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Aug 26, 2011

Mettā-bhāvanā: for True Happiness of All Beings

Sabbe sattā, sabbe pāṇā, sabbe bhūtā, sabbe puggalā, sabbe attabhāvapariyāpannā, sabbā itthiyo, sabbe purisā, sabbe ariyā, sabbe anariyā, sabbe manussā, sabbe amanussā, sabbe devā, sabbe vinipātikā– averā hontu, avyāpajjhā hontu, anīghā hontu, sukhī attānaṃ pariharantu.

May all beings, all living creatures, all creatures, all individuals, all forms of life, all women, all men, all those who have attained purity of mind, all those who have not yet attained purity of mind, all devas, all humans, all non-humans, all celestial beings, and all those in states of woe be free from animosity, free from aversion, free from trouble. May happiness be with them always.


The practice of mettā-bhāvanā (meditation of loving kindness) is the closing part of the technique of Vipassana meditation. We practice mettā by radiating loving kindness and goodwill towards all beings, deliberately charging the atmosphere around us with the calming, positive vibrations of pure and compassionate love. The Buddha instructed us to develop mettā so as to live more peaceful and harmonious lives and to help others to do so as well. The practice of mettā gives us a way to share with all others the peace and harmony that we are developing.

The commentaries state that mettā is the quality that inclines one to a friendly disposition—Mijjati siniyhatī’ti mettā. It is a sincere wish for the good and welfare of all, devoid of ill will. Non-aversion is mettā—adoso’ti mettā. The chief characteristic of mettā is a benevolent attitude. It culminates in the identification of oneself with all beings—a recognition of the fellowship of all life.

Mettā is not a prayer nor is it the hope that an outside agency will help. On the contrary, it is a dynamic process producing a supportive atmosphere where others can act to help themselves. Mettā can be directed towards all beings or towards a particular person. We must eliminate egotism and open our minds to practice mettā.

Intellectually, it is easy enough but it is far harder to develop such an attitude in oneself. To do so, some practice is needed, and so, we have the technique of mettā-bhāvanā, the systematic cultivation of goodwill towards others. To be really effective, though, mettā-bhāvanā must be practiced along with Vipassana meditation. So long as negativity such as aversion dominates the mind, it is futile to formulate conscious thoughts of goodwill, and doing so becomes a ritual devoid of inner meaning. However, when negativity is removed by the practice of Vipassana, goodwill naturally wells up in the mind; and emerging from the prison of self-obsession, we begin to concern ourselves with the welfare of others.

For this reason, the technique of mettā-bhāvanā is introduced only at the end of a Vipassana course, after the participants have passed through the process of purification. At such a time, meditators often feel a deep wish for the well-being of others, making their practice of mettā truly effective. Though limited time is devoted to it in a course, mettā may be regarded as the culmination of the practice of Vipassana.

Nibbāna can be experienced only by those whose minds are filled with loving kindness and compassion for all beings. Simply wishing for this state is not enough; we must purify our minds to attain it.

By the practice of Vipassana, we become aware that the underlying reality of the world and of ourselves consists of arising and passing away every moment. We realize that the process of change continues without our control and regardless of our wishes. Gradually, we understand that any attachment to what is ephemeral and insubstantial produces suffering for us. We learn to be detached and to keep the balance of our minds in the face of any experience. Then we begin to experience what real happiness is: neither the satisfaction of craving nor the forestalling of fears but rather liberation from the cycles of craving and fear. As inner serenity develops, we clearly see how others are enmeshed in suffering, and naturally this wish arises, “May they find what we have found: the way out of misery, the path of peace.” This is the proper volition for the practice of mettā-bhāvanā.

In order to practice mettā, the mind must be calm, balanced and free from negativity. This is the type of mind developed by the practice of Vipassana. A meditator knows by experience how anger, antipathy, or ill will destroys peace and frustrates any efforts to help others. Only when hatred is removed and equanimity is developed can we be happy and wish happiness for others. The words, “May all beings be happy” have great force only when uttered from a pure mind. Backed by this purity, they will certainly be effective in fostering the happiness of others.

We must, therefore, examine ourselves before practicing mettā-bhāvanā to check whether we are really capable of practicing mettā. If we find even a tinge of hatred or aversion in our minds, we should refrain at that time and relax or lie down until the impurity or unpleasantness goes away.

However, if the mind and body are filled with serenity and well-being, it is natural and appropriate to share this happiness with others: “May you be happy, may you be liberated from the defilements that are the causes of suffering. May all beings be peaceful! May all beings be happy! May all beings come out of their misery!”

In Vipassana, no verbalization, visualization or imagination is allowed. But while practicing mettā-bhāvanā, all of these are allowed.

We can use our imagination especially with those who are near and dear, we can visualize their faces and give mettā: “May you be happy, may you be happy.” As we experience the vibrations, which are characteristic of arising and passing, we can say to ourselves, “These vibrations are vibrations of mettā, of love, of compassion.” When one is alone, one can even verbalize, “May all be happy, may all be happy”. When we are in a group, we can recite mentally to ourselves, “May all be happy, may all be peaceful, may all come out of misery.”

This loving attitude enables us to deal far more skilfully with the vicissitudes of life. Suppose, for example, one encounters a person who is acting out of deliberate ill will to harm others. The common response—to react with fear and hatred—is self-centeredness, which does nothing to improve the situation and, in fact, magnifies the negativity. It would be far more helpful to remain calm and balanced, with a feeling of goodwill for the person who is acting wrongly. This must not be merely an intellectual stance, a veneer over unresolved negativity. Mettā works only when it overflows spontaneously from a purified mind.

The serenity gained in Vipassana meditation naturally gives rise to feelings of mettā, and throughout the day, this will continue to affect us and our environment in a positive way. Thus, Vipassana ultimately has a dual function: to bring us happiness by purifying our minds, and to help us to foster the happiness of others by preparing us to practice mettā. What is the purpose of freeing ourselves of negativity and egotism unless we share these benefits with others? In a retreat, we cut ourselves off from the world temporarily in order to return and share with others what we gained in solitude. These two aspects of the practice of Vipassana are inseparable.

In these times of violent unrest and widespread suffering, the need for such a practice as mettā-bhāvanā is clear. If peace and harmony are to reign throughout the world, they must first be established in the minds of all the inhabitants of the world.

May all beings be happy !

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Mettā-Bhāvanā

Ahaṃ avero homi, abyāpajjho homi. Anīgho homi, sukhī attānaṃ pariharāmi.

May I be free from animosity, free from suffering, free from trouble. May happiness be with me always.

Mātā-pitu-ācariya-ñāti-samūhā, Averā hontu, abyāpajjhā hontu. Anīghā hontu, sukhī attānaṃ pariharantu.

May my mother, father, teachers, and relatives be free from animosity, free from aversion, free from trouble. May happiness be with them always.

Ārakkhadevatā bhūmaṭṭhadevatā rukkhaṭṭhadevatā, Ākāsaṭṭhadevatā, averā hontu, abyāpajjhā hontu. Anīghā hontu, sukhī attānaṃ pariharantu.

May all guardian deities, earth-bound deities, tree-bound deities, sky-bound deities be free from animosity, free from aversion, free from trouble. May happiness be with them always.

Puratthimāya disāya, puratthimāya anudisāya. Dakkhiṇāya disāya, dakkhiṇāya anudisāya. Pacchimāya disāya, pacchimāya anudisāya. Uttarāya disāya, uttarāya anudisāya. Uparimāya disāya, heṭṭhimāya disāya.

In the direction of the east, in the direction of the south-east, in the direction of the south, in the direction of the south-west, in the direction of the west, in the direction of the north-west, in the direction of the north, in the direction of the north-east, in the direction above, in the direction below.

Sabbe sattā, sabbe pāṇā, sabbe bhūtā, sabbe puggalā, sabbe attabhāvapariyāpannā, sabbā itthiyo, sabbe purisā, sabbe ariyā, sabbe anariyā, sabbe manussā, sabbe amanussā, sabbe devā, sabbe vinipātikā– averā hontu, avyāpajjhā hontu, anīghā hontu, sukhī attānaṃ pariharantu.

May all beings, all living creatures, all creatures, all individuals, all forms of life, all women, all men, all those who have attained purity of mind, all those who have not yet attained purity of mind, all devas, all humans, all non-humans, all celestial beings, and all those in states of woe be free from animosity, free from aversion, free from trouble. May happiness be with them always.

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Original article: The Practice of Mettā-Bhāvanā

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Aug 18, 2011

Penetrating Wisdom of Vipassana

The entire mind should be filled with only one volition: (how best one can serve for) the liberation of all beings.
-- Sayagyi U S.N.Goenka

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An excerpt from Dhamma Discourse, Day One, Satipatthana Sutta Vipassana course:

"Atapi means 'ardently.' However sati is perfect only with wisdom, sampajano, with the understanding of the nature of reality at the experiential level—that is, its basic characteristic of anicca, arising and passing of bodily sensations. Because its nature is to be impermanent, the characteristic of dukkha, misery or suffering, is also inherent.

"Practicing with panna, you will understand dukkha with your own experience. Every pleasant experience, every pleasant situation is anicca.

"Everything within the framework of the body changes into something unpleasant, so it is nothing but dukkha. The law of nature is such.

"Yet the tendency of the mind is to get attached and cling to a pleasant experience, and when it is gone you feel so miserable.

"This is not a philosophy, but a truth to be experienced by pativedhana: dividing, dissecting, disintegrating, dissolving you reach the stage of bhanga, total dissolution. You witness the solidified, material structure, the body, as actually nothing but subatomic particles, kalapas, arising and passing. Similarly the mind and mental contents manifest as very solidified, intensified emotions—anger, fear, or passion—which overpower you.

"Vipassana, pativedhana, helps you.


Global Vipassana Pagoda, Mumbai, India. A light house of Dhamma
(Photo by N. Terse, July 2011.)


"With pativedhana - the piercing, penetrating panna - you divide, dissect, disintegrate to the stage where this intense emotion is nothing but wavelets. The whole material and mental structures and the mental contents are nothing but wavelets, wavelets, anicca, anicca.

"Then the reality about this "I" or "mine" or "myself" becomes clear. They are just conventional words. There is no "I" to possess this mind-matter structure, these material and mental phenomena. Mere mind and matter constantly interact, constantly influence each other, and become a cause for the arising of each other, resulting in currents, cross-currents, and under-currents going on in what you call "I.

Anatta ( no 'I') becomes clear at the experiential level."

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Aug 16, 2011

How to reach the Global Vipassana Pagoda, Gorai / Borivali, in Mumbai, India

Everyone is most welcome to visit the Global Vipassana Pagoda.

Visiting the Global Pagoda is free of charge. There is no entry fee.

Timings: 9.00 am to 7.00 pm

(The last ferry leaves Gorai jetty to the Global Pagoda at 5.25 pm)


* Vipassana students - those who have taken one or more 10-day Vipassana courses as taught by Sayagyi U S.N.Goenka - are permitted to meditate inside the main dome Dhamma Hall of the Global Pagoda.


( Food facility in the Global Pagoda premises is limited to a small food stall offering tea / coffee, light snacks like samosas and soft drinks. Larger food stalls are there in the adjacent Essel World complex.

Safe drinking water and very clean toilet / wash-room facilities are available in the Global Pagoda premises.)

How to reach Global Vipassana Pagoda, Gorai / Borivali, Mumbai, India:

The Global Pagoda can be reached overland by car, as well by ferry. Pre-paid taxi services are available at the Mumbai domestic and international airports. Ask for "Esselworld", if "Global Vipassana Pagoda" draws a blank stare. The Global Pagoda is within the Esselworld Park premises.

Reaching Global Vipassana Pagoda by Road from Mumbai City / Domestic Airport / International Airport / Railway Stations in Mumbai
  1. Reach Western Express Highway and go North towards Dahisar/Borivali/Ahmedabad.
  2. Cross the Dahisar Toll Booth and keep going straight.
  3. When you reach the Mira-Bhayandar crossing, turn Left towards Mira-Bhayandar. The crossing has a statue of Shivaji Maharaj positioned at the centre.
  4. Keep going straight till you reach Golden Nest Circle. At the Golden Nest Circle, take a left turn and stay on the main road.
  5. Keep going straight till you take a hard right turn at the end of the road. This point will come after Maxus Mall, which comes on your right. After the hard right turn, take a left at the T point junction.
  6. Keep following directions to Esselworld or Global Vipassana Pagoda from this point forward.
  7. When you reach the Esselworld Parking Lot, go ahead a few metres and take a right turn towards Esselworld. Tell the guard at the security post that you want to go to the Pagoda.
  8. Keep going straight till you reach the Helipad. At the Helipad, take a right turn to the Global Pagoda Road through the Sanchi Arch.

The Pagoda is about 42 km from the Domestic Airport Terminal.

Please click here For more detailed directions and maps

Hiring a car for airport pick-up to Global Vipassana Pagoda:

Private taxis and vehicles can also be hired from many car rentals in Mumbai, besides the airport pre-paid taxi service. Rates may vary. Many Vipassana students make use of the services of private taxi operator Mr Jagdish Maniyar. Contact : Tel (Res): 91-22-26391010 or cell phone 09869255079. As of February 2011, Mr Maniyar charges Rs 800 ( approx US $17, 13 Euros) for airport pickup to Global Pagoda (inclusive of road taxes). From Mumbai airport to Dhamma Giri Vipassana centre, Igatpuri, he charges Rs 2,550 (approx US $56).

From Borivali Railway station:
From Borivali Station (Western Railway, Mumbai) please use the western exit gates of the station (for the train from Churchgate, the exit is on the left). One can take Bus number 294 or hire an auto rickshaw (tuk-tuk) to Gorai Creek. The bus fare is Rs. 6 and auto rickshaw fare is approx Rs. 25 (approx US $0.50) to Rs 35.
For the auto-rickshaw, please take one heading to your right, after crossing the road from the western exit of the railway station. The Gorai jetty is approximately 10-15 minutes-ride from Borivili station. Please take the ferry for Esselworld from Gorai Jetty. The return fare for the ferry is Rs. 35/- per person.
On arrival at Esselworld, you will see signs guiding to take you to Global Pagoda (which anyway is too big to be missed !).
The Dhamma Pattana Vipassana Centre is less than five minutes walking distance from the Esselworld Jetty gate.

Other Bus Numbers to Gorai: From Kurla railway station (West) - 309 L; From Mulund station (West) - 460 L;From Ghatkopar Bus Depot - 488 L (please re-confirm before boarding bus)

Wishing you a very happy and most beneficial visit to the Global Pagoda.

For any further details and assistance, please contact:

Global Vipassana Pagoda
Telephone: 91 22 33747501 (30 lines)
Email: pr@globalpagoda.org

Pagoda Address:
Global Vipassana Pagoda
Next to Esselworld, Gorai Village,
Borivali (West), Mumbai 400091

For sending any post/courier, please use this address:

Head Office Global Vipassana Foundation
2nd Floor, Green House, Green Street, Fort
Mumbai – 400 023

Telephone: +91 22 22665926 / 22664039
Fax: +91 22 22664607

Dhamma Pattana Vipassana Centre
Inside Global Vipassana Pagoda Campus
Next to Esselworld, Gorai Village,
Borivali (West), Mumbai 400091
Tel: [91] (22) 3374 7519
Fax: [91] (22) 3374 7518
Email: info@pattana.dhamma.org

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Aug 10, 2011

Burma's Anti-corruption Crusader: Sayagyi U Ba Khin

As India debates the anti-corruption ombudsman Lokpal bill placed before Parliament on August 4, neighbouring Burma’s first accountant general Sayagyi U Ba Khin had more effectively and quietly produced transparent governance over five decades ago.

U Ba Khin (1899 – 1971), a remarkable, revolutionary character in Asian history, realized how merely more laws and fresh threats of punishment would not end corruption. To bring about organizational and national change, he enabled the individual to change himself – instead of shrilly clamoring for other people to change their behavior.

Sayagyi U Ba Khin (1899-1971)

U Ba Khin’s instrument of change was the ancient self-observation practice of Vipassana. And the results were so positive that prime minister U Nu, Burma’s last civilian leader, asked him to head four governmental departments at the same time.

On January 4, 1948, Burma's Independence Day, U Ba Khin became the first Burmese Accountant-General. This post was earlier held by the ruling British. He retired on March 26, 1953. The boy who was a brilliant student, but whose family could not afford to give him college education, later became the man who gave his country exemplary service - so much so that his governmental tenure was extended for over a decade in prominent positions.

As a bureaucrat, U Ba Khin became a living example of integrity and efficiency in challenging circumstances. His much respected, successful career proved that honest people need not compromise, or finish last.

U Ba Khin’s successes - such as transforming the corruption-ravaged Accountant General’s office and the State Agricultural Marketing Board - became outstanding practical lessons in human resource management.

Unlike India’s new Lokpal legislation to find more means to catch and punish corrupt officials, U Ba Khin’s method was to prevent officials from succumbing to temptations to crime. With insightful wisdom, he focused on a core source of corruption: pending files, and thereby bribes from the public to get their work done.

U Ba Khin fixed a time limit for files to be cleared. “If an official cannot decide within the stipulated time, let the file be brought to me,” he instructed. “I will take a decision. Not taking a decision and not bringing the file to the superior official indicates dishonest intention. It may result in dismissal from service.”

“U Ba Khin was aware that someone who takes bribes never changes for the better merely under threat of punishment,” said former Burma-born industrialist and principal Vipassana teacher Sayagyi S. N. Goenka who was U Ba Khin’s leading student. “He encouraged practice of Vipassana, and conducted Vipassana courses in a large hall in his office. The change was noticeable as employees stopped taking bribes, corruption reduced and was finally eliminated.”


The Global Vipassana Pagoda, Mumbai, India, is a Dhamma project that Sayagyi U  Goenka started in 1997 to commemorate the birth centenary of Sayagyi U Ba Khin in 1999 


U Ba Khin’s life inspired businessman and bureaucrats in Rangoon after World War 11 that it is possible for them to succeed without being corrupt.

One such wealthy industrialist was Satya Narayan Goenkaji, born in the royal Burmese city of Mandalay. He came from a Indian-origin business family from Rajasthan. Like U Ba Khin, the boy was a brilliant student (his headmaster gave double-promotion in school) with tremendous capacity for hard work. By age 30, S.N. Goenkaji was elected president of the Rangoon Chamber of Commerce and head of many social, educational and cultural organizations.

But Goenkaji’s life, and India’s destiny, was to change when he learnt Vipassana from U Ba Khin. In 1969, Vipassana returned to India through Goenkaji, 2,500 years after the practical quintessence of the Buddha's teaching was lost to the land of the Buddha.

Within a decade in Mumbai, Goenkaji renounced his wealth and life as a successful businessman to dedicate his life to sharing benefits of Vipassana – a Dhamma task, he said, he was doing on behalf of  his teacher Sayagyi U Ba Khin.

U Ba Khin’s method of conducting 10-day Vipassana courses within governmental offices paved the way in later years for thousands of bureaucrats and business executives in India and worldwide to benefit from Vipassana courses. Wise organizations offered paid leave for their staff to take the residential 10-day Vipassana courses. Many leading businessmen in India and senior governmental officials are Vipassana practitioners.

U Ba Khin’s fervent wish to see Vipassana shared worldwide was fulfilled. Vipassana is being taught, free of cost, in over 120 countries in over 50 languages, by trained teachers and assistant teachers of Goenkaji.

Vipassana, meaning ‘to see the truth’ in the ancient Pali language, is developing the faculty to see the truth within. One experiences the inner truth of mind-matter, every changing, impermanent moment.

Inner change comes with the realization that the actual inducement for corruption is not wads of bank notes - (the apparent reality),  but deeper, actual reality of the gratification of certain biochemical sensations flowing within the body.

A Vipassana practitioner realizes how only the superficial surface of the mind is in contact with worldly objects. Every thought in the mind arises with a changing biochemical sensation within. But the deepest part of the mind, where behavioral conditioning takes place, is in constant contact 24/7 with bodily sensations. This is why one rubs a mosquito bite even in deep sleep.

Vipassana involves constant vigilance of oneself, every moment. In an unguarded, heedless mind, this flow of impure craving can multiply, overpower oneself. Normal mental speed breakers like reason, restraint, fear of discovery, disgrace and punishment are all overwhelmed. Like an addict to drugs, the corrupt succumb to temptation, and then commit criminal actions.

Vipassana - the objective observation of impermanent bodily sensations - cleans the mind at the deepest level. When impurities in the mind are removed, suffering is removed.

A corrupt person is actually reacting to sensations - namely, a biochemical flow of subatomic particles within the body - set off by thoughts of greed. Tempting objects are only the apparent external reality. The inner craving for a particular type sensation is the actual story of suffering. Vipassana makes one aware of this internal process that goes on every moment. Freedom from corruption comes with not reacting to these sensations - whose nature is to arise and pass away.

The pure equanimity of non-reaction to sensations de-conditions the mind. This is a law of nature, just as a fire dies gradually dies when no more fuel is added. Deeply entrenched unwholesome behavior patterns of the mind gradually weaken and pass away.

Experiencing anicca, the Pali language word for impermanence, at the level of sensations, then becomes the most powerful force of inner change.

"Anicca is inside of everybody, within reach of everybody. Just a look into oneself and there it is - anicca to be experienced,” Sayagyi U Ba Khin said in a landmark lecture . “The experience of anicca, when properly developed, strikes at the root of one's physical and mental ills and removes gradually whatever is bad in him, i.e., the causes of such physical and mental ills… Anicca is, for the householder, the gem of life, which he will treasure to create a reservoir of calm and balanced energy for his own well-being and for the welfare of society."

One's real enemies are within - the corruption of impurities in the mind. The true well-being of the individual, and a nation, comes with removing these inner impurities, injuries in the mind.This cleaning, healing of the mind is achieved with practice of Vipassana.
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Aug 6, 2011

Kamma - the Real Inheritance

by Sayagyi U S.N Goenka

Kammassakā, bhikkhave, sattā kammadāyādā, kammayonī, kammabandhū, kammapa
isaraā, ya kamma karonti—kalyāna vā pāpaka vā—tassa dāyādā bhavanti
A.N. 3.10.216 (Samsappaniyasuttam)

Oh bhikkhus, beings are the owners of their deeds, the heirs of their deeds, born of their deeds, kin to their deeds; their deeds are their refuge. Whatever actions they perform, whether good or evil, such will be their inheritance.
Kammassakā: Beings are the owners of their deeds.

The law of Pa
icca Samuppāda (Dependent Origination) is the universal law of cause and effect: As the action is, so the result will be. Mental volition is the driving force for action at the vocal or physical level. If this driving force is unwholesome, the resultant vocal and physical actions will also be unwholesome. If the seeds are unwholesome, the fruits are bound to be unwholesome. But if this driving force is wholesome, the resultant actions are bound to be wholesome.

For a Vipassana meditator who develops the ability to observe this law at the level of direct experience, the answer to the question “Who am I?” becomes very clear. You are nothing but the sum total of your kamma, your sa
khārā (mental conditionings). All your accumulated actions together equal “I” at the conventional level.

Kammadāyādā: Beings are the heirs of their deeds.

In the worldly, conventional sense, one says, “I received this inheritance from my mother or my father or my elders.” At the apparent level this is true—but what is one’s real inheritance? Kammadāyādā—one inherits one’s own kamma, the results, the fruits of one’s own kamma. Whatever you are now, the present reality of this mind-matter structure is nothing but the sum total of and the result of your own accumulated past kamma. The experience of the present moment is the sum total of all you have inherited—kammadāyādā.

Kammayonī: Beings are born of their deeds.

One says, “I am the product of a womb, I have come from the womb of my mother,” but this is only apparent truth. Actually, your birth is because of your own past kamma. You come from the womb of your own kamma. As you start understanding Dhamma at a deeper level, you realise this. This is kammayonī, which produces the fruit of the accumulated past kamma every moment.

Kammabandhū: Beings are the kin of their deeds.

None other is your relative—not your father, mother, brother, sister or friend. In the worldly way we say, “This is my brother, my relative or my near or dear one; they are so close to me.” Actually, no one is close to you; no one can accompany you or help you when the time comes. When you die, no one accompanies you other than your kamma. Whoever you call your relatives remain here but your kamma continues to follow you from one life to another. You are not in possession of anything but your own kamma. It is your only companion.

Kammapa
isaraā: Their deeds are their refuge.
The only true refuge is in one’s own kamma. Wholesome kamma provides a refuge; unwholesome kamma produces more suffering. No other being can give you refuge. When you say “Buddha saraa gacchāmi—I take refuge in the Buddha,” you understand fully well that the person by the name of Gotama the Buddha cannot give you refuge. Your own kamma gives you refuge. Nobody can protect you, not even a Buddha. Refuge in Buddha is refuge in the quality of Buddha, in his enlightenment, in the teaching that he gave. By following the teaching, you can develop enlightenment within you. And the enlightenment that you develop within you, that is your wholesome kamma. This alone will give you refuge; this alone will give you protection.
Ya kamma karonti—kalyāna vā pāpaka vā—tassa dāyādā bhavanti: Whatever actions beings perform, whether wholesome or unwholesome, such will be their inheritance.

This law of nature should become very clear. Then you will become inspired to take responsibility for your own kamma.

Remain alert and on guard each moment, so that every action, physical or mental, is wholesome. You will not be perfect but keep trying. You may fall down but see how quickly you get up. With all the determination, with all the inspiration, with all the encouragement, get up and try again. This is how you become stable in Dhamma.

Bhavatu sabba ma
gala—May all beings be happy!

(original article from Vipassana Newsletter http://www.vridhamma.org/en2007-07
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