Category Archives: Causes and results

Truthfulness first

The third factor of the Eightfold Path is Right Speech, that is, cultivating speech that will lead us and others towards peace and away from unwholesome results. Of all the guidelines about speech, the most fundamental is truthfulness. Without being … Continue reading

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Sustainability

Developing the Eightfold Path in ourselves is the work of a lifetime. How can we stay oriented towards progress on the path when life is often disconcerting and demanding? It’s an important question. As input options, some people prefer listening … Continue reading

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Which direction?

All the factors in the Buddha’s Eightfold Path are preceded by sammā, which means supreme or ultimate or best. But sammā also means right in the sense of leading towards awakening and away from delusion. So for each of the factors, we can … Continue reading

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Collectedness

The last factor of the Eight-fold Path is Right Concentration. I agree with Sujato Bhikkhu in thinking that the descriptor “concentration” has misled many practitioners. So, for today, we’ll use “collectedness” instead of Right Concentration. Collectedness can be developed on … Continue reading

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Right Effort

Right Effort is largely an internal training. We can sometimes remove ourselves from unwholesome environments and choose more wholesome environments, but an unusual degree of self-knowledge is required for true Right Effort, specifically the effort to: prevent the arising of … Continue reading

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Right Action – the social contract

The second of the three factors in the “ethical” or “morality” section of the Eightfold Path is Right Action. For laypeople (that’s us) this refers to the five precepts: “I undertake the training rule to… refrain from killing, refrain from … Continue reading

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Right Speech

A monk visiting our local monastery this week talked about the tools we have in our toolbox to facilitate awakening. He initially spoke of concentration and insight practice but later expanded the analogy to discerning the hindrances and knowing our … Continue reading

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