thus have i heard

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    A Universal Formula Paid Member

    ONE OF THE SIMPLEST yet most profound things attributed to the Buddha in the Pali canon is the general statement of interdependent origination: When there is this, there is that, When there is not this, there is not that. When this arises, that arises. When this ceases, that ceases. (Samyutta Nikaya 12.37) More »
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    The Ties that Unbind Paid Member

    Imagine what would happen if you took six lengths of rope and tied one end of each to six creatures: a snake, a crocodile, a bird, a dog, a jackal, and a monkey. Then tie the other end of all these into a big knot and let go. What do you think would happen? Each of these animals would pull in a different direction, trying to return to their favorite haunts. The snake would slither toward its nest in the anthill, the crocodile would pull for the river, the bird would fly up into the air, the dog would head to the village, the jackal to the charnel ground, and the monkey would scamper for the trees. Can you picture such a scene? More »
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    Changing Your Mind Paid Member

    THE HISTORICAL BUDDHA Shakyamuni made a big deal of the distinction between wholesome and unwholesome states of mind. Most religious and philosophical traditions probably share this point of view to some extent, but the Buddha was unique in offering a detailed way of understanding how and why the mind manifests as it does in any given moment. There are patterns of cause and effect that can be seen in experience and traced over time to explain the dynamics at work shaping each moment of consciousness. The word for this is karma, and it does not mean "fate." More »
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    This Fathom-Long Carcass Paid Member

    Thus have I heard:The end of the world can neverBe reached by walking. However,Without having reached the world’s endThere is no release from suffering.I declare that it is in this fathom—long carcass, with its perceptionsand thoughts, that there is the world, theorigin of the world, the cessation of theworld, and the path leading to the cessation of the world.(Anguttara Nikaya 4:45) This radical statement, attributed to the Buddha in the Pali canon, constitutes no less than a Copernican revolution in thought, with far-reaching consequences for our understanding of the human condition. It redefines “the world” in a way that flies in the face of both the scientific and the religious traditions of the West, but is remarkably well suited to the postmodern views emerging along the cutting edges of the new cognitive and neurological sciences. More »
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    No Essence Paid Member

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    Self as Verb Paid Member

    The core insight of the Buddhist tradition—the relentless emptiness of phenomena—has profound implications for all of us who are trying to understand the nature of life. It points to the disturbing fact that all nouns are arbitrary constructions. A person, place or thing is just an idea invented to freeze the fluid flow of the world into objects that can be labeled and manipulated by adroit but shallow modes of mind. Beyond and behind these snapshots we take for ourselves is a vast and unnamable process. More »