Author: Mark Nunberg

Sutta Study Discussion Theme 1-7-17

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 20, Concentration/Samadhi To be read out loud: 20.1 From beginning on p. 238 until end of first full paragraph on

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 12-3-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 19, Tranquility & Insight To be read out loud: Section 19.1; First paragraph page 230 through second full paragraph page

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 11-5-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 18, Insight/Vipassana To be read out loud: Second full paragraph page 208 through the third full paragraph page 209 Third

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 10­-1-­16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought­World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo Chapter 17, Wise Attention: Yoniso Manasikara To be read out loud: 17.3 First paragraph on p. 198 through second full paragraph on p. 199 17.4 From the beginning of the section on p. 202 through end of second paragraph on p. 2014 Discussion Theme: Venerable Analayo states that Yoniso Manasikara (wise attention) has varied meanings that include a wise, appropriate, thorough and penetrative attention allowing the mind to go beyond the surface appearances into the underlying nature of any phenomena. Even beginning levels of mindfulness reveals that it really matters what and how we pay attention, with unwise attention we are very likely to be reinforcing the particular cycles of suffering that our mind is conditioned to spin through. Whereas wise attention can take care of the mind and path from the most mundane decision making about how to care for the body all the way to the very refined attention given to how the factors of awakening can come into balance. Wise attention is wholesome source of joy and delight in life. This month, we can begin by assessing our confidence in the transforming power of wise attention. This confidence initially arises from hearing and reflecting on the Buddha’s teachings that point to the liberation of the heart. Venerable Analayo states, “To be able to rouse such inspiration requires overcoming three adverse conditions: forgetfulness, thoughtlessness and confusion (AN V 145)”. As practitioners we are learning to renew our confidence and inspiration through our connection with this path ­ supported by our connection to community, our practice, or through our ongoing study. We then direct any energy of inspiration in the service of wise attention. On page 201, Venerable Analayo reviews from the Buddha’s teachings how wise attention could be directed. We can use wise attention to understand: the four noble truths, the value of sense restraint, the proper use of the requisites for life, the value of patient endurance of the vicissitudes of life, how to avoid danger, how to abandon unwholesome states, and finally how to develop the factors of awakening. This month let’s choose one or more of these studies to confirm the great value of wise attention in releasing the mind from the oppressiveness of its conditioned habits.

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 10­-1-­16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-­World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo,  Chapter 17, Wise Attention: Yoniso Manasikara To be read out loud: 17.3 First paragraph on p. 198 through second full paragraph

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 9­-3­-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought­World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo Chapter 16, Knowledge and Vision according to Reality Sections to be read out loud: Second full paragraph p. 185 through second full paragraph p. 186 Second full paragraph p. 187 through second full paragraph p. 188 1st full paragraph p. 189 through 1st full paragraph p. 190 Discussion Theme: This month we are asked to unpack the experience of insight ­ knowledge and vision according to reality. Although an intellectual understanding of what the Buddha taught is helpful, the teachings and practices are pointing to a deepening illumination of the underlying dynamic, non­conceptual and impersonal nature of experiencing (‘Experiencing’, although more awkward sounding, is perhaps a better word than the more static word ‘experience’.) This awakening arises because of a direct and continuous non­conceptual knowing of both the objects and attitudes that are arising and passing. Overtime, wise mindful awareness transforms the mind’s relationship to and dependence on all mental constructions. With practice, the mind views thoughts as natural phenomena, unworthy of attachment or enchantment. Concepts and ideas are seen as limited ­ not a cause for lasting happiness. Venerable Analayo gives examples from the Buddha’s teachings of how each insight or opening comes with greater demands to continue this process of being aware to what has yet to be seen clearly enough. In words, this process of awakening is described by the Buddha in terms of the twelve insights found in the four noble truths teaching, or a deepening of insight into the three characteristics. But actually this process of awakening is a coming to know oneself, as it actually is. Venerable Analayo explains this on pages 189­190. Our task is to abandon all ideas of self (mundane through sublime) in favor of what wise continuous attention reveals as the truth. Let’s commit to this noble work, let’s remember that we can always begin again.

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 8-6-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 15, Equanimity/Upekkha Sections to be read outloud: 15.2 Top of page 167 through the third paragraph on p. 169 15.3

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 7-2-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 14, Happiness/Sukha Sections to be read outloud: 14.2 Beginning at bottom of p. 156 (To train the mind requires….) until

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 7-2-16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought-World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 14, Happiness/Sukha Sections to be read outloud: 14.2 Beginning at bottom of p. 156 (To train the mind requires….) until

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Sutta Study Discussion Theme 6­-4-­16

From Craving to Liberation, From Grasping to Emptiness: Excursions into the Thought­ World of the Pali Discourses by Bhikkhu Analayo, Chapter 13, Contemplating Vedana Sections to be read outloud: 13.1 Read whole section 13.2 Third & last two paragraphs 13.4

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