Reflections on the Buddha's first sermon: how the four noble truths are a translation of the principle of conditioned arising into a way of life; the middle way as avoiding the two dead ends of worldliness and religiosity; the four truths as prescriptions rather than descriptions, as a sequence of tasks to perform rather than a set of doctrines to believe; the first truth as fully knowing dukkha both in depth and breadth.
Sometimes we long for stillness and for all activity to come to rest. Sometimes we long for movement and can't bare to be still any longer. In using the practices of stillness and movement of body we start to study this dynamic, and we see the inner life of stillness and movement and how suffering arises through not fully understanding this play: either we get hooked into the things that move because they catch our attention, or we want to reject them for the same reasons. Coming to a wise relationship with stillness and movement brings more rest in a world of things that move.
The parable of the ancient city as a template for a secular Buddhism, i.e. how the four truths and conditioned arising provide a framework for a new culture or civilisation; further reflection on "fully knowing dukkha" in terms of its cognitive, affective and aesthetic implications; how stream entry entails autonomy, as well as confirmed confidence in Buddha, dharma and sangha; the humanised Buddha as the appropriate model for one's practice of the dharma not the arahant.