Category Archives: Relationships

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

Posted in Causes and results, Compassion, Harmlessness, Livelihood, Precepts, Relationships, The 8-fold path | Leave a comment

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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Acceptance as equanimity

Anguttara Nikaya 5.57 (a sutta from the Pali canon) is a regular theme in these pages. Bhikkhu Bodhi’s translation of the complete sutta can be found on the main site (AN 5.57). We’ve been thinking about equanimity, so I re-visit … Continue reading

Posted in Ageing, Causes and results, Karma, Precepts, Relationships, Sublime states | Leave a comment

Why do things happen?

The last of the five natural laws is the over-arching law of reality, Dhamma. This includes the relationship between the conditioned [all perceivable things] and unconditioned [nibbāna] and the full physical and mental spectrum of experience. The Dhamma-niyāma is how all the … Continue reading

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The karma of psychology

We’ve been considering the five natural “laws” of karma, and we now come to the law of mind (citta-niyāma).  We might think that we control our thoughts, but as any meditator knows, the mind goes where it wants to, when it wants … Continue reading

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It’s not about you (me)

Still on the subject of muditā, what gets in the way of sympathetic joy? The biggest obstacle is our tendency to measure ourselves against others, often in superficial ways. If we judge others harshly, it is quite likely that we are … Continue reading

Posted in Causes and results, Friendships, General, Relationships, Sublime states | 2 Comments

Awakening joy

Awakening joy can have two meanings: (1) How do we awaken and cultivate joy in our own hearts?, and (2) Awakening or enlightenment depends on joy as a basis. Without joy there can be no awakening. Some people think the … Continue reading

Posted in Causes and results, General, Generosity, Mindfulness, Relationships, Sublime states | 1 Comment