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Sweeping Up Wood Chips

If one were to visit my home in the wintertime, they'd see wood chips all over the house.  They end up on the floor, and on the chairs, and I've even found them in my bedroom.   I use the wood chips in my chicken coop to provide nesting material and warmth to the birds.   They're effective, but the downside is the wood chips stick to my pants when I enter the coop to collect eggs and feed my feathered friends. Sometimes they even get into my boots.  And when I come into the house after doing chores, the wood chips come with me.  I've tried everything imaginable to keep this from happening.  I take my work boots off before entering the house.  I brush off my pants as best I can when chores are done. But it can't be helped.  The wood chips follow me like flies follow poop.  As far as problems go, this is a minor one; nothing that can't be solved with a broom and dustpan.  But it gives me a bit of perspective on life and Buddhist practice. We can think of the pract
Recent posts

Create Pockets of Contentment (Dharma Talk)

I discuss Buddhist pure lands and the challenge of facing all of the world's suffering. Using the pure land teaching I show how we can create small sanctuaries that save ourselves and others from harm.                                                                                                                                                                            If you enjoyed this Dharma talk, you'll love my books!

Learning to Walk Alone

I've been alone my entire life.  I don't mean that literally, of course.  I have a large family, a girlfriend, and a job that requires me to speak with people on a near-constant basis.   When I was younger, I served in the Marine Corps. where I routinely shared a squad bay with 60 other men.  And when I worked as a farmer's apprentice, I shared a bunkhouse with 5 other people. So, it's rare that my aloneness has been of a physical kind.  Rather, it is in the mental and spiritual realms that isolation has been my only friend. For a time, this bothered me.  I thought I was defective because I didn't care about the sports teams, the TV shows, and the popular culture of the people around me.   I tried to fake it.   I watched football highlights on the weekend, so I had something to chat about with coworkers on Monday.  I studied mannequins in storefront windows, so I could learn to dress fashionably.  And I researched the bands I heard on Top 40 radio stations, so I cou

Goodness is It's Own Reward (Dharma Talk)

I discuss the "paradigm of meritocracy, and how it can set up wrong expectations when we go about our daily lives.  I also discuss the Buddhist practice of Intoku ; explaining how it can help motivate us toward Right Action when there is no clear benefit to ourselves or others. If you enjoyed this Dharma talk, you'll love my books!

Only Two Things Matter in Life (Dharma Talk)

I explore the age-old question, "How Should I Spend My Time?" and discuss the two most important items on everyone's to-do list.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                If you enjoyed this Dharma talk, you'll love my books!

Will You Choose Enlightenment (Dharma Talk)

In this Dharma talk, I discuss Bodhi Day celebrations and the story of Buddha's enlightenment.  More specifically, I discuss the primary lesson we should take from his journey to liberation, and how it can influence our own practice.                                                                                                                     If you enjoyed this Dharma talk, you'll love my books!

Society is a Shared Hallucination (Dharma Talk)

In this Dharma talk, I discuss a teaching from Vasubandhu's "Treatise on the Three Natures".  I use his description of reality to explain how societies are created, and the circumstances under which we should opt-out of societal norms.                                                                                                                                         If you enjoyed this Dharma talk, you'll love my books!