Tue, 23 November 2010
In “What Do We Really Know About the Buddha?” Dhivan delivers a lovely talk with the odd surprise as he considers the relationship between what we think we may know about the Buddha, and what the historical evidence suggests. As Dhivan sifts the information that’s come down to us, we meet several different versions of a human being as he blurs with the archetypal presence he has also come to represent. Yet whichever manifestation we prefer, more than anything this talk brings us face to face with the rich and moving legacy of a brilliant and truly compassionate individual changing the world he took part in, stepping out of history “with the walk of a lion, the walk of a swan.”
Thu, 11 November 2010
In this talk Subhuti gives a concise and inspiring account of the Honeyball Sutta. Starting with some background to his work in Hungary amongst the oppressed Gypsies there, he presents the Buddha’s understanding on the basis for civil, in fact all kinds of, strife.
The Buddha’s analysis takes the form of a nidana chain beginning with actual experience, that when we begin to proliferate or move away from facts to interpretations inevitably leads us into a secondary reality that easily leads to conflict with others, who have different versions of reality.
A brilliant talk, covering ground rapidly but concisely bring together the Buddha’s wisdom both in terms of transforming society and how we work within meditation, in fact we need to employ the same tools in both situations.
Sat, 6 November 2010
In this talk Jinananda gives us some practical tips on good communication and healthy relationships. He brings in the Buddha’s words from the Sigalaka Sutta to illustrate some of the ways relationships were managed in the Buddha’s time. Pointing out that different kinds of relationships require different sets of duties and dynamic ways of relating, he notes that we should be mindful of how we are fulfilling those relationships from our own end.
Jinananda discusses the fact that even Buddhists, who are supposedly always kind and helpful, are not always so, even in stories from the Pali Canon. He reminds us, however, that this is normal, and that relating skilfully to each other is a truly immense challenge – difficult for even the most experienced Buddhists and not to be taken lightly.
Talk given at the West London Buddhist Center