A Phrase That I Liked

On this morning’s Today program on Radio 4, Nick Robinson was interviewing Matt Hancock, the Secretary of State for Health, on the draft Brexit deal.  When Mr Hancock tried to pull the conversation round to the future trade arrangements with the EU Robinson said: “We’ll come to the future in a second.”

Philosophical presentism is the view that neither the future nor the past exist. In some versions of presentism, this view is extended to timeless objects or ideas (such as numbers). According to presentism, events and entities that are wholly past or wholly future do not exist at all.

To live in the present moment is the basic foundation of Buddhism.

“Being in the moment is just another way of saying that we are aware of what is going on in our experience, that we are not just being angry (or whatever) but are aware that we are angry and are aware that we can choose to be otherwise…………

Of course a lot of the time when we are not being in the moment, we are literally thinking about the past or present. We might be dwelling on the past – brooding about some past hurt. Or we may be fantasizing about a future in which we have won the lottery and are living out our lives in some imagined paradise, or daydreaming about being with the perfect partner.

Often these fantasized pasts and futures are not even real possibilities, but simply fantasies of how things might be or of how we would have liked them to have been. And as with all unmindful activity, we have no awareness that this fantasizing is pointless. All that it does is reinforce unhelpful emotional tendencies that can never truly enrich our lives.”



NEW MOON – Irreversibility

Better than ruling the whole world, 
better than going to heaven, 
better than lordship over the universe, 
is an irreversible commitment to the Way.

Dhammapada v. 178

In which direction do we look when we seek security? For some it is towards greater happiness. Others look for an increased sense of sovereignty or control. The Buddha’s advice is to establish oneself in an irreversible commitment to Truth. To have reached a stage of awakening which is irreversible, known as Stream Entry, the Buddha says offers incomparable security; better than any level of conventional happiness or state of worldly power.

A Quote That I Like

“Everybody, everybody everywhere, has his own movie going, his own scenario, and everybody is acting his movie out like mad, only most people don’t know that is what they’re trapped by, their little script.”

– Tom Wolfe,

American journalist and author of “The Right Stuff and “The Bonfire of the Vanities”.

He died this week aged 87.

Books, Books, Books

Back in the middle of November last year we received the following email……………

I stumbled across the West Wight Sangha website and thought I might send you some of the books published by our organization. You can see some of them here. http://www.bhantedhammika.net/
If you would like some copies for yourself and your friends and you give me a postal address I will happily send you some copies.
Kind regards
Bhante Dhammika.

The books were ordered and duly sent on their way by ship.

The books arrived yesterday and coincidentally today is World Book Day! It is a celebration of authors, illustrators, books and (most importantly) it’s a celebration of reading. In fact, it’s the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world.

Bhante’s books will also be a great addition to our already large and comprehensive library. They are:-

Good Question, Good Answer (which covers the following)

1. What is Buddhism?
2. Basic Buddhist Concepts
3. Buddhism and the God-Idea
4. The Five Precepts
5. Rebirth
6. Meditation
7. Wisdom And Compassion
8. Vegetarianism
9. Good Luck and Fate
10. Monks and Nuns
11. The Buddhist Scriptures
12. History and Development
13. Becoming a Buddhist
14. Some Sayings of the Buddha

Like Milk And Water Mixed

What is Love? – Two Hearts Beating as One – All in the Family – Until the Mountains are Washed to the Sea – I was a Stranger and You Took Me In – Firm Friends and True
Self-sacrificing Love – Forbidden Love – Furred and Feathered Friends – That Love of Which there is None Higher – The Brahma Viharas – Breaking Down the Barriers – More About Metta Meditation – Kind Heart, Clear Mind – An Adorned and Beautified Mind – Images of Love – Appendix I. Instructions for Metta Meditation – Appendix II. Instructions for Mindfulness Meditation – Appendix III. Love, Kindness and Compassion in Early Buddhist Literature – Abbreviations

Good Kamma! Bad Kamma! 

What Exactly is Kamma?
Kamma and Rebirth in Buddhism
So what is Kamma?
Kamma and Rebirth
Collective Kamma and other Misunderstandings
Appendix I: The Buddha on Kamma and Rebirth
Appendix II: The Tsunami, A Buddhist View

To Eat or Not to Eat Meat

Vegetarianism in Ancient India
Buddhist Arguments for Vegetarianism
Motivation and Meat
The Last Link in the Chain
Problematic Vegetarians
Meat in the Buddhist Tradition
How I became a Vegetarian
The Buddha’s Last Supper

Thank you Bhante.

A Quote That I Like – “Are You A Buddhist?”

At our regular Tuesday night meeting one of our Sangha members shared the following quote which they had brought along…

“Are You A Buddhist?”
Sharon Salzberg.

Buddhism is a convenient label for the life she has chosen to live—No more. 

The point (of Buddhism) isn’t ‘to become a Buddhist’, to declare an identity, to reject anything else. The point is to look at, explore and if you wish, to try and live a certain way of life – a way of not harming yourself or others ,having compassion for yourself and others, building concentration, experimenting with mindfulness, developing Wisdom and Insight. 

It’s a way of life; it’s not in Lockdown with a certain kind of language or belief or adherence to belief. 

The Buddha did not teach Buddhism. 

The Buddha taught a way of Life.