I have recently watched this talk on five hindrances to self-mastery by Master Shi Heng Yi. I read about Five Hindrances, a concept new to me – desire, anger, restlessness and worry, sloth, torpor and boredom and doubt (I memorised it as DARED – desire, anger, restlessness, emptiness, doubt). The sloth, torpor and boredom sounded very familiar – non-doing confused for inaction, feeling lost, stuck, feeling numb and depressed in the face of the unknown, feeling empty. In other words emptiness understood on only one level, seen by the mind wallowing in self-pity as existential emptiness, dark void, terrifying abyss – “if there is no self, no me, then what is the point!”
Since then, several other Buddhist texts also warned me – don’t get stuck in emptiness. Keep practicing. Don’t think this is it, “I experienced ego death, no self and faced emptiness, I got it”. Don’t become fascinated by it. Instead go beyond, see it from a new level and keep expanding your perspective… Below is the mantra that I used in working with Five Hindrances. Not that this practice ever stops. Which ones are you focusing on in your practice?