brief teachings

  • Tricycle Community 3 comments

    As Spacious as Nature Paid Member

    Since people might feel a bit lonely coming out into nature by themselves, they tend to go out in groups. But often they just transplant their own little world out into the big world, and they still feel separation: “I’m with these people, not with those.” We should not be like a snail that carries its house on its back and shrinks back into it when another creature comes along. It is better not to put people into categories based on your social distance from them, whether or not you know them. It is also good to feel intimate with creatures around you—the birds, butterflies, and so on. Just as smoke from a chimney disperses into the air, we should disperse our sense of “group” or “family” and truly participate in the life around us. More »
  • Tricycle Community 7 comments

    The Time is Now Paid Member

    All the “spills” we create—not just with our hands but in the ocean of personal relationships as well—begin in our own mind. Distracted by the many things we have to do in a brief time, our attention wanders away from taking care of the activity in front of it, becoming concerned instead for finishing the task as quickly as it can so it can move on to another item on its list of priorities. Giving in to distraction, we give up caring about the activity we are doing. And in a subtle but real way, when we do that we also give up caring about our self, about the value of the effort we are making with our life. More »
  • Tricycle Community 8 comments

    Allow for Space Paid Member

    The difficulty most of us face is that we’re afraid of our humanity. We don’t know how to give our humanity space. We don’t know how to give it love. We don’t know how to offer our appreciation. We seize upon whatever difficult emotions or painful thoughts arise—in large part because we’ve been taught from a very young age that life is a serious business. We’re taught that we have to accomplish so many things and excel at so many things because we have to compete for a limited amount of resources. We develop such high expectations for ourselves and others, and we develop high expectations of life. Such a competitive, goal-oriented approach to life makes us very speedy inside. We become so tight physically, mentally, and emotionally as we rush through each day, each moment, that many of us forget—often quite literally—to breathe. More »
  • Tricycle Community 0 comments

    Dear Abbey Dharma Summer 2011 Paid Member

    Dear Abbey,When I turn on the TV, it feels unbearable to watch. I want to know what’s happening in the world, but media sources seem toxic to me. I’m sure I’m not alone in my emotional regard for the many things happening around us—political or social— that impact us and those we love. How can a Buddhist stay informed without feeling so overwhelmed?Signed,ConfusedDear Confused,I agree that it is important to know what is happening in the world and that we are presented with vast possibilities for becoming informed. I also feel we can be selective about what is useful and relevant. Think about this as Wise Discrimination Practice. More »
  • Tricycle Community 0 comments

    Is There a Self? Paid Member

    Then the wanderer Vacchagotta approached the Blessed One … and said to him:“How is it now, Master Gotama, is there a self?”When this was said, the Blessed One was silent.“Then, Master Gotama, is there no self?”A second time the Blessed One was silent.Then the wanderer Vacchagotta rose from his seat and departed.Then, not long after the wanderer Vacchagotta had left, the Venerable Ananda said to the Blessed One: “Why is it, venerable sir, that when the Blessed One was questioned by the wanderer Vacchagotta, he did not answer?” More »
  • Tricycle Community 0 comments

    Meditation Instructions Paid Member

    SIT comfortably, with your back straight but not stiff or tense. Gently close your eyes and feel the sensations of the breath as the air passes the nostrils or upper lip. The sensations of the in-breath appear simply and naturally. Notice how the out-breath appears. Or you might choose to feel the movement of your chest or abdomen as the breath enters and leaves your body. Wherever you choose to follow the sensations of breathing, whether the in and out at the nostrils or the movement of the chest or abdomen, train your awareness to connect clearly with the first moment of the beginning in-breath. Then sustain the attention for the duration of just that one in-coming breath. Connect again at the beginning of the outbreath and sustain your attention till the end.More »