Mature Emotions

Ajahn Vajiro

Mature Emotions

In the teachings of the Buddha there are mentioned the Brahma Viharas. These are usually translated as the divine, or heavenly abidings. This is from a literal translation: Brahma - God, and Vihara - Dwelling. They can be brought down from the heavens, to earth, by considering that as emotions they motivate and encourage the transcending of the limitations of basic human existence. This ‘transcend…

Love

Ajahn Sundara

Love

‘Love’ is a loaded word. I ‘love’ my sandwich. I ‘love’ my wife. There is selfless love and selfish love. The love in the Buddha’s teaching has to do with compassion. He talks about universal love. He also talks about the danger of love based on attachment. We don’t have to judge these different aspects of love. We experiment starting from our own experience in life. What is this love which is not…

Love as Undivided Attention

Ajahn Munindo

Love as Undivided Attention

What does it feel like to be loved? What does it feel like to be loving – as it is happening? To receive love from another is to receive somebody’s undivided attention. They’re not preoccupied with anybody or anything else; they have forgotten themselves and are wholeheartedly attending to us. There’s a tremendous beauty, richness and fullness in so receiving the heart of another. If we were to co…

Celibacy

Ajahn Jayasaro

Celibacy

The Buddha taught that on the path to enlightenment, sexual desire can, and eventually must, be completely transcended. To this end, monks undertake an absolute form of celibacy in order to isolate and reveal the impermanent, unsatisfactory and impersonal nature of sexual desire, and thus uproot identification with it. The weight of the Discipline is thrown behind this practice by making intention…

Transcending Conventional Distinctions

Mae Chee Kaew

Transcending Conventional Distinctions

The separation of men and women has become so deeply ingrained in most cultures that it is quite natural to experience it in a religious context. But gender is transient, it comes and goes; conditioned by past karma, it is a kind of destiny. The essence of one’s being is without name and without form, and thus without characteristics of male or female. This is a fundamental tenet of Buddhism: that…

Working with Difficult Emotions

Ajahn Viradhammo

Working with Difficult Emotions

It’s not that you don’t sometimes feel negative or at least conflicting emotions towards others in monastic life or in any other type of relationship. You do feel them. However, the task is to make them conscious and see them for what they are. Experiencing difficult emotions is normal. But those emotions are not to be believed or pursued. Instead, they’re to be known for what they are: changing c…

This Is What We Do

Ajahn Pasanno

This Is What We Do

The beauty of the Buddha’s teaching is that the Buddha brings us back to seeing…what we are actually doing. The goal is seeking the end of suffering. Yet we keep replicating and perpetuating it through a lack of understanding and our inability to let go of the impulses towards desire, attachment, becoming. We work to be able to pay attention, to recognize those habits and see clearly. That’s why t…

When Peace Is Worse Than Suffering

Ajahn Sundara

When Peace Is Worse Than Suffering

Perhaps we want to think of nothing, to have no thoughts, just endless bliss and perfect peace. But this is also delusion, only a more subtle form. Ajahn Chah said that being stuck in peace is a lot worse than being stuck in suffering. When we’re stuck in suffering, at least we know that we want change; at least we know we want to be free from/of it. One of the obstacles on the path of the holy li…

More inspired words

Ajaan Dune

More inspired words

When you can separate the mind from its involvement with all things, the mind is no longer tied to sorrow. Whether sights, sounds, smells, tastes, or tactile sensations are good or bad depends on the mind’s going out to fashion them in that way. When the mind lacks discernment, it misunderstands things. When it misunderstands things, it gets deluded under the influence of all things that are bindi…

How to Define the Dhamma?

Ajahn Amaro

How to Define the Dhamma?

When we talk about Dhamma, the descriptions can seem a little vague because we have to use terms that point to it but don’t exactly explain it. When the Buddha describes the qualities of the Dhamma, he uses terms like sanditthiko, akāliko and ehipassiko, meaning respectively ‘apparent here and now’, ‘timeless’ and ‘encouraging investigation’. That doesn’t give us a lot to chew on, does it? The th…