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Posts Tagged ‘dukkha’

Confronting Illness and Death

How do we confront illness and death? We will all experience them, but often don’t want to contemplate them. I’ll discuss some recent YouTube channels that have dealt with illness and death in deep and profound ways, as well as a little of my own journey. Then I’ll turn to both traditional Buddhist and secular…

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Is Desire the Root of Suffering?

It is sometimes said that desire is the root of suffering, or that the Buddha claimed such a thing. We will look at the ways in which desire can be unskillful, including some that are very close to our hearts, and other ways in which desires can in fact be skillful. We will see that…

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Practice Circle: Autumn and Impermanance

We’ve crossed the Equinox, and here in the northern USA where I live, the arrival of autumn is unmistakable. Green leaves dry and are touched with orange, red and gold. The evening turns cool and dark. Soon the lush profusion of life will give way to the barren cold of winter. It’s a very good…

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Practice Circle: Keeping Your Practice Together

I won’t bore you with the details, but 2017 has been a tough year for me. Job loss, unemployment, an auto accident, the stress of adjusting to a demanding new job, physical injury, and more — it’s all come one after another. Dukkah, thick and fast. And, just as I needed my practice the most,…

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Three Marks of Existence, or Three Factors of Human Experience?

Along with the Four Noble Truths and the Noble Eightfold Path, one of the core beliefs of Buddhists is the notion that there are three basic characteristics or “marks” of existence – dukkha (suffering), anicca (impermanence), and anatta (not-self). In the Aggi-Vacchagotta Sutta and other discourses the Buddha avoided entering into a debate over many…

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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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The Parade of Horribles

Hope is both blessing and curse. It is a blessing when it gives us the confidence to act, to see beyond temporary obstacles and problems towards the greater good that stands in the uncertain distance. Hope gladdens the heart, turns our minds towards optimism and brings energy when we are low and tired. Hope can…

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Meditating with Muse

As soon as I saw the first ads for Muse, the “brain-sensing headband” that provides users with feedback during meditation, I felt both intrigued and conflicted. After all, you don’t need a $300 electronic gadget to meditate. Would this be just one more mindfulness commodity, another plaything to become attached to? Would it be useful?…

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Radical Dharma: A Review

America’s racial sickness has become especially vivid in recent months. Whether it’s the execution of unarmed black people by police, retaliatory violence against police, the disruptive resistance of the Black Lives Matter movement, or the appearance of an openly racist demagogue as the presidential nominee of a major party, anyone who may have supposed that…

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