Thanks for the post-retreat report. Sounds like it was an extremely productive time for you.
Practicing in the rarified environment of a retreat is a very different kettle of fish than practice in daily life. And although I come from a tradition which is emphasizes technique (in the beginning), its actually the wisdom or the quality of observation that one takes into daily life that is important. As you knnow, Ledi Sayadaw, referred to meditation as "insight exercises" which I believe is indicative of its role and function.
I think its great that with the assistance of Bhante, you were able to diagnose a significant issue with regards to your practice. My observation has been that many people tend to get stuck in some comfortable groove and their practice becomes a mechanical and familiar plateux. I think the development of genuine objective self-analysis is fundamental for continued progress.
Thanks again for sharing.
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725
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