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retreat

Are you a traveler? Where are you bound? ~ rebirth part 1

Reincarnation or rebirth is a very important and challenging topic – and not just in Buddhism but for everyone because, just in case it IS true, we’re better off thinking about it than not … Do you ever ponder your existential predicament (for example at three in the morning when the clouds of distractions temporarily […]

Kelly Ingram Park 1

Equanimity and the Dalai Lama

This blog is about applying meditation to transform daily life, and as my own daily life of late has included protesting the Dalai Lama, I am going to write an article about what I did with that.             I don’t feel the need to explain again why I was at […]

Halloween 1

What’s really going on in New York City?

We stumbled into a metamorphosized New York on Halloween, a veritable charnel ground, when we decided to watch the parade down in the Village. The altered reality started for me on the subway, people dressed in outlandish costumes and behaving larger than life, but I was not expecting the sheer torrent of ghouls, torture victims, […]

should i tell him

How to catch a problem before it catches you

This carries on directly from this last article. My lovely dad turned 80 on October 2nd, and we were discussing the meaning of (the rest of his) life. He told me he’d been perusing the obituaries to get a sense of how long he had to live and worked out (by some strange and somewhat optimistic […]

problems outside the mind

How do I get rid of problems? Buddha’s advice

A million-dollar question. If we could answer this, we could get finally be free of the wretched things. In fact, this would be priceless information. Buddha did answer this. The whole of Buddhism, or “Dharma”, is supposedly a method to solve all our daily problems, and not just temporarily but FOREVER! This might seem a bit […]

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Charlie Brown sigh

Delusions be gone!

I had one more article on delusions up my sleeve, quickly finishing off the six causes of delusion as these are so practical. They show how delusions arise in dependence upon other factors and so, if we avoid those factors, we don’t have to experience the delusions. First it is worth remembering, as always, that it […]

riot boredeom

A Buddhist solution to boredom

UK riots The unexpected riots and looting in England left all of us wondering where they sprung from. There were some extenuating external factors but, as I said in this last article, I think they certainly were inflamed by inappropriate attention and the baleful influence of unhelpful “friends”. I also agree with those who say […]

disturbed by delusions and negative emotions

Dealing with negative thoughts and emotions

Delusions distort our world. With delusions, we project something from the side of our mind, and then we feel that the person or thing actually is like that from their own side, having nothing to do with our perceiving consciousness. All delusions do this, such as anger, which came up in this first article on […]

Five ways to deal with criticism, part 2

This continues on from Five ways to deal with criticism. How to deal with criticism and overcome our faults without feeling guilty or inadequate If we have any self-cherishing, criticism will probably sting us to a greater or lesser extent. As Christopher Penny put it: “It depends on how high my self-cherishing dial is turned […]

Shantideva

DON’T PANIC

The great Indian Buddhist Master Shantideva is famous for his practical advice on dealing patiently with problems: If something can be remedied Why be unhappy about it? And if there is no remedy for it, There is still no point in being unhappy. Here is a flow chart to illustrate this seemingly unarguable point (sorry, […]

problems outside the mind

How do I get rid of problems? Buddha’s advice

A million-dollar question. If we could answer this, we could get finally be free of the wretched things. In fact, this would be priceless information. Buddha did answer this. The whole of Buddhism, or “Dharma”, is supposedly a method to solve all our daily problems, and not just temporarily but FOREVER! This might seem a bit […]

letting go 5

Stop grasping

To me the spiritual path seems largely a process of letting go – first of the expectations that this life is the be all and end all of existence, then of the expectations of samsara working out, then of the expectations that our happiness comes first, then of the expectations that everything is as really happening […]

red bicycle

Putting things in perspective

We make up our own storyline as we go along. So we might as well make it a good one. I just heard that our two $700 bicycles that I ride all the time have been stolen. The upstairs tenants left them unlocked in the front yard. (I’m property manager but away at the moment). […]

ugly tree

Why am I so sad? Removing the two ego minds at the source of our pain.

In a recent article I tried to explain how self-grasping and self-cherishing, and the delusions they spawn, entirely undermine our happiness. Luckily, nothing is fixed – if we can understand these two ego-centered states of mind at the source of our pain and dissatisfaction, that’s the first step to removing them. We don’t need them […]

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