We take refuge, but we also become a refuge. The degree to which we can cultivate value, precepts and restraint, we gain an increasing sense of authority to stand against the outward pull of thought and sense desire. This strength or determination can be felt in the body. Tap into the imaginal to sense its depth.
Movement into the immaterial/vertical domain occurs through restraint, renunciation and withdrawal, but all marked by pleasure. Most supportive is a cooperative social form where other people are doing the same thing. Monasteries model this social form. Refer to D33, considered ‘Vinaya for lay people.’
The cosmos is cosmos and not chaos because of a natural order. There is an internal order too in our embodiment where the energies of ideas, thoughts and psychologies are collected in the body. But we’ve lost our embodiment, and therefore access to the moral intelligence of the body. We can regain access through enacting, remembering and recollecting.
1. How to practice last 3 of 8 precepts; recipient of one’s giving determines one’s merit – please explain; 2. how interpersonal aspect of energy affect/support one’s practice and meditation; 3. giving hand to hand vs. in disembodied ways (credit cards, etc.); 4. self consciousness around my giving’ the art of receiving has been neglected; 5. how to be with others who don’t know their own goodness
Caring for aging parents; celestial realm as metaphor or actuality; those who are spontaneously reborn; sacrifice; when I know I’m not observing precepts perfectly; meditation practice feels flat; advice for caregivers in medical field; breaking through feeling bleak about the world; subjective nature of the sacred
Presentation of the multi-layered, holistic, vertical cosmos of the suttas as compared to our flat world that only extends geographically. One can move up and down the cosmos through one’s own actions – giving, ethics, renunciation, clearing the mind of the hindrances and developing deep meditation. One learns to make things sacred; sacred meaning everything is valued, has its place and is treated with respect. A study of the Kutadanta Sutta (D5.29) as an example of how the Buddha taught engagement and movement along this vertical/immaterial domain