Category: blog

I Realized I Don’t Have to Believe My Thoughts.

  By Tara Brach Our mindfulness practice is not about vanquishing our thoughts. It’s about becoming aware of the process of thinking so that we are not in a trance—lost inside our thoughts. That’s the big difference. To train in becoming mindful of thoughts can help us to notice when your mind is actively thinking, either using the label “thinking, thinking,” or identifying the kind of thought—“worrying, worrying,” “planning, planning.” Then, becoming interested in what’s really happening right here. Coming home to the sensations in your body, your breath, the sounds around you, the life of the moment. As...

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Considering Affliction & Addiction, Unless, Unless We Remember.

By Elizabeth Eilers Sullivan After reading this post about possible origins of addiction, I got to contemplating. If addiction is not approached solely as a disease—but as the author, Johann Hari, suggests a lack of connection to community—could its origins possibly be linked to our thought patterns? I write this with a compassionate, inquisitive heart: no judgment, but a desire to better untangle how we can fall into isolation and its many side affects. I have been touched by family members and friends who struggle with addiction, have seen the isolation they find themselves in, and I know intimately the...

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In Compassion’s Arms: Hearing the Dalai Lama Laugh.

  By Tammy T. Stone There are three lines: one for monks, one for Tibetans and one for foreigners. We’re at Dharamsala’s Kalachackra Temple on the first morning of the Dalai Lama’s three-day Introduction to Buddhism teaching. Dusty roads and smaller alleyways wind down the hilly mountains at the foothills of the Himalayas, converging past cafes, kiosks and prayer flags, taking thousands of people to the temple. Men and women must separate at security check; it takes the women 10 times longer to get through, with the exception of the Tibetan nuns. There are far fewer of them than...

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What’s a Bodhisattva Monk?

  By Daniel Scharpenburg Recently I made a formal and official commitment to follow the Bodhisattva Precepts. I am a Bodhisattva Monk. My ordained name is Shi Zhao Dao, which means Venerable Shining Path. Not everyone who takes Bodhisattva Vows is a Bodhisattva Monk. It’s a special commitment beyond the Vows. The original Buddhist monks followed a set of vows called the Vinaya. Those monks are called Bhikkus and they have what we think of as traditional monastic vows; they must be celibate, they can’t accumulate wealth, etc. They essentially are separate from the world—set apart so they can...

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What the Tabloids Didn’t Say: Prison and Teresa Guidice.

    By Beatrice Codianni  The truth can only set us free if we are aware of it. When it was announced that Teresa Guidice was going to be sent to Danbury Federal Prison Camp for crimes involving bankruptcy fraud and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, Reentry Central was inundated with phone calls from the media asking if we would speak to them about what it would be like for her in the Danbury Camp. At first we were apprehensive. We did not want to be a part of exploiting Teresa’s situation. But when several reporters suggested...

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