Monthly Archives: September 2014

Being Helpful

Once we cultivate compassion —the intense desire to reduce the suffering of others— we must discern at every moment how we can be most helpful: thinking positive thoughts, offering prayers, speaking helpful words, performing beneficial acts, dedicating merit, or even just … Continue reading

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Buddha’s Offspring

Those whose seed is aspiration for the supreme path, whose mother is wisdom, source of all Buddha qualities, for whom peace is a comfortable womb and compassion a skilled nanny, are born as Buddha’s sons and daughters. —Maitreya, Uttaratantra

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Buddhist Views

The various Buddhist views of reality are not competing with or refuting each other. They are indispensable at various times, and for different persons. They are necessary while helpful. There is an orderly progression, from Vaibhasika realism, through Sautrantika subtle … Continue reading

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These are karmic consequences in accord with the cause: Killing leads to short duration of life; Theft leads to lacking possessions and enjoyments; Sexual misconduct leads to much enmity; Lying leads to being maligned by others; Slander causes friends to … Continue reading

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To Love Even More

Even if one I’ve lovingly cared for like my own child, regards me as an enemy, to love him even more, as a mother loves a sick child, is the practice of a Bodhisatva. —Tokme Zangpo

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Real Mindfulness

A mindful act requires, besides attention to the present moment, that we know clearly: how this particular act furthers our spiritual aspirations; that it is appropriate at this time, in this place and circumstance; that it can and will be … Continue reading

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Our view of the continuum of cause and effect in our and others’ lives is narrow and shallow —and necessarily so, given our limited momentary perspective. While we do know that there is no effect without a cause, we cannot … Continue reading

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Difficult situations cannot and do not improve by focusing on them —on the contrary, once the mind has generated an unpleasant feeling, it will continue to find those aspects that confirm the feeling and exclude all that do not. The … Continue reading

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In the Noble Eightfold Path, renunciation (nishkama) is the first of three components associated with Right Thought (the other two are good will and harmlessness). Renunciation is best understood as the perfection of detachment: seeing the futility of craving, and … Continue reading

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Detachment (vairagya) is the absence of craving for, and clinging to, (1) sense pleasures, (2) personal opinions, (3) cultural or familial rules and customs, and (4) notions of ‘me’ and ‘mine’. It flows from the awareness that possessions, relationships, and … Continue reading

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