Reversal Learning versus Forward Learning

Meditation learning is reversal – reversing what is already in existence. Learning in this sense addresses what is already here instead of creating what is other than here.

The purpose of learning meditation is to undo what has been done, not as literally, but through recognition – hence it is reversal by nature. When one is able to recognize a mistake, at that point one has already got himself released from the mistake, in word to mean correction has occurred, at the mind level. Recognition here is not anything about regret or remorse but simply a realization it was an error in the mind. Recognition is reversal in this meaning.

Whenever a mistake is made, there is a tendency of the mind to give attention to the outcome rather than the process that leads to it. My meditation teacher constantly reminds us that any experience that comes into our space is not at all important than the attitude towards it. What he is to mean is that the experience itself is none of our business, since it is already in existence, but our attitude, which is in the present, is a determining factor for our future.

Back to the example of a mistake – when you recognize a mistake, you can either give attention to the mistake, which has already occurred and probably see yourself wrong in it or, you can be grateful that you have the ability to recognize the mistake. Ignorance cries over split milk, whereas wisdom rejoices in what is learnt from the experience. In other words, ignorance look at the effect, whereas wisdom at the cause.

Ignorance carry the mistake forward by making amends through guilt, having to live with guilt, while wisdom releases the past and naturally transforms due to resolving it through understanding. The latter is a reversal learning, as it reverses what is past by making it correct and hence completing what is in the past and then move on, whereas the former carries the past forward, not resolving it at all, except proliferating it further by constant guilt.

When one recognizes a mistake, one has to give attention to the recognition itself rather than the mistake. The recognition is the cause of undoing the mistake. Without recognition, correction is impossible. Recognition is wisdom at work. Question may arise what about one who has yet to see it as a mistake? Then it is obvious that wisdom has not come in or ignorance is just around covering the truth to be seen. A mistake will not be called a mistake until one recognizes it which already means a correction has been made, in the mind. Without the arising of the correction, a mistake cannot be seen, hence the meaning ignorance – ignoring the obvious.

One may ask further what about justice when the mistake has been done upon another, in term of retribution. Retribution is again, a forward learning as it entails guilt. In truth, justice has been carried out in the mind as every moment of unseen mistake, by itself it already entails much suffering to the beholder. Anything that is against nature is by itself suffering, without needing to impose further suffering. This truth applies at the mind level and what the world does to the person is another issue all together, as again, the world is in constant conflict with the Truth.

The law of nature is just, except man made laws as it addresses the effect rather than the cause. All issues can only be addressed at the cause level if a permanent resolution is to be made.

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