Becoming and the back-and-forth of “real life”

Do you ever find yourself in that “becoming” mode? Where you are focused so much on accomplishing something, or becoming a “new” person through career, personal life, etc.? I have (since I used this website) taken 6 month breaks periodically, to re-acclimate to “real life” after prolonged periods of “practice” as diluted as my practice may be, and becoming is something that is always on my mind! Always chasing something new, or running away from it, or whatever! Even if it is in my mind!

I am always curious about other people and their own states of becoming. Do you notice these in yourself? How do you deal with them and/or process them and such?! Just a curious inquiry after my hiatus, which was this time quite longer than others!

Becoming is necessary on the conditioned path as the practitioner progresses from one stage to the next. The issue is using conditioned phenomena skilfully and there is no other choice.

" the meditator must intentionally make use of qualities from which he/she wants to escape, gaining familiarity with them in the course of mastering them to the point where they are naturally stilled. There the transcendent paths and their fruitions take over. This is the sense in which even the path of right practice must eventually be abandoned, but only after it has been brought to the culmination of its development.

Many people have misunderstood this point, believing that the Buddha’s teachings on non-attachment require that one relinquish one’s attachment to the path of practice as quickly as possible. Actually, to make a show of abandoning the path before it is fully developed is to abort the entire practice. As one teacher has put it, a person climbing up to a roof by means of a ladder can let go of the ladder only when safely on the roof. In terms of the famous raft simile [§§113-114], one abandons the raft only after crossing the flood. If one were to abandon it in mid-flood, to make a show of going spontaneously with the flow of the flood’s many currents, one could drown."

—“Skilfulness,” Thanissaro

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