I often encourage people to recite the Diamond Sutra. Why is that? It teaches, "All conditioned dharmas are like a dream, an illusion, a bubble, a shadow. Like dew and lightning. Thus they should be perceived.” All the external phenomena are ever-changing, impermanent, and delusional. We should apply this understanding in life for Dharma practice and eradicating afflictions.
All sorts of "attachment to notions" could arise in life. Eyes perceive the notions of form. The mind gives rise to consciousness. That's why afflictions arise to trouble us. What should we do? Apply the teaching of “All conditioned dharmas are like a dream, an illusion, a bubble, a shadow. Like dew and lightning.” Make this statement the catcher in our course of Dharma practice. Capture afflictions and attachments right on spot.
This is the practice of prajna, the “contemplative awareness”. Every phenomenon is about contemplative awareness. Breathing is contemplative awareness, so is the examination of our mind. Whenever a thought arises, examine it right away, “Hmm… How was I troubled?” “Why am I afflicted?” “Because of ‘ego’.” “What is this notion?” “Is it real?” “Oh, it’s a delusion.” When our mind analyzes right away, the effect of contemplative analysis would come forth.
Dharma practice is the continuous work of contemplative analysis. After a while of practice, the ego that’s deep within our bones and marrow will be lessened. As the slang goes, “Rats scurry away when the cat comes out.” When prajna comes out, afflictions hide up. Like playing hide-and-seek, there are lots of rats of affliction inside us. Let’s work hard to unleash our prajna cat. Let it work until we’ve attained enlightenment.