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Dhamma Talks of the Buddhist Society of Western Australia, Ajahn Brahm: Give It Everything You've Got 3

And there’s too many problems in the world because people are just so easy to complaining, shouting at each other and causing all sorts of pain for each others, simply because they’re tired themselves. So if we can learn how to put energy into resting, energy into being still, if this is the time to be still, then do it. Even putting energy into eating, sometimes that people complain about irritable bowel syndrome these days. I used to say before now if you want to make a decision, trust your guts. But if so many people have stomach aches, that’s the wrong thing to tell people to look at these days. So instead of trusting your…your guts, you have to fix the guts first of all.

And why is it that so many people do have indigestion or stomach problems or irritable bowel syndrome. It is quite clear to me why people have irritable bowel syndrome. It’s because when they are eating, they are not really paying attention, not giving everything they’ve got. Most of the time when people are eating, they don’t even taste their food, they are busy talking to the person sitting next to them, or watching the TV, or doing anything except paying attention to what they are actually doing in that moment.

Some years ago, one of our monks, he had some trouble with his digestion and he went to have a barium meal. It’s a very…I don’t know if they still have that as a diagnostic technique. They have this really gucky white liquid barium, which you have to drink a lot of, and this sits in your stomach and then as the stomach starts to churn and move, they can follow its progress through your bowels on the x-ray machine. And so they gave this monk a barium meal and had the x-ray machine on him and nothing was happening. It was about three o’clock in the afternoon, until they realized monks don’t eat anything in the afternoon. And this monk hadn’t eaten a meal in the afternoon for about six or seven years, so the stomach was not used to working at that time of the day, so these doctors were really stunned. It was just sitting there, and as far as the natural clock of his stomach was concerned, it would sit there until dawn of the next day when he would start eating again, because the stomach had learned through conditioning to turn off from just after midday to the following dawn, because that’s the only time, we only eat from dawn until midday in our tradition. But one nurse had a brainwave. They couldn’t give him something to eat, all they said is “think of your favourite food”, and as soon as he started thinking of his favourite food, the stomach started churning, liquid started coming out of the glands and the whole thing started to move, so they could actually complete their diagnostic test. And when he said that to me afterwards, I said yeah, how important it is actually to pay attention to what you are eating, because even just thinking about what you are eating actually makes the stomach start working, juices coming out, and that was actually why this monk’s barium meal could actually start moving, simply because he started thinking, making awareness of his favourite food.

Now you can understand that if you are eating and paying no awareness at all, you don’t realize it’s your favourite food or any old food, which is why that the food doesn’t move properly, the juices don’t get secreted, the saliva doesn’t even come out; which is why it doesn’t get digested fully, which is why that people have stomach problems. A little paying attention to what you are eating, putting energy, this is eating time, give it everything you’ve got, enjoy for goodness' sake. And if you go to an expensive restaurant in particular, and if you go with your partner, if it’s a very expensive meal, please tell them before the first course, shut up, no talking, I want to enjoy this meal, I pay so much money for it, I’m not going to have my attention taken away by you, shut up. Doesn’t that make a lot of sense? Because how can you enjoy a meal when you’re busy talking to someone else? Would you actually go to say a musical performance, say especially like classical music, have a conversation with your partner? Of course not. Simply because if you’re listening to them, you can’t be listening to the music. If you’re listening to the person sitting next to you, you can’t even taste the food. So even in romantic dinners, candlelight, expensive restaurant, please tell your girlfriend, shut up until I’ve finished. And then you can really enjoy the food; not only enjoy the food, but also that the food can be properly digested because you are paying full attention to everything you are doing. That way you become healthier, you don’t have the irritable bowel syndrome, you don’t have indigestion, the stomach and everything else can work as it’s meant to because you’re paying attention for goodness' sake and everything works properly.

So this is the story about putting everything you…everything you’ve got into what you’re doing. That even gets to the point to the final act of life when you’re dying. Why is it that Buddhists get reincarnated? It’s because they never die properly and have to do it all over again, and it’s a terrible thing to have to do it all over again. For those of you who are old and retired, imagine having to go to work all over again, even if you are working now, imagine having to go to school all over again. Even if you are sort of a student at school, imagine being a baby all over again, having nappies and wetting yourself and pooing yourself and not being able to tell anybody except screaming…and trying to get your mother’s attention. Do you want to do that all over again? Imagine wearing a nappy again. You will, if you don’t get it right.

So when you’re about to die, give it everything you’ve got, put all your energy into this. Okay this is the final test. It’s like the final examination of life, the big one is now here, so please do it well. A lot of times when, instead of dying, people are trying to live, and that why they don’t do it well. “I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die, I want to live.” So instead, when it’s time to die, I want to die, I’ll just…put all your attention into this process. It’s a very powerful process, dying, and actually in the old teachings of the Buddha many many people became enlightened at the time of their death. Even if they didn’t do it beforehand, they managed, right at the last moment, and the reason is because that time of death is giving you one of the most powerful teachings of life, teaching you what you really own and how much control you really have over the things which you always thought were yours. At the time of death all your possessions mean nothing, all that hard work by accumulated money, all those bank statements, those loans, all those credit cards, you can’t them off with you.

I don’t know if you know the old story of the man who was about to die and he was always equivocal about religion. He liked Buddhism, but he also liked other religions as well. So when he died, or just before he died, he went to see a Catholic priest, a Buddhist monk and a Jewish priest, and he said, “Just to make sure that something good happens to me after I die, I’m going to give you ten thousand dollars each, five thousand dollars to your temple and five thousand dollars I want you to put in my coffin when I die so I’m going up to heaven, either Buddhist heaven, Jewish heaven or Christian heaven, one of them must be right.

So the Buddhist monk, the Jewish priest and the Christian priest thought, well, you can’t turn down a five thousand dollar donation, so they took that money, and when that man died, during the funeral service, they all came up. First of all, came up the Christian priest, put five thousand dollars in cash into the coffin, keeping his promise. Then came the Jewish priest, put another five thousand, fifty hundred dollar notes in the coffin. Then came the Buddhist monk, wrote out a cheque for fifteen thousand and took the other ten thousand dollars' change. That’s why Buddhists are wise. But you can’t take anything with you.

So the time of death is a time when you can realize…The time of death is when you can actually realize how little you own, how you can have to let everything go. And it’s easy to let things go when you realize that your family, they’re not yours, they’re just friends, people you grow up with, people who you know for many many years and eventually you will part from, your friends, you will part from. Everything in this world which you had, your home, your car, your possessions, you part from. They’re not yours, they belong to nature. As soon as we realize that we can let it go. It is much easier when we can let these things go, we can enjoy people’s company when they are there. We can enjoy our possessions, our house, our car when it’s there. We enjoy it. We enjoy our partner while they’re there, we can even enjoy our monk when he’s here, before he goes to Singapore or wherever else he is going next. But after a while we know that we have to let it go.

We know how to let things go, we know how to enjoy them when they’re here. Too often we take things for granted, we think they’re always going to be here for us and that’s why we never really care. We think we’ll care tomorrow, we can say I love you tomorrow, we can say sorry tomorrow. How often is it always tomorrow? And we never get round to it and then we die. A wonderful thing about death, it shows us there is no tomorrow. Actually there was no yesterday, there is only now. What a beautiful moment this now is. We learn how to grab not the day, but to grab the now, and we realize that’s all we ever have, that’s all we ever needed, that’s all we ever wanted, just the peace in this moment.

Understanding that, that death teaches us about the value of peace, the value of forgiveness, the value of letting go. That’s why many people get enlightened at the time of death. So when it’s the time for you to die, please give it everything you’ve got, so you don’t need to come back again, get it right this time, please. And that way when you put energy, effort, full attention into whatever you are doing, it’s incredible just how successful you can be, whether it’s in life or in death, whether it’s in your relationships or whether it’s in your business, even in your meditation or whatever, putting energy into the moment, one thing at a time, everything you’ve got, it’s incredible just how successful you can be, and also how much energy you can arouse, and also how much happiness will come along with that energy. This is a very simple teaching about life.

There’s a teaching which came from Ajahn Chah, which I have followed. I know that when I was building my monastery, and those of you who are from Singapore, you went to see it today, you see many of those buildings I actually build myself. I know that it’s sometimes said in some books that never in the history of Buddhism has blood ever been shed for the furtherance of the religion, but that is actually a lie, it’s not true. I’ve shed much blood on those buildings, building a monastery. Sometimes I’ve hit the…I’ve hit my finger with a hammer, sometimes I’ve… much blood was actually got on those buildings, but I’ve always given it everything I’ve got. When you give it everything you’ve got this is why you get a beautiful monastery, this is why you get a powerful Buddhist society, this was why you got a successful life, this is why you get an energetic mind, this is why I was really tired and I’ve just spoken for one hour, amazing. So whatever you do in life, give it everything you’ve got. If you’re with your partner, give him everything you’ve got, listen to him or her, total listening, be in the moment, eating, really pay attention, whatever it is, anything you’re doing, enjoy every moment by putting full effort into whatever is the task at hand. You have lots of energy for later, don’t worry about saving something for a rainy day, give it now and then you’ll have as much energy and happiness as you’ll ever want in life. Thank you very much for listening.

…any questions? Is there any questions you would like to ask about the talk this evening? You could actually shout it out because I think you can hear if you have any questions, putting energy into the moment, energy into the question? Yes!

Aha, you are talking about when things aren’t interesting, then what do you do? And again, a lot of life is making those things interesting, putting energy into them, putting joy into them. Recently, when I’ve been teaching meditation, I was teaching…this was actually in Melbourne, there’s a few people from Melbourne, I got a letter from one of the members of the Buddhist Society of Victoria, and they were saying they were trying to meditate, they were getting dull, and I gave them a very simple technique of take your attention away from your breath just for a second and put it around your mouth and smile and then go back on to your breath. You’ll find your breath is more interesting and more joyful. And they wrote back a letter. I only received it yesterday. They said, thanks, thanks, thanks, it worked. Because they were getting bored with their breath, it was not interesting and that’s why they couldn’t really focus on their breath in their meditation, and all they really needed to do is to put something into it to make it enjoyable, to make it interesting.

Some years ago there was one of the people here who was a bus driver, and they thought this is a dead end job, just driving a bus, this is no real job satisfaction; there is no real prestige. When they went to parties, what do you do? I drive a bus. It’s not like being like, you know, the CEO of a company or like, you know, a footballer, or so even like a monk has got some romance to it, but they being a bus driver, I said, look, don’t look at it that way, you can have so much fun and happiness in a bus, all those people you meet, you will affect every one of them who walks on to your bus and pays their fare. You could growl at them or you could just smile at them, say some nice words, just give some good energy to them and they will give you good energy back. So he took what was a boring job, he gave so much energy to it, he changed his whole attitude and his whole life as a bus driver changed.

So what you actually look upon as being boring or disinteresting, there’s nothing in life which isn’t which is disinteresting. It’s what you put into life, and if you really put energy into anything you’ll find you’ll open up in the most what you thought was uninteresting tasks becomes fascinating, even when you are washing the dishes, boring old washing the dishes, feel the texture of the plates between your fingers, feel just their smoothness, just after they have been cleaned, as you are wiping them, feel the whole movement of the cloth and plate and what you are doing this for, doing this for so that other people will be able to eat a delicious dinner later on, out of compassion for them. It’s not so much what you do, it’s your attitude towards it; and it’s a very good question because if you are bored with anything, it’s nothing to do with the task which you are doing, it’s all to do with how much good attitude you are putting into what you’re doing.

I’ve given so many talks in the last year. I should be bored out of my skull giving talks. I go to Singapore and I give talks, come here and I give talks, I go to Melbourne and I give talks all day, go to Thailand and I give talks. I told people that a few weeks ago I tried to escape in Singapore, it took me into the airport, into the airport lounge, people were talking to me all the time, I decided to run away into the toilets in Changi airport’s lounge, thinking I’d escaped, and as soon as I got into the toilet the toilet attendant recognized me, Ajahn Brahm! and started asking me question on meditation for the next twenty minutes. So even in the toilet I can’t escape. And I realized that that was my karma because I had bad attitude, my attitude, I tried to escape, and of course as soon as you try and escape, the karma catches you and makes sure you can’t escape no matter where you go. Instead of doing that I should just have said yes okay I’m tired, it doesn’t matter, it’s a privilege to give talks, it’s not boring at all, put everything you’ve got into what you’re doing and then you have fun.

If you’re writing a letter to somebody, even if it’s to someone you like, who’s leaving his chaplaincy job, give it everything you’ve got, it’s fun. So whatever I do, I try to give you that extra energy, and it’s always fun then, so it’s never boring or disinteresting, you make interest, construct it, and nothing…people think that being a monk must be so boring, it’s amazing just how interesting it is being a monk in today’s world, a fascinating life. We should actually have this on the universities when they have these career days, we should have a stall, “Be a monk”. Maybe we can go on those what’s those those job centres, “Be a monk”. So thank you, Madam, for that question. I hope I have answered it to your satisfaction. It’s a very interesting question. Okay, I think that’s probably enough now because it’s gone past nine o’clock. So thank you for that question and thank you for coming here.



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And there’s too many problems in the world because people are just so easy to complaining, shouting at each other and causing all sorts of pain for each others, simply because they’re tired themselves. So if we can learn how to put energy into resting, energy into being still, if this is the time to be still, then do it. Even putting energy into eating, sometimes that people complain about irritable bowel syndrome these days. I used to say before now if you want to make a decision, trust your guts. But if so many people have stomach aches, that’s the wrong thing to tell people to look at these days. So instead of trusting your…your guts, you have to fix the guts first of all.

And why is it that so many people do have indigestion or stomach problems or irritable bowel syndrome. It is quite clear to me why people have irritable bowel syndrome. It’s because when they are eating, they are not really paying attention, not giving everything they’ve got. Most of the time when people are eating, they don’t even taste their food, they are busy talking to the person sitting next to them, or watching the TV, or doing anything except paying attention to what they are actually doing in that moment.

Some years ago, one of our monks, he had some trouble with his digestion and he went to have a barium meal. It’s a very…I don’t know if they still have that as a diagnostic technique. They have this really gucky white liquid barium, which you have to drink a lot of, and this sits in your stomach and then as the stomach starts to churn and move, they can follow its progress through your bowels on the x-ray machine. And so they gave this monk a barium meal and had the x-ray machine on him and nothing was happening. It was about three o’clock in the afternoon, until they realized monks don’t eat anything in the afternoon. And this monk hadn’t eaten a meal in the afternoon for about six or seven years, so the stomach was not used to working at that time of the day, so these doctors were really stunned. It was just sitting there, and as far as the natural clock of his stomach was concerned, it would sit there until dawn of the next day when he would start eating again, because the stomach had learned through conditioning to turn off from just after midday to the following dawn, because that’s the only time, we only eat from dawn until midday in our tradition. But one nurse had a brainwave. They couldn’t give him something to eat, all they said is “think of your favourite food”, and as soon as he started thinking of his favourite food, the stomach started churning, liquid started coming out of the glands and the whole thing started to move, so they could actually complete their diagnostic test. And when he said that to me afterwards, I said yeah, how important it is actually to pay attention to what you are eating, because even just thinking about what you are eating actually makes the stomach start working, juices coming out, and that was actually why this monk’s barium meal could actually start moving, simply because he started thinking, making awareness of his favourite food.

Now you can understand that if you are eating and paying no awareness at all, you don’t realize it’s your favourite food or any old food, which is why that the food doesn’t move properly, the juices don’t get secreted, the saliva doesn’t even come out; which is why it doesn’t get digested fully, which is why that people have stomach problems. A little paying attention to what you are eating, putting energy, this is eating time, give it everything you’ve got, enjoy for goodness' sake. And if you go to an expensive restaurant in particular, and if you go with your partner, if it’s a very expensive meal, please tell them before the first course, shut up, no talking, I want to enjoy this meal, I pay so much money for it, I’m not going to have my attention taken away by you, shut up. Doesn’t that make a lot of sense? Because how can you enjoy a meal when you’re busy talking to someone else? Would you actually go to say a musical performance, say especially like classical music, have a conversation with your partner? Of course not. Simply because if you’re listening to them, you can’t be listening to the music. If you’re listening to the person sitting next to you, you can’t even taste the food. So even in romantic dinners, candlelight, expensive restaurant, please tell your girlfriend, shut up until I’ve finished. And then you can really enjoy the food; not only enjoy the food, but also that the food can be properly digested because you are paying full attention to everything you are doing. That way you become healthier, you don’t have the irritable bowel syndrome, you don’t have indigestion, the stomach and everything else can work as it’s meant to because you’re paying attention for goodness' sake and everything works properly.

So this is the story about putting everything you…everything you’ve got into what you’re doing. That even gets to the point to the final act of life when you’re dying. Why is it that Buddhists get reincarnated? It’s because they never die properly and have to do it all over again, and it’s a terrible thing to have to do it all over again. For those of you who are old and retired, imagine having to go to work all over again, even if you are working now, imagine having to go to school all over again. Even if you are sort of a student at school, imagine being a baby all over again, having nappies and wetting yourself and pooing yourself and not being able to tell anybody except screaming…and trying to get your mother’s attention. Do you want to do that all over again? Imagine wearing a nappy again. You will, if you don’t get it right.

So when you’re about to die, give it everything you’ve got, put all your energy into this. Okay this is the final test. It’s like the final examination of life, the big one is now here, so please do it well. A lot of times when, instead of dying, people are trying to live, and that why they don’t do it well. “I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die, I want to live.” So instead, when it’s time to die, I want to die, I’ll just…put all your attention into this process. It’s a very powerful process, dying, and actually in the old teachings of the Buddha many many people became enlightened at the time of their death. Even if they didn’t do it beforehand, they managed, right at the last moment, and the reason is because that time of death is giving you one of the most powerful teachings of life, teaching you what you really own and how much control you really have over the things which you always thought were yours. At the time of death all your possessions mean nothing, all that hard work by accumulated money, all those bank statements, those loans, all those credit cards, you can’t them off with you.

I don’t know if you know the old story of the man who was about to die and he was always equivocal about religion. He liked Buddhism, but he also liked other religions as well. So when he died, or just before he died, he went to see a Catholic priest, a Buddhist monk and a Jewish priest, and he said, “Just to make sure that something good happens to me after I die, I’m going to give you ten thousand dollars each, five thousand dollars to your temple and five thousand dollars I want you to put in my coffin when I die so I’m going up to heaven, either Buddhist heaven, Jewish heaven or Christian heaven, one of them must be right.

So the Buddhist monk, the Jewish priest and the Christian priest thought, well, you can’t turn down a five thousand dollar donation, so they took that money, and when that man died, during the funeral service, they all came up. First of all, came up the Christian priest, put five thousand dollars in cash into the coffin, keeping his promise. Then came the Jewish priest, put another five thousand, fifty hundred dollar notes in the coffin. Then came the Buddhist monk, wrote out a cheque for fifteen thousand and took the other ten thousand dollars' change. That’s why Buddhists are wise. But you can’t take anything with you.

So the time of death is a time when you can realize…The time of death is when you can actually realize how little you own, how you can have to let everything go. And it’s easy to let things go when you realize that your family, they’re not yours, they’re just friends, people you grow up with, people who you know for many many years and eventually you will part from, your friends, you will part from. Everything in this world which you had, your home, your car, your possessions, you part from. They’re not yours, they belong to nature. As soon as we realize that we can let it go. It is much easier when we can let these things go, we can enjoy people’s company when they are there. We can enjoy our possessions, our house, our car when it’s there. We enjoy it. We enjoy our partner while they’re there, we can even enjoy our monk when he’s here, before he goes to Singapore or wherever else he is going next. But after a while we know that we have to let it go.

We know how to let things go, we know how to enjoy them when they’re here. Too often we take things for granted, we think they’re always going to be here for us and that’s why we never really care. We think we’ll care tomorrow, we can say I love you tomorrow, we can say sorry tomorrow. How often is it always tomorrow? And we never get round to it and then we die. A wonderful thing about death, it shows us there is no tomorrow. Actually there was no yesterday, there is only now. What a beautiful moment this now is. We learn how to grab not the day, but to grab the now, and we realize that’s all we ever have, that’s all we ever needed, that’s all we ever wanted, just the peace in this moment.

Understanding that, that death teaches us about the value of peace, the value of forgiveness, the value of letting go. That’s why many people get enlightened at the time of death. So when it’s the time for you to die, please give it everything you’ve got, so you don’t need to come back again, get it right this time, please. And that way when you put energy, effort, full attention into whatever you are doing, it’s incredible just how successful you can be, whether it’s in life or in death, whether it’s in your relationships or whether it’s in your business, even in your meditation or whatever, putting energy into the moment, one thing at a time, everything you’ve got, it’s incredible just how successful you can be, and also how much energy you can arouse, and also how much happiness will come along with that energy. This is a very simple teaching about life.

There’s a teaching which came from Ajahn Chah, which I have followed. I know that when I was building my monastery, and those of you who are from Singapore, you went to see it today, you see many of those buildings I actually build myself. I know that it’s sometimes said in some books that never in the history of Buddhism has blood ever been shed for the furtherance of the religion, but that is actually a lie, it’s not true. I’ve shed much blood on those buildings, building a monastery. Sometimes I’ve hit the…I’ve hit my finger with a hammer, sometimes I’ve… much blood was actually got on those buildings, but I’ve always given it everything I’ve got. When you give it everything you’ve got this is why you get a beautiful monastery, this is why you get a powerful Buddhist society, this was why you got a successful life, this is why you get an energetic mind, this is why I was really tired and I’ve just spoken for one hour, amazing. So whatever you do in life, give it everything you’ve got. If you’re with your partner, give him everything you’ve got, listen to him or her, total listening, be in the moment, eating, really pay attention, whatever it is, anything you’re doing, enjoy every moment by putting full effort into whatever is the task at hand. You have lots of energy for later, don’t worry about saving something for a rainy day, give it now and then you’ll have as much energy and happiness as you’ll ever want in life. Thank you very much for listening.

…any questions? Is there any questions you would like to ask about the talk this evening? You could actually shout it out because I think you can hear if you have any questions, putting energy into the moment, energy into the question? Yes!

Aha, you are talking about when things aren’t interesting, then what do you do? And again, a lot of life is making those things interesting, putting energy into them, putting joy into them. Recently, when I’ve been teaching meditation, I was teaching…this was actually in Melbourne, there’s a few people from Melbourne, I got a letter from one of the members of the Buddhist Society of Victoria, and they were saying they were trying to meditate, they were getting dull, and I gave them a very simple technique of take your attention away from your breath just for a second and put it around your mouth and smile and then go back on to your breath. You’ll find your breath is more interesting and more joyful. And they wrote back a letter. I only received it yesterday. They said, thanks, thanks, thanks, it worked. Because they were getting bored with their breath, it was not interesting and that’s why they couldn’t really focus on their breath in their meditation, and all they really needed to do is to put something into it to make it enjoyable, to make it interesting.

Some years ago there was one of the people here who was a bus driver, and they thought this is a dead end job, just driving a bus, this is no real job satisfaction; there is no real prestige. When they went to parties, what do you do? I drive a bus. It’s not like being like, you know, the CEO of a company or like, you know, a footballer, or so even like a monk has got some romance to it, but they being a bus driver, I said, look, don’t look at it that way, you can have so much fun and happiness in a bus, all those people you meet, you will affect every one of them who walks on to your bus and pays their fare. You could growl at them or you could just smile at them, say some nice words, just give some good energy to them and they will give you good energy back. So he took what was a boring job, he gave so much energy to it, he changed his whole attitude and his whole life as a bus driver changed.

So what you actually look upon as being boring or disinteresting, there’s nothing in life which isn’t which is disinteresting. It’s what you put into life, and if you really put energy into anything you’ll find you’ll open up in the most what you thought was uninteresting tasks becomes fascinating, even when you are washing the dishes, boring old washing the dishes, feel the texture of the plates between your fingers, feel just their smoothness, just after they have been cleaned, as you are wiping them, feel the whole movement of the cloth and plate and what you are doing this for, doing this for so that other people will be able to eat a delicious dinner later on, out of compassion for them. It’s not so much what you do, it’s your attitude towards it; and it’s a very good question because if you are bored with anything, it’s nothing to do with the task which you are doing, it’s all to do with how much good attitude you are putting into what you’re doing.

I’ve given so many talks in the last year. I should be bored out of my skull giving talks. I go to Singapore and I give talks, come here and I give talks, I go to Melbourne and I give talks all day, go to Thailand and I give talks. I told people that a few weeks ago I tried to escape in Singapore, it took me into the airport, into the airport lounge, people were talking to me all the time, I decided to run away into the toilets in Changi airport’s lounge, thinking I’d escaped, and as soon as I got into the toilet the toilet attendant recognized me, Ajahn Brahm! and started asking me question on meditation for the next twenty minutes. So even in the toilet I can’t escape. And I realized that that was my karma because I had bad attitude, my attitude, I tried to escape, and of course as soon as you try and escape, the karma catches you and makes sure you can’t escape no matter where you go. Instead of doing that I should just have said yes okay I’m tired, it doesn’t matter, it’s a privilege to give talks, it’s not boring at all, put everything you’ve got into what you’re doing and then you have fun.

If you’re writing a letter to somebody, even if it’s to someone you like, who’s leaving his chaplaincy job, give it everything you’ve got, it’s fun. So whatever I do, I try to give you that extra energy, and it’s always fun then, so it’s never boring or disinteresting, you make interest, construct it, and nothing…people think that being a monk must be so boring, it’s amazing just how interesting it is being a monk in today’s world, a fascinating life. We should actually have this on the universities when they have these career days, we should have a stall, “Be a monk”. Maybe we can go on those what’s those those job centres, “Be a monk”. So thank you, Madam, for that question. I hope I have answered it to your satisfaction. It’s a very interesting question. Okay, I think that’s probably enough now because it’s gone past nine o’clock. So thank you for that question and thank you for coming here.


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