Thai Forest Dhamma

in the tradition of Lungphu Mun Bhuridatto

and his western disciples

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Talks from Ajahn Martin

This website now contains all of Ajahn Martin's recorded talks in English and German (a few in Thai and in French).

Most of the talks were given to laypeople at Baan Taad Forest Monastery who wished to receive instruction on Dhamma and meditation.
Most of the newer talks (from 2013 onwards) were given to newly ordained western monks. The talks are preserved exactly as they were originally given – they have not been cut or corrected. For that reason, they should not be transcribed or translated into another form without Ajahn Martin's written consent.

If you have any questions about the content of the talks, please send an email to th.forest.dhamma@gmail.com.

Back to All Talks

Date Title Description Album Duration
30-12-06 Just a simple task...
A protective place. Sila: the Five Precepts are for our protection. Heaven and Hell. The Law of Kamma applied to the worldly life. What is Dukkha? An easy and simple task: Just putting the mind on one object: the tip of the nose or mental repetition of the word “buddho”. Access Samadhi or Upacara Samadhi: Feeling safe in the middle of the storm. Reaching the state of Deep Samadhi or Appana Samadhi. Duality. One-pointedness. Knowingness. The “monkey mind”: Putting back the mind on the object. Fighting the pain with investigation. Knowing the breath. Investigating pain, doubts, and laziness. Questions and answers.
Dhamma Talk 38.12
16-12-06 The overflowing teacup? Views and opinions hindering the practice
Views and opinions make the heart very hard. The open-minded heart. The Overflowing Teacup story. Looking at the heart. A closed heart. A heart full of Metta. The difference of an experience and a view or an opinion. The stages of freedom: Sotappana, Sakadagami, Anagami, Arahant. The path to the end of Dukkha: hardship, endurance, patience and determination. What is freedom? The worldly sense of fight for freedom or independence and the freedom of the mind. Avijja: the tyrant. The ultimate happiness. Boxing against a champion called “Avijja”. Vimutti. The means of Avijja. Undermining the power of Avijja. Sila, Samadhi and Panna. Sati. Investigation of the body. The Nama Khandas.
Dhamma Talk 44.13
13-12-06 Advice for people going back into worldly life
How to keep up daily practice. The value of the concentration. Benefits of the practice in our daily life. Reflections after our daily work and activities. Developing wholesome things. Keeping the Five Precepts (Sila). Questions and answers: considerations about the body (asubha: seeing the ugliness. A factory called “Body”. Loathsomeness).
Dhamma Talk 37.2
11-12-06 4 Columns of practice
The experience that stays in our mind. Looking for the experience again and forgetting the work: the single-pointedness of the mind. The changing nature of the present moment. Dukkha is a container for all the unpleasant things. The Citta can do only one task at a time. Staying with the meditation object. Not letting the Citta going to the senses. The knowing nature: where we take refuge. “Let go” is the function of the heart that understands. Wisdom arises in the heart. The Wisdom of the experience. The fire of the senses. The Five Khandas: the made up world. A magician called “Avijja”: not wanting to know in line with the truth. There are no Khandas in Nibbana. The Five Khandas do not belong to us. Citta: the driver and the car. Citta and the kamma. The investigation of the body is the main topic. The body is the nutriment of greed and hate. The Five Precepts are a must, our right to born as human beings. Generosity, respect and gratitude. Freedom.
Dhamma Talk 57.36
8-12-06 Samadhi- not an option
Going through the fires of hell to reach the safe shore of supreme happiness. Metta: loving kindness. Strictness with kilesas. Getting down to the basis of Samadhi. Khanika Samadhi, Upacara Samadhi and Appana Samadhi: descriptions and similes. Benefits of the development of access concentration (Upacara Samadhi). It is a must, not an option. One-pointedness meaning: there is no subject and there is no object, just the pure knowing nature of the Citta. The path to deliverance is the path of Sila, Samadhi and Panna. Mindfulness is having the mind full of attention. The Five Khandas: getting the taste of each component. Importance of Sati. Samadhi is not beyond our abilities. Determination and effort.
Dhamma Talk 43.52
4-12-06 Going on holiday: going in the fire of the senses
Why these talks are not suitable for the general audience. The difference with mainstream Dhamma way of teaching. Comments about what “respect to the Teacher” means. The middle way. Heating and cooling: utmost pleasure? The force of sexual desire: the most driving force within us. Who is the one who burns our heart? Flames of greed and hate. Developing Mindfulness. Boiling everything down to the Five Khandas. The Eightfold Path is the path of Sila, Samadhi and Panna. Investigation is teaching the heart to understand. Seeing the Five Khandas in action.
Dhamma Talk 40.18
1-12-06 Experience in line with the Truth
The teaching of the Lord Buddha only points to the truth. Not looking for the experience one thinks it might be. Upacara Samadhi: the thunderstorm simile and detailed comments. Appana Samadhi. Overcoming fear. Following the Path and not the images. Whatever we believe is, in the end, an obstacle. Another person insight can help us but is never our own insight. The way of training Mindfulness, concentration and insight. Beauty and ugliness. Heaven and hell. Subha and asubha Duality. Overcoming opposites. Difficulties are steps in the ladder to Nibbana. Facing hindrances with the power of determination. Looking at the things that we do not like. asavas. Cutting the stems of greed and hate. Raga- tanha: sensual desire. Developing a switching tool: turning the ugly in beautiful and the beautiful in ugly. Questions and answers.
Dhamma Talk 43.48
27-11-06 Dhamma from the heart
Some considerations about memory. The heart that is experienced in Dhamma. Comments about: tanha, wanting, greed, hate, Avijja and conceit. Language is limited to the experience that we normally make in the world. Similes are still the best way to describe experiences beyond this realm, but cannot be applied fully. Examples of similes of Avijja. Understanding of the mind is not the understanding of the heart. Cleaning the attic of the house: a simile of cleaning the path of practice. The teaching of Lord Buddha is a pointer to the truth and not the truth itself. Importance of the own experience. The observer and the object observed. Samadhi: when the observer and the object become one. Mindfulness and self-consciousness: the difference.
Dhamma Talk 42.34
24-11-06 The teachings of Than Acharn Maha Bua
The teaching of Than Acharn Maha Bua, the difference with other teachers and its main topics. Appana Samadhi: knowingness and one pointedness, non-duality. The Nibbana of the little man. The way of practice is fighting the kilesas. Boxing against kilesas and Avijja: a simile of Than Acharn Maha Bua. We cannot persuade them to go away. There is no freedom in the Five Khandas. True freedom: Parinibbana. Sisyphus and Prometheus. Fruitless work. Importance of Samadhi. Investigating the tricks of Avijja. Avijja: sugar coated poison. Determination and effort. Investigation of the Five Khandas, the four elements and Anicca, Anatta and Dukkha: our topics. Investigation of the body: taking skin as example. The language of the warrior. An every minute fight. Taking the short path. The freedom from Dukkha, from doubt, from fear, from greed and from hate.
Dhamma Talk 50:46
21-11-06 Avijja: Not wanting to Know
Evading the truth, the Dukkha and even the sukha. Seeing the thoughts searching around pleasant feelings. Anicca, Anatta, Dukkha: always present. Avijja: called “the big magician”. Not realizing that we do not have the power to change the things that arise this moment. The fruits of the results of our training. Applying Anicca, Anatta and Dukkha to the Five Khandas. The driver and the car simile. Body is a tool. Not wanting to see the truth. How the Citta and body are different. Believing in Avijja. Getting rid of Avijja: facing the truth. How to undermine its power. Investigating what is disgusting. Body is like a factory: simile. Under he sways of the kilesas. Being worried and afraid. Investigating to undermine the liar, the magician. Fostering Samadhi. Setting up our determination. When the practice becomes interesting.
Dhamma Talk 47:19
18-11-06 Questions and Answers
The identification with the body. In Samadhi kilesas are at rest, but in Nibbana the Five Khandas are gone. Deep pain experience and Samadhi. Forcing or persuading. Fear and pain, going through them, understanding them and investigating them: the only way. Understanding takes place in the heart. Wisdom and Sati: a simile. The heart: the only thing that can let go. A tunnel through the mountain. Attachment to family and friends. Watching us, not the others. Kilesa: what is not peaceful, quiet, calm. Understanding the whole “train”. Rolling back. Looking at the process. Using words. Experience has nothing to do with words and concepts. Anicca: considerations. Figures in the clouds. Building concepts is: just wandering on. Techniques are just techniques. Getting stuck in the practice. Sati: our engine in the training.
Dhamma Talk 77:36
15-11-06 The path of Practice
Learning to walk and to speak: a simile related to the path of practice. Investigating for Wisdom and not investigating for knowledge. Difference between knowledge and Wisdom. The Dhamma of the Lord Buddha can be compared with a snake. Living in the ivory tower. Symbols: manipulating and creating new ones. What is the body? Animals and humans: a wise comparison and reflections. Carrots soup simile: Investigation of the Five Khandas: High-speed train simile. “Understanding” is something that happens in the heart. Magga-phala, Sotappana, Sakadagami and Anagami. Kamma. Taking responsibility for our actions. The Buddhist Path: learning to be responsible.
Dhamma Talk 46.35
12-11-06 Samadhi
Comments and considerations about the history and development of the Thai Forest tradition and Theravada Buddhism. Reflections about what is given. Facing the difficulties: liking and disliking. Samadhi: the place where the Citta rests. Mind: a single processor. Effort, Determination and Sati: the basis of our practice. Mindfulness is not self-consciousness. Taming the mind. The two aspects of Samadhi. Khanika Samadhi, Upacara Samadhi and Appana Samadhi: The Five Precepts. Generosity, respect and gratitude. Questions and answers.
Dhamma Talk 55:16
9-11-06 Sila, samadhi and panna
Heart and mind is the same thing: Citta. Samadhi: The world of experience. Upacara Samadhi and Appana Samadhi states. Kilesas and the strolling mind. Appana Samadhi state: an experience beyond description and a motor to get rid of the defilements: greed, anger and delusion. Sammuti. Investigation. Rupa (body), Vedana (feeling), Sañña (memory and association), Sankhara (thinking) and Viññana (consciousness): the mixture that fools us. The path of Sila, Samadhi and Pañña. Sila: virtue, the Five Precepts: our protection to fall down into the lower realms.
Dhamma Talk 32:38
5-11-06 Investigation
Washing dogs: a comparison. Our love for our own “smell”. The only thing that shines in the whole Universe for the wise: Nibbana. Kilesas are tricky. Kilesas are what we call “us”. “I” is the one who gets us in trouble. The three principles of the Universe: Anicca, Anatta and Dukkha. Reflective questions about them. Constant changes of feelings (Vedana), memories (Sañña), thoughts (Sankhara), Viññana (consciousness). What in the Five Khandhas is not changing? Reflections. Why and when Dukkha and restlessness comes in. An example of the Lord Buddha about the “I”: Disassembling the body. The Four Elements. The Five Khandas: Rupa, Vedana, Sanna, Sankhara and Viññana. The game of the “self”: Newborn child with a five balls toy simile.
Dhamma Talk 48:17
19-10-06 Kamma.
Kamma. Accepting good and bad. Neutrality of kamma. Wholesome and unwholesome kamma: the distortion of our mind. Trying to escape from what we think is not fair to us. We are responsible for our kamma. What is "good" kamma? Going against the stream. Greed and hate. Investigating excitement. The citta and the kilesas. Putting the attention on our heart.
Dhamma Talk 27:24
16-10-06 The Four Noble Truths.
The Four Noble Truths. Three columns of Sila (virtue or morality), Samadhi (concentration) and Pañña (wisdom): a detailed and accurate description of each one. Different Types of Samadhi. The important difference between awareness and self-consciousness.
Dhamma Talk 30:49
13-10-06 What is NOT "applying the Dhamma”.
What would satisfy us? Going back in the world: what is NOT applying the Dhamma. A movie frame as example. Mindfulness in every moment. Like, dislike, and liking and disliking again: a constant change. Going beyond greed and hate, like and dislike, good and evil. Fooled by things that tear us apart. How the kilesas’ world is always pushing us around. The thickness of our beliefs: questioning and investigating them.
Dhamma Talk 41:53
11-10-06 Emptiness.
Emptiness. Training computers to hear and see: a good example. The difference with us: our wanting. Investigation in line with the nature and the truth. The Four Elements. Patterns. The world is empty. The body and the nama khandas: a tool to go to the end of suffering. How the mind creates forms. Similarity: language and meanings. When the meaning goes the attachment goes. We are attached to the things we have created. Breaking down the body’s movement. Beliefs. Anicca, anatta, dukkha. Afraid of throwing our knowledge, our beliefs and our views away. Fear of not knowing. Questions and answers.
Dhamma Talk 64:49
9-10-06 Investigating body and mind in line with the Truth.
Undermining the kilesas. The tree of greed and the tree of hate, investigating the body: the only way to cut them down. Three kinds of investigation. Traveling throughout the universe of the body. Breaking down the body, its functions, and understanding its nature. Opening the inner eyes. Investigating properly. The knowledge that arises in our heart. Similes of insight: cutting down the tree - making a tunnel. Stage of anagami. Investigation of the nama khandas. Mind resting in samadhi and mindfulness: a necessity in order to start with a proper investigation. How to investigate thoughts and breaking them down. Not knowing and true knowingness.
Dhamma Talk 39:14
4-10-06 A 7 minute talk
Dhamma Talk 7.06
26-09-06 What is necessary on the path of practice
The Buddhist Scriptures’ purpose in our practice. A summary of the Four Noble Truths. Sila (virtue or morality), Samadhi (concentration) and Pañña (wisdom). Generosity and letting go of attachments. Gratitude: importance of being grateful. Law of Kamma: not related only with material things. Respect for teachers and parents. Finding others’ faults, blaming others. Practice of Metta. Living for the others and not of the others. Acceptance. Unpleasant feelings and getting rid of bad tendencies. The fire of greed. Wanting and not wanting. Blaming the world. Restlessness. Getting the mind calm. The realms of Heaven and hell. Anagami. Five lowest deeds to be reborn in a lower realm. Bimbisara. Kamma. Anicca, anatta and dukkha. The five khandas. The four elements. Avijja. Knowledge, opinions, etc.: package excess. A whispering magician. Finding a good friend in the Path. Sharing merits. Respecting virtue.
Dhamma Talk 58:08
24-09-06 Determination and Effort.
Determination: a very powerful tool, how to make it stronger. The necessity of enormous patience. Mind as a wild animal and meditation as a pole. Pulling back the mind to the object of meditation. Reaching one-pointedness. What "effort" means. How to develop interest in the object of meditation. Observing the changing nature. Hearing and seeing in line with the truth. Feelings are just feelings. What "restlessness" means. Meditation is a matter of training matter like in the Example of learning piano. Being mindful of the body movements. Training of mindfulness. Breaking down the complex world. Do not get fooled by the names or symbols. The privilege of being born as human being. The Five Precepts: our protection. Listening with the heart.
Dhamma Talk 33:30