29 Nov
Posted in: Groups, Practice
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After the Sitting

We had a sweet little group at the Hi-Pointe Sitting last night, and then afterwards, several of us went over to Kaldi’s for chai and biscotti and a bit more sangha building.

There was discussion about looking for an “overview” or “map” of the teachings and I said that the basics of the practice are the Four Noble Truths.

Traditionally, the Four Noble Truths are:
(1) There is suffering.
(2) The cause of suffering is clinging.
(3) There is an end to suffering.
(4) The way to the end of suffering is the Noble Eight-fold Path

The Eight-Fold Path is:
(1) Wise View
(2) Wise Intention
(3) Wise Speech
(4) Wise Action
(5) Wise Livelihood
(6) Wise Effort
(7) Wise Mindfulness
(8) Wise Concentration

Or, more conversationally, these truths are:
(1) Even at it’s best, life is challenging and filled with disappointments.
(2) The reason for this is that we are always wanting things to be different than they are (easier, better, more satisfying, longer lasting, etc.).
(3) It doesn’t have to be like that.
(4) The way out of this difficulty is to follow the path offered by the Buddha.

This path is:
(1) Understanding the way things really are
(2) Turning one’s mind toward that understanding
(3) Speaking in ways that are not harmful
(4) Acting in ways that are not harmful
(5) Supporting oneself in ways that are not harmful
(6) Doing things that are wholesome and not doing things that are unwholesome
(7) Being aware of what’s actually happening
(8) Training the mind to be calm and collected

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