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Sacred outlook – Seeing beyond ordinary perception in modern culture, and American Buddhism
Why is pride a poison, and when can pride of accomplishment be considered a good thing? With full Ambattha Sutta “Pride of Birth and its Fall.”
Vajrasattva, the Great Purifyer, among the most powerful and profound healing and purifications techniques in Vajrayana Buddhism
Family lay Buddhism: What the Teachers Say about keeping motivated in your Buddhist Practice as parents — and coping with every-day family life in a modern stressful world
Reconnecting with nature to reboot our “spiritual self” activates a feeling of self-transcendence
Video: Buddhist Teachings on Ngondro, The Foundation Practices with Venerable Zasep Rinpoche
Kucchivikara-vattha: The Monk with Dysentery (Sutra teachings) “If you don’t tend to one another, who then will tend to you?”
“Putting Compassion on the Scientific Map”: Compassion Boosts Happiness/Health; and Research Indicates That Practicing Buddhists Are Happier than Average.
Video with wonderful mantra chanting: Om Gate Gate Paragate Para Samgate Bodhi Soha, the essence of Heart Sutra and Emptiness
Music Mantra Video: Taking Refuge in Buddha, Dharma and Sangha and the Four Immeasurables wonderfully sung by Yoko Dharma with video visualizations
Broken Commitments: 3 Teachers weigh in on practice “overload” and breaking Vajrayana practice promises. What do we do about it?
Dalai Lama and Lama Tsongkhapa: teachings on calm abiding meditation that go beyond “the breath” as the focus — targeting the main affliction
Music Mantra Video: Om Mani Padme Hum wonderfully chanted by Yoko Dharma, the sacred sound of compassionate Buddha Chenrezig
Tara Book excerpt and teaching: Who is Tara and how can She help us? An introduction to Tara, Karma, Shunyata, Dependent Arising, and Buddha Nature by Venerable Zasep Tulku Rinpoche
What’s with all this consort union in Tantric Buddhism? No, it’s not about sexual fantasies. The psychology of Yab-Yum consorts, union of wisdom and compassion
Video: “How do I deal with my anger? Sometimes it consumes me and hurts others”: a Buddhist student asks teacher Ven. Zasep Tulku Rinpoche
Video: “Experience Buddhism” with Namdrol Rinpoche “Buddhism emphasizes, and lays its very foundations on, equanimity.”
Lama Zopa Rinpoche and other teachers recommend Kṣitigarbha mantra and practice for times of disaster, especially hurricane and earthquake, because of the great Bodhisattva’s vow
Medicine Buddha healing mantras chanted by the amazing Yoko Dharma
Why 35 Confessional Buddhas practice and “The Bodhisattva’s Confession of Moral Downfalls” is a critical purifying practice for Buddhists
What the Dalai Lama and Patch Adams Have in Common: Laughter, and Compassion, the Best Medicine
“Preliminary practices… clear and enrich our minds, allowing practice to progress smoothly” — Thubten Chodron. Why Ngondro is a lifetime practice, and a “complete path”
Tantra Helps “Stop Ordinary Perception”, and is the Fast Path to Enlightenment. But How Do Modern Buddhists Relate to Deities?
Painter and digital Thangka artist Jampay Dorje aims to bring “Thangka painting into a modern era” with spectacular art, lessons for students, and a life-long project to illustrate all of the 11 Yogas of Naropa
Buddha teaches us to view every meal as if we were reluctant cannibals: Samyukta Agama Sutra 373, the Four Nutriments
Letting Go — letting go of past, letting go of future, letting go is the hardest thing to do: Na Tumhaka Sutta
Becoming Gesar, the fearless Buddhist: How to overcome fear in uncertain times, according to Pali Sutta, Mahayana Sutra and Tantra
The Hand of Buddha defeats the three poisons : Vajrapani (literally, “Vajra Hand”) — Guardian of Shakyamuni Himself; Vajrapani, the power of the mind to overcome obstacles such as pride, anger, hate and jealousy
Tonglen video: Why giving and taking practice is an important kindness meditation and Bodhichitta practice; how to do it: taught by Zasep Rinpoche
Understanding Dependent Co-Arising is critical to Buddhist practice: The Great Causes Discourse Maha-nidana Sutta
Pali Sutta for Our Age: Old Path White Clouds: Walking in the Footsteps of the Buddha by Thich Nhat Hanh, a Book Review of a Classic
The bridge between science and Buddhism, atoms and no atoms, theism and athiesm; Yidam deity meditation and the Cognitive Science of Tantra
“Every one has Buddha Nature.” A teaching video: Venerable Zasep Rinpoche with mantra chanting by Yoko Dharma
Cankama Sutta: Walking Meditation Sutra: put some mileage on your Buddhist practice with formal mindful walking
Milam Sleep Yoga: lucid dreaming can bring us closer to experiencing non-dualistic “reality” than waking meditation
Reconnecting with nature to reboot our “spiritual self” activates a feeling of self-transcendence

Reconnecting with nature to reboot our “spiritual self” activates a feeling of self-transcendence

Today’s modern world demands that we race along, doing things too quickly without taking into consideration the world around us. To make matters worse, wars, conflicts, pollution and other global concerns are all contributing to the imbalance of our environment and it often seems that we’re moving further away from our emotional selves.


“Forest bathing” is a scientifically proven way of improving health — popularized in Japan.



Unlocking Your Spiritual Self with Nature

by Guest Contributor Sally Keys

One of the ways we can restore the balance is through the practice of Buddhism which teaches us to look at our spiritual development and uncover the path to true happiness.

Finding our spirituality

Spirituality is a broad concept that many scientists have tried to define through brain activity and its effects through meditation. It can mean different things for people but essentially we think about it as in terms of uncovering the meaning of life which can encompass a sense of connection to something bigger than ourselves.


Grab a backpack and head off to a forest, a beach or a mountain by yourself (or with some like-minded mindfully-tuned Buddhist friends.) Mindfully reconnecting with nature can help us understand Oneness and Emptiness. Mindful practice in nature can help us reconnect to our spiritual sense of self-transcendence.


Anxieties in the modern world, particularly distractions from technology, have allowed negative energies to enter our lives which we need to let go of in order to feel a reconnection with the world again. Our ancestors were not faced with the same conflicts but instead had a deep connection with the universe formed through a relationship with nature. It is these traditional life practices which we have lost and need to recoup.

One of the first steps we can take is to rekindle a bond with our environment and look to making a positive impact in the world.

The mindful Buddhist practice of direct experience through nature, we’ll gain greater positivity and peace between us and others around us. Ancient cultures have always honoured nature’s rivers, mountains, trees, flower, sun, moon and natural elements but the ongoing destruction of the environment has meant that this has been damaged. By re-awakening our spiritual side, we can start to repair the damage to the natural world.

One of the easiest ways to activate a sense of “self-transcendence‘ is to reconnect with nature, one-on-one, in a mindful way. Photo credit: Peter John Maridable.

How we can connect with nature

First, we need to really listen to nature before we can communicate with her. Meditation will help although it may be difficult at first. With the effort of real commitment, and with the Buddhist qualities of qualities of awareness, wisdom and kindness. you’ll be a step in the right direction. We can do this by spending time alone in nature. Whether it be up in a mountain or in your local park, part of the reconnection involves finding a quiet time and place in your mind so you can focus on the nature that surrounds you.

The modern, western world might not always teach us to relax and observe, but by allowing ourselves to see and hear our surroundings, we’ll begin the process of unlocking our spiritual self.




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