Idle speech appears at the end of Right Speech. To the uninformed observer, mentioning pointless conversations can seem like a throwaway category, an insignificant one at that and only tagged on for good measure. That would be a grave misunderstanding. What we allow to run in our mind either imprisons us or frees us. Non-stop self-talk is the internal expression of “idle speech.” Though seemingly innocuous, this running commentary is a major barrier to awakening and is the primary infrastructure propping up the imagined “self.”

(This talk was given at Santa Barbara’s Open Door Sangha on September 22, 2022.)