Mudita Journal

Buddhism Archive

The skyscraper and the cherry blossom: Why Objectivism needs secular spirituality

After my "Pointing to the reality" post, my intelligent Rand-loving friend was rubbed the wrong way by my suggestion that cherry blossoms are on the same level with skyscrapers: Skyscrapers give us an appreciation for things as they could be, for the ways man changes the world. How can cherry blossoms compare? Here is my reply. I like your summary of the worldview Ayn Rand articulates, about man's life as the standard of value, and how much meaning there is at that level, of shaping the world around us to fit our needs and to support our life and happiness. I ...

Pointing to the reality

I wrote this in answer to a friend, a relative newcomer to Ayn Rand's philosophy, who inquired about my interest in spirituality and why I would say something like "The divine is all around us." Why use the same words that religions use? I just got back from a 20-minute nap in the sunshine in the grass, in the park down the street. On my way to my favorite patch of grass on the embankment, I was approached by a young black missionary named Marcelle who was carrying a bible and was eager to talk. Sweet kid, seemed lonely, and was ...

Flow with whatever may happen

July 13, 2012  ·  Category: Buddhism, Eckhart Tolle, FLOW, Meditation, Mindfulness

Thanks to Michael Strong of FLOW for bringing this lovely graphic to my attention. He writes: "Although this is Buddhist, it is similar to the Taoist usage of 'Flow,' which was one of our original inspirations."

Mindful habits and voluntary simplicity

May 29, 2012  ·  Category: Buddhism, Mindfulness

I enjoyed Brandon Rennels's list of aspirations for 2012. His first two: 1. Mindful habits. Reciting a 4-line gatha to myself each morning, taking my first bite of food for my friends and family, setting mindfulness bells to ring every 30 minutes when I open the computer, etc. I have spent the last six months building a solid habit base that I’d like to continue working with. As I’ve written about before habits are critical for long-term change, but they are often hard to implement. One reason why habits have been difficult for me in the past is that my current ...

Living daylight

September 12, 2011  ·  Category: Buddhism, Meditation, Mindfulness

A quote that really struck me today, from the Almaasary of quotes from A.H. Almaas: What determines whether a soul has basic trust? Basic trust is the effect on the soul of a particular aspect or quality of Being that we call Living Daylight. We call it this because if one's perception is subtle enough to visually see and kinesthetically feel the substance of one's consciousness, it actually looks like daylight, and is felt as an alive consciousness. It is experienced as something boundless, in the sense that it is not bounded by one's body but rather is experienced as something ...

Treating chronic pain through radical acceptance

A new friend asked for my advice about using meditation to treat chronic pain. I would assume that, like me, you have consulted many doctors and they aren't able to do much to help. In this case, one of the most powerful therapies is what we might call "radical acceptance." The basic premise is that we often don't realize how much of our suffering is of our own creation, created by how we react to the pain in our body. Sometimes the core of pain itself can be like a grain of sand in an oyster; but through our irritated reaction, it ...

The other side of peace

December 20, 2010  ·  Category: Adyashanti, Buddhism, Intellectual, Mindfulness

Fellow Adyashanti student Margo, at A Peaceful Human Race, has an excellent new post titled "the other side of peace," which does a good job of exploring the paradoxical nature of peace. It's a topic that interests me, as I've long been fascinated by the fact that peace sometimes requires something that looks an awful lot like war -- and perhaps, occasionally, even war itself. Her post begins: "conflict is essential to the development and growth of man and society. it leads either to the construction or destruction of an entire group or state. . . if there is no ...

An enlightened view of enlightenment

December 13, 2010  ·  Category: Adyashanti, Buddhism, Eckhart Tolle, Intellectual, Mindfulness

I haven't written much on Mudita Journal about the concept of enlightenment, but it's been in the background for me for several years, ever since I discovered the teachings of Adyashanti (and Eckhart Tolle, before him). Perhaps I should write a post about it, sometime, for the benefit of those who are unfamiliar, who see it as a "mystical" concept, or who are skeptical that it has any value. Meantime, I know a few of my readers are acquainted with Adyashanti — or "Adya," as students often call him — and his teachings. In any case, a friend said the ...

The gentle art of blessing

December 11, 2010  ·  Category: Adyashanti, Buddhism, Eckhart Tolle, Mindfulness

I was contacted today by a fellow student of Adyashanti's teachings, who lives in Albuquerque and was wondering about the status of the group I had tried starting there, years ago. It turns out she has a blog as well, called A Peaceful Human Race. Reading it, I was moved by this post: for the last couple months, i've been reading the gentle art of blessing by pierre prandervand. a little excerpt from the book can give you a taste of what this book is about, or you could click the title of the book above, order, and check it out yourself. pradervand ...

Transcript of my Reason.tv interview about Ayn Rand’s legacy

February 16, 2010  ·  Category: Buddhism, Individualism, Intellectual, Objectivism

My thanks to a user on braincrave.com for transcribing the parts of my August 2008 interview with Reason.tv that pertain to Ayn Rand's legacy. I'm pasting his transcription below (with a few light edits and corrections) for Mudita Journal readers interested to revisit some of the themes I explored in that interview. I definitely think her novels provide the best introduction to her ideas. They're easier, so they're more accessible to many people. They're best sellers over the last 40 to 50 years, so obviously they've appealed to many people. But also, they set her ideas in the context of the ...