Gloria Taraniya Ambrosia has been offering instruction in Theravada Buddhist teachings and practices since 1990. She is a student of the western forest sangha, the disciples of Ajahn Sumedho and Ajahn Chah, and is a Lay Buddhist Minister in association with Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery in California. She served as resident teacher of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts from 1996 through 1999. Taraniya teaches at the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies and at Dhamma centers in the United States.
As meditators, we develop the capacity to relate anew to sensory input so that we are less and less preoccupied with the content of sensations, feelings and thoughts. From this new vantage point we are more able to see the clinging that leads to suffering.
Though it's role in the process of waking up is pivotal, intention is very subtle, rarely conscious, and outside the control of self. Purification is made possible through the appropriate use of mindfulness to the things we do and say.
If we only understand the practices of dana, sila and bhavana (generosity, morality and meditation) conceptually, we may miss the deep meaning and purpose of these practices and may never quite experience their benefits.
With so much emphasis on dukkha, on overcoming the five hindrances, etc., our practice can at times seem bleak. We can balance this and lighten the heart by knowing where and how to find the joy in practice.