Wearing a mask

Like a child at the cinema, we get caught up in the illusion. From this comes all of our vanity, ambition, and insecurity. We fall in love with the illusions we have created and develop excessive pride in our appearance, our possessions, and our accomplishments. It's like wearing a mask and proudly thinking that the... Continue Reading →

Spider caught in its own web

If you follow the example of most people of this decadent age, you will end up being just like them—an expert fraud. You will waste your life chasing after the unattainable. You will be like children who are so busy playing that they are indifferent to hunger and cold and don’t notice the day passing—until... Continue Reading →

Where you are at with practice

In prison Khenpo Münsel Rinpoche taught me this:‘The extent of your realization will be known when you encounter difficult circumstances.You will not know the extent of your realization when things go well.’ When you find yourselfin a troublesome situation, when you are in great pain, when an intense emotion arises,only then will you know where... Continue Reading →

Befriending ourselves

“We have to forgive ourselves. We have all made mistakes and acted stupidly. So what? We're human beings. If we were perfect then we wouldn't need a path, since we would already have arrived! It is because we have problems, because we have faults, because we've made stupid mistakes that we need a path. So... Continue Reading →

The key to wise thought

The key to wise thought is to sense the energy state behind the thought. If we pay attention, we will notice that certain thoughts are produced by fear and the small sense of self. With them will be clinging, rigidity, unworthiness, defensiveness, aggression, or anxiety. We can sense their effect on the heart and the... Continue Reading →

Befriend the silent observer

When you are so busy that you feel perpetually chased, when worrying thoughts circle your head, when the future seems dark and uncertain, when you are hurt by what someone has said, slow down, even if only for a moment. Bring all of your awareness into the present and take a deep breath. What do... Continue Reading →

Light Coming Through

During difficult times we often fail to recognize our wisdom potential because we tend to focus on our pain. At these times we may even feel that faith is not a possibility for us – that it is something that people either have or don’t – not something that we can cultivate. But our instinctual... Continue Reading →

Wish people well

Maintaining care, we should always wish everyone the best, regardless of whether we can be the direct cause for their well-being. Many people make the mistake of thinking that when we wish others well, then we also have to be responsible for their well-being. We can't always be a direct support for people because their... Continue Reading →

What creates samsara

It's very important to understand what creates samsara, also called the realm of confusion. Samsara does not arise from external circumstances. It's not tied to any particular object in the world around us. What creates samsara is how the mind habitually clings to its misperceptions of reality.– Mingyur Rinpoche 

The moral ambiguity of human existence

As human beings we share a tendency to scramble for certainty whenever we realize that everything around us is in flux. In difficult times the stress of trying to find solid ground—something predictable and safe to stand on—seems to intensify. But in truth, the very nature of our existence is forever in flux. Everything keeps... Continue Reading →

A gold chain is still a chain

There seem to be all sorts of different attitudes toward the idea of karma. One is that if you constantly try to be good, then there will be constant good results. That attitude to karma doesn't help you to transcend karmic creation. The ultimate idea is to transcend sowing the seed of any karma, either... Continue Reading →

Recognizing the feelings

Repeated thoughts and stories are almost always fueled by an unacknowledged emotion or feeling underneath. These unsensed feelings are part of what brings the thought back time and again. Future planning is usually fueled by anxiety. Remembering the past is often fueled by regret, or guilt, or grief. Many fantasies arise as a response to... Continue Reading →

Practice of discipline

When you are busy and preoccupied, you feel hassled by your own existence. You are so busy that you think that you do not have any time to spare for your practice. Such torment and busyness seem to be monumental or historic, but that is not the case. As far as we are concerned, that... Continue Reading →

Opening of heart

Love is an opening of the heart. It's like the sun shining. The sun just naturally shines. It doesn't discriminate, shining on this person, but not on that one. It just shines because it is the nature of the sun to give warmth. And it's the equanimous quality of the heart that we have to... Continue Reading →

Relaxing our sense of identity

Ram Dass sometimes shared a story of a young woman who told him, “My family hates when I’m a Buddhist but loves when I’m a Buddha.” In other words, its not what religion we identify ourselves with that matters, but how freely we are able to love and keep our hearts open with others that... Continue Reading →

Truth of uncertainty

One day my teacher Ajahn Chah held up a beautiful Chinese tea cup, “To me this cup is already broken. Because I know its fate, I can enjoy it fully here and now. And when it’s gone, it’s gone.” When we understand the truth of uncertainty, we become free The broken cup helps us see... Continue Reading →

Giving

"I am not saying that you should go home and clear out all your things - that is not the point. The point is this question of opening the heart, of really being able to rejoice in giving to others - not just material things. Material things are good things to start with but we... Continue Reading →

Becoming masters of our mind

“Most of us are slaves of our moods, of our feelings, of our emotions, of our memories, of our anxieties. We’re completely swept along by this. We suffer, and we cause others to suffer. But if we can become the masters of our mind, then we can use our mental faculties in a way which... Continue Reading →

Dependant arising

If you plant a seed in the ground and all the right conditions are present, such as perfect soil, water, and heat—every thing is together and there are no obstacles—then no matter how much you pray for the plant not to grow, it will grow. It will definitely grow because the seed planted in the... Continue Reading →

Genuine transformation

In order to receive any genuine transformation we have to transform everything we do, everything we say, everything we think, to the utmost of our ability, into a Dharma practice.If we use every action of body, speech and mind as our practice, by cultivating awareness, being present in the moment, seeing things with clarity and... Continue Reading →

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