Strategy for working with hindrances

The five hindrances are:
1. Sensory desire
2. Ill-will
3. Sloth-torpor
4. Restlessness-worry
5. Doubt

We’ll get back to the second hindrance soon, but I want to share a wise strategy for working with all five of these obstructive energies. In a forthcoming book called “How to Wake Up”, author Toni Bernhard proposes a four-step approach to dealing with our hindrances as they arise. In a nutshell, she advises:

1) Recognize that a hindrance has arisen.

2) Label the hindrance, in a friendly manner. That is, treat the hindrance as an unexpected guest.

3) Investigate how the hindrance makes us feel, both physically and mentally, remembering that it is a temporary visitor.

4) Let it be. Don’t try to force the hindrance out, but rest peacefully with it until it diminishes or passes away. If this isn’t working, return to any previous step.

Give this strategy a try the next time you are in the throes of a greed attack or when anger surges. It may take some practice, but I promise results commensurate with any effort made (eventually).

I’m going to leave you with this proposal for a week or so. I’m on vacation and won’t have much internet access for a few weeks, so posts will be sparse until early August. Enjoy the vacation!

About lynnjkelly

Australian/American. Practicing Buddhist.
This entry was posted in Hindrances. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Strategy for working with hindrances

  1. falguni says:

    thank u for sharing wisdom.

  2. Kim says:

    Enjoy your break. Thank you for your posts!
    Kim Alden

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