Published Tuesday, 19 February 2019
Like a fish which on being dragged
from its home in the water
and tossed on dry land
will thrash about,
so will the heart tremble
from the current of Mara.
When we find life agreeable we tend to think ‘this is the way things should always be’. Of course part of us knows life can't always be agreeable, however habits of unawareness cause us to forget. When we forget, we believe in assumptions about how things should be and lose perspective on how things actually are. One way of understanding what the Buddha calls ‘the current of Mara’ is just these habits of unawareness. When we are not careful we become distracted by assumptions and fantasies and these distractions turn into habits which can be hard to let go of. So if our commitment to the spiritual work finds us feeling challenged, even trembling, let’s not automatically assume something is going wrong. Withdrawing from an addiction to distraction is hard work, however thankfully there are many who have walked this way ahead of us and shown that it is worthwhile.