ISmile 351 – When Hopelessness Rules

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This evening’s talk covers a range of topics but centers around the idea that hopelessness offers us freedom. This is covered by Pema Chodron in her book, When Things Fall Apart.   http://infinitesmile.org/Podcasts/wp-content/ISSWhenHopelessnessRules.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | Download (Duration: 56:16 — 77.3MB) | EmbedSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSS

Breaking Through the Dharma Wall

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Ben Hutchison’s piece for The Under 35 Project is a great reminder of how our path unfolds when we are no longer caught by the path itself. In practicing Buddhism, in whatever form or lineage you choose, there is going to be loss and disappointment. As Dogen writes in Genjokoan, “flowers fall amid our longing and weeds spring up amid or antipathy.” …

Dialogs With My Teacher #63

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Here’s another installment in a series of emails that took place between Michael and one of his senior students beginning the Summer of 2009. May you find the exchange interesting and enriching. ___ February 25, 2011  Student: How can the realization of stillness inform, say, a long-standing argument one person has with another? Michael: It depends. For the most part, two things …

Dialogs With My Teacher #60

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February 14, 2011  Student: Under what conditions could death be characterized as a distraction? Michael: Death is merely a return to truth. But our interpretation of death is almost always a distraction to this offering. So I’d say that both avoidance and celebration of death serve as distractions if either works to soften the full knowledge of death’s immediacy. This …

Dialogs With My Teacher #54

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January 6, 2011 (#54) Student: If there is no self, who sets goals and where do these goals come from? Michael: Goals arise just as all else arises: from Emptiness. They also eventually die back into Emptiness. This basic rule applies to everything, including the self who sets goals in the first place. An appropriate response to this ebb and …

Dialogs With My Teacher #51

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Here’s another installment in a series of emails that took place between Michael and one of his senior students beginning the Summer of 2009. May you find the exchange interesting and enriching. ___ December 14, 2010 Student: Where there is love, there can be no fear, right? Michael: I’d agree with that statement as long as the kind of love we’re talking …

Dialogs With My Teacher #41

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Here’s another installment in a series of emails that took place between Michael and one of his senior students beginning the Summer of 2009. May you find the exchange interesting and enriching. ___ October 27, 2010 (#41) Student: What happens when you fall in love? Michael: We recognize ourselves through another, and then let go. This surrender feels so good that we …

Dialogs With My Teacher #35

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Here’s another installment in a series of emails that took place between Michael and one of his senior students beginning the Summer of 2009. May you find the exchange interesting and enriching. ___ August 14, 2010 (#26) Student: Is there a perfect time to break from the sweetness of teacher? Won’t this be known and happen naturally, just like the end of …