working hard

General discussion, particularly exploring the Dharma in the modern world.
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Miroku
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Re: working hard

Post by Miroku » Tue Mar 12, 2019 6:49 pm

I am in this with Grigoris, although I am very much at a beginning and in no way a good example as I am easily distracted and sometimes even daily practice is nothing but an ideal for me. However, as someone said that we have to work and have families and that lessens our time. That is true, but isn't the real time to practice in many ways outside of the cussion? The formal sessions don't have to be that long, however in between sessions one can do the real work. We have our mind always even our malas and dorjes and bells are at home. Be it lojong, bare mindfulness, reciting mantras or engaging in virtuous deeds with body speech and mind.
A boat delivers you to the other riverbank.
A needle stitches up your clothes.
A horse takes you where you want to go.
Bodhicitta will bring you to Buddhahood.
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Even non-buddhists have many virtuous accomplishments
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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:59 pm

boda wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 6:37 pm
Does it feel good to dismiss what I say as pointless word games?
That is just my opinion, it only carries as much weight as you give it.

I believe you are splitting hairs for no particular reason. I am allowed to feel this way and to express it.
There a lot of research to support the efficacy of deliberate practice.
What, in the examples given in my post above about "working hard", excludes the idea/notion of being deliberate?
If you’re not opposed to feeling some degree of discomfort in being publicly proved wrong, google Eric Anderson and deliberate practice. Or just do what feels good.
I don't need to google in order to know/understand if my practice is deliberate or not.

Sometimes it is deliberate and sometimes it is mechanical, but if you do not put in the effort then it will be neither deliberate nor mechanical. And that is the point of "working hard".

And, because it seems that the point of practice may be lost on you: Practice is 90% about habituation to wholesome views and activities and 10% about deliberation. Initial motivation may require motivation and deliberation, but after that...

PS Lay off the personal judgements of how/what I feel.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
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"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Re: working hard

Post by boda » Tue Mar 12, 2019 10:48 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:59 pm
What, in the examples given in my post above about "working hard", excludes the idea/notion of being deliberate?
I didn't read your examples, however, immediately subsequent to this question you write:
Grigoris wrote:Practice is 90% about habituation to wholesome views and activities and 10% about deliberation.
90% excluded, I guess.
Sometimes it is deliberate and sometimes it is mechanical, but if you do not put in the effort then it will be neither deliberate nor mechanical. And that is the point of "working hard".
Given the choice between working hard mechanically or deliberately, any serious practitioner should choose the latter. It may be uncomfortable to challenge yourself, but amazing things can happen when you do. Just last night I watched a documentary called The Dawn Wall. It's about a couple of American rock climbers who successfully scaled the 3,000 foot dawn wall of Yosemite. The best rock climbers in the world thought it was impossible. I imagine 'mechanical' climber wouldn't have even considered trying.

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Tue Mar 12, 2019 11:29 pm

boda wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 10:48 pm
I didn't read your examples...
So you are talking to yourself. Good for you!
Given the choice between working hard mechanically or deliberately, any serious practitioner should choose the latter.
It figures that you completely overlooked my explanation, I mean given you are engaging in a monologue...
It may be uncomfortable to challenge yourself, but amazing things can happen when you do.
Sitting your ass down for regular practice is also a challenge. It is also uncomfortable. Don't take my word for it, try it some time. Amazing things happen when you do so.

I bet the people that scaled the Dawn Wall had worked their asses off before hand. Not like they just watched a motivational video on youtube and "lo and behold"...

Let's get real here for a second.

Repetition is the key to learning and successfully acquiring skills. Like it or lump it.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Re: working hard

Post by boda » Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:10 am

Grigoris wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 11:29 pm
I bet the people that scaled the Dawn Wall had worked their asses off beforehand. Not like they just watched a motivational video on youtube and "lo and behold"...
I've been talking about deliberate practice, not motivation or motivational videos. Although motivation is also important to any sustained practice.
Let's get real here for a second.
If that means you'll try to pay attention to what I say and not try to mislead with things like motivational videos or whatever, then by all means.
Repetition is the key to learning and successfully acquiring skills. Like it or lump it.
Deliberate practice is the key to developing skills beyond where 'mechanical hard work' can get you. If you want to argue against this effectively you'll need to learn more about it, I suppose, but it appears that you have no interest.

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:45 am

boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:10 am
Deliberate practice is the key to developing skills beyond where 'mechanical hard work' can get you. If you want to argue against this effectively you'll need to learn more about it, I suppose, but it appears that you have no interest.
You seem to be confounding disagreement with ignorance, or lack of interest.

I already stated that deliberate effort is needed, at least initially, but you overlooked that statement (again) in order to justify trotting out your pony (again).

BORING!

And you continue to insist that repetition is not necessary to consolidate initial interest and improve a skill. Something that every teacher in every single field of learning will attest to.

I will leave you to discussing with, and convincing, yourself.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
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Re: working hard

Post by boda » Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:54 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:45 am
boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:10 am
Deliberate practice is the key to developing skills beyond where 'mechanical hard work' can get you. If you want to argue against this effectively you'll need to learn more about it, I suppose, but it appears that you have no interest.
You seem to be confounding disagreement with ignorance, or lack of interest.
You can’t make, and haven’t made, an argument against deliberate practice (as understood by the research of Anders Erickson and others) because you don’t know what it is, apparently. You can’t actually disagree with something you don’t know. I can’t, for example, disagree with or argue against the efficacy of a particular method of baking if I don’t really know much about it. I can say that I disagree with the method but it would be a meaningless dismissal.

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:02 pm

boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:54 pm
You can’t make, and haven’t made, an argument against deliberate practice (as understood by the research of Anders Erickson and others) because you don’t know what it is, apparently. You can’t actually disagree with something you don’t know. I can’t, for example, disagree with or argue against the efficacy of a particular method of baking if I don’t really know much about it. I can say that I disagree with the method but it would be a meaningless dismissal.
HELLO! I am not arguing against deliberate practice, I am arguing in favor of the utility of repetition.

Of course you would have understood this, if you had actually bothered reading what I have been saying.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: working hard

Post by boda » Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:40 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:02 pm
boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:54 pm
You can’t make, and haven’t made, an argument against deliberate practice (as understood by the research of Anders Erickson and others) because you don’t know what it is, apparently. You can’t actually disagree with something you don’t know. I can’t, for example, disagree with or argue against the efficacy of a particular method of baking if I don’t really know much about it. I can say that I disagree with the method but it would be a meaningless dismissal.
HELLO! I am not arguing against deliberate practice, I am arguing in favor of the utility of repetition.

Of course you would have understood this, if you had actually bothered reading what I have been saying.
If we can “get real” again, you wrote:
Grigoris wrote:Repetition is the key to learning and successfully acquiring skills. Like it or lump it.
And I responded with:
boda wrote:Deliberate practice is the key to developing skills beyond where 'mechanical hard work' can get you.
So to take a stab at accurately summarizing, you don’t recommend increasing deliberate practice beyond 10% for some as yet undisclosed reason.

I’ve pointed out that, assuming the results of practice are valued, all practice should be deliberate. That’s 100% or as much as possible. Also, with too little deliberate practice and just habitual repetition, even a lot of it, results can degrade.

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:55 pm

boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 4:40 pm
blah
I have made my point and no longer care to engage you.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: working hard

Post by TharpaChodron » Thu Mar 14, 2019 4:13 am

It's called the Middle Way for a reason. The Buddha taught a million ways to engage and help sentient beings. Many may be incapable of serious discipline at a given time. Of course, we devout Buddhists must hold ourselves to a higher standard. But too often people are discouraged from the Dharma because they don't have the ability to practice seriously and aren't Buddhist Nazis. If you want to make this about adhering to rigid forms of practice and religiousity, might as well cross off most of the sentient beings you wish to engage. As a fellow easily discouraged kid, I think it's a disservice to them.

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Re: working hard

Post by Johnny Dangerous » Thu Mar 14, 2019 5:50 pm

boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:54 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:45 am
boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 12:10 am
Deliberate practice is the key to developing skills beyond where 'mechanical hard work' can get you. If you want to argue against this effectively you'll need to learn more about it, I suppose, but it appears that you have no interest.
You seem to be confounding disagreement with ignorance, or lack of interest.
You can’t make, and haven’t made, an argument against deliberate practice (as understood by the research of Anders Erickson and others) because you don’t know what it is, apparently. You can’t actually disagree with something you don’t know. I can’t, for example, disagree with or argue against the efficacy of a particular method of baking if I don’t really know much about it. I can say that I disagree with the method but it would be a meaningless dismissal.
Is he talking about Buddhist practice? It doesn't look like it from a cursory search. If not, why would we preference his ideas? This is a subject that Buddhist teachers have written on for 2000 years, and they are writing in the context of what we are actually taking about. They would be the first source to go to, not this guy.
There's no hoarding what has vanished,
No piling up for the future;
Those who have been born are standing
Like a seed upon a needle.

-Guhatthaka-suttaniddeso

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Thu Mar 14, 2019 6:11 pm

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Thu Mar 14, 2019 5:50 pm
Is he talking about Buddhist practice? It doesn't look like it from a cursory search. If not, why would we preference his ideas? This is a subject that Buddhist teachers have written on for 2000 years, and they are writing in the context of what we are actually taking about. They would be the first source to go to, not this guy.
He doesn't say anything particularly innovative (from a pedagogical perspective) in any of the stuff I skimmed.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: working hard

Post by boda » Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:50 am

Johnny Dangerous wrote:
Thu Mar 14, 2019 5:50 pm
boda wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 3:54 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Wed Mar 13, 2019 8:45 am
You seem to be confounding disagreement with ignorance, or lack of interest.
You can’t make, and haven’t made, an argument against deliberate practice (as understood by the research of Anders Erickson and others) because you don’t know what it is, apparently. You can’t actually disagree with something you don’t know. I can’t, for example, disagree with or argue against the efficacy of a particular method of baking if I don’t really know much about it. I can say that I disagree with the method but it would be a meaningless dismissal.
Is he talking about Buddhist practice? It doesn't look like it from a cursory search. If not, why would we preference his ideas?
We shouldn’t, just like we shouldn’t prefer him to learning from a master in music, art, mathematics, sports, chess, knitting, or whatever. The principles of deliberate practice can be applied to practically anything. Indeed one of the principles is learning from a master.
This is a subject that Buddhist teachers have written on for 2000 years, and they are writing in the context of what we are actually taking about. They would be the first source to go to, not this guy.
I don’t think you’re quite getting the point.

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Re: working hard

Post by tobes » Fri Mar 15, 2019 7:34 am

I basically agree with Grigoris on this question: if you are genuinely committed to Bodhicitta, then the task is relentless. The level of effort required is immense and unceasing. Hard work is the bread and butter of the path. It has to be a constant.

However, I think what some other posters are pointing to is also quite important: that one can easily fall into a mentality of 'working hard for the Dharma' whilst actually being very contrived about it, and this just generates imbalance and hinderances. The 'Buddha drinks milk' example is quite salient here, as Queequeg suggested - in the sense that, there are definitely many points on the path where one has to relax and let go of the intense effort. Being attached to practice is quite a subtle problem.

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Re: working hard

Post by stevie » Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:42 am

When Bodhicitta is purified, everythings levels out and 'work hard' and 'relaxed approach' are equal. So work hard at purifying Bodhicitta.

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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Fri Mar 15, 2019 11:23 am

stevie wrote:
Fri Mar 15, 2019 10:42 am
When Bodhicitta is purified, everythings levels out and 'work hard' and 'relaxed approach' are equal. So work hard at purifying Bodhicitta.
You develop or nurture Bodhicitta, you don't purify it.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: working hard

Post by DharmaN00b » Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:32 pm

Grigoris wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:05 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:42 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 11:05 am
Push your comfort zone to breaking point and beyond.
How do you square that with the Buddha taking gruel and recalling sitting beneath the rose apple tree?
Dude, he almost starved himself to death before taking gruel. It is not quite the same as sitting one's ass down for an hour or so of practice a day (something well beyond most of our comfort zones). ;)
An hour or so? Can we make a quantitative assessment in terms of time spent on a cushion?
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Re: working hard

Post by Grigoris » Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:59 pm

DharmaN00b wrote:
Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:32 pm
Grigoris wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 3:05 pm
Queequeg wrote:
Tue Mar 12, 2019 2:42 pm

How do you square that with the Buddha taking gruel and recalling sitting beneath the rose apple tree?
Dude, he almost starved himself to death before taking gruel. It is not quite the same as sitting one's ass down for an hour or so of practice a day (something well beyond most of our comfort zones). ;)
An hour or so? Can we make a quantitative assessment in terms of time spent on a cushion?
Let's say that 20% of the time spent "on a cushion" is actual quality practice time (and I am being generous).

This means that with one hour of practice, you have dedicated 12 minutes of your day to actually cultivating your mind.

I would say that is pretty piss-poor, wouldn't you?

Do you think that is enough to even make a small dent in the habitual afflictions you have accumulated over countless lifetimes?

That is why in Tibetan traditions they make you do 100,000 or 1,000,000 (or more) repetitions of various practices.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: working hard

Post by DharmaN00b » Fri Mar 15, 2019 3:02 pm

Thanks very much (Grigoris() that make perfect sense> I will try harder.
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