Take Responsibility for the Requisites

Ajahn Pasanno

Take Responsibility for the Requisites

I’d like to continue with the theme of the four requisites and the material realm in which we live. On a certain level, looking after the requisites is really basic, just putting things away. Take responsibility for the requisites. Make sure that tools get put back into the place where you found them, rather than leaving them out for other people to put away. Cultivate the attitude of being circum…

The Internal Lawyer

Ajahn Karuṇadhammo

The Internal Lawyer

Ajahn Karunadhammo, 26 September 2012 Last night at the vinaya class we were going over some of the rules around speech. For some of the lay guests who might not know the patimokkha so well, the precept about speech in the five precepts is broken down into many different rules in the monks’ vinaya. The general principle is expounded in much more detail with separate rules, such as a rule against t…

The Gift of Giving Space

Ajahn Yatiko

The Gift of Giving Space

It’s a challenge to encourage people to grow in Dhamma. It’s not easy because it’s not a matter of simply telling people what to do or asking people to conform to a set of rules. You have to encourage and inspire people to dig deep within themselves to respond to situations in ways that are skillful. That often involves going against the grain. It’s tempting to tell people what to do and to lay do…

Refocusing on the Defilements

Ajahn Yatiko

Refocusing on the Defilements

One of the problems we come across is the tendency to forget the goal of our practice and life—in other words, the direction in which we should point ourselves. We can return to the basic understanding that we wish to be free from the defilements of greed, hatred and delusion. It’s easy to get caught up in the conditions of daily life. You want the conditions to be a certain way and you either lik…

The Real World

Ajahn Amaro

The Real World

What does a Buddhist monk know about the real world anyway?” It’s a common question because there’s a sense of the monastery being an isolated sanctuary where we say, “Goodbye cruel world,” then we come into our beautiful sacred space and suddenly we’re spiritual. That’s a bit of a sweeping generalization, but it’s often the way people think. What is a monastery, anyway? What is the purpose of a s…

Solitude and Engagement

Ajahn Pasanno

Solitude and Engagement

This last week has been a full one, with lots of contact and engagement. That’s the nature of monastic life, even though there’s a bottom line of simplicity. One goes through various phases of solitude and engagement. It’s important to make a conscious effort to bring things back to a life of more solitude and less engagement. It’s interesting to see how the mind picks up a particular way of relat…

What if I get it Wrong?

Ajahn Sucitto

What if I get it Wrong?

This reflection is excerpted and adapted from “Running Away from Phantoms,” a Dhamma Talk offered by Ajahn Sucitto at Abhayagiri in 2007 — “What if I get it wrong?” “What if it doesn’t work?” “What if I’m left here alone?” Just look over the edge of that. Look over the edge of ‘what if’ and let your mind open up and realize that we’ve been running away from phantoms. Examine the attitudes you have…

The Brahma Viharas

Ajahn Dtun

The Brahma Viharas

(These teachings by Tan Ajahn Dtun were part of a meditation retreat for laypeople held in Australia in March 2005.) We have all come together here to keep precepts, to develop meditation and to cultivate wisdom in our hearts. This intention is something very hard to find in the minds of people in this present day. When we have mindfulness and wisdom, we can see the harm there is in acting in unsk…

Growing in Goodness and Virtue

Ajahn Dtun

Growing in Goodness and Virtue

Within the teachings of the Lord Buddha, the Buddha instructed the community of his disciples (monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen) to become acquainted with the truths of nature; that is, with regards to one’s own body, the bodies of others and all material objects - all come into being and exist for a period of time before finally ceasing to be. The Buddha was teaching that we should know the natur…

The Role of Observance Days

Ajahn Amaro

The Role of Observance Days

The role of our weekly Observance Day is to put things down and focus on the precepts and the formal spiritual qualities of our life. It’s a day of recollecting, a day of observing; it’s a day to remember Dhamma, to observe that primal principle and our primal motivation for being here at the monastery. It’s a time to recollect the possibility we have as human beings to let go of all confusion, de…