Summary: Translator/teacher Ken McLeod provides spiritual practitioners with the essence of Buddhist practice. Ken is noted for his ability to present profound teachings and practices in clear straightforward language free from the myths and cultural overlays that make many Eastern teachings difficult to understand. These podcasts are a sampling of the 300+ recordings, some with transcripts, freely available at UnfetteredMind.org under Teachings. Our website also has dozens of original articles and translations of Buddhist texts.
On being nobody; our situation consists of: nothing at the core, emotional reactions from roles, world of stories; tools: black box, middle way, interdependence; closing.
Participants' experience with previous week's meditation on response to bodhisattva vow; creating conditions for bodhicitta to arise in oneself; five training principles: don't close your heart to anything, be mindful of the benefits, nurturing goodness and awareness, spread and deepen attitude within, avoiding four black dharmas and instilling white dharmas; meditation assignment for upcoming week on experiencing the four black dharmas.
Participant's experience with previous week's meditation on succumbing to despair and rejecting others; aspects of the bodhisattva vow associated with Dharmakirti; moving from intention to will; benefits of taking the vow, disadvantages of losing and factors leading to the degeneration of the bodhisattva vow; vow renewal; bodhicitta as an ethic of compassion; meditation instruction for upcoming week: repeat bodhisattva vow daily, how do you respond to the ceremony and to forming this intention?
Participant’s experience with previous week’s meditation exercise on rejoicing in virtue; meeting the deficiency inside ourselves so that we may aspire to bodhicitta; planting virtuous roots; prayers used in class: Prayer to the Perfection of Wisdom, Four Thoughts that Turn the Mind, Refuge and Awakening Mind, Four Immeasurables, Dedication, Aspiration for Awakening Mind, Good Fortune; bodhisattva vow ceremony; celebration; meditation instruction for upcoming week on succumbing to despair with regard to helping others.
Participant’s experience with previous week’s meditation exercise on laying to rest wrong action; taking the bodhisattva vow in the presence of a teacher; does spiritual understanding lead to appropriate action; insight and compassion; preparation for taking the vow: offerings (developing generosity), clearing away non-virtuous action (remorse, remedy, resolve, reliance); meditation instruction for upcoming week on rejoicing in virtue. Due to a recording error, the meditation instruction was added later.
Participant's experience with previous week's meditation on attention, intention, and will; living life at the level of intention or will in order to help others wake up (bodhicitta); Is bodhicitta or desire to help others awaken a natural instinct?; the four geneses of bodhicitta; meditation instruction for upcoming week: when you doing something you know is wrong, what needs to happen to lay it to rest?
Participants’ experience with previous week’s meditation exercise; the four stages in the development of awakening mind; two aspects of awakening mind -- apparently true and ultimately true; translation points on these two terms; aspiration and engagement awakening mind; attention, intention and will; meditation instruction for upcoming week.
Students' experience with previous week's meditation exercise on engaging in wholesome and unwholesome activities; reading 'behind the lines' when a text references other text (using opening of Chapter 8 as an example); what is bodhicitta, what cultivates it, and what it means to be awake; a different perspective on what it means to 'help all sentient beings'; discussion of some of the 22 similes for bodhicitta; meditation instruction for upcoming week.
Review of previous week's discussion on outer, inner, and secret interpretations of the three jewels and participants' experiences with meditation on trusting the three jewels; participants explain why taking a vow of refuge was important; description of refuge ceremony from text; what is meant by 'realize all phenomena are nonexistent and have no form, no perception, and no characteristics...'; experience when completely present; function and importance of ritual and ceremony; discussion of various trainings in refuge; overview of pratimoksa; meditation instruction for upcoming week.
Participants' experience of previous week's meditation on trust; an exercise in trust; overview of Jewel Ornament of Liberation covered to date; the importance of a foundation to spiritual practice; origin of refuge; in what can one trust; outer, inner and mystery interpretation of the three jewels; how each jewel meets a different motivation; meditation instruction for upcoming week
Identifying what you want to do and what prevents you from doing it; how attention causes one to focus and create results; lack of willingness, know-how, and capacity as a framework for understanding what prevents things from happening
Interest in understanding things; persistence that continues after exploration; close attention to genesis and causation (and the difference between the two); creativity in framing questions (and reversing the six forms of mind-killing as a way to develop them)
An exercise on understanding the distinction between what you actually want and what you're asking for; particpants' reaction to exercise; how relating directly to experience through awareness leads to being more awake and alive; What do I stand for?; attend, intend and commit
How to attend: gathering information (internal and external), check for balance; How to intend: get a symbol, generate possibilities; How to commit: take action (even a small action), keep cycling, watch signs, stay in touch with body and feelings, think evolution; participants' comments; reminder to stay in your own experience
Participants report their experience with previous week's guided meditation; a tale of warm fuzzies and cold pricklies; reactions to giving and receiving kindness; three steps to staying present when receiving kindness: recognizing, acknowledging, and appreciating; the natural response (love) to staying present in kindness; extending this response to 'all sentient beings'; the difference between loving-kindness and compassion; the contraction that occurs in the presence of suffering that prevents loving-kindness and compassion from arising; meditation instruction for the upcoming week.