1. Talk - Equanimity
2. Spot by Spot Meditation - Letting Go
3. Talk - Understanding Equanimity
4. Guided Awareness Meditation - Body Awareness
5. Talk - Closing
First we must understand through our own direct experience the various mental processes that lead us to grasping after or pushing away any experience. We need to clearly understand how our intentions drive all our actions, our thoughts, emotions, speech and physical activity. Reacting through our thoughts, emotions, speech and physical activities creates its own result, which conditions our future happiness.
Very early on in our meditation practice we can observe our conditioned patterns and how they are created. We see that each time we react to an intention by following it through, these patterns become more and more deeply ingrained in our minds and eventually they become our natural way of reacting. Through repetition we strengthen the desire behind them, and they become so strong that we feel as if we have no choice but to react how we always do.
Through observing this process we come to understand that at any point we can choose to follow it through or to change our intention and react in a different way. We can only do this if we can see clearly what is really going on. This clarity allows us to understand the various mental processes that are involved in our patterns and how they cause each other to arise, therefore giving us the opportunity to change the direction in which they are taking us. This can’t be done by intellectualising, but only through stopping and watching what is actually happening in the moment.
Once we take responsibility for our own happiness and suffering, we can come to understand how we create them, thus allowing us to start to decondition our old patterns and not create any new ones.
This is a major benefit of awareness meditation as it is the only way we can come to understand, through our own direct experience, how we cause our own suffering and how we can end it.