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Gaps in the Gossip

November 2, 2010

Right effort involves full participation. We need gaps in our discursive or visionary gossip, room to stop and be present. Usually someone is whispering some kind of seduction, some gossip behind our back: "Meditating is nice, but how about getting together with our friends?" When discursive thoughts are constantly happening, right effort has no room to take place. It's a continual vision of possibilities: "I have a desire to eat lambchops—no, leg of lamb, steak, lemon ice cream. My friend and I could go out to the shop and get some ice cream and bring it home and have a nice conversation over ice cream. We could go to that Mexican restaurant and get tacos 'to go' and bring them home. We'll dip them in the sauce and eat together and have a nice philosophical discussion as we eat, with candlelight and soft music." We are constantly dreaming of infinite possibilities of all kinds of entertainment. There is no room to stop, no room to start providing space. Providing space is knowing how to release the discursive or visionary gossip. Such right effort is beautiful.

Condensed from "The Eightfold Path," in The Myth of Freedom and the Way of Meditation, pages 124 to 125 in the Shambhala Library edition.

This post was posted in Ocean of Dharma