The Five Hindrances to Our Spiritual Path

<Ganesha> Welcome to #)Gaia*Friends(
<JEP> hello what a crowd!
<Susanrose> WELCOME! Everyone.
* Dreamie lights a candle...and some incense
<Ganesha> My name is Melissa Shubha Smith aka Ganesha
<Ganesha> we are beginning the talk :)
<Dreamie> :)

<Ganesha>Those of us who are on the spiritual path experience
many ups and downs, spirals, and sidetrips on the
superhighway of human potential.
Much of the time it seems we have taken a back road!

The side trips may be scenic and the lessons perfect
but there comes a time in the life of a seeker, when
it seems we'd like to get on the Freeway instead of
the bumpy backroads.

This is the time we can look to the sages and seekers of
times past for their experience of what worked for them on
the path.

This program tonight is an effort to touch on some of the
things that create blocks for us on the spiritual path
as well as ways we can overcome the blocks with practical
simple everyday ideas and timeless advice.
As you journey on the spiritual path, obstacles will attempt
to get in your way. Sometimes just recognizing the types
of obstacles is an obstacle in it self.
They can be very subtle.
<David> ain't that the truth.

<Ganesha> How can you help yourself? How do you hinder yourself?
These are the questions to contemplate and ask ourselves are
we really willing to do what we need to do to undergo

Are we willing to let go of some patterns
and habits that create bondage and in effect totally

The "Buddha" lived 2500 years ago in India.
He lived the life of a seeker and eventually attained
enlightenment under the "Bodhi Tree".
His experiences of his path were orally transmitted in
the form of Dharma Teachings or The Way. Later about 500
years after his death some of his teachings or advice to
spiritual seekers was written down in the Pali Canon.

There are many lineages and traditions in Buddhism, but
the teachings and advice to spiritual seekers applies to
all on the path whatever their inclination. Then as now,
the hindrances, or challenges, all have the power to
distort a seekers view of reality.

One of his most famous teachings is:
The Five Hindrances

1. craving
2. ill will
3. sloth, spiritual laziness
4. restlessness
5. doubt

How do you know you are confronting a hindrance on your path?
Just ask yourself:
Am I losing a sense of balance?
My priorities?
What is really important?
Are these temporary reactions, destructive emotions?
What is standing between you and the clear
cool awareness of enlightened consciousness or self realization?

Those serious students of the spiritual path confront each of these


For instance...meeting the challenge of doubt.

Doubt or skeptical awareness can be a healthy way to
investigate and propel our spiritual engine? But doubt can also
present itself as a reason to not stick with a spiritual practice
or pattern. Is this really doing anything?

We create mental fixations or doubts to cloud and hinder our natural
experience of love and we spiritually mature...
the clouds of doubt become more and more transparent but
the inner doubts about our own value and worth can
undercut a spiritual seeker in the worst way.

Sometimes just staying in the present moment can be a way
of dealing with our doubts about ourselves, our path, and
life in general. This why people meditate. Other ways of dealing with doubt can be
cultivating gratitude, remember our immortality, The Laws
of Cause and Effect or karma in this Universe.


When we confront ill will, we may notice that our minds
naturally have a pattern of creating judgment and
opposition focus in our dealing with others.
You say black , I say white.
We can also have it escalate into mean spiritedness,
anger, and rage if we do not contemplate our mental
and emotional patterns.
One way to change our ill will patterns is to picture ourselves
in the "others" shoes or view the world thru their eyes.
A famous saying is "You don't know a man until you walk a mile in his shoes'.
On the very blatant or subtle level, every time you feel yourself on one side of the fence
and someone else on the other....this is an opportunity
to explore the world as a place with no borders, wars,
fences, countries, or positions. We are all but a blue dot
in space. Spaceship Earth.

Some other ways to confront ill will are:
1. Thinking about others first
2. Regard this world as a dream
3. Reflect on the Kindness of everyone you meet
4. All of Life should be done with the "One Intention"
(you can love even the people you don't like)
5. Reflect on what provokes difficulties in your own life
6. Don't wallow in self pity
7. Maintain a Joyful Mind ( Have a Nice Day
unless You've made other Plans)


Craving and desires..... Attachment....these are powerful experiences of
what our mind can do to really throw us off a sacred life.
Sometimes we want something so badly or we think someone else should act a certain way...and we get so carried away in our mental perspective that it just brings more
wanting, wanting , wanting...we are never satisfied...we crave
more and more in an effort to find THE THING that will satisfy us.
More food, more sex, more ego, more drink, more relationships,
more more more.......
<gentle> AGREED Ganesha...

<Ganesha>On the spiritual path its best to be prepared to be confronted
with the compulsiveness of your mind again and again.
We all have invested in wanting, achieving, accumulating, and grasping.

In one sense we can see how this attribute helps our path by
leading us to seek the highest perfection...the highest
consciousness awareness. But we also have to come to terms that
our spiritual life is not about Having "more" or "being better than"
....we can round up the usual suspects of aspects of
our lives and mental constructs where we can contemplate and examine
our true motives. (Love/Ego/Gratification/Sex/Pleasure/
Money, Possessions/Fame/Security/Power)
<Dreamie> the *ego*

Do the "attachments to these things make us lose perspective on our path?
Are we emotionally invested with an intensity and energy
that is not supportive or takes away from our experience of
the oneness of the Universe?

Buddha said:
"The Way is not difficult for those who have no preferences"

<Dreamie> :) wise words
<Ganesha>Think about it......
Watch to see what is motivating you in your life.
It is said that Desirelessness is Nirvanic there
anything in your life keeping you from this awareness?
If so...relinquishing this attachment may dramatically
transform your experience.

When we look for Love outside of ourselves we are being very
lazy. Love is Inside. The experience of wholeness is from within.
Sometimes we just are too lazy to cultivate the efforts we
need to grow very strong and true on the spiritual path.

What is right effort? How do we cultivate it?
How do we transform and enlighten ourselves...being
fully present and clear in any given moment.

Some of the things that support laziness
(It is not always easy to admit to these things)

1. pride
2. jealousy
3. self doubt
4. ill will towards ourselves and the inherent joy within

Things that support our work to overcome these blocks.

1. Breath
2. Be calm
3. Exhale - Its quieting
4. slow down and focus
5. Relax
6. Smile to Yourself
7. Meditate More

Buddha also had something called the 4 Great Efforts
these are very affirming when we confront our
inner laziness and lack of interest in courage and discipline
on the path.

1. effort to avoid any new unwholesome, negative,
thoughts, and actions.
2. effort to Overcome any existing unwholesome thoughts and actings
3.effort to develop only good and wholesome thoughts and lead an enlightened life.
4. effort to maintain goodness that already exists

Other things that support Right Effort on the Spiritual Path:
Generosity, Virtue, Patience, Effort, Meditation, and Wisdom.

Come from the place of your own inner guidance and wisdom.
Take time to nurture yourself and make effort to take people,
places, or things out of your life that drain your energy.


Whenever we see someone who creates problems for themselves
we say: "They are Making Waves". going around in circles, or
playing games....

Why are we bored? Why are we restless? What is our interest factor?
Our mind intrudes with a thousand important things that need to be done
while we are in the middle of our meditation session.
The thoughts swirl around in our if in a daze
we can no longer focus...we say to ourselves...let go...forget blissful....

Investigation into the roots of our restlessness is one
of the principal factors in our own consciousness evolution.
We are agents of our own transformation.

Use inquiry into the boredom....
This can keep us awake, alert, interested, and developing.
If you are bored and sleepy ask yourself...What are the roots of this?
Am I using this as a way to avoid or deny something
about myself or my path or state that is bothering me?

Using concentration and focus is a powerful tool to
find relief from the world. Concentration has a calming effect.
as we concentrate we become more expansive and spacious.
It is also a way of attaining a respite from the ups and downs of our emotional bodies.

Meditation practice is a powerful age old method for
being in what is known as authentic presence. Concentration,
Focus Awareness, Moment to Moment Awareness, Be Here Now, and
Peaceout Time are names for this experience.
This is a way to develop an appreciate for living in the moment
and having that Magic of Mindfulness. Developing a Greater Perspective.

<Ganesha> Being fully in the present means that you
have no thoughts about past or future. You are fully engaged in
what's taking place at this exact moment.
<Dreamie> the magic is in the nothingness....
<EchoSilence> when your will becomes divine
that causes even more joy

<Ganesha>Recently, I received something in email from the
Top Ten Lists Inc. via

"The Top Ten Things That Can Dramatically
Transform Your Life"
I thought that the List was really a powerful and expressive way to
overcome the 5 Hindrances on the Path. The List is simple,
easy to do, and wondrous.

Do you sometimes feel overwhelmed by the sheer magnitude of what it takes
to change your situation or your life? I have ... regularly, but I've
discovered that adopting some or all of the ten practices below can make a
huge difference. For the record, a practice is defined as a conscious
deliberate habit.

1. Be fully present, in the moment.

It has been estimated that up to 80% of our thoughts in any given day are
about the past or the future rather than the present. Think of it. That's
a tremendous dilution of energy. Being fully in the present means that you
have no thoughts about past or future. You are fully engaged in what's
taking place at this exact moment.

2. Meditate

I know you've heard this before, and you may have tried meditating and
concluded that it isn't your cup of tea. Try again. If you've found a
mantra disconcerting or you get bogged down in your visualizations, try
this: Sit down and get comfortable, pay attention only to your breathing,
particularly the exhalation phase. Let each breath take you down to a more
relaxed state. Continue for at least twenty minutes for at least one
session each day, preferably in the early morning. The effects will
increase with time. It may take three to six months to begin noticing
really significant changes.

3. Act deliberately.

Have you any idea how much of your daily activity is dictated, in whole
or in part, by situations, other people, or external demands? The answer,
for most of us is, quite a bit. To act deliberately is to operate from a
deep level of inner calm, so deep that to those around you, it may appear
as though you are slow to react--and you are! Why? Because, instead of
reacting on the basis of whatever emotion is being currently triggered by
the situation or person, you respond in an appropriate manner. So, how do
you begin to act deliberately? By monitoring your every action and
reaction on a moment-by-moment basis. Do it for three days in a row and
you'll be happily surprised at the difference it makes.

4. Develop a sense of pace.

Everything and every being has its own rhythm. You have yours, I have
mine, and they are different. The pace I seek is one that allows me to
align myself effortlessly with what is going on while still managing to
act deliberately. There's a secret to developing a sense of
pace:relaxation. Approach everything and everyone in an aikido-like
(relaxed) manner and you'll be amazed how different it (and they) feel.

5. Periodically, withdraw and recharge.

I've always been attracted by the stories telling how Jesus would
withdraw from those around him. Sometimes he would go to the top of a
mountain, sometimes to a fishing vessel, and sometimes he just vanished.
In order to keep your calm and to be fully present, it's important to
withdraw and recharge, regularly.

6. Take steps to eliminate clutter, noise, distractions, and people who
drain your energy.

Some people live in clutter, thrive on noise, and allow themselves to be
drained by demanding friends and acquaintances. If any of this sounds
familiar, you can do something about it NOW. Clear off your desk, skip
television and radio for a week, and distance yourself from those who use
you to meet THEIR needs. And think about this: someone once described a
Master as one from whom all the extraneous has been removed. Mastery, in
its highest sense, is purity. So, when you eliminate, you purify!

7. Commit to service.

Do you gauge your success by how much you are recognized and rewarded by
others? Isn't that what profit is all about? Let me suggest a different
slant; try ordering you're life around this objective: Not my will, but
Thine be done. Judge your self and your day not by how much you get, but
by how much you GIVE. In time, you'll be amazed at how this difference in
orientation changes you. Good things come into your life more effortlessly
and life becomes easier. A word of caution here. You don't have to find a
great cause or become a professional do-gooder. All you have to do is
engage fully in the opportunities that appear on a daily basis. When you
do, you'll find that those opportunities increase and you GROW!

8. Stop chasing your mission.

Have you discovered your mission in life? If not, are you filled with a
consuming desire to know what you are all about? If so, then STOP. Become
fully engaged in your present and let your mission find you. It will come,
I promise, most likely as a quiet nudge that something just feels ...
<EchoSilence> believe in yourself

9. Let go of your attachments.

Everything to which you are attached prevents you from moving freely.
Letting go is an absolute requirement in this life and, ultimately, OF
this life. But there's a kicker here: it is imperative to reach the point
in your thinking where letting go becomes a joyous act rather than a
personal sacrifice.

10. Love unconditionally.

I saved this one till last, because it is the most difficult. To love
unconditionally means just that: to love without any strings attached.
It's the toughest kind of love, because it is often most needed in
situations that can best be described as unjust or unfair. So, why is it
necessary to love unconditionally? I suppose there are many reasons, but
one stands out in my mind above all others. It is this: Unconditional
(even non-verbal) love HEALS. So, there you have it. If this list hits
home, begin practicing unconditional love today by sharing it with your
friends, relatives, co-workers, and acquaintances. Even one of these
practices, consistently followed, can make a difference in you (their)

This brings our talk this evening to a close.
I hope we have identified and transformed the spiritual path of those attending.

I would like to take this time for Thanking our Masters, Teachers, Loved Ones, and Guides especially Buddha.

With Great Respect and Great Love,
I am opening the floor for discussion and questions.

<gentle> beautiful Ganesha :)
<foxydot> I am so ready for discussion <giggle>
I think you pinpointed every "flaw" in my spiritual character
<Ganesha> well, these are the pointers of the Buddha and these teachings
are very ancient. The wise ones who have walked the path...before us...
have mentioned these things
I think it is really important if we are serious about our path...
to really look and contemplate at our own inner mechanics
and see how these things hold us back from experiencing oneness

<daysi> I sometimes worry that my motives for doing what I do
aren't pure too
<Susanrose> daysi... we are all in evolution... your realization
of that which is missing is the hope of what is yet to come
in your development...dynamic creation and consciousness.
Do not doubt , have faith that all is moving to our
highest evolution...say this affirmation: I keep my face to
the sun and the shadows fall behind me!
<daysi> Thanks Susanrose. You give us hope.
<Dreamie> I love the saying... know thyself
and if there's a part of you that you don't
particularly care on that

<foxydot> I like to help people, but only of my free will...when people start
asking me for things all the time, I get angry and tense
<Dreamie> hehe
<Susanrose> remember to pay yourself first,
with some kindness and time to
make yourself feel beautiful

<Susanrose> welcome poetree!
<poetree> thanks

<Susanrose> I want to mention that I recently read the book, the
Messengers, and in it it says the Angels are telling us
about a wonderful new time that will come after the earth
changes,...I am proud that our group has kept together and
that we will be in a position to message and share with
each other what is happening in our part of the world when
these events occur..

<Dreamie> nice Susanrose
<Susanrose> #)Gaia*Friends(, as well as all the spiritual channels
here play an important part to help unify the loving souls
who are ready to help the earth become the Eden is it meant to be
* Dreamie smiles...and is ready
<poetree> interesting...
<gentle> AGREED I personally believe that the net is the astral plane...
where are dreams AND our fears are manifested
<Dreamie> me too gentle....
I have traveled spiritually where I never would have
traveled if it weren't for the net...

<David> I must go... office meeting. thank you Ganesha...
and Susanrose enjoy ;>
<Susanrose> Good night and Blessings to all!
<Dreamie> blessings to you Susanrose
<poetree> is it over already??
dagggggg I miss everything! *grin*
<JEP> bye now everyone... thanks!
<foxydot>:) thank you Susan rose
<gentle>Night all.... bye!
<daysi> Love to all of you. I really enjoyed Ganesha's talk. Bye
*Good night from AshtarRose:
"The Ashtar Rose blooms Opening Her petals
for all to see, From with in comes a White light that expands an surrounds everyone
withlove, You pick up the Rose and Smile for flowers make people smile
and Say I love You..."

<Note: The following was added to the log later.
It was sent to us from Dreamie, From California.>

Angel of Love_

Of all the spiritual attributes, love is the greatest. Each being needs
the warmth and support of the universal spiritual energy. Every breath of
love taken in opens the way to fulfillment and enlightenment. Every breath
of love exhaled opens the way for others. Spiritual love then expands into
a powerful energy. The more it grows, the stronger it becomes.

Every step taken represents a part of the growth cycle. When a step is
taken with the love of humankind, the step becomes at one with the
universe. When goodness is at the foundation of every step and every
breath taken, there is no challenge that cannot be accepted.

The heart and soul remain intact when centered on the love of one another
and in the love of our Infinite Spirit.

It is in the darkness of fear that steps are taken toward the destruction
of another. To turn all darkness into a flowing stream of the light of
love would bring an energy too beautiful to describe. May all existing
love-light beings share their sparks with all matter. When sparks hit
someone or something else, they ignite more sparks. It then becomes a
magnificent cycle. For one soul to grow in enlightenment makes another
soul look at its own path. This leads more souls to become beacons of the
light of love.