Advayavada Buddhism

ON COURSE WITH NATURE.

Advayavada Study Plan – week 21

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 21] In weeks 14 to 18 we again treated the preliminary subjects, in week 19 we again honestly took stock of and responsibility for our personal situation at this time (first step on the Noble Eightfold Path), in week 20 we again took an appropriate and timely decision to adjust our course bearing in mind that commendable undertakings are those which are in agreement with wondrous overall existence and take us forward at the fundamental level of our life (second step), and to continue with this quarter’s 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP), this week we shall again put our decision and improved objective in writing as precisely as possible; 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, and putting our ideas into words, or better, writing them down, makes an important difference, “for in this way they become objective and criticizable” (Popper). This task is based on the third step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-vacha (in Pali) or samyag-vac (in Sanskrit), in Advayavada Buddhism’s fully personalized usage: our very best enunciation or definition of our intention; in Dutch: onze beste uitleg (de derde stap op het edele achtvoudige pad).

Advayavada Study Plan – week 20

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 20 = week 7 of 13, second quarter] As already stated, in Advayavada Buddhism, the Path is firmly based on what we increasingly know about ourselves and our world, and trusting our own intentions, feelings and conscience; adherence to the familiar five precepts (not to kill, not to steal, sexual restraint, not to lie, and refraining from alcohol and drugs) and a well-considered understanding of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs of being and the Buddha’s four noble truths suffice to start off and proceed on the Path at any time. Last week we again honestly took stock of and responsibility for our personal situation at this time, and to continue with this quarter’s 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP), this week we shall again take an appropriate and timely decision to adjust our course, bearing in mind that commendable undertakings are those which are in agreement with wondrous overall existence and take us forward at the fundamental level of our life. This task is based on the 2nd step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-sankappa (Pali) or samyak-samkalpa (Sanskrit), in Advayavada Buddhism’s personalized usage: our very best resolution or determination; in Dutch: onze beste beslissing (de tweede stap op het edele achtvoudige pad).

Around us, life bursts forth with miracles

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“Around us, life bursts forth with miracles—a glass of water, a ray of sunshine, a leaf, a caterpillar, a flower, laughter, raindrops. If you live in awareness, it is easy to see miracles everywhere.

Each human being is a multiplicity of miracles. Eyes that see thousands of colors, shapes, and forms; ears that hear a bee flying or a thunderclap; a brain that ponders a speck of dust as easily as the entire cosmos; a heart that beats in rhythm with the heartbeat of all beings.

When we are tired and feel discouraged by life’s daily struggles, we may not notice these miracles, but they are always there.”

~Thich Nhat Hanh

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Advayavada Study Plan – week 19

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 19 = week 6 of 13, second quarter] In Advayavada Buddhism, the Noble Eightfold Path is fully personalized: it is firmly based on what we increasingly know about ourselves and our world, and trusting our own intentions, feelings and conscience. Adherence to the familiar five precepts (not to kill, not to steal, sexual restraint, not to lie, and refraining from alcohol and drugs) and a well-considered understanding of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs of being and the Buddha’s four noble truths suffice to start off on the Path at any time and, when the Buddha’s Eightfold Path as taught in Advayavada Buddhism is followed conscientiously, it becomes nothing less than the main karmic factor in one’s life. The 13-week Advayavada Study Plan (ASP) is repeated four times a year for this lofty purpose: in weeks 14 to 18 we again treated the preliminary subjects and, to continue with the current second quarter of 2017, this week we shall again honestly take stock of and responsibility for our personal situation with respect to whatever we are presently doing or are concerned with, or about, such as our health, relationships, work, study, our place in society, etc. This task is based on the 1st step on the Noble Eightfold Path: samma-ditthi (Pali) or samyag-dristi (Sanskrit), in Advayavada Buddhism’s personalized usage: our very best comprehension or insight; in Dutch: ons beste inzicht (de eerste stap op het edele achtvoudige pad).

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Advayavada Study Plan – week 18

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 18 = week 5 of 13, second quarter] In Secular Buddhism generally, the focus is on the correct interpretation and realization of the historical Buddha’s ‘four noble truths’: 1) the truth of the ubiquity of existential suffering in the world, 2) the truth that ignorant craving and attachment are the actual and immediate causes of such suffering, 3) the truth that this suffering shall cease altogether when we deal with and overcome its causes, and 4) the truth that the sure way to achieve this is by following the Noble Eightfold Path or Middle Way. In Advayavada Buddhism, the Path is understood dynamically, as an ongoing and fully autonomous, non-prescriptive, investigative and creative process of progressive insight, reflecting in human terms wondrous overall existence becoming over time in its manifest direction, this evolution or progress constituting, then, the fourth sign or mark or basic fact of being. It is composed stepwise of (1) our very best (samma in Pali and samyak in Sanskrit) comprehension or insight, followed by (2) our very best resolution or determination, (3) our very best enunciation or definition (of our intention), (4) our very best disposition or attitude, (5) our very best implementation or realization, (6) our very best effort or commitment, (7) our very best observation, reflection or evaluation and self-correction, and (8) our very best meditation or concentration towards an increasingly real experience of samadhi, which brings us to (1) a yet better comprehension or insight, and so forth.

The way things are

Advayavada Study Plan – week 17

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 17 = week 4 of 13, second quarter] As explained, the concept of dukkha (Pali) or duhkha (Sanskrit) does not include, in Advayavada Buddhism, emotional grief nor physical pain. It refers solely to the existential suffering, angst and regret non-enlightened human beings are prone to, and is, therefore, considered as a remediable psychological affliction; the enlightened person accepts with understanding and compassion the sorrow and pain which are part and parcel of human existence. It is easy to see that human beings experience existential suffering mainly because they wrongly strive after and try to hold on to things, concepts and situations which they believe to be permanent and unchanging, but are not. Their mistaken view and understanding of things is most often the result of a thirst, craving or clinging (called tanha in Pali and trishna in Sanskrit) which is in turn caused by their not knowing (avijja or avidya) or not understanding or simply disbelieving the actual, i.e. impermanent, durational and finite, nature of individual existence, and this thirst, craving or clinging, which is the second of the four noble truths taught by the Buddha, 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 affect the efforts of others to improve theirs.

No fight, no blame

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The highest good is like water.
Water gives life to the 10,000 things
and does not strive.
It flows in places men reject
and so is like the Tao.In dwelling, be close to the land.
In meditation, go deep in the heart.
In dealing with others, be gentle and kind.
In speech, be true.
In ruling, be just.
In daily life, be competent.
In action, be aware of the time
and the season.
No fight: No blame.~Lao Tsu,
Tao Te Ching, verse 8

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Advayavada Study Plan – week 16

[Advayavada Study Plan – week 16 = week 3 of 13, second quarter] As stated before, 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 indeed 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 third preliminary subject is dukkha (Pali) or duhkha (Sanskrit), which means suffering, sorrow; dissatisfaction; frustration; stress; gnawing unease; existential distress, caused a.o. by distrust of life and fear of retribution. In Buddhism it is traditionally considered the third of the three (in Advayavada Buddhism, four) signs or marks or basic facts of being and it is also the first of the four noble truths taught by the Buddha. Importantly, in Advayavada Buddhism, dukkha or duhkha does not include emotional grief nor physical pain and is, above all, not seen as a permanent feature of reality: in the context of the four noble truths, it is essentially understood by us as the existential suffering in the sense of a basic frustration, even suffocation, caused by the unhealthy and socially infectious feeling that reality does not conform to the person’s desires and expectations; the unremitting persistency of human distress, alienation and conflict in the world is seen as being mainly due to the very many everywhere indeed not knowing or not understanding or simply disbelieving the actual, i.e. impermanent and finite, nature of individual existence.

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