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Nov 15
Friday

Good Society Part II: Feeling the Goodness

Filed under Community Articles, Dharma Teachings

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

The second part of a two-part series by Shastri Russell Rodgers. For part one, click here.

In Part I of this two-part essay, we looked at the genetics behind the universal human impulse to create good society. The logic was this: everywhere there are humans, we form society. Therefore, it must be in our genes. The first part of this essay was basically a book review of Blueprint: The Evolutionary Origins of a Good Society, by Nicholas Christakis, a Yale professor.

Dr. Christakis proposes that encoded in our genes is a “social suite” that is common to all societies that are able to survive the test of time and circumstance. This “suite” includes : good leadership (and respect for that leadership), cooperation, learning from each other, befriending others, and valuing each person’s individuality. The genes encode possibilities: we make conscious choices as to whether to take advantage of these possibilities.

Buddhist practices that focus on kindness help to bring it to conscious awareness. Often, kindness practices focus on the heart. Sometimes, in visualization practices, there is a radiating sun, moon or seed syllable placed there. Here, radiation is a metaphor for kindness, and the visualization gives the mind something to focus on. The “Sadhana of Kindness” which is being practiced in many Shambhala Centres, has this basic structure. The post-meditation experience of this sadhana inspired me to write this essay. Continue…

Entries filed under Dharma Teachings


Peace is in the Heart

Peace is in the Heart – HIGHLIGHT

A Harvest of Peace video message from Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche Click here to see the video, or read on for a transcript of the talk. Click here for a French-language translation. continue
Posted September 25, 2016 by CGH
The Four Dharmas of Gampopa

The Four Dharmas of Gampopa – HIGHLIGHT

Having looked at the Shambhala Dedication of Merit earlier this week, our attention now turns to a traditional opening chant by Russell Rodgers Gampopa Grant your blessings so that my mind may be one with the dharma. Grant your blessings so that dharma may progress along the path. Grant your blessings ... continue
Posted September 15, 2016 by CGH
The Shambhala Dedication of Merit

The Shambhala Dedication of Merit – HIGHLIGHT

Delving into the context and deeper meaning of this familiar dedication chant by Russell Rodgers By the confidence of the golden sun of the great east, May the lotus garden of the Rigden’s wisdom bloom. May the dark ignorance of sentient beings be dispelled, May all beings enjoy profound brilliant glory. In ... continue
Posted September 13, 2016 by CGH
Synchronizing Body and Mind

Synchronizing Body and Mind – HIGHLIGHT

by Shastri Kim Kelso When we meditate we are practicing synchronizing mind and body.  We are giving ourselves a chance to collect ourselves.   Often our body is ahead of our mind or our mind is ahead of the body, or our body is sitting in the room ... continue
Posted September 5, 2016 by CGH
Aspiration of Shambhala

Aspiration of Shambhala – HIGHLIGHT

Our commentator on the Shambhala chants turns his attention to the aspiration by Russell Rodgers In the midst of our river of habitual thoughts, we tend to forget what is most important to us. Aspiration chants are reminders. If we consciously aspire to something, it’s more likely to ... continue
Posted August 26, 2016 by CGH
Longevity Supplication

Longevity Supplication – HIGHLIGHT

In our ongoing series on the Shambhala chants, we consider a supplication for the longevity of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche by Russell Rodgers As with other longevity chants, this one is all about the power of devotion. For genuine gurus, it is the devotion of their students that prolongs ... continue
Posted August 24, 2016 by CGH
The Shambhala Protector Chant

The Shambhala Protector Chant – HIGHLIGHT

In our continuing series on the Shambhala chants, we take a look at protectors manifesting as coincidence. by Russell Rodgers A constant stream of coincidence shapes our lives. You get up in the morning. It’s raining and that always makes you depressed. There’ s a traffic jam on the ... continue
Posted August 22, 2016 by CGH
The Protector Ritual

The Protector Ritual – HIGHLIGHT

A long-time student ruminates on the practice of protector chants in Shambhala ritual by Russell Rodgers The protector chants have been causing controversy at centres since Trungpa Rinpoche first asked us to start doing them over thirty years ago. Periodically, members argue over whether or not it is ... continue
Posted August 18, 2016 by CGH
Supplicating the Shambhala Lineage

Supplicating the Shambhala Lineage – HIGHLIGHT

An explication of the chant known as the Supplication to the Shambhala Lineage by Russell Rodgers In this chant, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche acknowledges the sources of the Shambhala Lineage. There were four main lineages in Tibet: the Gelugpa (the Dalai Lama’s lineage), the Sakya, the Kagyu and the ... continue
Posted August 16, 2016 by CGH
Everyday Mindfulness

Everyday Mindfulness – HIGHLIGHT

Ten practices for developing mindfulness in the midst of our everyday activities by Jennifer Wang Mindfulness and meditation go together like muscles and strength-training. Mindfulness is an attribute we exercise during meditation, and meditation is a practice (I believe the best practice) to cultivate mindfulness. However the rubber ... continue
Posted June 27, 2016 by CGH
Investigation of the Dedication

Investigation of the Dedication – HIGHLIGHT

Taking a closer look at one of our most familiar chants, the Shambhala Dedication of Merit By Russell Rodgers Mural depicting one of the Rigden Kings By the confidence of the golden sun of the great east, May the lotus garden of the Rigden’s wisdom bloom. May the dark ignorance of ... continue
Posted February 28, 2016 by CGH
Think About It; Beliefs Matter

Think About It; Beliefs Matter – HIGHLIGHT

A reflection on how our beliefs influence our behavior, our communities, and our ability to live in ways that reflect basic goodness. by Shastri Christine Heming Recently, as I was preparing to teach about the power of kindness, I found myself re-reading many of my most revered books, ... continue
Posted February 26, 2016 by CGH
Sakyong Gives Talk at Gongter

Sakyong Gives Talk at Gongter – HIGHLIGHT

Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche Addresses Western Students at the Gongter Near the end of the Gongter, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche gave an evening talk to the Westerners and English-speaking Tibetans attending the empowerments. About two hundred people attended the event, which was followed by a blessing line where everyone ... continue
Posted November 16, 2015 by CGH
Taking Refuge

Taking Refuge – HIGHLIGHT

Dharma Teaching by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche The Tibetan word for refuge is chup, “to be protected by.” Every day we wake up and tacitly take refuge in something that we think will offer us security and protection. Most of the time we put our poker chip on the ... continue
Posted October 28, 2015 by Dan
Meditation and the Truth of Suffering

Meditation and the Truth of Suffering – HIGHLIGHT

Dharma Teaching by Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche The path of meditation isn’t necessarily about becoming a Buddhist. It’s about awakening to who we already are: buddha—“awakened one” in Sanskrit. Through the practice of meditation, the Buddha overcame bewilderment and suffering and awoke to the truth of reality, which is ... continue
Posted September 14, 2015 by Dan

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