The cultivation of karuna, or compassion, which tempers wisdom's cool discernment
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    Seven Reasons Why It's Better Not To Hate Them Paid Member

    I know how easy it is to sit around during this election year and smolder in rage. I have years of personal experience reading newspapers or listening to news while the urge to violence hijacks my mind. Getting wind of the latest degradation to decades-old environmental legislation or another slash to health care and education is sure to get me steaming. I have entertained countless fantasies of moving to another country (and that's the tame end of things). But in spite of my anger, rage, and disbelief, I have a commitment to try not to hate, or at least to try to temper my hate with a little bit of compassion and understanding. Why? Well, I think it's the sane way to be—and my dharma practice demands it. More »
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    Everyone as a Friend Paid Member

    So how should we view sentient beings? If they have all been in every possible relationship with us from time without beginning (and time has no beginning in Buddhism), should we consider them to be enemies? Everyone has indeed been the enemy—the person who wants me to trip, fall down the stairs, break a leg. My first teacher, Geshe Wangyal, said that one problem with this outlook would be that you’d have to go out and kill everybody. Difficult to do. Everyone has also been neutral, like the many people we pass on the streets; we may even know some faces, but we don’t have any open relationship with them. They are just people working here or there; we may see them often, but there is neither desire nor hatred. Should we consider them to be neutral? Or should we consider these people to be friends? More »
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    Unlimited Friendliness Paid Member

    Images by Lowell Boyers More »
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    Taking Your Future Into Your Own Hands Paid Member

      All sentient beings without a single exception have buddha nature, from the dharmakaya buddha down to the tiniest insect. There is no real difference in the quality or size of this enlightened essence between individuals. However, buddhas and fully enlightened bodhisattvas have cut the movement of dualistic mind at the very beginning. That is how they are different from sentient beings. Buddhas and bodhisattvas’ expression of mind takes the form of compassionate activity. This activity, through emanations and re-emanations, appears in all samsaric realms in order to teach other beings. More »
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    Taking a Stand Paid Member

    Boundaries play an interesting and sometimes complicated role in developing compassion. They are like the stake and wires that are used to help keep young trees rooted and growing straight. Early on in our practice or when we’re faced with difficult, new challenges, a lack of healthy boundaries can lead to our compassion being blown away before it’s had a chance to take root. As we develop, though, boundaries held too tightly can stifle our compassion and keep it from reaching maturity. In the process of developing compassion, we need to become skillful at knowing when to apply boundaries and when to relax or release them. More »
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    Avalokiteshvara In Tibet Paid Member

    According to an old Tibetan tradition, the bodhisattva Avalokiteshvara has a special relation with the people of Tibet. A bodhisattva is a warrior or hero of enlightenment, a being who is on the path to buddhahood. But in a sense, Avalokiteshvara is even more than a buddha. After attaining buddhahood, he voluntarily returned to the way of a bodhisattva in order to lead all beings to buddhahood. Thus Avalokiteshvara is considered the manifestation of the selfless, unconditional compassion of the buddhas. More »