• The three marks of existence

Buddha talks about three marks of existence: Anicca, Dukkha and Anatta. In English, these translate to “impermanence”, “misery” and “non-self.”

Everyone on the path of meditation begins his practice with the experience of Anicca. In my case, I was not able to do meditation properly for a long time, especially the Anapana. The reason being that I was getting overwhelmed with sensations in the area on my face between the upper lip and nostrils. After struggling for more than five years, I came to realize that nature wanted me to experience Dukkha. So, essentially, I was trying to solve a three variable equation with two variables, i.e., Anicca and Anatta. You can easily guess that it would work sometimes (when z = 0 ), but mostly it would lead to weird results.

When I talk about experiencing Dukkha, it’s not about the apparent form of it. If you pinch yourself you’ll feel Dukkha, but this is not the Dukkha I am speaking of or referring to. I am talking about that Dukkha which naturally arises in the form of sensations. There may be some break here and there, but the experience will come back to some form of Dukkha.

The American Declaration of Independence has the phrase “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” It works well if we define happiness as equanimity than merely as seeking pleasure, you know?