I Care about You Because…

Ajahn Amaro

I Care about You Because…

One of the ways that the Buddha spoke about stream entry—the irreversible breakthrough to realization of the Dhamma—was as a “change of lineage.” The phrase relates to the idea that “I am a personality; this is me, this is mine, this is what I am.” This belief is called sakkayaditthi, or “personality view.” And as long as “I am the body,” then of course Pat Horner and Tom Horner are my parents. Bu…

Rushing to Get Somewhere Else

Ajahn Sucitto

Rushing to Get Somewhere Else

Becoming whole and staying connected is a matter of relating to our head, body and heart in a balanced and peaceful way. ‘Things are like this now.’ Even when we feel sick or bad or confused, if we relate to that experience for what it is, as a condition and not as something that we are – isn’t that a way to be at peace; a way that has clarity and freedom? On the other hand, even when things aren’…

The Nature of Welfare

Ajahn Jayasaro

The Nature of Welfare

As samanas we seek to imbue our actions with a reverence for life, a spirit of kindheartedness, benevolence and altruism. And we learn to make that reverence for life unqualified. The sanctity of life, and the potential of all beings for awakening forms the basis for the 227 precepts of the Buddhist monastic code. When Ajahn Chah asked Ajahn Mun about the discipline and voiced his fears that there…

Ethics, Kindness, and Wisdom

Ajahn Sucitto

Ethics, Kindness, and Wisdom

Generosity is the easiest and happiest way to enter the experience of mutuality. It defies the logic of greed by accessing the happiness of the heart when it is bringing forth rather than holding on. Morality is the principle of acknowledging that others count as much as I do. It grants respect for self and others, and the qualities of a mind that has no deceit, vindictiveness or remorse show us t…

Acceptance Brings Equanimity

Ajahn Pasanno

Acceptance Brings Equanimity

Acceptance also brings the quality of equanimity, a non- reactive clarity that allows one to stay centered. Equanimity is not indifference. It is the ability to return to a place of stillness, to be non-reactive and to weigh things carefully. This is an important quality especially when considering social action or social responsibility. Without equanimity, we can get drawn into our own reactivene…

Attachment to Ideals

Ajahn Jayasaro

Attachment to Ideals

The attachment to an ideal can be so intense that people are willing to kill or die for it. This kind of feeling is valued because it gives meaning and purpose to our lives and relieves for a while the drag of petty concerns. But it also robs us of discernment and we need to refine this type of love carefully with wisdom to avoid becoming a victim or a pawn of skilful manipulators. In a conflict,…

The Death of the Planet

Bhikkhunī Santacittā

The Death of the Planet

Many believe that thinking or speaking about death will make us depressed or afraid, keeping us from really living. But often it is the fear of death itself that is making us depressed and afraid, keeping us from really living. Once the truth of death is embraced and digested, those difficult emotions will dissolve by themselves. Just as we don’t like to think about our own death, it’s also distre…

Assumption of Material Dependency

Ajahn Amaro

Assumption of Material Dependency

“I haven’t used money since 1978” is the usual response I make when asked about the Buddhist monastic lifestyle. It invariable brings a moment’s pause in the conversation, if not a wide-eyed dropping of jaws. It’s a very different way to live, never owning or even handling money of any kind, and describing it usually brings forth such questions as: ‘How can one possibly live that way, especially i…

Escape from Violence

Ṭhānissaro Bhikkhu

Escape from Violence

“§1. When embraced, the rod of violence breeds danger & fear: Look at people in strife. I will tell of how I experienced terror: Seeing people floundering like fish in small puddles, competing with one another— as I saw this, fear came into me. The world was entirely without substance. All the directions were knocked out of line. Wanting a haven for myself, I saw nothing that wasn’t laid claim to.…

The Priority Has to be Dhamma

Ajahn Sumedho

The Priority Has to be Dhamma

A problem that arises when there is any set form is that some seem to fit into the ideal form more than others. Those who feel that they don’t quite fit into the ideal form might draw the conclusion that this isn’t a suitable life for them. Maybe some of us can’t chant very well, recite the Patimokkha, or maybe we’re not very good at chatting with the lay people. Not everyone can be a gifted, char…