This web site invites inquiry into early Buddhism, especially the relational or interpersonal practices and potentials found in the Pali suttas, along with corollaries of those early practices in contemporary life and practice.
Such inquiry inevitably involves some engagement with scholarship, but by intention it is also personal, ad hoc, and a bit haphazard—reflecting the opportunities, teachings, and experiences that come to me. Read more about this project.
Ānanda went to the Blessed One and, on arrival, having bowed down to the Blessed One, sat to one side. As he was sitting there, Ānanda said to the Blessed One, "This is half of the holy life, lord: admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie."
"Don't say that, Ānanda. Don't say that. Admirable friendship, admirable companionship, admirable camaraderie is actually the whole of the holy life."
—Upaḍḍha ("Half") Sutta, SN 45.2
discussion:"Great work, Martha! I loved the video of Shinzen Young—very insightful. I do believe improv is a way of life, not about being funny. If everyone took just one improv class the world would be a better place, guaranteed."
on "Improvisation As a Spiritual Practice"
- "I can’t help but wonder why, how ... our vipassana or Pali Buddhist subculture got so far off these deeply human teachings that value, rather than discount, relational contact as support for the path. "
on "Lighting Up the Night"
Personal productivity expert David Allen describes a type of distractibility very familiar to meditators—and diagnoses it as stemming from the attempt to manage too commitments in short term memory, which is poorly suited to the task. He thinks we can get to concentrated clarity and “flow” by managing those commitments outside the mind, in an external system reliable enough that the mind can trust it. Continue reading