The Light of Buddha's Wisdom - Precepts of Compassion

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Buddha sheds the light of wisdom on the true nature of suffering, liberation, and the human mind, on the teachings of compassion, moral causation, and the whole phenomenal universe. This retreat offered an opportunity to receive, study, and contemplate Buddha's teachings on mind, precepts of compassion, and moral cause and effect. The discussions and contemplations were framed in the light of wisdom which is far beyond all discussion. Wonderful teachings were offered together with ways of not clinging to those teachings. There were periods of quiet sitting, walking meditation, oral teachings, and group discussions, with opportunities for individual interviews as time allowed.

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i would like to begin
by saying i'm happy to see you all and thank you for coming
i'm like to the introductory ceremony
ask each of you to say your first name
and then after your name is said everybody say your name
and after other people's names or said you say their name
then when i'm like i'm here

home on
kathryn catherine
miss sarah
searches for that
say that
yeah check
a bar graph
stephen graham graham
vastu day
how could you tell me your name again roma
they're not familiar
the kind of from you

could you give us your name
how the title for this retreat as you probably noticed was caught the light of buddha's wisdom
welcome would you give us your name please
how the light of buddhist wisdom
is the same
has your light
hey each of you
i could say has a light or has light
and that light you have is also
the light of the buddha's
how buddhas are those who
in touch with who
who realize this light who see this light and who act in accord with it matched
also in behalf of it
act in accord with
and and then and part of and part of what are those who realize light do is they
they think and they talk and they make various bodily postures
and and like all of us
in their thinking in there talking and in their bodily postures they convey this light
and they know they're conveying light and they also conveyed in a way
that will help other people
open to it
open to the light which there
sending and the light which people the beings which the enlightened ones were addressing
so that the beings that the enlightened ones are addressing who do not yet to see their light will awaken
to their light
we'll see the buddhist light
which they didn't see before and we'll see their own light
and we'll see other people's like
and we'll see the light not just in people and buddha's but the light and everything
so each of us has light or is light
and all things are light
even amid of all things everything is light

i am
thought of this story which i heard and i didn't review the story
so i remember it a little vaguely
but it's a story about her
i'm a french boy
story about a french person person who lived in france when he was a boy
and he was a boy like guy you know probably in that to twenties or thirties in france and he had when he could see he had vision normal vision are fairly normal vision and then fairly rapidly when he was maybe eight
years old or something like that is visit started to her
get darker and i think in a fairly short period of time
he lost his vision
his ordinary vision
pretty much completely
and i don't remember him saying this so clearly but i have a feeling that he
he was somehow
to really accept
the darkness into which he was plunged
but i remember him saying i completely accepted the darkness into which i was plunged but i have a feeling that i feel that's what happened to said he was able he was ready to accept that he lot
his normal
boys vision and was now
in darkness
and then not too long after that i don't know how long maybe it was weeks or months but i don't think it was years and might have been weeks
ah and i remember exactly what happened but
he was he he realized there was light
he an accepting i would say my this is my commentary and accepting that he was in the dark
anna anna and understanding that darkness with different from late
which is wanted advantages of
having light and losing it and accepting it
accepting a loss except accepting the darkness
he was able to find another later
which i guess you might say is not what was not a physical light
but a spiritual light
a light which most of us
have to be trained to see
because we're so enamored of other kinds of light
but why he his training was a combination of having a taken away and accepting at which is similar to giving it up
yeah i mean if somebody's taking something from you and and then suddenly realize it or i'm gonna give it up before it turns i'm gonna give it up since it's going
so here
which able to see this spiritual light and the spiritual light that he saw was such that he actually could maneuver in the world then
not the same way other people do but by by following this light he can get around and he didn't follow her stuff
i don't know if he got to the point where you could ride a bicycle
i have another story of by bicycle riding
but he did get around the other boys and he wasn't going around by holding hands with them he's moving along with them and he got around and
by this light he followed the light
so it was is a light and i propose there is this light like you have it
and it's this this light is the same light that's in darkness and enlight it's just a it's it's the light of darkness and light to light of you and me it's the light of good and evil even evil all things have light even evil has
and if you see this light you can move through evil without getting tripped up and you can move through good without dripping tripped up
if you encounter good and you can't see the light of good you can get hung up on it
if you're connor evil of course and you don't see the light of it you can get tripped up on it
if you encounter a person and you don't see their light you can get tripped up in your relationship with them and so on
so the spiritual lights not the same
as ordinary light but it's not separate
the spiritual light is the nature of ordinary light
ordinary light is ordinary light but also ordinary light is
is you know also mysterious and
ah has this true nature which is light but ordinary darkness also as mysterious the same way
it has has a light
so he could see this light and and then he and then the nazis they're not nazi army attacked france when he was like
maybe early teens
and they conquered a good share of it and
he joined the french resistance and he was
for energetic and this resistance to the nazis occupation and
he's kind of a leader of the movement
an inspiration to the other people
but anyway even though he was blind they still found out
and sent him to concentration camp with the other
justin's fighters
they got sent to the same concentration camps as for example jews and gypsies but they retreated somewhat differently
and through the oh wow i'll just finished and threw out his time and in concentration camp because he was able to stay with his light he was in our medicine person for all the other prisoners because
he could relate to them from is light and how and even help them find it in prison
so they're in this terrible situation but
he saw this light and he was therefore a position to help his fellow
he can see the light in the horror of being in prison
and one thing he realized early actually quite early was that
he would lose the light
if he became angry or afraid
and by anger at the commute in appropriately angry
in appropriate unskillful anger and fear than he would lose it he get distracted he didn't mention if it became greedy for something that he would lose it
maybe that wasn't his problem
you can imagine that can be easy to slip into fear
ah an anger if you lost your sight
and he did like he did occasionally i guess he verified that when he when those states arose in him he will lose his his vision of the light
so again i'm proposing to that this that this light of things is all around us all the time it's coming towards us as emanating from us
ha and wisdom is behold this light
so buddha's wisdom gives off light and put his wisdom beholds the light and
a part of what opens us to this light is being willing to ah
give up our ordinary light an ordinary darkness
i'll give up our ordinary vision
and during this retreat
i propose the following schedule
i propose that we have
a meeting now
then tomorrow morning
i will i propose that we offer periods of meditation starting at six thirty in his room
and so a period of sitting meditation a period of walking meditation a period of sitting meditation and then we'll have a break and then we can have discover some discussion
so that would be between six thirty and ten we do those things here that would be our second session this is i propose to disappear first session
now be our second session and then we have breakfast or brunch excuse me
i over at the main building
and then come back here and eleven damn third session from eleven to one
and then another break a longer break
from one to two thirty and then have another session from to thirty to five and a break for dinner
until seven and have our
fifth session so
first ones six starts at six thirty second one starts at ten thirty one starts it
no suddenly starts at eleven thirty one starts at two thirty fourth one starts had
seven know
second thread
so one
tum tamales to
eleven's three at
two thirty is for and then seven o'clock tomorrow night's five and then next morning six thirty will be sixth and we have breakfast earlier that day so that we have ten o'clock on sunday we ever seventh millions of seven meetings in this room
and the be schedule on table
so and
yeah i request you to to let me know if you're not gonna come to something
if you could please
let me know
direct directly face to face or give me a note or you could also tell my assistant catherine
but you're gonna
not be here for session if you would please
as an exercise in something or other where would it be an exercise in none
my feedback exercising feedback
i want to talk about feedback
as a tool as a as an as a practice to open to the light
anyway i want you to know that now that you're here
these and guys mean something to me i'm not trying to control you i just want you to know that that you you affect me now in a way that you didn't before you started this retreat so if you want to do something other than be here i appreciate your letting me know
thank you yes
a little louder
excel ah well i can also do this is that help it grow does it help it all and also i appreciate that and i also you can just go like this
or you can speak but also this point like this and i'll understand that means for me to speak up okay
it's it's partly the quality
he said better known you think ah
fair trial little hi steven
is that better
is it ok
well thank you
there's a possibility of recording the talks this weekend yeah i wanted to ask first of your permission that i thought i should also ask everyone's permission
since sometimes as discussion that were recorded
he had my permission how about do does he have your permission to record these talks
he does
a challenge like people would like copies of it later i guess we could have a sign up list okay
thank you paul

let's see
i offered in the announcement for this weekend and i feel fine in trying to follow through on the offer
to to to bring a buddhist teachings on
the precepts of compassion
moral cause and effect
and also buddhist teachings on everything
another way to put it is buddha's teachings on the true nature
have precepts of compassion the true nature of suffering the true nature of
moral cause and effect the true nature of everything
and the true nature of everything
is that everything is light
but but it doesn't just say that the true nature of everything is light
but it says other things about about phenomena and and in talking about phenomena it may help us open to the true nature open to the light of open to the light
of all things
i recently read a review of i television show based on am radio show
and the radio show is called this american life
and now television as a television shows being made on this but there was one of the things that the reviewer said that watching the reviewer said one has it one one feels that one should speak in the third person when talking about this american life
because one feels that if if one is critical and all of this american life one will experience perhaps be attacked by those who are lovers of the show so one speaks in the third person for safety purposes
but one has to make a living so when rights this article
and one has heard from the person who created to show the structure of the show is basically the structure of a sermon
and then they the reviewer said when i heard that i realized what was bothering me about the show is that i felt like
it was like this like meaning was being
forced into my mind
by the comment by the comments on the stories
and i thought well does that would a sermon is and i think a sermon could be that where someone's telling you the meaning of things
gay but i don't want to do that
i don't want to to speak to you in a way that i'm putting meaning into your head
what do i want to do
hi i want to encourage you to find the meaning in everything
so i'm more into trying to help you find the meaning of all events rather than tell you what it is
and there is a possibility you know like this weekend
or even this evening that
you may actually open to the meaning of things because the meaning of things
is available
oh oh yeah and another meaning of one of the meanings of that
in the dictionary meaning of a sermon which is listed as a religious discourse delivered as part of a church church service and another meaning of it is an often lengthy and tedious speech
and as as a reproof or exhortation
and i thought i didn't of course i do not mean at this point so far anyway
to deliver tedious speech a reproof
it could happen some day but right now i don't feel like it and i wonder how but exhortation exhortation i thought i want to encourage people
but how about extort and i looked up exhorting the root of xr is to encourage or to urge
but i don't want to urge you to do something you don't want to do
but i do on to urge you to do what you do wanna do
and so what do you want ah
so you might want
you might want pleasure do i want to encourage you to want pleasure
i don't want to encourage you to want pleasure i do i do want to encourage you to be aware
if you want pleasure
i i want to urge you to be aware of your desire for pleasure
my desire for pleasure your desire for pleasure is basically motivated by the delusion
that pressure that that pleasure will give you relief from suffering
in our delusion we sometimes think that some pleasure might give us relief from suffering
and i would say that it doesn't
give us relief from suffering but it might distract us from it for awhile and distraction from suffering might almost seem like relief
and it's not actually relief is just distraction is postponing the work
a facing are suffering
and the work of facing are suffering
what's we face it
we have a chance to see the light in the suffering suffering has light just like everything else does then we can see the truth of suffering the true nature of suffering and seeing the true nature of suffering his happiness
i want to urge you i don't exactly want to urge you to be happy
i don't want to urge you to want to be happy
i just want to urge you to do
what you need to do in order to be happy cause you do wanna be happy
and happiness is relief from suffering
because happiness is even if you're in pain you see the true nature of suffering and it's your be very we're very happy
to see the truth
of anything in particular the truth of suffering
i would like to encourage you to face suffering and to face it in such a way that you open to its truth to it's true nature
and so we have sitting and walking meditation and we also have lots of other
opportunities during the week and but in particular
during the sitting and walking meditation isn't is a good time to practice sitting and walking meditation
and the way i would suggest you practice during the sitting and walking
his arm i suggest
you practice sitting
okay so what's it like the practice sitting wholeheartedly well it's like you're sitting
you're in the sitting posture either the on the ground or in a chair and and sitting and you're giving your whole heart to the sitting that you're doing
or you're standing can you give your whole heart
to the standing or you're walking and you give your whole heart to the walking
what's it like to give your whole heart or to turn to the sitting well it's to give yourself to the sitting
pretty much period
now if you gave yourself halfway it's maybe not a period to give half yourself to the sitting it's like what about the other half but if you give your whole self to and it's pretty much that's the end of the story for the moment
is he and his story in other words you don't give yourself to the sitting expecting something
so you sit in a moment came here i am sitting
that's it here i am sitting i'm not expecting anything for this
here you are sitting now how about you are sitting here right
how about sitting here without expecting anything just just for the moment without expecting anything
what are expecting reward for being a meditator
just wholeheartedly set since you're sitting has you're sitting
for you're sitting for and a this way of whole heartedly sitting of giving yourself completely to what you're doing at the moment
in that giving
you're basically starting to open to the light
i might as i might or might not have the occasion to remind you
to to be this way to practice this way
but you're welcome to remind yourself
sit and walk
giving yourself completely to the sitting and walking
that's of basic
now we could add to this a little bit if you like this is optional
when you're sitting and walking
you might also basically give yourself to your sitting give yourself to your walking but also give yourself to the breathing give yourself to your breathing
but again give yourself to your breathing
without expecting anything
be that way with your body and your breath
when sitting and walking and standing or even reclining some of you might be reclining in meditation
it's possible to meditate in any posture
for for basic ones sitting standing walking and reclining
are the four basic ones
and meditation can can be done or any other for the buddha the historical buddha practice meditation and boasts for
are statues of buddha practicing meditation in those for there aren't too many statues of the buddha like you know leaning over to pick up a rock
or the buddha you know swinging from a tree or the buddha sitting on the toilet
or the buddha and on and what
you know
crawling out in the bath
or the buddha washing her feet but those things happened and in those postures to the buddha was
being a those postures without expecting anything and therefore the buddha is giving off and receiving the light
which has always been given often received the light of our true nature
maybe that's enough for starters on the meditation
yes sorry
while the one that the buddha recommended was
i'm lying on your right side
and with your head some propped up a little bit and maybe with your with your right hand is kind of under under your neck or under your head
in the last few years i've been having trouble reclining on my right side some probably my shoulder doesn't work so well to recline on my right side
so i've been reclining on my left side
whore reclining on my back
so doesn't seem have some something doesn't work for my shoulder to been so i wouldn't be strict about
about where that's right or left side just
you know if you see statues of were usually on his right side and he usually recommended that the advantage that there is advantage to one advantages is that your heart isn't your hearts up on top
resident you're lying on your heart but if you had shoulder problems like me and i'm not work to do on right side
it can also be on your back but to live it more alert to be on your side
i'll see your breathing as an easier your you know your your diaphragm cause go in and out on the side for the more easier than when you're on your back so it's slightly better in certain ways
but point is whatever posture your an
there is a possibility of wholeheartedly
giving yourself to the posture
how i said maybe that's enough but i thought of something else i want to say about this

not only give yourself in the in his practice not only give yourself completely
to what you're doing
with no expectation
give yourself to inhaling with no expectation give yourself to exhaling with no expectation
not only that but also
give the inhaling to the inhaling and give the exhaling to the exhaling
not going to give yourself to everything
but gotta give everything to everything
it just even more just another dimension of wholeheartedly sitting wholeheartedly being present as you actually give everyone to everyone you give everybody to themselves
give yourself to yourself
give your posture posture
you're breathing to your breathing
and give everybody else to themselves
with no expectation
make everything you do a gift
and make everyone else a gift

again this is a meditation to open to
the light
which is not make the light we just have to open to it
and then open to it we may be able to see it
however it is possible life i feel to be open to it and yet not yet see it
and if we're open to a but don't yet see it was still be kind of verb
hah little bit unhappy
or are quite unhappy
it's possible there's upon like about this and which goes
this leaky tumbledown grass hut
left opening for the moon
now i gaze at it
now i see it
all the while
it was reflected in the teardrops fallen on my sleeves
if we don't see the light we may cry
in pain and sorrow
from not seeing it
and in every tear
that falls
the light is shining in the tear drop
but we don't see the light and we don't see that it's shining in the teardrops that we shared because we don't see the light but it is light is shining on us all the time
but even after you opened to it and let it in which and actually we are open to it and we are letting it in unless be kind of
get with the openness program we may not see that we're letting it in we are letting it in
we are open to it and somehow we have to practice being open to it
otherwise we won't realize that we're open to it and if we don't realize we're open to it even though a shiny right into us and training out of us we won't realize it
so one way of opening to it is just to be here completely be here moment by moment
that's it
which means be here moment by moment that say it means without expecting anything
from the practice of course you will get
you will get something from the practice
and you're already are getting something but if we get distracted by trying to get something we will miss that we're already getting it
how many that's enough
and tonight i would like to suggest that we do walking meditation
and then
follow that was some sitting meditation is you can practices i hope not pretty i hope simple instructions simple but completely demanding are completely requesting
his instruction arcs are completely requesting you to give everything
to what you're doing
with no expectation that couldn't ask for more
because they asked me for everything and you have everything to give
southern questions please give everything to you're walking and you're sitting
with no expectation
with the also additional understanding that you are opening to the light of wisdom
opening to let it shine out of you and interview in this practice
and when you're walking it might be helpful for you to be aware of whether you're inhaling and exhaling just tune in to noticing maybe before you start moving when you stand up before you start moving noticing check out whether you're inhaling exhaling
and get your p get yourself in a position where you have you you're standing on two feet
everybody here's a bike head
you're standing on two feet and stand stand to feet and put put most your weight on one of the foot one your feet but most of the weight and one your feet so that ah the other foot can step
so i suggest when you stand up position yourself with one foot a little head of the other one
but mortier were on the front foot
and then check out your breathing
and notice when you're inhaling and exhaling and then when and then when you notice you're exhaling when you're ready step on the exhale
and then notice inhale
and as you noticed in how shift your weight onto the lead foot again and when you notice exhale step so
tune into your breathing give yourself to your breathing give yourself your posture give yourself to you're walking in this way
and i requested we walk in a circle can it be more than one circle around the perimeter of the room clockwise
so it would you please