Kamalashila explores the centrality of mindfulness to the Buddhist path. He discusses the concept of intoxication, with reference to the 5th Precept and the Sutra of Golden Light. Kamalashila then considers the four foundations of mindfulness from the Satipatthana Sutta and concludes that mindfulness is the basis of metta and allows us to embrace the realm of truth and beauty.
Here Candradasa explores the third precept and the Buddha’s moral code generally and we get some sense of where we might look to find ways to work effectively with our strongest desires in ways that lessen attachment and help us see reality more clearly.
Drawing on sources from Russell Brand to Tenzin Palmo, Suryadarshini navigates the third precept. Covering sex, relationships, confessional writing, and social media, she offers suggestions for how to start a shift from attention and attachment into stillness, simplicity and contentment.
How can we decide between right and wrong? The Eastern criterion of ethics is psychological rather than theological: ethical behaviour is said to express higher orders of awareness.
Here, Sangharakshita details the first precept, that of abstention from all forms of violence and harm towards other beings. Cultivating the positive aspect of this precept is the embodiment of maitri, love, as expressed through our deeds of loving-kindness.
The big questions keep coming as we move deep into our week of shared practice around the seven point mind-training. What are we “bonded” to? How do we see our ethical path? How do we envision making commitments to ourselves and the promises we make? Yashobodhi offers some lojong (“teaching slogans”) that can help us clarify what it is, exactly, we are up to!
Drawing on Bhante’s paper on the Ten Pillars from 1984, the Dhammapada and the Mind Turning teachings, Dhammadinna talks about the paradigm shift we make in our ethical practice from power mode to love mode, and the renunciation of power and blame through which we enter into experience of forgiveness and ksanti.