woman sitting on wooden planks

What lies beyond avidya? If we have gone beyond suffering and seeking pleasure, what is there to do in this life?

The answer lies in being able to distinguish vidya from avidya and not confusing a beginner’s understanding with the real thing.  For a beginner’s understanding it sounds as if one might get bored – that is a sign of an incomplete understanding, lack of realisation. Continue reading What lies beyond avidya? If we have gone beyond suffering and seeking pleasure, what is there to do in this life?

tibetan singing bowl in cozy room

How do we work with the Formless Meditation instructions ‘Wake, Heart, Open, Be’? Doesn’t using them just involve more thinking?

The instruction is not to focus on the heart, wake, open and be. The words are there to give you the co-ordinates as it were.  When you say “heart” or simply think of the word, for a fraction of a second you experience something… Continue reading How do we work with the Formless Meditation instructions ‘Wake, Heart, Open, Be’? Doesn’t using them just involve more thinking?

young asian female looking at reflection

Who is experiencing this present experience? Which ‘I’ am I?

We have a strong sense of self all the time but a vague idea about what it really is. Then we panic and grab onto what is not self as self and it lets us down every time – it lets ‘us’ down – we still have a very strong sense of self and we need to have – otherwise what kind of being would we be? Continue reading Who is experiencing this present experience? Which ‘I’ am I?

Where does Ngöndro – the traditional preliminary practices fit into the Awakened Heart Sangha?

Ngöndro in general means preliminary and in the context of Tibetan Buddhism often refers to the practice of the 4 x 100,000… In Tibet many people had a lot of time they could devote to Dharma practice so having the 4 x 100000 to accomplish gave them a goal and many people made it their main practice… Continue reading Where does Ngöndro – the traditional preliminary practices fit into the Awakened Heart Sangha?

man holding white and black happy birthday signage

How can we act skilfully in the world when our actions will always be tangled up with avidya/delusion?

If our health and well being and that of our family, friends, country and so on are relatively stable and doing okay, then better spend as much time as possible taking advantage of that situation by cultivating right view by listening, reflecting and meditating.  But if duty of care means we need to earn a living, take care of our health, look after family, friends and country and so on – well we have to spend time helping others and try to practise… Continue reading How can we act skilfully in the world when our actions will always be tangled up with avidya/delusion?

Why do I feel so moved by the line ‘Here there is nothing to remove and nothing to add’?

We are enough just as we are – what a relief just to hear that and know we are totally loveable and adequate in ourselves – all we need now is to realise that fully and its full implications – our nature is Buddha – and what does that mean? Continue reading Why do I feel so moved by the line ‘Here there is nothing to remove and nothing to add’?

Photo by Nevil Zaveri, creative commons rights via Flickr

What are we to make of wrathful action being one of the Buddha’s great miracles, given the precept not to kill?

This idea of the Buddha’s wrathful or fierce activity that destroys evil and forces that oppose the Dharma runs throughout the tradition and comes up a lot in the Mahayana sutras and even more in the tantras/Vajrayana. Continue reading What are we to make of wrathful action being one of the Buddha’s great miracles, given the precept not to kill?