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  • MING: So I'm a jolly good fellow,

  • and I'm honored to introduce Ajahn Brahm, my fellow jolly

  • good fellow.

  • I'm a huge fan of Ajahn Brahm.

  • In the part of the world I came from,

  • which is Southeast Asia, and also in Australia,

  • Ajahn Brahm is a big deal.

  • He's like a celebrity.

  • He's like a movie star.

  • He has to wear shades when he goes to the mall.

  • He is a widely admired master, teacher of dharma,

  • and Buddhism, and meditation.

  • And he's known for his wisdom, his intelligence,

  • and great humor, and for telling great stories.

  • He's also very naughty.

  • Let me give you an example of naughty.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Hey.

  • No.

  • MING: Yes, you.

  • The last time we were together, I

  • brought my father to see Ajahn Brahm.

  • And I wanted a book autographed for my father.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yes, yes, yes.

  • MING: And then I was busy.

  • So I give it to a friend, and say,

  • can you get Ajahn Brahm to autograph for Ming's father.

  • And then he put it to you.

  • And you wrote, "To Ming's father."

  • So which is why today, I had to say,

  • can you autograph to my wife, Cindy, Cindy.

  • Otherwise, he was going to write "To Ming's wife."

  • AJAHN BRAHM: "To my wife."

  • MING: Yeah. "To my wife," yeah.

  • He's also, among other things, known

  • for his leading role in advocating

  • for the rights of Buddhist nuns for full ordination.

  • Yay.

  • [APPLAUSE]

  • MING: And for that, he got expelled from his order.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yay.

  • [LAUGHTER]

  • MING: I know.

  • The last time we were talking about this,

  • we were in the audience and onstage, somebody

  • was talking about this.

  • And we high-fived each other.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yes, yeah, yeah.

  • MING: Remember?

  • We were like, let's do a high-five again.

  • High-five.

  • Yeah.

  • He said the best thing about being expelled from his order

  • is he can only be expelled once.

  • Ajahn Brahm is also the co-founder of Bodhinyana,

  • the first dedicated Buddhist monastery

  • in the Southern hemisphere, hemisphere, hemisphere.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yeah.

  • MING: Yes.

  • He's the coolest monk in at least the Southern hemisphere,

  • hemisphere, hemisphere.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yes.

  • It's very cold in Australia.

  • MING: Yes.

  • Which is today also the largest community

  • of Buddhist monks in Australia.

  • He is the author of multiple books.

  • And in 2004, he was awarded the John Curtain Medal

  • for Leadership, Vision, and Service

  • to the Australian community.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Yes.

  • MING: And with that, my friends, please give

  • a warm welcome to Ajahn Brahm.

  • AJAHN BRAHM: Hi.

  • [APPLAUSE]

  • Very good.

  • First of all, when Shirley-- where is she?

  • She asked me for a title for the talk

  • or at least some way of getting people

  • to come in the old bums on the seats,

  • I did mention to everybody that I was over 750.

  • That's my age.

  • Now, there we go.

  • That's because you meditate a lot and you're very peaceful.

  • It means you look only in your 60s.

  • Well, last year, last year in Bhutan,

  • I celebrated my 750th birthday.

  • And I'm a monk.

  • I have to be honest.

  • I cannot tell a lie.

  • It really was 750 months.

  • [LAUGHS]

  • Now, if you're a monk, saying you're old

  • makes you have more cred.

  • People actually respect you more.

  • So if I just said I was 62 and 1/2 and 63, that's so ordinary.

  • But 750, that's awesome.

  • So I'm 750-- almost 762 now.

  • Wow.

  • But this is one example of learning

  • how to make some fun in life and learn

  • how to make some fun in your workplace,

  • learning how to do what Meg is trying to teach everybody,

  • to have a more happy, more powerful mind,

  • learning how to see things in a different way.

  • Obviously, in anywhere in our modern world,

  • we have to see things looking out of the box.

  • And one of the ways the Buddhist monks can actually

  • see things which other people can't see

  • is we literally live outside of the box.

  • We do things which are totally different than anybody else.

  • And because we live outside of the box,

  • we can actually innovate, and especially in what we're

  • teaching here, mindfulness.

  • Mindfulness is so last decade.

  • So we've made more advances since that time.

  • I was telling Bill a few moments ago at lunch, mindfulness, OK.

  • So there was this woman, a very wealthy woman,

  • who went to work one day.

  • And there was many burglaries in the neighborhood.

  • So she told the guard on the front of her mansion,

  • be mindful.

  • There are many burglars around.

  • And when she came home from work,

  • she found that her house had been ransacked.

  • Burglars had stolen everything.

  • And she told the guard at her house,

  • I asked you to be mindful.

  • Why weren't you mindful?

  • And the guard said, I was mindful, Madam.

  • I saw the burglars going in, and I was mindful,

  • burglar going in, burglar going in, burglar going in.

  • I saw them taking your jewelry out.

  • I was mindful.

  • I noted jewelry going out, jewelry going.

  • I saw them going in again with their truck.

  • I saw your safe going out.

  • I noted safe going out.

  • I was mindful all the time.

  • Would that be very helpful?

  • No.

  • Mindfulness is not enough.

  • So I seen at the lunch desk, Days of Mindfulness.

  • Mindfully putting food into mouth.

  • Food going in.

  • More food going in.

  • More food going in.

  • Well, that's being mindful.

  • But it's not sometimes being wise.

  • So if you want to stay ahead of the curve with mindfulness,

  • we add something more, which is kindness.

  • And if you add kindness to mindfulness,

  • you get the latest-- [LAUGHS] stop laughing.

  • Putting me off.

  • The latest buzzword in psychology, kindfulness.

  • So don't just be mindful.

  • Be kindful.

  • Now, what that really means is yes, you're aware.

  • But you got some responsibilities, some duties.

  • Be kind to what's going on.

  • Now, you live in the tech world.

  • I don't know if you heard this story.

  • It's a true story.

  • This was in NASA a few years ago in Houston.

  • And they had just installed a new mainframe computer,

  • big number cruncher.

  • And it cost millions and millions of dollars.

  • And after installing the big number cruncher

  • in the headquarters of NASA in Houston,

  • they tried to boot it up.

  • They could not get it working.

  • And because this was costing millions of dollars every hour,

  • they got every high tech guy in the whole-- and woman--

  • in the whole of the United States and Canada--

  • even Europe-- flying them in first class.

  • They needed them immediately to try and fix up the problem.

  • No one could fix up the problem.

  • There was one tech guy who was a Buddhist.

  • He was a Thai man.

  • And he said, well, if no IT guy can fix up the problem,

  • and if all the best experts have tried and failed,

  • perhaps it might be something supernatural.

  • And I know the guy to fix it, because there

  • was a Thai monk, a meditation monk who

  • just happened to be visiting the Thai temple in Houston.

  • The nice thing about monks is they're cheap.

  • I don't get anything out of this.

  • And what do they have to lose?

  • Nothing.

  • So they invited this Thai monk into the main computer

  • headquarters, the terminal of NASA.

  • And what did he do?

  • A little bit of meditation, kindfulness.

  • You check it out if you've got any friends in NASA.

  • After the monk had been in there,

  • that computer worked perfectly.

  • It started working again.

  • And we know that is true because he's

  • visited San Fran several times.

  • And one time when he came here, the person receiving him

  • decided to look at his passport to make

  • sure his visa was in order.

  • And this monk has got a diplomatic visa

  • with no expiry date so he can come into the US

  • from Thailand at a moment's notice in case NASA needs him.

  • Now this is the power off kindfulness.

  • And a similar story, which I also love-- and this is true.

  • This is one of my disciples-- having meditated

  • with me in Australia for a year, he went back to school

  • in Hamburg, Germany, at the University.

  • And the first day on campus, as he was walking past an ATM

  • machine, the ATM made a sound.

  • It was like a gurgle.

  • And he interpreted that this ATM was welcoming him onto campus.

  • Don't just think about artificial intelligence.

  • It already has arrived.

  • It made a gurgling sound.

  • And he though it's welcoming him onto campus.

  • So from that day on, he'd always say hello, guten Morgen,

  • to his favorite ATM.

  • He'd always use that and be kind to it.

  • And after three months of kindfulness to this ATM,

  • he happened to be having his lunch on a bench within sight

  • of the ATM machine.

  • No one had been close to it for at least 15 minutes

  • when it made the familiar gurgle sound once again.

  • And he looked at this machine, and a 20 euro note came out.

  • No one had been close to the machine.

  • No one had put any cards in or typed in any PIN numbers.

  • And a $20 note, or 20 euro note came out.

  • He went over to the ATM, picked up the euro note,

  • waved it around.

  • Does this belong to anybody?

  • No one claimed it.

  • So he took it away.

  • This is what happens with the power of kindfulness.

  • If you're short of cash, you don't need a card.

  • You don't even need an account.

  • Just go up to the ATM machine, stroke it, and say,

  • may you never run out of electricity.

  • May no one ever hit you when they find

  • they've got no credit balance.

  • May you always be happy and well.

  • And who knows?

  • You may get $20.

  • That's an absolutely true story.

  • Amazing, just the power of the mind just over machines.

  • So this is also true.

  • Your computer, if it's not working, if it crashes,

  • what should you do?

  • Please don't sear at it.

  • Please don't get angry at it.

  • Just take your hand and stroke it.

  • There, there, hard drive.

  • [LAUGHS]

  • You may be laughing at me, but you try it.