The greatest gift is the
gift of the teachings
 
Dharma Talks given at Insight Meditation South Bay - Silicon Valley
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2017-09-26 Anathapindika: A Generous and Devoted Lay Follower 44:25
  Ed Haertel
In this third talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Ed Haertel, tells the life story of Anathapindika. He was not a monk, and he is remembered as the foremost in generosity among the Buddha's followers. He received teachings from the Buddha that consisted a comprehensive code of conduct for conscientious lay followers of the Buddha. In this way, Anathapindika has become a benefactor to all those in the future, who try to follow the path of liberation.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-09-19 Ananda:The Man with the Questions 35:05
  Thanissaro Bhikkhu
In this second talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Thanissaro Bhikkhu, talks about the contributions by Ananda to the Dharma. Because of his incredible memory, what we know in the Pali Canon today came mostly from Ananda's recollection of the Buddha's teachings. He described in detail who came to the Buddha, what were their question/problem, and how the Buddha addressed that particular question/problem. This is an important contribution to our understanding of how the Dharma was taught, because so much of it depended on who was asking what, and what kind of teaching was the best for them. Another debt that we owe Ananda is that he asked the Buddha questions that no one had asked. And Ananda's questions in turn sparked the Buddha to explain things or do things that he otherwise might not have explained or done.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-09-12 Angulimala: An Ethical Transformation 27:30
  Shaila Catherine
In this first talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Shaila Catherine, tells the life story of Angulimala and his transformation from notorious robber and murdered to a peaceful, compassionate, truthful, and awakened monk. It is an inspiring example of the power of restraint, and the potential for redemption. Habits and dispositions do not need to control our lives. We can stop unwholesome, unhealthy, and harmful courses of conduct. We can purify our minds.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-09-12 The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community 3:50:52
The early Buddhist sangha included some accomplished and intriguing disciples--lay and monastic, male and female. By searching the literature of the Pali Canon, contemporary scholars have been able to compile biographical information, infer personality traits, and gain a vivid sense of the human relationships and life-stories that formed the earliest Buddhist community. This speaker series will explore the lives, practice, and teachings of several of the great disciples of the Buddha. The series will illuminate both the ordinary and extraordinary contributions of some of the most interesting personalities whose questions, challenges, and life situations shaped the teachings that we cherish today.

2017-08-29 The Role of Feelings and Emotions in Decision Making 41:22
  Shaila Catherine
Shaila Catherine gave the fifth talk in a speaker series titled "Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet." She pointed out that feelings and emotions can be rather seductive, especially when we are not mindful of them, because they can unconsciously propel us into action. When feelings are pleasant, the response very often moves the mind towards craving and grasping. When feelings are unpleasant, the response is often aversion. Therefore, feelings should be investigated and understood, instead of being the basis upon which impulsive decisions are made.
In collection Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet

2017-08-22 Climate Change and the Dharma 25:17
  Jennifer Dungan
Jennifer Dungan gave the fourth talk in a speaker series titled "Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society. and Planet." She proposed that human-caused climate changes could be regarded as a Heavenly Messenger for us to wake up. She further explored how global warming is a consequence of clinging on a societal and political scale. In addition, we can be mindful of what arises in our mind when we hear about global warming. The spectrum can range from feeling alarmed to feeling dismissive. Our mind state in turn can lead to wholesome or unwholesome actions.
In collection Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet

2017-08-08 The Skillful Means of Recognizing Empty Appearance 47:20
  Lisa Dale Miller
Lisa Dale Miller gave the third talk in a speaker series titled "Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet." She explained that though the Buddhist notion of emptiness can be quite challenging for Western Buddhist practitioners, the rich teachings on emptiness offer a clear path to apply wise view, wise action and skillful means in daily life.
In collection Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet

2017-07-25 Tending to Our Minds and Hearts, Caring for Others 35:40
  Nikki Mirghafori
Nikki Mirghafori gave the second talk in a speaker series titled "Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet". Teachings from the "Acrobat Sutta" were shared to illustrate how tending our own mind is a stepping stone to care for others, and the world. The power of actions leading to habit formation in the mind and body, which could either lead to liberation or suffering, were also discussed.
In collection Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet

2017-07-18 The Bliss of Blamelessness: Cultivating the Foundation & Framework of Buddhist Practice 53:20
  Robert Cusick
Robert Cusick gave the first talk in a speaker series titled "Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet". There are many benefits to training in sila or by living in integrity with the precepts. When we recognize and respect the importance of integrity as a foundational underpinning of Buddhism and choose to develop it as a personal daily practice, we access a powerful tool that can be used for both our immediate and complete liberation from suffering. By choosing to train in this way, we create the conditions in our own lives to understand and experience what's known as the "Bliss of Blamelessness." This talk by Robert Cusick is about some of the many different ways people are transformed by living in integrity with the precepts and ultimately changed by the bliss of blamelessness.
In collection Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet

2017-07-18 Living Wisely in the World: Caring for Mind, Family, Society, and Planet 3:23:34
A famous verse in the Dhammapada states: “All experience is preceded by mind, led by mind, made by mind. Speak or act with a corrupted mind, and suffering follows, as the wagon wheel follows the hoof of the ox … Speak or act with a peaceful mind, and happiness follows, like a never-departing shadow.” This guest speaker series will explore the ways in which care for our minds leads to care for our families, societies and our planet.

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