Wisdom Collection

The best of Tricycle's member-supported content

Tricycle Teachings | Tricycle wisdom in e-book format

Member Supported Content

Tricycle Teachings e-books are available to all Supporting and
Sustaining Members. Join now to enjoy the entire collection.

The Latest in the Wisdom Collection

  • Tricycle Community 1 comment

    Gifts that Keep Giving Paid Member

    The holidays are coming. Time to draw up your gift list. Forget cashmere lap robes, chronometer watches, that scented candle your assistant will only re-gift to her grandmother. Expensive, unimaginative presents are so last year. The Buddhist spirit of giving—dana—is about generosity, not booty. We need to think outside the Tiffany box. Conscious consuming today means not just buying less but being mindful of your footprint on the earth. “Green” etiquette says the best present is one that doesn’t pollute, doesn’t exploit resources, causes no harm, helps someone in need—and may even burnish your karma. When you plunk down your credit card, make it truly count. More »
  • Tricycle Community 10 comments

    The Wise Investigator Paid Member

    Can you say something about the title of your book, Don’t Look Down on the Defilements, They Will Laugh at You? I never intended to write a book. One of my yogis had taken a lot of notes during interviews and wanted to make them available to others. Those notes were then edited and expanded by me and some other yogis. We picked the title because it is important not to underestimate the power of the defilements. When I teach meditation I emphasize the importance of watching the mind. While doing this you will see a lot of defilements. In their grosser manifestations, the defilements are anger, greed, and delusion. And they have plenty of friends and relatives, who often show up as the five hindrances: desire, aversion, torpor, restlessness, and doubt. More »
  • Tricycle Community 9 comments

    A Refuge Into Being Paid Member

    When meditating, is it necessary to focus on one specific object? This is not always necessary, but at times it can be very helpful. When you do meditate on a specific object, such as the breath, that object will help you to develop concentration, and concentration will enable you to cultivate a quiet and spacious mind. But you must be careful not to focus your attention too narrowly on the object, as that can constrain your practice. You should keep your primary focus on the object of meditation, but try to do so with a wide-open awareness. As you follow the breath, for instance, allow yourself to also be aware of what is happening in and around you. Be conscious of sounds, thoughts, sensations, feelings—but without fixating on, grasping, or rejecting any of these things. More »
  • City of Screams Paid Member

    In February 2001, Mullah Omer, leader of the Taliban, issued his infamous decree: all pre-Islamic art in Afghanistan was to be destroyed, including the two great Buddhas carved into the sandstone cliffs of Bamiyan. When Rob Schultheis began this article—a history of the ancient monument and the people who built it—the Buddhas were still standing.The first historical account of the Buddhas of Bamiyan—the larger of which is said to have been the tallest Buddha in the world—comes to us from 632 C.E., in the words of the great Chinese pilgrim Hsuan Tsang. Hsuan was in the midst of an epic ten-thousand-mile trek along the Silk Road, to the westernmost outposts of the Buddhist world. Much of what is now Afghanistan consisted of small Buddhist kingdoms then, but the countryside was wild and lawless. Hsuan writes of narrow, precipitous trails, of snowdrifts twenty to thirty feet deep, of demon-haunted passes and murderous bands of robbers. More »
  • Tricycle Community 33 comments

    Who's Zoomin' Who? The Commodification of Buddhism in the American Marketplace Paid Member

    After the Buddha attained enlightenment under the Bodhi tree in Bodhgaya, he walked the dusty roads to the Deer Park in Sarnath, where he delivered his first sermon, The Sutra of the Turning of the Wheel of Dharma. Here for the first time he described life’s conditions in terms of the Four Noble Truths, declaring desire, craving, “thirst” as the driving force that keeps us stuck in the mire of suffering called samsara. More »
  • Tricycle Community 13 comments

    Family Practice Paid Member

    I’d been away on a silent retreat for several weeks. We’d engaged in a Dzogchen preliminary practice of self-inquiry in which one asks, “Who is meditating? Who, what is aware?” By retreat’s end, wondering how my family was doing, I called home. Jonathan, who was three at the time, answered the phone. “Daddy!” he said, excited. “Yes.” “WHO are you?” I was stunned; my mind stopped. Jonathan giggled. “Just teasing, Daddy!”Tibetan heart-mind training translates ordinary thoughts and feelings into fuel for the path. These practices redirect clinging and suffering into compassion; these practices empower mind to disclose its innate openness. More »