You can’t really think your way out of addictions. Rather than talking about recovering from addictions by controlling behavior, Sokuzan teaches addiction awareness meditation. Through sitting meditation practice, by training the mind to observe what is happening in all of the sense fields, mind and body not separate, we are training awareness to see situations as they arise so what to do becomes clear without evaluating or trying to get rid of anything. You need to spend a lot of time training your mind. Dedicate at least an hour a day to your practice.
Thoughts appear and then start to go away, but because there is something about the nature of thoughts that supports a self, an identity, an ego that just thinks about me, me, me, me and my stuff–or the nearest extension of me like my property, my children, my family–we go back over old things for some kind of resolution and bring them back to life, pumping fuel into them out of fear or desperation or insecurity. What should we do? In today’s talk, Sokuzan teaches the importance of prioritizing awareness to work with the entire situation.
When we are fixated on one part as opposed to another part, it looks like things are separate. An extreme of this is warfare. We forget to take into consideration the bigger picture, or “Big Mind”. Sit down, hold still, and see the relative truth of separate parts. Practice just observing the parts without doing anything with them. This is called patience. In this way, you are using your life to awaken to the Whole.