Author: Vishvapani

The Historical Buddha and the Eternal Buddha

On Buddha Day Buddhists ask what the Buddha means today, so long after his death.  Is he an historical figure or an eternal principle? Thought for the Day 21.6. 2016 hen Gautama, the man history knows as The Buddha, died two-and-a-half thousand years ago his followers faced a question. Was he really dead and gone – this person who had transformed their lives and seemed to embody a reality so much greater than ordinary existence? They knew that his influence lived on in his teaching; but was there some other sense in which he continue to exist? A similar question...

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Buddhism: An Introduction – a Review

Buddhism: An Introduction by Alexander Wynne, I.B. Taurus, London 2015 Alexander Wynne’s excellent book is nothing like most ‘introductions’ to Buddhism. There’s no blow by blow explanation of the Eightfold Path or other basic doctrines. As Wynne points out, these are easily available on the Internet. It also isn’t an introduction to the practice of Buddhism, though Wynne is clearly sympathetic to the practitioner’s perspective. It’s really an introduction to Buddhist history with a strong focus on Wynne’s framework for interpreting how Buddhism developed. An academic text then, but freshly written; and an introduction to some of the recent scholarly...

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Mindfulness & Sleep Problems

Most approaches to sleep problems involve drugs and various techniques, but sleep is a natural process. The danger in trying really hard to get to sleep, is that you make it less likely to happen. And if you depend on techniques sleep can become less and less natural – something that comes of its own accord without trying. Mindfulness opens up a different approach. Here are some suggestions for how it can help your sleeping.    Acceptance: when getting to sleep feels like a struggle, you need to stop fighting. When we worry about not sleeping and out thoughts go...

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