Category Archives: Precepts

Guardians of the world

Sometimes at Buddhist ceremonies, laypeople are given “protection cords”, bracelets made of thread that we are meant to wear until they fall off. If we ask what the cords are protecting us from, the answer most often given is “from … Continue reading

Posted in Causes and results, Dukkha, General, Harmlessness, Karma, Mindfulness, Precepts, Relationships | 1 Comment

Tis the season

It hasn’t escaped my notice that the end of the calendar year is upon us. In most cultures, it’s a time of renewal, of celebration, of gathering, and of joy. How we perceive the activities of the season will vary … Continue reading

Posted in Causes and results, Compassion, Friendships, General, Generosity, Mindfulness, Precepts, Relationships, Speech, Sublime states | 4 Comments

Developing mindfulness

Through all our discussion of the hindrances, the common tool we’ve been pointing to is mindfulness. Here at the end of the year, it will be good to pause and assess how well-developed our mindfulness is. Some of us have … Continue reading

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Start where you are

Having thought for a few weeks about mindfulness and how to appreciate and develop it in ourselves, it might be a good time to figure out what our current status is with respect to our growth as individuals. Readers of … Continue reading

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Speaking gently

A third element of Right Speech, after truthfulness and harmonious speech, is gentle speech, that is, avoiding all the many ways we could indulge in harsh speech. Harsh speech might be too loud, threatening, sarcastic, inappropriate in a particular setting, … Continue reading

Posted in General, Precepts, Speech, The 8-fold path | 2 Comments

Divisive or harmonious speech?

A second category of Right Speech (after truthfulness) is harmonious speech, or refraining from saying things with the intention of dividing people or groups from each other. It is a challenging moment in history, in many places, to hold to … Continue reading

Posted in Causes and results, Friendships, Precepts, Speech, The 8-fold path | 5 Comments

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

Posted in Causes and results, General, Precepts, Speech, The 8-fold path | 4 Comments