Trudy Goodman

From Trudy

Shaping the Mind’s Habits

These words from the Buddha say it all: “Whatever a monk keeps pursuing with their thinking and pondering, that becomes the inclination of their awareness.” In other words, what we choose to pay attention to, becomes the inclination of our hearts and minds. (The word he used in teaching is “citta”, which means heart-mind). He was simply saying that entertaining certain kinds of thought shapes the mind’s habits – the mind goes there, again and again. By learning to be mindful, we cultivate the habit of open-hearted generosity towards each other:

From the Dhammapada, early teachings of the Buddha:

All experience is preceded by heart-mind,
Led by heart,
Made by mind.
Speak or act with a reactive mind,
And suffering follows
As the wagon wheel follows the hoof of the ox.
All experience is preceded by heart-mind,
Led by heart,
Made by mind.
Speak or act with a peaceful mind,
And happiness follows
Like a never-departing shadow.

Hopefully you’re aware that Jack and I will be teaching with Maria Shriver Thursday night (4/19/18) at the Saban Theater. Maria is a humble goddess! She has a lot to share from her life as a journalist, first lady of California, activist and mother. Here’s a quote from Maria’s new book, echoing the Buddha’s wisdom:

“The mind can be a powerful ally or a formidable opponent… Just as you exercise your body, you must also train your mind to work for you and not against you…We all need to learn mental strength…No matter what your age, no matter what your income, no matter what life has thrown your way, your (heart and) mind will be your best ally in moving you forward.”