A study of the Buddha's understanding of God (Brahma) as found in texts of the Pali Canon. The Buddha was an ironic ATHEIST, who did not take a fanatic position against God. This is followed by a reflection on the idea of BUDDHANATURE, starting with its origins in the Pali Canon and seeing how it evolves in later Buddhist thought in ways that both complement and contradict the early tradition.
There are two main approaches in our practice - mindfulness and invoking beautiful and exalted states. They complement each other in important ways. After considering these two approaches, we explore the nature of each of the divine abodes, their near and far enemies, and their complementary nature - each requires the other three for its mature development.
Awakening as a process of degrasping instead of being the production of a state of enlightenment that cannot be eaten in salad. The suggestion that the path consists of sudden awakening followed by gradual practices
A reflection on the nature of KAMMA in which the Buddha recognises that numerous conditions are responsible for our experience in this life. This is followed by an analysis of the ten UNDECLARED questions (is the world eternal, etc.) in terms of the Buddhist rejection of metaphysics in favour a pragmatic and therapeutic approach to living life in this world here and now.
How do we live and act wisely, whether in our meditation practice or in the rest of our lives? The core of our practice is to come back to wisdom moment-to-moment. The main teaching on wisdom that can guide us is the Four Noble Truths. We explore this teaching as a practical guide, requiring an understanding of causes and conditions. Yet wisdom ultimately must also be connected to to two further qualities to be whole - to compassion, and to courage.
Meditation need not be limited to a practice that one can only do a on the cushion. When we bring the passion for truth to the center of our lives, it opens up every moment to be a moment of knowing truth.