December 5, 2010. 77-minute dharma talk given Thich Nhat Hanh in the Assembly of Stars hall at Lower Hamlet in Plum Village. The talk is in Vietnamese with English translation (French and original Vietnamese available and video version). The monastery is in the 2010-2011 Winter Rains Retreat. You can hear other parts of this commentary. We continue here with Part IX and stanza’s 29-32 of Chinese Dhammada, Sutra #36.
Walking in the present moment, but not like a robot. If you see another practitioner who might be struggling with the practice, learn to be an inspiration to others by practicing yourself rather than saying what they’re doing it wrong. Presence of your mind. Ask yourself, are you sure? The body is here, but what about the mind? Do you radiate peace, joy, and presence?
Stopping is our practice. Everything is a training for a new habit. When we eat, walk, shop, cook, clean the bathroom. You can get enlightened by stopping, looking, and practicing.
If you need to suffer, just suffer. Do not suppress. But that is not enough. Suffering is not enough. It is not ok to only suffer. You have to train yourself to accept yourself. Allow yourself to cry, allow yourself to see another way out. See other ways to transform. without mud. No lotus. Suffering has a role in happiness. No one can claim that I have no suffering at all, but don’t suffer uselessly. You come to the sangha to make use of your suffering.
The sutra commentary begins at the 49-minute mark of the dharma talk. We learn about leading the life of a holy person. In taking the mindfulness Trainings, whether lay or monastic, we gain space. Limitless space. It’s easy. If you understand this verse, you put your whole heart toward the path of practice. This is the path to the shore of no birth and no death.