Category Archives: Causes and results

Doubt

Sensory desire Ill-will Lethargy and drowsiness Restlessness and worry Doubt The last of the five hindrances is doubt, vicikicchā in Pali. To be clear, there are two distinct types of doubt: a hindering, pessimistic doubt, which can stop us in … Continue reading

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Agitation

The fourth in the usual list of five hindrances to meditation (and much else) is restlessness and worry, sometimes “restlessness and remorse”. This is approximately the opposite of lethargy/drowsiness, a mindstate which is like checking out of life. With restlessness/worry … Continue reading

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Low energy

As a reminder of what we’re exploring, the five hindrances are: Sensory desire Ill-will Lethargy and drowsiness Restlessness and worry Doubt We come now to the third hindrance: lethargy and drowsiness. “Sloth and torpor” has been the standard translation from … Continue reading

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Practicing friendliness

The Buddha, and many teachers after his time, recommended practicing  mettā (loving-kindness) regularly as a remedy for the hindrance of ill-will. In this practice, we meet ill-will with mindfulness when it’s present, and when it’s absent, we practice mettā. If we … Continue reading

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Patience

The hindrances are not our fault, but they are our responsibility. Greed and hatred in particular are not things we should blame ourselves for; they are part of the natural, imperfect world. At the same time, if we let them … Continue reading

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Goodbye anger

Confronting our own ill-will is hard, but if we are to make any headway towards a peaceful heart (let alone liberation from all suffering) we must make the effort. Example: Let’s say someone we know makes a forceful, bossy, cutting-off … Continue reading

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Hello anger

The second of the hindrances is ill-will. It covers a lot of ground from minor irritation to rage, and includes dislike, annoyance, resentment, aversion, frustration, anger, hostility, impatience, and hate (in addition to irritation and rage). General grumpiness could also … Continue reading

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