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Lojong 1.a.) First, learn the preliminaries (1 of 4 parts)

1. Preliminaries (1a - d)

1) First, learn the preliminaries. (a. Appreciate life & hearing the Buddhadharma, b. Know the reality of death, c. Accept Karma, d. Accept the inevitability of pain)

This is the first of four admonitions defining the preliminaries:

a. Appreciate Life & hearing the Buddhadarma

Anyone with access to this website has to admit he or she has many affordances and benefits from living in the modern world. Those of us fortunate enough to be reading this live like gods, or at least like royalty. In the Practical Dharma it is suggested that we appreciate the blessings we have been given, rather than engage in ostentatious renunciations that push burdens on others. ("#22 Transform your desires, & remain who you are. Avoid being ostentatious in the "realization" of the dharma", but this is covered in another saying.)

In a practical matter for example, I don't pretend I can be separate from the reality of the modern food chain. Instead, before I partake of the bounty that comes to me beyond what I deserve, I honor the sacrifices of the many who made it possible for me. In the tradition of Native America, I thank the animals (and all the others) for their give away.

And in the same way I am grateful for the many other opportunities I have been given such as hearing the teachings of all the philosophers, scientists, spiritual leaders, psychologists, and others who paved the way for me (and you) to enjoy our understanding of how the world works.  I am especially grateful for the opportunity to hear the Buddhadharma, which can provide release from suffering (NOT relief from pain).

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  • Response
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