Category Archives: Recent Posts

There’s a reason people do long retreats

I don’t think most working people in America even dream of going on an extended retreat. Vacations, if they’re taken at all, are more to recover energy, or to see someplace new. The idea of stepping out of society for weeks or months at a time is not thought about, or seen as desirable to most, but only because they don’t know the advantages of it…

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What kind of mind will we use

Recently I have gathered my notes on Buddhist psychology, along with what I have tried my best to include in practice over the years. I see now that the main difference between my early introduction to these teachings and how I see them now has to do with the different qualities of mind we can have…

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Untying the Knot of the Ego

One cannot rely on the dualistic, deluded mind to undo its own delusions (which is using the same kind of mind that created the problems)

Finally, it is the non-deluded, noncompounded, nondual, ultimate reality itself that has the real power to remove delusions…

– Shenpen Hookham, from The Buddha Within

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Tenets of Pure Perception

In Tibetan Buddhism, basic ignorance manifests as what they call ‘impure perception’, or ‘ordinary perception’, the mundane view of the world that we carry with us, and this is seen as the root cause of how we limit ourselves and suffer. The opposite of this is called an enlightened view, pure perception, or sacred outlook. This is a way of experiencing the world as essentially divine in nature, having great beauty and potential…

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Compassion and Self-Compassion

What we call compassion is the love we have in us, meeting suffering in ourselves, in our family, and in the world. We are closest to ourselves, and so of course we know our own suffering better than that of others. We need this one quality called self compassion to turn to what is difficult, and to keep our attention on it, and hold it tenderly until it begins to transform…

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The Knowledge of Liberation

What makes Buddhism such a great treasure to us all is that it teaches the way to freedom from suffering. When we first hear this, we may find it hard to believe, but if we investigate, test the teachings and begin to have some experience ourselves, our faith and dedication to practice naturally develop…


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On Mythological Time and Space

With our ordinary sense of time, events happen one after the other. Looking ahead, we make plans, and looking back, we measure how far we are now from an experience according to the clock, or calendar. Mythological time though is something completely different. In mythological time, every story that’s been told, of sacred adventures, is about what is happening now, and eternally, and in all times and places…

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The Esoteric Aspect of Connecting With a Tradition

From the outside, when we see a person connecting with a Tradition, it looks fairly straightforward, and self evident. We may see them going to church, or to a temple; on a retreat, or pilgrimage; we may find them joining a candle light procession, reading scriptures or sutras or inspired poetry in time set apart, or having a daily meditation practice. This much can be seen.

Within the experience itself however, there is a richness that is subtle, and tangible. This is less often talked about, and so I’d like to say something about it here…

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