Gain and Loss

Tonight I stumbled upon a quite remarkable sutta over at accesstoinsight. It is titled the lokavipatti sutta, the discourse on the Failings of the World. To be honest, I was searching for something - ostensibly inspirational - about failure. Something like, "'always fall upward,' says the Buddha." Or, "don't worry, be happy."You see, I had a good talk with a friend last summer. He was and is by most any account a very successful man: excellent education, great job, intelligence, good looks, … [Read more...]

Kant and Buddhist Ethics, INDEX

Back on track. I think a fair amount of the meat of my Ph.D. is already floating around, in rough form, on my various blogs. Time now to gather it!Aug 3, 2005: Kantian and Buddhist Ethics, thinking out loud: An outline (for my MA):Why Kant - Deontology? Beware the pitfalls of comparative philosophy/ethics.Keown's understanding of Buddhist Ethics (Aristotelian)Kant vs AristotleKant's EthicsFeelings/Respect -- Freedom/Autonomy -- Duty Politics/Self-Development -- Result: Kingdom of … [Read more...]

To Do and Expanding Metta

Summer is heating up here (not literally just yet), but as I settle in here in beautiful Missoula, I am finding plenty to keep me engaged and busy. Some things I need to get cracking on:Annual Progress Report for my Ph.D. - How would I rate my progress? Somewhere between 'satisfactory' and 'some cause for concern', but I think I'll be generous and go with the former. I've been lucky to have phenomenal support from my advisor(s), and I do have a decent outline; 'tis just time to get into the … [Read more...]

Gratitude Journal

A sparrow (I think, though I'm not sure which variety) from my Vipassana Retreat, Camp Child, MT.Cool rain drops ripple in puddles outside, a lone bird sings, and npr tells me what's going on in the world. Unemployment is up, an errant US bomb kills Pakistani allies, Kucinich introduces articles of impeachment against Bush. I think I'll listen to that bird some more. In the meantime, here are some things I'm thankful for this week:Practice - meditation. My two lovely -though short- retreats … [Read more...]

Meanderings of a Snowy June Morning

It's evening now, but this morning, after sleeping in a good bit, I lazily rose and peaked out my window only to see - SNOW! It's June 10th for heaven's sake - Snow? Ha! I stood motionless for minutes watching it come down in big wet flakes, melting as it hit the ground. "What a fine way to start the day," I thought, smiling, and made my way on foot to work two blocks away.~Work is coming together beautifully, even though it is not quite teaching, which I know is my true love. I spend my … [Read more...]

Sunshine Vignettes

What a weekend!It all began innocently enough, sitting in the Friday evening sun on the porch watching a doe and fawn nibble next door. Apparently these lovely ladies can be mighty vicious this time of year, but mostly they just go after dogs.Then my friends Jen and Patia (pictured below) showed up to help me celebrate my birthday. They brought me some awesome gifts, a Bodhi tree bookmark by Jen and a Mantastic sticker from Patia and then took me out for dinner and a "couple" drinks (don't … [Read more...]

Samsaric Support

growing up (from Lotus in the Mud) To take refuge in the Buddha is to take refuge in someone who let go of holding back just as you can do. To take refuge in the dharma is to take refuge in all the teachings that encourage you and nurture your inherent ability to let go of holding back. And to take refuge in the sangha is to take refuge in the community of people who share this longing to let go and open rather than shield themselves. The support that we give each other as practitioners is … [Read more...]

Gratitude Journal

Sunset over Missoula, May 31, 2008This week has been one of many blessings for me: time on retreat, exciting news from a friend, a birthday and the well-spring of support and kind messages that flowed from all corners of the world, and the birth of new routines in familiar lands. So, without further adieu, I am grateful for: Rootedness. I remember being utterly stunned by the beauty of Montana one fall evening just after returning from my MA work in Bristol, UK. "Wow, I thought, I had taken … [Read more...]