Category: Essays

Demons in the Garden, Weeds in the Mind

“Demon” is an old word, an ancient idea conjuring up images of devils and other fiercely intimidating embodiments of the forces of evil. Perhaps you, like I, instinctively recognize your own demonic nature. We all have within us the capacity to think speak and act in ways that are harmful. What we do with these demons, our demons, is a central project of the spiritual path.

LESSONS. Lesson 5. Part A. The End of Suffering

The first rank in zen is to see the relative in the absolute – we call it change. When things are going the way we want – we can see change as the relative in the absolute. But anytime all h*ll breaks loose in our life – when things don’t go our way – we go wild with suffering. BUT – Buddha tells us there is an end to suffering – You may ask – where is it? And how do I find it? Fashi Lao Yue suggests you take a look here.

LESSONS: Lesson 4 – The Causes of Suffering

We are inseparable from the Truth and yet we seem to be fumbling around in something unreal and not true. We seem to get caught in our ignorance (stupidity), in scattered distractions and in our self-interest. Each one of these traps keeps us from knowing that we, you and me, are the Dharma – the Truth. Do you know what keeps you trapped? Fashi Lao Yue offers some help.

Lesson 3 – Part B  The Realization of Suffering is the Beginning of Wisdom

The basics of practice are protections – protecting ourselves from doing harm to ourselves and protections for others by not doing harm to them. Many of us see ourselves as OLD HANDS at this business of spiritual work – but in reality all that has happened is we have gotten comfortable and secure in the world of material stuff – maybe even smug? We forget what choices we follow – in this essay, we are asked to re-examine our choices – and our sincerity. It, hopefully, challenges us to return to the Dharma with awareness and our full attention.

I Always Want It to Be Different

DON’T OVERLOOK THE BASICS.
IN LESSONS, Lesson 3, PART A we return to the foundations – to realize them in our lives, not just memorize them. Fashi Lao Yue gives us examples of what we do and examples of those who have realized the truth in the first Noble truth. There is suffering – it’s really true…what do we do about it?

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