When I was nineteen

I was nineteen years old the last time I had a seizure. I was in the hospital with pneumonia for five days. It was the first big thing to happen in my life since the loss of my parents, I think. I spent five days in and out of consciousness with a heavy fever that […]

Dhyana: Mind Development

This is meditation, the cultivation of unified awareness focused on the present moment, the eternal now. In meditation there is no difference between the knower, the knowing, and the known. We are trying to cut through delusion. Our goal is full enlightenment, inner peace, and the dissolving of self-made barriers. Liberation from the self is […]

Bodhisattva Road

The Bodhisattva’s Journey Mahayana Buddhism is sometimes called the Great Vehicle. It’s also called the Bodhisattva Path. Bodhisattva means Enlightenment Being or Awakened Being. The path that I advocate, the path that I teach about, is the Bodhisattva Path. It’s a powerful and difficult journey. The ideal of the Bodhisattva is what we are trying […]

Simplicity in Shamatha

Shamatha is a simple meditation style. The point is to free ourselves from delusion. We dwell in delusion all the time, but as long as we understand that and cultivate discipline, shamatha can help us transform ourselves. It’s about being here now. When we aren’t fully present we make all sorts of mistakes. Shamatha is […]

Saving Ourselves

The path of Buddhism is called the Dharma. It is a method for saving ourselves. I don’t mean that as a trite platitude. The Dharma will save you. Not save your soul from damnation. As Buddhists we don’t believe in that. The Dharma will save you from yourself. It will save you from your own […]

Getting Out Of Our Own Way

“Flow with whatever may happen.” ~ Tao Te Ching Our true self is always open and free—the only thing stopping us from realizing that truth is ourselves. We get in our own way. This applies not just to our spiritual practice, but to many of our goals in life, the big goals and the smaller […]

All Places Are Sacred

I noticed the small Ganesh statue behind the counter as I was purchasing a six pack of Hard Orange Cream Ale. The statue was pink and enclosed in glass, as little statues of this kind sometimes are. I thought he appeared to have a beatific smile, but who the hell can tell if an elephant […]

Bodhidharma’s 2 Entries

Bodhidharma said there are two ways to enter the path. Entry through conduct and entry through principle. He outlined this in a teaching called the Two Entries and the Four Practices. In this teaching he outlines in a clear way what we must do to attain enlightenment. Entry through conduct is associated with practices that […]