Posts by LindaSB

What Is Dependent Arising?

I said that dependent arising is both very simple, and very complex, but always helpful, and worth the effort to understand. Let me start with the very simple. It Really Is Simple Dependent arising says that we come into the world with certain drives that cause us to build a view of the world and…

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Yes, Dependent Origination Can Be Saved

This post is going to get personal. It can’t be helped. I’ve looked for some other way to write it, but there isn’t one in which I can be straightforward and tell the truth. I’m not going to attack anyone. I might — oh, okay, I will — argue against methods and conclusions, though. But…

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Pali Intensive Course Offered Online

There are some exciting things happening in the world of Buddhist studies. There is one in particular I’m familiar with that I thought you might like to know about, because – especially at this moment in time – you don’t need to be either a monastic or a student at a university, or a big…

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The Importance of How We Translate: The End of Suffering

    How readers understand Buddhism depends a great deal on how it is presented to us. This should be obvious. Though Buddhism teaches us to see for ourselves whether what we learn applies to our lives, how we practice, and what we look for when we practice is going to be affected by how…

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The Snake: Translating Ancient Verses

Note: This post is shorter than it looks. Skip the large section of Notes if you wish. The challenge posed by an ancient verse like “The Snake” is that, even for its original audience, a great deal is left unsaid. Even if you lived in a time when you and everyone around you knew that…

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Learn Comedy From The Buddha

So the Buddha walks out from under the bodhi tree and turns out to be a comedian. No seriously, give me some respect here. I’ve been reading lots of the oldest stories we have about the Buddha in his day, and have been surprised to realize that some of the stories he tells, and some…

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A Private Place in a Public Space

Spaceship It is six in the morning on the fourth of February, and I’m watching the sky slowly lighten enough to see waves foaming over small islands of rock on the Pacific coast, just north of Big Sur. The song of the surf and the occasional low boom of a wave striking shore has been…

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Who Is The Ultimate Authority?

The concept of authority in Buddhism shouldn’t be complicated — yet it is. Many of us are already familiar with the Kalama Sutta‘s talk about how we shouldn’t rely on outside authorities but weigh what we’re told against our own experience. For many here this was one of the first reasons we became interested in…

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A Secular Understanding of Dependent Origination: #0 The Taints

There are three taints: the taint of sensual desire, the taint of being and the taint of ignorance. With the arising of ignorance there is the arising of the taints. With the cessation of ignorance there is the cessation of the taints. The way leading to the cessation of the taints is just this Noble…

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A Secular Understanding of Dependent Origination: #12 Aging and Death

The aging of beings in the various orders of beings, their old age, brokenness of teeth, grayness of hair, wrinkling of skin, decline of life, weakness of faculties — this is called aging. The passing of beings out of the various orders of beings, their passing away, dissolution, disappearance, dying, completion of time, dissolution of…

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