A series of talks and meditations I began at the lunar new year (Yang Earth Dog), on Śivaratri, that look at practice as understood by the visionary Buddhist movement known as the Mahāyāna, or “Great Vehicle.” I think it rambled a bit to start, especially the one on whether our practice is progressing, which almost veered into “Is American Buddhism really screwing up?” I hope I saved the flotilla from that particular difficult vortex, but it’s only a vortex because it might be partly true, of course.
The series settles down into exploration of some important Mahāyāna concepts like altruism, bodhicitta, and bodhisattva practice: the strange mystery of how you can vow to save all beings while simultaneously cultivating the perception that there are no beings to be saved. I make a pass at answering that ancient hard problem at the end of the Feb 27 talk.
Then we spend some time looking at the core dynamic of self and other, relationship, social action, and individual healing. Continuing, we’ll look at Emptiness, of course, the heart of the Mahāyāna vision, and of the tantric Buddhisms that grew from it.