April 2014 Blog Posts (3)

Vulnerability and Nothing at Stake

This week I was reflecting on how we consistently misunderstand vulnerability and miss its promise. When we see it as weakness or brokenness, our energies move toward management, reactivity, or even shame. However, vulnerability  actually points to the very heart of interdependence and impermanence. The experience of vulnerability in a human body is the reality of dukkha. So vulnerability is another way of speaking about the Buddha’s Three Marks of Existence.  We…


Added by Flint Sparks on April 18, 2014 at 4:49pm — No Comments

Sangha Poems

Today we wrote poems together. Following the poems I describe how these poems were written.

The Way Forward

I sit in zazen awaiting clarity.

Wishing and hoping for openness.

But freedom comes from being open to confusion.

This is what it means to be alive.

May we find our freedom in the bird-song

and feel our confusion like the cool

humid, gray day that it is.

Soft, allowing,… Continue

Added by Peg Syverson on April 13, 2014 at 1:03pm — 2 Comments

Oak Tree Nature

Everything has (or is) Buddha nature in the same way an acorn has (or is) “oak tree nature.” That is, the full potential lies embryonic within, needing only favorable conditions to be fully realized. Under adverse conditions, that potential is unrealized, stunted, or thwarted. Favorable conditions does not mean “easy” or “comfortable” situations; Buddha nature is often realized under adverse circumstances that are actually favorable conditions for that development. Suffering, crisis,…


Added by Peg Syverson on April 3, 2014 at 8:11am — No Comments



Appamada is not just the occasional mindful thought or attentive state of mind, it’s actually a commitment to being attentive. It’s more than just a meditative state of mind, it’s more than just being mindful. It has to do with that primary ethical or moral orientation we have in life, with which we bring into being whatever activity we’re engaged in. Whether in formal meditation, in our interactions with other people, in our social concerns, or in our political choices, it’s the energetic cherishing of what we regard as good.

—Stephen Batchelor


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