Once we undertake this practice, it can take a long time just to get to know ourselves, to start to look inwardly and get to know all the forces that are pushing and pulling us. We get to know our own ways and means of being in the world, and of taking on the practice, the discipline and the meditation techniques. We see our own tactics of mind in relationship to pleasure and pain – we see what we get stuck on and what we want to get away from. It takes a long time to get to know ourselves.
Often, we pick up the practice with our own deluded views, and it can take a while to see that as well. Not that it’s wrong – it’s absolutely inevitable that this happens. We pick things up according to the way we understand them. We put them into practice and then we learn – ‘is it working or not working?’ ‘What are the results of the way I’m practising?’
And this can be a really hard learning experience; at least, in my experience!
This reflection by Ajahn Jitindriya ̄ is from the book, Awakening Presence, (pdf) p.73.