Biographies of the Buddha

ฐานิสสโร ภิกขุ

Biographies of the Buddha

The Buddha, as a teacher, was adamant about the power of action and focused special attention on what skillful actions could accomplish in bringing about a true and unchanging happiness. So it’s only natural to want to know what he himself did and what he was able to accomplish through his actions. An account of his life allows people who are not yet convinced of his awakening to assess him as a t…

Cessation

อาจารย์ วีรธัมโม

Cessation

“Cessation” is an important word in Buddhism, and it’s one that I like to define as the fading away of the sense of self. The sense of self fades away when we don’t attach to an experience. Cessation occurs when we learn to look at experience objectively. For instance, if I’m becoming irritated while I’m talking with someone, I can notice my reactions as objects in the mind and feelings in the bod…

Encased in Our Personal Histories

อาจารย์ สุจิตโต

Encased in Our Personal Histories

We have to keep challenging this ‘I’m a separate entity’ paradigm by which we tend to operate. If you were asked, ‘Where are you really?’, most of you would probably experience yourselves as living somewhere behind your eyes. This is the ‘me’ bit, somewhere up in the head, with all the rest underneath it. In other words, I don’t regard my head as being on top of me; I regard my feet as being under…

Firmly Intent

ฐานิสสโร ภิกขุ

Firmly Intent

In Thailand, when they translate “concentration” into Thai [from the Pāli], they translate it as being “firmly intent.” In other words, the mind is not simply still and quiet. There’s also a very strong intention to stay that way, to maintain this stillness. Of course, to stay right here you need motivation. You have to understand that this is a good thing to do. And there’s so much out there tha…

The Importance of Concentration

ฐานิสสโร ภิกขุ

The Importance of Concentration

The desire to get the mind into concentration is an important part of the path. There are two reasons for why you need concentration. One of the purposes of concentration is to provide good food for the mind: a sense of pleasure, a sense of well-being that comes when you get the mind to settle down and you don’t need to think about how to gain pleasant sights, nice sounds, pleasant smells, tastes,…

Bowing, an Opening of the Heart

อาจารย์ สุเมโธ

Bowing, an Opening of the Heart

Bowing…this is another tradition. Learn how to bow mindfully, putting one’s head down, surrendering oneself physically, giving oneself in the act of bowing, instead of just saying, “I am not aggressive, I am not proud and arrogant.” If you get proud that you bow so well, or if you start hating people that do not bow, then … ! This is an act of devotion, and devotion is an opening of the heart, of…

The Monastery as a Refuge

อาจารย์ ชยสาโร

The Monastery as a Refuge

The monastery, he [Ajahn Chah] said, was a refuge from the stresses and strains of daily life. It was a place where people could take a step back from their lives, take an overview and learn life skills that would stand them in good stead in their daily life. If they left it too long, it might be too late. He teased people who waited to go to the monastery until they could no longer sit on the flo…

Unacknowledged Suffering

อาจารย์ มุนินโท

Unacknowledged Suffering

The Buddha’s teachings on cultivating caring aim to equip us with skilful defences which strengthen and protect us without compromising our sensitivity and discernment. They aim to give us the skill to meet life, whatever that might mean in our case. Nobody goes through this experience of life without periods of feeling intensely challenged. What matters is how well prepared we are for the challen…

The Difference Between Form and Spirit

อาจารย์ มุนินโท

The Difference Between Form and Spirit

Most of us, at least in the beginning, do not always appreciate the difference between form and spirit in practice. For instance, our initial interest in meditation may well have been inspired by hearing that it could help us become more peaceful and help increase understanding. However, if we are not careful about how we engage with the forms and techniques used in developing meditation, we can j…

Three Kinds of Parents

อาจารย์ ญาณธัมโม

Three Kinds of Parents

The Buddha says we have three kinds of parents in our lives. Our first parents are those who conceive us and give us physical birth. These are the parents who give us life. These second kind of parents the Buddha refers to as the nurturing parents who bring us up, take care of us. Sometimes, nurturing parents can take even better care of us than our biological parents because they are kind and com…