Advayavada Buddhism

ON COURSE WITH NATURE.

Dependent Origination

Great Middle Way

mipham4What is meant by dependent origination? It means that nothing included within inner or outer phenomena has arisen without a cause. Neither have they originated from what are not their causes; that is, noncauses such as a permanent creator, the self, time, or an almighty deity.

The fact that phenomena arise based on the interdependence of their respective causes and conditions coming together is called dependent origination.

—Jamgon Mipham

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Advayavada Study Plan – week 4

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 4] Non-liberated human beings are essentially prone to existential suffering (see week 3) because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent, but are not. Their mistaken view of things is produced by a thirst, craving or clinging (tanha in Pali, trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their fundamental ignorance (avijja in Pali, avidya in Sanskrit) or disbelief of the true nature of existence, particularly the impermanence and changeability of everything (see week 1) and the selflessness and emptiness (and, therefore, finitude) of all things (see week 2). This thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second noble truth of Buddhism, blinds them to the actual wonders and blessings of overall existence and can moreover easily take on a more unwholesome form: already as sensuous desire, ill-will (vyapada), laziness, impatience or distrust will it seriously hinder the individual’s efforts to better his or her circumstances, as well as contaminate the efforts of others to improve theirs. To avoid all this, Advayavada Buddhism, on its part, invites us all to instead intelligently make the very best of our own lives by attuning as best as possible with actual wondrous overall existence advancing over time now in its manifest direction, and we do this by conscientiously following our personalized Noble Eightfold Path (see coming week 5). Feel free to share this post.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 3

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 3] Dukkha (Pali) or duhkha (Sanskrit) means suffering, sorrow, dissatisfaction, frustration, anxiety, or stress; it is the first of the four noble truths of Buddhism and also the third of the three or, in Advayavada Buddhism, four signs or marks or basic facts of being, the other three being the impermanence or changeability of everything (see week 1), the selflessness and emptiness of all things (see week 2), and evolution or, in human terms, progress (see coming weeks 4 and 5). In Advayavada Buddhism, dukkha or duhkha does not include, in the context of the four noble truths, emotional grief nor physical pain, which are part and parcel of human existence, and it is, above all, not seen as a permanent or inevitable feature of reality; it is chiefly understood in said context as the existential distress and distrust of life non-liberated human beings are prone to and which are essentially caused by the unhealthy and socially infectious feeling that reality does not conform to their petty desires and mistaken expectations. The ubiquity and unremitting persistency of human distress, alienation and conflict is undeniably especially due to the very many everywhere in the world not being taught or not comprehending or simply disbelieving and denying the basically impermanent and finite nature of their individual existence. Advayavada Buddhism, on its part, invites us all to instead intelligently make the very best of our own finite lives by attuning as best as possible with actual wondrous overall existence advancing over time now in its manifest direction. We do this by conscientiously following the Noble Eightfold Path. Feel free to share this post.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 2

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 2] As already explained, Advayavada Buddhism does not tell you what to do or believe, but invites us all to make the very best of our own lives by attuning as best as possible with wondrous overall existence advancing over time now in its manifest direction. The 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP) is repeated four times a year for this lofty purpose and the second preliminary subject of this first quarter of the new year is again anatta (Pali) or anatman (Sanskrit), which literally means no-self and is traditionally considered the second of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs or marks or basic facts of being. The Buddhist anatta or anatmata doctrine teaches that no soul, spirit or self exists in the person in the sense of a permanent, eternal, integral, and independent substance. In Mahayana Buddhism, the nissvabhava doctrine teaches further that, as in fact all things without exception are produced by interdependent origination, every single thing is therefore empty (shunya) of self-nature (svabhava); svabhava-shunyata (lit. self-nature emptiness) is a central notion in Madhyamaka philosophy: in Advayavada Buddhism, the selflessness of all existents is one of the four signs or marks or basic facts of being, the other three being the impermanence or changeability of everything (see week 1), the ubiquity of existential suffering (see next week), and evolution or, in human terms, progress (see the week after that). Feel free to share this post. ~ advayavada.org/#plan advayavada.wordpress.com/

Advayavada Study Plan – week 1

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 1] Advayavada Buddhism does not tell you what to do or believe, but invites us all to make the very best of our own lives by attuning as best as possible with wondrous overall existence advancing over time now in its manifest direction. The 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP) is repeated four times a year for this lofty purpose and the first preliminary subject of the first quarter of this new year is anicca (Pali) or anitya (Sanskrit), which means impermanent, changeable, unstable, or transitory, and is traditionally considered the first of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs or marks or basic facts of being. The Buddhist aniccata or anityata doctrine teaches that impermanence or changeability is the most fundamental property of everything existing. It lies at the very heart of the interdependent origination and emptiness of all things (see next week), and growth and evolution, progress, and liberation, would not be possible without it. Karma is, in Advayavada Buddhism, said incessant universal process of interdependent origination of all things as it is undergone and experienced by sentient beings, our individual share of it being the unique and everchanging knotlet of biopsychosocial (bps) events in which we are personally embedded. Feel free to share this post. Happy 2019 everybody! ~ advayavada.org/#plan advayavada.wordpress.com/

Advayavada Study Plan – week 52

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 52] In weeks 40 to 44 we again treated the preliminary subjects, in week 45 we again honestly reviewed and took stock of our personal situation (first step on the Noble Eightfold Path), in week 46 we again took an appropriate and timely decision to adjust our course (second step), in week 47 we again put our decision and improved objective in writing as precisely as possible (third step), in week 48 we further developed our very best attitude to carry out our improved objective (fourth step), in week 49 we implemented our improved way of doing things (fifth step), in week 50 we concentrated on mustering our very best effort and commitment to fulfil our improved objective (sixth step), in week 51 we again made our best possible evaluation of our efforts to date (seventh step), and, to conclude this fourth quarter’s 13-week Advayavada Study Plan, this week we shall continue to develop and deepen our very best meditation towards Samadhi* and our awareness of Nirvana. This task is based on the last step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-samadhi (in Pali) or samyak-samadhi (in Sanskrit); in Advayavada Buddhism’s personalized usage: our very best meditation or concentration towards samadhi; in Dutch: onze beste bezinning (de achtste stap op het edele achtvoudige pad). Feel free to share this post. Happy New Year everybody!

*Samadhi (Pali and Sanskrit): perfect concentration (of the mind, enstasy); total absorption in the object of meditation; the merging of subject and object; realization of the sameness of the part and the whole, of the identity of body and mind, of form and emptiness, of samsara and nirvana, of the immediate and the ultimate; perfect attunement with wondrous overall existence advancing in its manifest direction; oceanic feeling; wonder, awe, rapture; essential purity; deep love and compassion; awareness of our common ground and the innocence of sex.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 51

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 51] In weeks 40 to 44 we again treated the preliminary subjects, in week 45 we again honestly took stock of, and responsibility for, our personal situation at this time (first step on the Noble Eightfold Path), in week 46 we again took an appropriate and timely decision to adjust our course (second step), in week 47 we again put our decision and improved objective in writing as precisely as possible (third step), in week 48 we further developed our very best attitude to carry out our improved objective (fourth step), in week 49 we implemented our improved way of doing things (fifth step), in week 50 we concentrated on mustering our very best effort and commitment to fulfil our improved objective (sixth step), and, to continue with this fourth quarter’s 13-week Advayavada Study Plan, this coming week we shall again make our best possible evaluation of our efforts to date, including the measure of our compliance with the familiar basic precepts: not to kill, not to steal, sexual restraint, not to lie, and refraining from alcohol and drugs. This task is based on the 7th step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-sati (in Pali) or samyak-smriti (in Sanskrit); in Advayavada Buddhism’s personalized usage: our very best observation or reflection and self-correction; in Dutch: onze beste aandacht (de zevende stap op het edele achtvoudige pad). In week 52 we shall take the last step in the current 13-week cycle: we shall then continue to develop our very best meditation towards Samadhi and our awareness of Nirvana. Feel free to share this post.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 50

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 50] In weeks 40 to 44 we again treated the preliminary subjects, in week 45 we again honestly took stock of, and responsibility for, our personal situation at this time (first step on the Noble Eightfold Path), in week 46 we again took an appropriate and timely decision to adjust our course (second step), in week 47 we again put our decision and improved objective in writing as precisely as possible (third step), in week 48 we further developed our very best attitude to carry out our improved objective (fourth step), in week 49 we implemented our improved way of doing things (fifth step), and, to continue with this fourth quarter’s 13-week Advayavada Study Plan, this week we shall again concentrate on mustering our very best effort and commitment to fulfil our improved objective. This task is based on the sixth step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-vayama (in Pali) or samyag-vyayama (in Sanskrit); in Advayavada Buddhism’s personalized usage: our very best effort and commitment; in Dutch: onze beste inspanning (de zesde stap op het edele achtvoudige pad). Importantly, as we advance properly along the Buddha’s Middle Way responding to his promise of Nirvana, we shall continue to rid ourselves of the so-called ten fetters (dasa-samyojana) that restrict us to samsaric life: 1) belief in the self, 2) scepticism regarding the Path, 3) attachment to rituals, 4) partiality for certain things, 5) prejudice against certain things, 6) clinging to physical life, 7) hope of a hereafter, 8 ) conceit and pride, 9) intolerance and irritability, and 10) the last remnants of our ignorance of the true nature of reality. Feel free to share this post.

Zen is…

No and No

Great Middle Way

46170040_250767079132013_7878854794247405568_nSome ascetics and priests accuse me wrongly, baselessly, falsely, and groundlessly, saying that the recluse Gautama is a nihilist and preaches the annihilation, destruction, and nonexistence of an existent being.

That is what I am not and do not affirm. Both previously and now, I preach suffering and the cessation of suffering.

—Buddha Shakyamuni

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