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0 commentsIt is said that after his enlightenment the Buddha was motivated to teach by seeing that all beings were seeking happiness, yet out of ignorance were doing the very things that brought them suffering. This aroused his great compassion to point the way to freedom. The Buddha spoke of different kinds of happiness associated with various stages on the unfolding path of awakening. As we penetrate deeper into the process of opening, the happiness of each stage brings us progressively closer to the highest kind of happiness, the happiness of nibbana, of freedom. What are the causes and conditions that give rise to each of these stages of happiness? How does this joy come about? The events and circumstances of our lives do not happen by accident; rather they are the result of certain causes and conditions. When we understand the conditions necessary for something to happen, we can begin to take destiny into our own hands. More »
0 commentsIt has been said that without monasticism there is no Buddhism. When the first Sangha began to grow around the Buddha there was, of course, no distinctly “Buddhist” form of monastic practice. The history of the Buddhist monastic conventions begins with Shakyamuni’s modifications of the matrix provided by Indian monasticism. The changes he made in the models he received reflected his appreciation of his students’ needs of as well as the realities of his culture and society. More »