An illuminating finale to Gimhāna Retreat

The spiritually uplifting 2014 Gimhāna Retreat ended joyfully with the last Wednesday meditation and Dhamma teachings by Bro Tan.

Report by Gan Bee Ching  |  Photographs by Gan Jia Cheng

On Wednesday 16 July, Nalanda Centre was packed with devotees eager to listen to the last Gimhāna teachings for 2014.  It was indeed a worthwhile effort as Bro. Tan delivered an illuminating finale on the gradual development of a ‘good mind’.  Recalling his earlier talks about a ‘good heart’ versus a ‘good mind’, he asked rhetorically –‘What is this “mind”?’

Bro. Tan commented that there is continual arising and fading of both ‘kusala’ (wholesome) and ‘akusala’ (unwholesome) states of ‘citta’ (mind).  Constant churning between these two states means that we need to pay attention to how we are ‘doing’ good (i.e. ‘being’ good) – because good behaviour or actions are not necessarily accompanied by ‘kusala citta’!

Devotees sitting through an hour's meditation before partaking the Dhamma teachings.

A ‘good mind’ is mindful, and has moment-to-moment awareness of ‘citta’.  However, a volatile and agitated mind cannot be mindful.  Meditation is therefore essential for mindfulness training.  Furthermore, Buddhist meditation goes beyond experiencing calmness.  It is transcendental and culminates in intuitive wisdom, which leads to understanding the true nature of existence, purification of ‘citta’, and the realization of Nibbāna.

Devotees paying close attention to the Dhamma talk by Bro. Tan, the last for this year's Gimhāna Retreat.

After the talk, devotees shared their personal experiences and expressed their joy and gratitude in having the opportunity to participate in this year’s Gimhāna Retreat. Tokens of appreciation were presented to our wonderful teacher, Bro. Tan, for his simple yet profound, practical and liberating teachings that gave us much inspiration and renewed our spiritual aspirations.

Participant Sis. Su Cheng sharing her learning experience throughout the Gimhāna Retreat.

The spiritually uplifting evening ended with dedication of merits to all beings.  Devotees left with a deep spiritual fervor to uphold consistency, continuity and steadfastness in establishing morality, quietude and wisdom for the well-being of oneself and others.  Sabbe sattā sukhihontu. Sadhu anumodana!

Bro. Tan chatting with MMU students while Nalanda Youth leader, Bro. Disheng (right) looks on.