A Compendium of the Mahayana: Asanga’s Mahayanasamgraha and Its Indian and Tibetan Commentaries

For those so inclined, this massive volume is well worth considering: Details: The Mahāyānasamgraha, published here with its Indian and Tibetan commentaries in three volumes, presents virtually everything anybody might want to know about the Yogācāra School of mahāyāna Buddhism. It discusses in detail the nature and operation of the eight kinds of consciousness, the often-misunderstood notion of “mind only” (cittamātra), dependent origination, the cultivation of the path and Read more [...]
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Spiritual Friendships

Truly let us praise the joy of companionship! Better or equal ones should be chosen as friends. If these are not found, living blamelessly, one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. While emphasizing the element of solitude, the sutta does provide some stanzas such as the above to praise the value of spiritual friendship. This one is in league with the Dhammapada which states that this form of spiritual element is to be highly valued, but that Solitary-Fortitude is the best Read more [...]
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Time is Short

There is sporting & love in the midst of companions, & abundant fondness for offspring. Feeling disgust at the prospect of parting from those who'd be dear, wander alone like a rhinoceros. Perhaps there’s no greater emotion experienced of having a child than losing one. I have seen first-hand this tragic state on numerous occasions over the years in ministry and the lingering effects of losing a child is terribly unbearable and never subsides. The child is not supposed to Read more [...]
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Intrusions!

When amidst companions one is approached with requests in the house, and where one stands, walks or wanders. Seeking independence which is undesired by others, one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. Interruptions are the assassins of spiritual repose. Coming from every which way the one seeking an independent spirit is mauled at every opportunity, afterwards being left to recover from the assaults which always drains one’s vital energies. Some intrusions of the Recollective Read more [...]
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A Deer Tale

As an unbound deer in the forest seeks a feeding-place when it wills, wise, seeking independence, one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. We have a lot of wandering deer foraging for food in my area, particularly in winter late at night. There have been many occasions when upon peering through the drapes of my bedroom window I’ve come face to face with some of these majestic creatures. On a singular occasion as one was feeding on some shrubbery outside my window, it was Read more [...]
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One’s Highest Aim

He who feels compassion towards friends or companions neglects his aim, his mind being bound. Considering this dread which lies in intimacy, one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. Compassion is a much used and abused term in our day and age. Once connoted to imply a bending over backwards to help one’s neighbor in need has been twisted and hijacked into a warped political agenda of helping people only if it’s in the best interest of the purported caretakers, enabling Read more [...]
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Not Smart

Affection arises in the one who has made (intimate) contact; as a consequence of affection this suffering originates. Considering the danger which comes from affection, one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. Affectionism can be a blessing and a curse. Upon that first intimate contact it can feel like the world is suddenly a wonderful place until that place takes a turn for the worse as the fragile intimacy dissipates. Undue suffrage will be an inevitable consequence when Read more [...]
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The foreverness of Zen

Nothing in this life is Zen. Not your assumed birth, nor an inevitable cessation of your present biological matrix. One´s dreams, desires, ideas, and imaginations are not Zen. Faith in Zen, or the dharma, is not Zen. This world, or the perceived beyond, is not Zen, nor are the various bodily positions, or meditative states - Zen. No god, or God, is Zen or the root-source of zen. No Buddhas are zen. Nor any ritual of any sort or age of reverence is zen. All this is merely relativistic existentialism, Read more [...]
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Why Suffer?

Abandoning punishment for all living beings, not hurting even a single one of them, one should not wish for a son, not to mention a companion! one should live alone, like the horn of a rhinoceros. After refusing to strike-out against another sentient being, thus harming-none, why would you want to inflict injury upon yourself by desiring the worldly path with its plethora of suffering?  Desiring children or an intimate companion appears comforting on the surface, but upon taking the plunge Read more [...]
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The Snow-Buddha

The picture depicted is that of the Stone Buddha sitting outside my hermitage, referenced back in August. He is 18” high, and as you can see here is just surfacing again (peeking his head out of the snow and looking about) during some thawing-out today after being submerged in 28” of snow from a recent blizzard. Although the weather outside has been frightfully frigid, I’m kept quite warm during my meditation sessions inside my hermitage which is gas-heated. So, while others this winter Read more [...]
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