The art of playful action

In the beginning of the Bhagavad Gītā (2.50) we encounter the following short definition: yogaḥ karmasu kuśalam, which might be...

Spontaneity

There is a condition in which life flows by itself. It does not matter what exactly is experienced, but whatever happens seems to unfold...

Where to start? Where to end?

We might encounter teachings, practices, and other aspects of contemplative traditions in a pretty random way: a Buddha Head looking out...

Seeking freedom

Whatever feeling is felt (pleasant, unpleasant or neutral), do not indulge in craving for the pleasant, or in aversion for the...

A short guide to death recollection

Death is one of the most important topics for recollection, which has an immense potential in terms of fostering practice and developing...

Embodiment

In the Udana 3.5 there is this short stanza: “Sati kāyagatā upaṭṭhitā, Chasu phassāyatanesu saṁvuto; Satataṁ bhikkhu samāhito, Jaññā...

The interplay of experience

(Author's cut from An Introduction to Friendliness, §1 Reflections) It is impossible to have experience without being somehow involved...

Meditation: four basic principles

Formal meditative practice is just a piece (important, but just a piece) in the broader picture presented in the discourses. And how to...

A relational turn

In most standard presentations of the Buddha's teachings, the emphasis lies on the idea that an individual can achieve freedom by relying...

The art of hermenutics

As any pianist would know, there are two boundaries within which any interpretation has to move. On the one hand, one is confronted with...

Everybody can, but not everybody will

The discourses present the teachings of the Buddha as potentially addressed to everybody, although they also make it clear that not...

Top-5 discourses of the Buddha

The Pāli canon contains many thousands of discourses (they are even difficult to count exactly, 8000? 10000? more?), spanning from a few...

By force of taking away

Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564) said: 'by sculpture I understand that which one does by force of taking away' ('per scultura io...

Neutrality traps

A core business of the practice presented in the discourses is to reach a form of dispassion and emotional neutrality. This means that no...

Belief, truth, and practice

Even superficial familiarity with the history of philosophy and ideas (especially from a global perspective) immediately reveals that...

A day worth living

The term 'awakening' (and even more 'enlightenment') is commonly used in relation to a wide range of diverse experiences, usually...

Yoking and unyoking attention

In Sanskrit and Pāli, yoga literally means 'yoke.' Like the yoke put by farmers on the neck of oxen. In a more metaphorical sense, yoga...

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