  • 38. 36 8 Listening to the Dhamma (Dhammasavana) “Listening to the Dhamma is a practice of Bhavana. With wise reflection it gives Right View, the start to end Dukkha. May I not swerve from this Path that will lead us to Nibbana.” 9 Expounding the Dhamma (Dhammadesana) “What surpasses all other gifts is the Dhamma. Teaching or sharing the true Dhamma brings Sukha. May I promote the Dhamma to lessen Dukkha.” 10 Straightening one’s views (Ditthijjukamma) “The First Factor of the Middle Way is Samma Ditthi. Right View is understanding the 4 Noble Truths clearly. May I practice the Noble 8-Fold Path diligently.” More than 6 years ago I did a PowerPoint and Video Presentation titled “The Ten Meritorious Actions” using the Hokkien dialect. The texts in Romanized Hokkien have the English caption translation. For the Video, the audio narration of the poetic Verses is in Hokkien. You can check out the following Links: On YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tqwr7OB8dGU On Slideshare https://www.slideshare.net/ohteikbin/the-10-meritorious- actions-a-hokkien-poem-with-eng-trans
  • 40. 38 Message 8 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, To you, a very happy and most peaceful morning. Friday is with us again so quickly like lightning. Time indeed zooms by all of us just like an eye blink. How have you and your family members been keeping? I hope each and every one of you is in the pink. My Metta to you all for your constant well-being. It’s important to avoid any unwholesome thing. Wholesome deeds we must do to receive many a Blessing. Do not slacken when it comes to Dhamma practicing. Keep at ardent Dhamma learning and contemplating. Sila, Samadhi and Panna – sustain this doing. Before long may you conquer all forms of Suffering! ********************************************* I would like to remind you of our conditioned mind and attitude propelling us to doing many a foolish or unwholesome deed, deeds that have their roots in greed, anger, hatred, delusion and fear. In one form or other I have written on this matter a number of times. It is good to reflect on this time and again and break the chains that bind us to Samsaric suffering: “ We are all creatures of habits and conditioning.
  • 41. 39 We’ve been conditioned in our attitudes and thinking. Conditioning can bring about a good or bad thing. A bad thing has its roots in greed, ego and hating. This will cause us or others much pain and suffering. Dhamma practice can cut the bad conditioning link. To keep the good and wipe out the bad conditioning, be determined and diligent in the following: 1 Learn and understand the Dhamma constantly. 2 Never fail to stop your deed of charity. 3 Keep your practice of morality strongly. 4 Contemplate on the Dhamma unceasingly. 5 Do good, shun evil, train the mind mindfully. 6 Send Metta to one and all regularly. 7 Set aside time to meditate patiently.” ************************************************ Doing introspection from time to time is a very good spiritual practice – to reflect and self-check as to how our Dhamma practice is going on, whether we are declining or growing stronger in Dhamma learning and KNOWING/ SEEING the way things really are. I would like to pen a list of questions where we can introspect and reflect upon: * Dana, Sila, Bhavana - do we always remember? * On ‘Dhamma Matters’ dates, do we set up a reminder? * Kamma and Dhamma - do we SEE that they truly matter?
  • 42. 40 * On Dana, have we been a better Giver and Helper? * On Metta, have we been doing well … friendlier and kinder? * On keeping Precepts, are we getting better and better? * On Sadha in the Triple Gem, is there any waver? * Are we still strong and ardent as a good Dhamma learner? * With others can we in harmony work well together? * Relating with others, are we often a Fault-Finder? * At Dhamma Centers, are we a dedicated member? * Against the evil Mara, are we still a good ‘Fighter’? * On the Dhamma, have we declined as a ‘Dhamma lover’? * Have our indulgences in sensual pursuits grown weaker? * On unwholesome desires, has our restraint grown stronger? * As Buddha’s Disciple, are we a worthy follower? * In our practice, has our mind become more calm and clearer? * Walking the Path, are we more compassionate and wiser?
  • 43. 41 * Can we say that ‘Forsaking the Dhamma we will NEVER!’ * Diligent in our Practice, is Enlightenment nearer? ********************************************** Doing Dhamma Reflections and Making Positive Aspirations throughout the year is a very beneficial spiritual practice. Such a good action, if consistently repeated will steadily over time bring about good mental development when we find our thinking, attitudes and views becoming wiser and our practice of Dana, Sila and Bhavana intensifying. Some years ago, I did a set of Dhamma Reflections and Aspirations we can carry out from time to time. I would like to share this with one and all after having done some minor editing and adjustments. * Do contemplate on the Dhamma and make positive aspirations constantly. This, followed by practice helps to cut Greed, Anger, Delusion and Fear certainly. * Good Aspirations for daily living can build mental states of well-being. * May we all grow in the mind. May we reach the Truth Sublime. * May more wholesome thoughts and good Dhamma advice help me to be more happy, peaceful and wise.
  • 44. 42 * Counting our Blessings is a wise practice. It leads to contentment and mental peace. * When the mind is heedless and lacks clarity, one can expect actions of stupidity. * Amidst our ‘busyness’, do find time to be in solitude to train the mind. * For true peace to prevail in the mind, you need to have meditation time. * When the mind is trained to be more mindful, it’ll go into a state that’s more peaceful. * May we learn and help spread the Dhamma to young and old everywhere, near and far. * Beyond Ignorance, there is Enlightenment. May we grow in Compassion and Wisdom. * Peace develops with less expectation. Be present, be aware, pay attention. * May we all stay mindful and clear as we live wisely year to year. * Unwholesome speech, action or mind will lead to spiritual decline. * When we spread Dhamma and Loving-kindness, we fill our hearts with peace and happiness. * Selfless giving is a great spiritual practice
  • 45. 43 In true giving, joy arises and there is peace. * May our mind dwell in calm and peace. May all our stress and worry cease. * When one has great compassion for every being, one kills the ‘Self’ that is a root of all suffering. * Beware of all anger, ill-will and hate. The pain and suffering they bring is great. * Striving on mindfully with Right Vision let’s conquer greed, hatred and delusion. * May our Dhamma Practice bring mental peace. May all our suffering lessen or cease.
  • 47. 45 Message 9 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, I hope all things with you are going on peacefully. Some find that each day and week passes by so quickly! Others might find the days dragging along so slowly. Time is relative, it’s tied to our mind state so strangely. A mind with Dhamma is superior undoubtedly. Such a mind will know what to do, spending days wisely. A mind of defilements will suffer miserably. An idle mind attracts Mara very easily. Why do good things or Blessings come to some frequently? Why do bad things or misfortunes strike some constantly? Blessings are outcomes of the good we do sincerely. Dukkha is tied up with bad things of mind and body. So, it’s not praying to a god that we turn ‘Lucky’. ‘Good Begets good, Bad Begets Bad’, do know this deeply. It’s good Dhamma practice that will count ultimately. So, let’s be wise and practice the Dhamma ardently! ***********************************************
  • 48. 46 I would like to give reminders of some important Dhamma Gems for us to constantly contemplate upon and practice diligently. Some Dhamma Gems for Reflection and Practice 1 BE IN THE HERE AND NOW Bring the mind to the Present Moment. It will settle into a state of calm and peaceful contentment. 2 PRACTICE CHARITY AND GENEROSITY This helps to cut a root cause of Dukkha, our Ego. There’ll be less mental suffering with our Letting Go. 3 DO THE MEDITATION ON LOVING-KINDNESS. The benefits of this great meditation are many. Within us and with others there’ll be better harmony. 4 PRACTICE GRATITUDE AS OFTEN AS WE CAN When one is grateful, there is an uplifting of the mind. Arising in us will be a spiritual joy sublime. 5 SET ASIDE TIME TO BE ALONE In solitude contemplate on some Dhamma. When Wisdom grows there’ll be a fall of Dukkha. 6 ALWAYS BE MINDFUL, GUARD YOUR THOUGHTS Our thoughts create our peace, our Dukkha, Check the mind to keep away Mara.
  • 49. 47 7 PRACTICE PATIENCE AND FORBEARANCE These are important virtues to cultivate. All things will come to pass… to endure is great. 8 TODAY MATTERS, NOT SOMEDAY In Dhamma practice do not procrastinate. Life is uncertain, fools hesitate or wait. 9 LEARN FROM WRONGS AND MISTAKES Wrong actions bring suffering and pain. Learn from them and do not err again 10 LET IT BE, LET IT GO There’re times when we have to let go or let it be. This way we can keep the mind more peaceful and free. *********************************************** Dhamma is everywhere. If we are observant and mindful of what we see and hear, we can learn a lot of Dhamma from the things that we experience or the happenings around us. Upon reflection and contemplation on these, we can gradually see and actualize the Dhamma. In the 1990s, an interesting happening took place at our Association, Persatuan Buddhist Hilir Perak. I wrote an article on this and it was later published in two Free Distribution Dhamma books “Crystals in The Sand” (Sukhi Hotu) and “Why Like That One? – A Buddhist Reflects” (Inward Path). The article was titled “Lessons from a Dead Cat”. I reproduce the article (with some minor editing and adjustments) for your reflection.
  • 50. 48 (Some background info: For more than 20 years since 1987, I used to give Community Guidance Classes in Chemistry and English at our local Buddhist Association, Persatuan Buddhist Hilir Perak. This was one of our outreach programs.) LESSONS FROM A DEAD CAT Every day in the afternoon, a number of students would come to our Buddhist Association to make use of our Community Library facilities or to follow our Guidance Classes for selected UPSR, PMR, SPM and STPM subjects. There was an occasion a number of years ago when many students complained about a horrible stench in the vicinity of our Association. (It was a pity that none investigated to find the cause and solve the problem.) I looked around the Association premises to try to locate any dead body of an animal – the stench was definitely due to a rotting carcass. I could not find any dead body. The stench went on for a couple of days. One morning, one of our adult members who had been on duty in the morning, phoned me to say that she had located the carcass of a dead cat trapped in a narrow corridor behind a row of 5 toilets. The corridor was filled with a lot of things – containers, wooden chairs, boards and some other things. She asked me to enlist the help of some students to clear the mess in the afternoon. At the end of my SPM English class that afternoon, I made an announcement (an indirect way to ask for some volunteer helpers):
  • 51. 49 “Are there any students who would like to gain some insight experience into the recent Earthquake disaster in Turkey? There is some DANA work from which you can gain some wisdom.” The students were curious as to what I was driving at. Three boys and three girls volunteered for this ‘unknown Dana work’. They followed me to the place where the carcass of the dead cat was trapped in. On reaching the place and on realizing the Dana work expected, most of them became afraid, shocked and filled with aversion (and regret?). The sight and smell of the rotting carcass was bad enough. Ha! To remove the carcass and clear the mess was even worse! Maggots were attacking the parts of the carcass and parts of the dead body were strewn or stuck against some furniture items. It was perhaps a gruesome sight for the students. I suppose some of them must have regretted their curiosity as they volunteered for this ‘mysterious Dana work’! One of them, I noticed, had turned pale in his face. Anyway, to get things going, I gave them some Dhamma points for reflection: “What you have here is nothing compared to the recent Earthquake tragedy that struck Turkey. Imagine being buried under tons of rubble – without water and food for hours or days, not knowing whether you will be rescued. As the hours pass, dead human bodies around you begin to decay and the stench gets worse and worse. Did you read about the case of the boy trapped under the rubble with some of his family members? One by one, they perished, and the bodies rotted. It must have been a real ordeal and trauma for this poor boy who was later rescued. Have you reflected on how lucky we
  • 52. 50 all are, leading so comfortable lives? Have we learnt how to count our blessings? This little Dana work that we are going to do is a positive action – many are going to benefit from it … and our Association will be a cleaner place!” I suppose the students must have been inspired by this little ‘Dhamma Talk’. We got cracking at things; I too had to join in – all in all, it took us about an hour to clear the mess and put back things in order. We took the carcass of the cat to a distant place for disposal. You know, from this little incident, we can reflect on a lot of good Dhamma. • In the Dhammapada, the Buddha said: “Behold this body – a painted image, a mass of heaped up sores, infirm, full of hankering – of which nothing is lasting or stable.” “Fully worn out is this body, a nest of disease, and fragile. This foul mass breaks up, for death is the end of life.” Such contemplation would not make us morbid, pessimistic or depressed. On the contrary, it can ‘enlighten’ us a bit – we will cling less, appreciate more of what we have, help us cut so many of our defilements ~ greed, attachment, anger, jealousy, ego, conceit and delusion. • We are all subjected to decay, old age, disease and death. It is strange that despite this fact of life, so many live a life as if life is permanent. We spend so much time chasing after wealth, power and sensual pleasures not realizing that
  • 53. 51 the ‘Prince of Darkness’ can, at any time, ‘tap us on the shoulder’ and say, “It’s time to go.” And there is no bargaining! Reflecting on this, shouldn’t we feel an urgency to lead a life with Dhamma as the Guide and Light – a life of kindness, compassion, Dana and striving to develop our mind? • Our ignorance and conditioned mind make fools of us, and we suffer. Not understanding and realizing the Eight Worldly Conditions we - expect always to gain; we cannot accept or bear with any loss. - react adversely or in agony to “ugly sights”, “foul smells”, “lousy tastes”, “horrible sounds”, “uncomfortable feelings” , “bad mood” and “angry thoughts”. - yearn for praise and cannot take any blame. - pursue feverishly honor and fame with no realization that this is fleeting. When will we learn or practice patience? When can we take things as they inevitably are or as they inevitably come along? When will our minds develop the Brahma Vihara qualities of Metta ( Loving-Kindness ), Karuna ( Compassion ), Mudita ( Altruistic Joy ) and Upekkha ( Equanimity )? Let us reflect on the Buddha’s Last Words: “Be diligent, mindful and extremely virtuous. With thoughts collected, guard your mind. In this Doctrine and Discipline, by living strenuously,
  • 54. 52 you will escape the Cycle of Rebirth and put an end to suffering. Think not that you have no Teacher after my death. Regard the Dhamma and Vinaya I have taught you as your Teacher. He who practices My Teaching best serves Me most. He who sees the Dhamma sees Me. Transient are all component things. Strive on with diligence.” Stay Safe. Be Mindful, Peaceful and ‘Kindful’ . With Metta, Bro. Oh Teik Bin
  • 56. 54 Message 10 Dear Friend in the Dhamma, I hope and pray that all is well with everybody. Time passes by all of us so very speedily. Things happen at times so very unpredictably. Well, we know one thing that’s constant is uncertainty. One of life’s three signs is Anicca or transiency. The trained mind can cope better with this certainly. Training the mind entails Dhamma practice constantly. The best of ways is the 8-Fold Path undoubtedly. Let us reflect on Panna, Sila and Samadhi. Through mindful learning may we deepen Samma Ditthi. Keep thoughts away from ill-will, attachment and cruelty. Be mindful of the speech we all engage in daily. No Lies, No Slander, No Gossip or Speaking Harshly. Samma Kammanta points to actions of the body. No killing, no stealing and acts of adultery. Right Livelihood would mean not harming anybody. Right Effort aims to purify the mind ardently. Unwholesome thoughts we must dispel from the mind strongly. Let not wrong thoughts enter the mind so dangerously. Wholesome thoughts we must all develop continually. Maintain and nurture all the good thoughts you’ve already. Right Mindfulness we call Samma Sati in Pali.
  • 57. 55 This has to be practiced by us very diligently. Be mindful of feelings, mind, Dhamma and the body. Right Concentration is known as Samma Samadhi. Do this Stillness Meditation for tranquility. May we walk this Noble 8-Fold Path most ardently! ***************************************** When Ignorance is cut through with the sword of Wisdom, the mind grows in joy, happiness, peace, tranquility and equanimity. So, the development of Wisdom is a crucial objective of Dhamma practice. Many years ago, I did a presentation titled “Wisdom in Less than 10 Words”. I did a reflection and review on this again and decided to * select some Dhamma Messages / Life Lessons * do some editing and re-writing on some of what was penned * add further Dhamma reflections for the selected Wisdom Teachings of less than 10-words Below is the write-up for your reflection and actualization. Wisdom in less than 10 Words 1 NOTHING WORTH HAVING COMES EASY Spiritual gains are what matter ultimately. How can this come without striving diligently?
  • 58. 56 2 DO MORE THAN EXIST Is Human life just “Eat, Work, Have Fun and Sleep?” Wise ones know that ‘Life’s True Meaning’ they must seek’. 3 THE PAST IS GONE, THE FUTURE YET TO COME. The only true Reality is the NOW MOMENT. Being in the NOW gives us the Peace of Contentment. 4 REALIZE HOW BLESSED YOU ARE Gratitude is a great spiritual practice. Growing within there will be more joy and peace. 5 WHY STRESS OVER SOMETHING YOU CAN’T CHANGE? Things arise according to causes and condition.
  • 59. 57 There’re times to Let Go, Let It Be, that’s Liberation! 6 ONCE YOU NEED LESS, YOU WILL HAVE MORE Live a life of little wants, a life of true Simplicity. You’ll have a wealth of contentment, joy, peace and serenity. 7 KINDNESS CHANGES EVERYTHING The practice of Mindfulness, Heedfulness and ‘Kindfulness’ will bring you a lot of joy, peace, wisdom and happiness. 8 SO MUCH IN LIFE DEPENDS ON OUR ATTITUDE Strive to develop Samma Ditthi or Right Understanding. This is essential in the Middle Way to end Suffering.
  • 60. 58 9 SIMPLE THINGS BECOME COMPLICATED WHEN YOU EXPECT TOO MUCH Expectations oftentimes lead to disappointment and misery. Just do your best in righteous ways and you will live much more peacefully. 10 GREAT THINGS OR ACHIEVEMENTS NEVER COME FROM COMFORT ZONE How can there be gain without any struggle or some pain? Success comes with diligence, trying again and again. 11 STORMS DON’T LAST FOREVER Have great patience and endurance to the very last. All is impermanent, everything will come to pass. 12 YOU WILL RISE BY LIFTING OTHERS
  • 61. 59 The practice of Giving or Service is truly uplifting. It cuts the Self or Ego… joy and peace suffuse your being. 13 CHANGE YOUR THOUGHTS AND YOU WILL CHANGE YOUR WORLD The World, happy or sad is created by your inner mind. Have thoughts of Love, Compassion, Letting Go, a Heaven you’ll find. 14 THERE ARE ONLY 2 OPTIONS: MAKE PROGRESS OR MAKE EXCUSES Excuses for laziness are the workings of Mara. Arouse your energy, be diligent to end Dukkha. 15 HAVE A WARM HEART, COOL MIND, A CARING TOUCH Conquer Anger and Hatred, Be Compassionate, the Wise Ones say.
  • 62. 60 With such ardent practice, you’ll be peaceful, keeping Dukkha at bay. “Time once gone off, cannot be obtained back again. The wise ones use their time well in sunshine or rain. May we strive on diligently to end all pain.” Live with mindfulness, gratefulness and peacefulness. Take care. With Metta, Bro. Oh Teik Bin