Tibetan: lelo (actually pronounced lay-lo)
English: indolence, faintheartedness, procrastination
The Tibetan term lelo is a subsidiary negative emotional state that undermines one's enthusiasm for virtuous or productive activities. Maitreya Buddha taught that this is the first flaw that we bump up against in our daily practice. It is a flaw because it ensures that we do not start, that we don't apply ourselves. It is a flaw because it ensures that we remain feeling stuck.
We may want to do something important, want to accomplish an activity, but when we try to do so we run up against the inertia that is our own indolence.
There are three types of indolence:
This is the fatigue and laziness that we all experience. It is heavy, sluggish. I could get started or I could rest for a second. I could do a little bit today, or I could wait until tomorrow when I feel better.
Obsession with pointless activity.
We all know these...
This is feeling inadequate or unable to start. A lack of self-confidence that results in waiting or hiding.
It is easy to pass the blame to something else, something outside of ourselves. But as a practitioner, or someone aspiring to be a practitioner, we need to look at our situation and our life. We need to be honest with ourselves, our choices and our activities.
Are we really committed to making this happen?
To overcome these three types of indolence, Maitreya Buddha taught four types of remedies:
Belief. Intention. Perseverance. Pliancy.
Belief is knowing there is something greater than this. It is not blind faith, but rather our deepest aspirations and knowing there is a truth in them.
Our intention seeks to purposefully accomplish our activity. Clarify it. Be specific.
Perseverance pushes us to continue to show up. Put in the time. Do the work. Make the effort.
The result is pliancy. We become adaptable, flexible, dexterous. We become open to change, ready to change. We become confident with the continuum of change which is life.
No longer too tired to go, too busy to go or too scared to go, we simply go. We start, and figure out what else we need as we go.
Are you going, or waiting? What else do you need to start?