dharma talk

  • Tricycle Community 2 comments

    Basic Insight Meditation Instructions Paid Member

    Sit on the floor, legs crossed. (If this is uncomfortable you can sit in a chair. Those who are ill may do this exercise lying down.) Close your eyes or leave them open. Focus your attention on a spot on the abdomen along the body’s vertical midline.As the abdomen expands during respiration, watch the movement with your mind, from beginning to end. When it contracts, do the same. Continue watching the abdominal motions, one after another, keeping your attention in the immediate present moment.Rather than focusing on the breath or the abdomen’s shape, observe the motion itself, experienced as a tactile sensation of pressure. Breathe naturally and follow the movements lightly, keeping your mind on the surface of the abdomen. You don’t have to concentrate too hard. If you have difficulty perceiving the movements, put your hands on your stomach. More »
  • Tricycle Community 3 comments

    How Long Is A Moment Paid Member

    IN THE PRACTICE OF VIPASSANA we try to stay in "the present moment." Everyone knows what the "present" means: Now. But what, precisely, is a "moment"? How long does it last? And when does the present moment become the past?In Vipassana the word "moment" has two definitions. The first could be called the "practice-moment." ("Practice" refers, of course, to meditation practice.) The second is the moment of consciousness itself. More »
  • Tricycle Community 4 comments

    The Aim of Attention Paid Member

    Self-awareness . . . is a neutral mode that maintains self-reflectiveness even in the midst of turbulent emotions. —Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence   More »
  • Tricycle Community 34 comments

    The Three Things We Fear Most Paid Member

    When things upset us, we often think that something is wrong. Perhaps the one time this is truest is when we experience fear. In fact, as human beings, we expend a huge portion of our energy dealing with anxiety and fear. This has certainly been apparent in the present economic upheavals and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We live with an everyday reality that is tinged with personal and cultural anxiety. Our fears are not just the product of global events, however—they go to our very core. On a day-to-day level, fear often motivates how we act and react, and sometimes even how we dress or stand or talk. But fear makes our life narrow and dark. It is at the root of all conflict, underlying much of our sorrow. Fear also blocks intimacy and love and, more than anything, disconnects us from the lovingkindness that is our true nature. More »
  • Tricycle Community 8 comments

    Old Relationships, New Possibilities Paid Member

    WE ALL HAVE SOME rough relationships in our lives that seem held together by the stickiness of attachment and expectation. It is true that we have love and care for these people, but, at the same time, it’s not so clean; there’s plenty of complexity. Inside, we feel an emotional tug when we see or think of them. This is often exaggerated with the people we are close to and with whom we share a strong dynamic, such as our parents, children, close friends, or spouse—all relationships where a lot of expectations tend to arise. There are many unspoken demands. In the midst of our romance, marriage, or parenting, we find ourselves responsible for someone else’s loneliness and their emotional or physical pain. More »
  • Tricycle Community 27 comments

    Long Journey to a Bow Paid Member

    WHEN news of the impending death of a beloved and esteemed teacher swept through the village, well-wishers gathered to pay their last respects and honor him. Standing around the master’s bedside, one by one they sang his praises and extolled his virtues as he listened and smiled weakly. “Such kindness you have shown us,” said one devotee. Another extolled his depth of knowledge, another lamented that never again would they find a teacher with such eloquence. The tributes to his wisdom, compassion, and nobility continued until the master’s wife noticed signs of restlessness and kindly asked his devotees to leave. Turning to her husband, she asked why he was disturbed, remarking upon all the wonderful tributes that had showered him. More »