Be a Buddha, Not a Buddhist: Introduction to Weekly Practice

Be a Buddha, not a Buddhist is an important concept to me because the real value, as I see it, in Buddhism is not the ism but the practice itself. I’ve realized recently that I’d like to take my understanding of Buddhism into deeper territory. One of the best ways to do this is to revisit everything I’ve learned in the past, to start my practice from scratch, or with the beginner’s mind, so to speak.

I’d like to invite you to practice along with me, to explore the teachings of the Buddha, not through long readings of the suttas, though that is certainly good to do on your own, but through some good ol’ meditation time, and rolling what we learn into daily practice, the living experience.

Each week I’ll post a Weekly Practice that focuses on a concept from Buddha’s teachings: The Three Marks of Existence; The Four Noble Truths; The Eightfold Path. Often concepts will overlap, and you’ll find as weeks go by that the practice is cumulative, meaning we don’t leave behind the previous weeks, but instead build on what we discover.

Each Weekly Practice will have the following format:

  • Introduction from me
  • What the Buddha taught: This may be in the form of a quote, a passage from a sutta, or paragraph from a book
  • Sitting Mediation and a Moving Meditation: Do one or the other, or both
  • Daily Practice: Suggestions for taking what you discover in meditation into your daily living experiences

We’ll benefit and learn the most if we set aside time each day for the meditation part, and make a concerted effort, Right Effort, each day to practice as opportunity arises. From my past experiences, opportunities for practice present themselves often in daily life. Overtime, you’ll find life IS practice.

At the end of every Weekly Practice there is a Comment area. As we are a virtual sangha (community), please don’t hesitate to post questions, concerns, and opinions. Additionally, feel free to share insights you discover in your own practice, and share advice or suggestions you feel would be helpful to others.

So, no matter what your experience level, whether you are new to Buddhism, or have been practicing for decades, I hope you’ll join us in these Weekly Practices to Be a Buddha, Not a Buddhist.

Note: I’m not implying you should or can not call yourself a Buddhist;-) Additionally, I am not an expert in Buddhism. This is simply an invitation to practice with me, and all others in our sangha who participate, in the manner I am exploring Buddha’s teachings.

Without further delay: