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Scripturient: Some of the Dharma

I first started reading Jack Kerouac in 1968, a battered paperback copy of On the Road, reprinted a decade after its original publication and kept in a pocket of a pack sack for easy reference as I hitchhiked around the country one summer. The book e… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Some of the Dharma

Scripturient: The Blackened Nose

There’s a famous Zen tale that I was reminded of as I was reading the media release about the Collingwood Airport this week. It somehow seemed remarkably fitting. It’s about the folly of selfishness, of thinking yours is the only way forwar… . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The Blackened Nose

Scripturient: The Slow Path to Happiness

If 15 minutes of stillness change the 23 hours and 45 minutes left in your day, including your sleep and your human relations, it seems to be worthwhile. So said Matthieu Ricard, a Buddhist monk who has spent the last 45 years in the Himalayas pursuing the goal of mindfulness. Ricard was interviewed in January, . . . → Read More: Scripturient: The Slow Path to Happiness

Scripturient: How Many Virtues?

The Greeks had but four cardinal virtues: prudence, justice, temperance, and courage (or fortitude). To this, many centuries later, the Catholic church (notably Aquinas) added three theological virtues: faith, hope, and charity (or love). These are the seven basic virtues of Western culture. But they’re not the only ones. In 410 CE, Aurelius Clemens Prudentius . . . → Read More: Scripturient: How Many Virtues?

Scripturient: Death by Bacon?

Buddha’s death considered as we approach Vesak Shakyamuni died from eating tainted pork accidentally offered to him by a well-meaning lay devotee…. that story permeates Buddhist history and mythology, and has spawned many debates both about both his death and the morality of eating animal flesh. Okay, it wasn’t necessarily bacon… This story is mentioned . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Death by Bacon?

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Master Shih Te’s Words

I see a lot of silly folks who claim their own small spine’s Sumeru, the sacred mountain that supports the universe. Piss ants, gnawing away at a noble tree, with never a doubt about their strength. They chew up a couple of Sutras, and pass themselves off as Masters. Let them hurry and repent. From . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Master Shih Te’s Words

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: A Buddhist Guide for Voters

While it was intended as a general ‘charter of free inquiry,’ the Buddhist Kalama Sutra (or sutta) contains wise words that all voters – especially local voters – should heed during the municipal election campaign. The Kalamas were a people in ancient India. Gotama visited them and stopped in a town called Kesaputta, where he . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: A Buddhist Guide for Voters

Eclectic Lip: Unity in Diversity

Polycarp of Smyrna

Former Canadian Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson, or LBP – not to be confused with U.S. President LBJ, dominant Japanese political party the LDP, or women’s wardrobe staple the LBD – once obscurely remarked that Canada needed to maintain a “unity in diversity”. (I’d’ve written “famously remarked”, but let’s be . . . → Read More: Eclectic Lip: Unity in Diversity

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Happiness & Fulfillment

There are ten methods for meditating on the world, begins one scroll in the 1,300-year-old collection of Tang-dynasty sutras from Xian, China, that can lead us to happiness and fulfillment. I realize that sounds like the opening of a New Age piffle book, but the sutras were actually discovered in a cave near a Buddhist . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Happiness & Fulfillment

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Montaigne’s words on anger

“There is no passion that so shakes the clarity of our judgment as anger,” Montaigne wrote in Book II of his Essays (Chapter 31). “It is a passion that takes pleasure in itself and flatters itself.” That strikes me a very Buddhist statement, a comment lifted from the Dhammapada, although Montaigne was a solid Catholic. . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Montaigne’s words on anger

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Fools

Even though for all his life, A fool attends upon a wise man, He no more knows wisdom Than a spoon knows the flavours of soup. The Dhammapada, Chapter 5, verse 64

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: A Compassionate Buddha?

There’s a story in Valerie Roebuck’s translation of the Dhammapada (Penguin Classics, 2010, commentary on verse 6, p 115-116) that caught my eye recently, and it made me wonder what the moral or ethical precept was buried in it. And it makes me question what it says about the supposed compassion of the Buddha and . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: A Compassionate Buddha?

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Reading the Dhammapada

One of the most inspirational, moving books in my library is the Dhammapada, a collection of sayings of the Buddha, originally from the Pali canon. I’ve had a version of the Dhammapada in my library since the late 1960s, and read it through many times. It’s good to reread it often. My first copy I . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: Reading the Dhammapada

Eclectic Lip: Putting the “X” back in Xmas

Xtians began using “Xmas” 500 years ago, since in Greek, X is the “Ch” in Christ

Around the holidays, some people (not to name names or anything) urge modern society to put the “Christ” back in Christmas. There’s much to criticize about the hollow vacuousness of consumer culture, after all. Most of us can . . . → Read More: Eclectic Lip: Putting the “X” back in Xmas

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Buddhist protestor

Of course, the very idea of a protestor kinda violates the 8-fold path a bit. Alltop is dharma. Cartoon by the suffering SMBC.

Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The Moral Compass

I have a laminated card beside me, wallet-sized so it can be carried around easily. I made it at my shop a few years ago; just a simple, two-sided business card with some text. It’s part of my personal moral compass. We all benefit from some guidance, at times, something to remind us of the . . . → Read More: Scripturient: Blog & Commentary: The Moral Compass

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: Bubble Mode

As a form of travel, giant soap bubble is suited to Buddhist monks, toddlers, and whimsical characters from children’s stories. It is not recommended for 60-year-old podiatrists with catastrophic waxy ear buildup and the inability to stand on a skein … Continue reading →

350 or bust: Take Time To Renew Your Spirit

Eclectic Lip: The Innovator’s Dilemma, Toyota edition

This car — yes, this car — has impeded Toyota’s electric efforts

My post on how The Innovator’s Dilemma explains why Toyota lags in electric vehicles — and how Kleiber’s Law explains there’s nothing for them to worry about (yet), is now up on GreenCarReports.

While the Tesla stats were cooler to have dug . . . → Read More: Eclectic Lip: The Innovator’s Dilemma, Toyota edition

350 or bust: Take Time To Renew Your Spirit

350 or bust: Take Time To Renew Your Spirit

mark a rayner | scribblings, squibs & sundry monkey joys: The Master

I still think back to those days in Japan, when I studied zazen under the guidance of Rōshi Miaki. I had been looking for something in my life, and when I stumbled upon the group of monks, quietly sitting, I … Continue reading →

A Puff of Absurdity: A Stoic Resurgence

In reading a few other blogs lately, Stoicism has come up a few times, and I’m seeing it in a few books I’ve been reading lately too.  Maybe it’ll stick this time.

In Robin Hanson’s blog discussing why middle aged people are most pessimistic, I suggested that maybe it’s a point in life . . . → Read More: A Puff of Absurdity: A Stoic Resurgence

Death By Trolley: This New Year’s, Resolve to Stop Chasing Happiness

Many wisdom traditions encourage a path or process orientation rather than a destination or product orientation to living well.

Happiness makes for a poor goal.

It’s not particularly well-defined. What is happiness? How much happiness is enough to be happy with – to not eventually be let down by?

The steps to achieving . . . → Read More: Death By Trolley: This New Year’s, Resolve to Stop Chasing Happiness

knitnut.net: I got a job!

I had the interview on Friday afternoon, and then on Saturday, when I was at Duncan’s vet’s office, I got the call offering me the job. I announced to a waiting room full of strangers “I got the job!” and they all cheered.

It’s not just any job, either – it’s a good job! . . . → Read More: knitnut.net: I got a job!