Buddhism

  • Tricycle Community 2 comments

    Cloudspotting Paid Member

    Although cloudspotting is an activity best undertaken with time on your hands, it is something that everyone can enjoy. Clouds are the most egalitarian of nature’s displays, since each one of us has a good view of them, so it really doesn’t matter where you are. A little elevation never goes amiss, of course, but this could as easily be provided by a high-rise as by a mountain range of outstanding natural beauty. More important is the frame of mind you are in while cloudspotting. You are not a trainspotter, so standing on a hill with a notebook and pen poised to tick off the different types will end in disappointment. So will any attempt to write down their serial numbers. - Gavin Pretor-Pinney, from "Cloudspotting,” Tricycle, Fall 2006 Follow us on Twitter and Facebook. More »
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    "Me," "Myself," and "I" Paid Member

    Holding to an ordinary notion of self, or ego, is the source of all our pain and confusion. The irony is that when we look for this "self" that we're cherishing and protecting, we can't even find it. - Dzigar Kongtrül Rinpoche, from "Searching for Self,” Tricycle, Summer 2007 Follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Read the full article: Searching for Self More »
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    The Test of Truth Paid Member

    What is the test of truth? The Buddha offers a simple formula: Test things in terms of cause and effect. Whatever is unskillful, leading to harm and ill, should be abandoned; whatever is skillful, leading to happiness and peace, should be pursued. Apply the test of skillfulness to all teachings in all your actions. Where is this teaching taking you? Is it moving you in a direction that is wise and kind? One quick test isn’t enough, you know. You have to keep at it, so that your sensitivity to the results of your actions grows more and more refined with practice. When you’ve done the hard work of asking these questions, then you can decide for yourself whether a teaching, or a teacher, is worth following. More »
  • Tricycle Community 5 comments

    It's not quite Bamiyan but... Paid Member

    One of the world’s tallest Buddha statues will soon be unveiled at Sarnath, where the Buddha delivered his first sermon. Funded by the Thai government, the sandstone statue, meant to evoke the famed sixth-century Bamiyan Buddhas the Taliban destroyed, was sculpted in the Ghandaran style. (A Calcutta Telegraph article misidentifies the Bamiyan statues as the tallest Buddhas in the world: China's Leshan Buddha, at 233 feet, and its Spring Temple Buddha, at 422 feet, would both tower over the Bamiyan sculptures and the more modest 100-foot Buddha in Sarnath.) For more on the Leshan and Spring Temple Buddhas, click here. You can read the Telegraph article here. More »
  • The self exists, it's just not as real as you think. Paid Member

    If a basic principle in Buddhism is non-self (anatta), is it incompatible with psychotherapy, which seems to be all about finding and understanding the self? The question is a little misguided, and in an ABC News NOW segment Buddhist psychiatrist Mark Epstein explains why: The self exists, it's just not as real as you think it is. You can watch the interview here. More »
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    Just Now Paid Member

    The mind can do wonderful and unexpected things. Meditators who are having a difficult time achieving a peaceful state of mind sometimes start thinking, “Here we go again, another hour of frustration.” But often something strange happens; although they are anticipating failure, they reach a very peaceful meditative state. My first meditation teacher told me that there is no such thing as a bad meditation. He was right. During the difficult meditations you build up your strength, which creates meditation for peace. We may want to spend much time—months or even years—developing just these first two preliminary stages, because if we can reach this point, we have come a long way indeed in our meditation. More »