No effort required – just sit

When engaging in meditation practice, we should feel it to be as natural as eating, breathing and defecating. It should not become a specialized or formal event, bloated with seriousness and solemnity. We should realize that meditation transcends effort, practice, aims, goals and the duality of liberation and non-liberation. Meditation is always ideal; there is... Continue Reading →

Great news

"Don’t conclude that your mind is significantly different from anyone else’s. We all have this monkey mind. Once we put the monkey under the magnifying glass, the mind commonly appears crazier than ever. It’s not. You are just allowing yourself to become acquainted with how crazy it has always been. This is great news” Mingyur... Continue Reading →

Work of meditation

When we look deeply into ourselves, we see both flowers and garbage. Each of us has anger, hatred, depression, racial discrimination, and many other kinds of garbage in us, but there is no need for us to be afraid. In the way that a gardener knows how to transform compost into flowers, we can learn... Continue Reading →

Hungry ghosts

Actually, we are all hungry ghosts. It’s a metaphor for the part of us that’s unsatisfied. Because of our attachments and our conditioning, we miss the food and drink that’s right in front of us. In fact, the ingredients we need to make a meal that will satisfy us are all right here. But we... Continue Reading →

Practicing mindfulness

Some people think there is a difference between mindfulness and meditation, but this is not correct. The practice of mindfulness is simply to bring awareness into each moment of our lives. Mindful living is an art. You do not have to be a monk or live in a monastery to practice mindfulness. You can practice... Continue Reading →

Our original nature

Many sorrows of the world arise when the thinking mind is disconnected from the heart. In meditation we can reconnect with our heart and discover an inner sense of spaciousness, unity, and compassion underneath all the conflicts of thought. The loving heart allows for the stories and ideas, the fantasies and fears of the mind... Continue Reading →

Feeding your happiness

When I was a young monk, I wondered why the Buddha kept practicing mindfulness and meditation even after he had already become a Buddha. Now I find the answer is plain enough to see. Happiness is impermanent, like everything else. In order for happiness to be extended and renewed, you have to learn how to... Continue Reading →

Inherent wisdom

Look into a plum tree. In each plum on the tree there is a pit. That pit contains the plum tree and all previous generations of plum tree. The plum pit contains an eternity of plum trees. Inside the pit is an intelligence and wisdom that knows how to become a plum tree, how to... Continue Reading →

The greater view

A friend of mine has been taking care of her ninety-three-year-old mother. The doctors say that her mother will die any day. For more than a year, my friend has been teaching her mother meditation exercises that have been very helpful. She began by watering the seeds of happiness in her mother, and now her... Continue Reading →

Being Extraordinary

One's 'extraordinariness' lies in the ability to truly comprehend how ordinary we are with all our fears and dreams. Understanding that all desires, temptations & feelings that arise within us have been experienced by many others as well. May we use this understanding in relating to others better, may we use this to have more... Continue Reading →

Romantic illusions

Millions of people in this world are interested in some version of meditation, or yoga, or one of the many so-called spiritual activities that are now so widely marketed.A closer look at why people engage in these practices reveals an aim that has little to do with liberation from delusion, and everything do to with... Continue Reading →

We have to start with ourselves

Through the practice of meditation, we gradually begin to relate with our world, our friends, and other situations. And slowly we begin to trust the world as well. We begin to feel that the world is not as bad as we thought— there might be something worth learning. However, we cannot just go out and... Continue Reading →

Working on ourselves first

In reality, nothing can save us from a state of chaos or confusion unless we have acknowledged it and actually experienced it. Otherwise, even though we may be in the midst of chaos, we don’t even notice it, although we are subject to it. On the path of meditation, the first real glimpse of our... Continue Reading →

May you be well and happy

We have to develop a very open loving attitude in our relationships with people. With everybody we meet, whether they are nice to us or not, we must have that initial feeling of “May you be well and happy”. Just a good feeling. It doesn’t mean we have to be stupid or that we can’t... Continue Reading →

A path with heart

In undertaking a spiritual life, what matters is simple: We must make certain that our path is connected with our heart. In the end, spiritual life is not a process of seeking or gaining some extraordinary condition or special powers. In fact, such seeking can take us away from ourselves.In beginning a genuine spiritual journey,... Continue Reading →

Make yourself available

If only for a moment make yourselfAvailable for the use of othersJust as earth, water, fire, wind, medicine,And forests [are available to all].—Nagarjuna's Precious Garland, translation by Jeffrey Hopkins

Goodness in everyone

We have to train our mind to see what’s good in everyone - not ignoring the faults, but not hardening our mind around them either. When we can see the good in others and see their potential, then our attitude towards them and our way of relating to them changes completely. This is a change... Continue Reading →

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