Category Archives: Buddhism

From the Annals of “Easier Said than Done”

I recently came across this gem in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s fine book, Wherever You Go, There You Are: So, if you stop trying to make yourself into more than you are out of fear that you are less than you are, … Continue reading

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Definition of the Day: “Meditation”

I have read and heard many definitions of “meditation” in my time, but the one below strikes me as perhaps the best. It captures the core aspects of meditation, so that by committing the definition to memory you are internalizing a simple way of … Continue reading

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The Way of the Monkey or the Way of the Kitten

In India there are two images used to characterize the “two principal religious attitudes” found among human beings. One is the “way of the kitten”; the other is the “way of the monkey.” When a kitten cries, its mother takes it … Continue reading

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Syphilis, Hypnotism, Buddhism, and the History of Psychology

Lately I’ve been reading Ronald Comer’s textbook on abnormal psychology. Needless to say, it’s a very big book. The author classifies many theories and therapies according to whether they adopt a somatogenic or psychogenic approach to mental illness. In other … Continue reading

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Summer Solstice 2014

Yesterday was the summer solstice. Though I ordinarily post something on the day of the equinoxes and solstices, yesterday I abandoned all to-dos and surrendered to the sweet idleness of the longest day of the year. In our corner of Oregon the weather was beautiful: … Continue reading

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Two Metaphors for the Trained Mind

In earlier posts (here and here) I quoted some metaphors meditation masters use to describe the normally distracted and afflicted condition of our untrained monkey minds. Well, then, how to describe that other, more unusual, experience of a trained mind? There are … Continue reading

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Groupthink in Theoretical Physics and Beyond

I recently read Lee Smolin’s excellent book, The Trouble with Physics: The Rise of String Theory, the Fall of a Science, and What Comes Next. Highly recommended for anyone interested in a sophisticated nontechnical account of the current state of physics, … Continue reading

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