Teaching February 21 at IMSB

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So many of us have difficulty in distressful interpersonal relationships at work and at home. Many of us find ourselves struggling with how to relate wisely to the mass dysfunctionality of American politics and public discourse. My talk will offer dharmic wisdom for navigating distressful interpersonal interactions and cultivate wise view, loving intention, empowerment, inner strength, connectedness, honesty and awakening. Hope to see many of you who live in the local area. And those afar, the talk will be made available on my site and iTunes. Location information can be found at: Everyday Dhamma Speaker Series

The Ultimate Rx

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You can now download for free on Academia.edu The Ultimate Rx: Cutting through the delusion of self-cherishing, the chapter I authored for the newly published Handbook of Mindfulness: Culture, Context and Social Engagement.

Chapter Abstract:
Western and Buddhist psychologies acknowledge the significant role distorted self-narratives play in poor mental health. But these two disciplines hold divergent views on the utility of ‘cherishing the self’. Western psychology claims high self-esteem is a requirement for self-confidence, happiness, and success. Buddhist psychology asserts wisdom and compassion are the forerunners of genuine confidence and sustainable personal and collective well-being. It further states that endemic self-cherishing—the habitual reification of distorted hyper-egoic self-narratives—is a primary source of mental and emotional affliction. Yet, Buddhist psychology also affirms the innate capacity of all human beings to end the mental suffering of self-cherishing. This chapter explicates Western and Buddhist psychological models of self, Buddhist theories of not-self and conventional and ultimate self-cherishing, and outlines a somatopsychotherapeutic clinical approach for helping individuals struggling with depressive, anxious, trauma-related symptoms and addictions, to recognize self-cherishing mentation and lessen its deleterious effects.

The Alignment of Buddhism and Activism

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Listen to a dharma talk I gave at Marin Sangha on November 27, 2016. In these turbulent times it is important to understand how effective social action and the Buddhist practices of wise speech, embodied awareness and right action complement one another. Virtuous conduct, sīla, depends upon a Buddhist practitioner’s ability to comprehend and enact right view: impermanence, not-self and the causes of suffering and non-suffering. This talk clarifies how to hold the precepts while boldly, fearlessly engaging in social action.

Free mp3 download      or        iTunes Podcast

Deluded and Undeluded Mind: Two new dharma talks

dharmatalkslogo2Listen to two dharma talks I recently delivered on Delusion and Non-delusion. 

Delusion and Deluded Mind
This first talk covers the Buddhist psychological description of how delusion manifests in human perception and its effects on collective and personal human suffering.

Download mp3               iTunes podcast

Non-delusion and Undeluded Mind
This second talk covers the Buddhist psychological description of how non-delusion manifests in human perception and practical steps for cultivating non-delusion in daily life.

Download mp3                 iTunes podcast

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Stephen Batchelor visions a secular dharma

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Stephen Batchelor discusses a secular dharma based upon his interpretation of the historical Buddha’s teachings found in the Pāli Canon. I think he does a fantastic job of condensing the main topics more deeply expounded upon in his terrific new book, After Buddhism, which I highly recommend. Stephen does have some very thoughtful comments about the conflictual issues of secular mindfulness and corporate mindfulness in the Q&A found toward the end.

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Eight Verses Of Thought Transformation

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I offer this original sound/artwork as a gift to a world suffering with greed, hatred, and great confusion. This recording features the Eight Verses of Thought Transformation, a profound Tibetan Buddhist teaching by Geshe Langri Tangpa (1054–1123).

The Eight Verses provides a gateway into the awakened mind of a Bodhisattva by beautifully illustrating the inseparability of mind and heart in a very challenging and thoughtful manner. The text is a practical manual for developing the Pāramīs/Pāramitās: generosity, virtue, renunciation, wisdom, enthusiasm, patience, truthfulness, determination, lovingkindness, equanimity/compassion. 

Seating oneself firmly in the sacredness of mind/heart allows full extension of the Bodhisattvic commitment to develop Bodhicitta; the altruistic intention to attain enlightenment for the sake of all sentient beings. May this practice liberate all beings from the ocean of samsara.

THE EIGHT VERSES SOUND/ARTWORK

©2007 Lisa Dale Miller    All rights reserved

New Dharma talk on right view available for free download

I have uploaded the mp3 recording of the dharma talk I gave at IMSB on Right View: www.awakenedpresence.com/sounds/right-view.mp3
Download in iTunes podcasts:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/right-view/id1056659008

The first path factor of the Buddha’s Eightfold Noble Path is right view, also known as wise understanding. Though right view is the first of the Eightfold path factors, it represents the fruition of the succeeding seven path factors. Right view and right intention (the second path factor) together encompass supreme training in wisdom; a training designed to awaken the faculty of penetrative understanding—that which knows things as they truly are. The Buddha defined right view as understanding dukkha—the inherent unsatisfactoriness of all experience—its origin, cessation and the path leading to its cessation. He also defined right view as wisely comprehending Dependent Origination—the Buddha’s topology of mind and the cognitive-affective perceptual mechanisms that cause us to misapprehend self and world as separate, autonomous and permanent. The Buddha taught that wrong view is the greatest source of unwholesome mind states and by extension, unwholesome decisions and behaviors. The fruition of right view is a heart-mind liberated from avidyā, the delusion of suffering.