Christopher Titmuss Dharma Blog

A Buddhist Perspective

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Books, Photos and Music

Alison Wright. The Compassionate Photographer. 1961 – 23 March 2022. An Obituary.

One of the most adventurous and fearless women in the global Sangha, Alison Wright, aged 61, a National Geographic photographer, died last month (23 March 2022) while scuba diving on Sao Miguel island, one of the Portuguese Azores Islands. Continue reading 



A Zoom Talk on Thursday 7 April 2022 at 19.00 – 20.30 Thai time. (14.00 – 15.30 CET) on the new book of Ajahn Buddhadasa of Thailand.

Ajahn Buddhadasa  has a new book out Seeing with the Eye of Dhamma.

Click on Photo.

If you love the Buddha-Dharma and know the value of meditation/reflection, then do secure a copy of the Seeing with the Eye of Dhamma. This new book covers the comprehensive teachings of Ajahn Buddhadasa of Wat Suanmoke (Monastery of the Garden of Liberation) outside Chai Ya in southern Thailand.

Translated by Dhammavidu and Santikaro, you can hear the Ajahn’s voice in the text as book consists of a translation of a selection of his public talks. The book addresses the core teachings of the Buddha in a language for the 21st century – a radical, insightful teaching with a depth respecting the human potential for profound realisations.

Zoom Talk Info. No registration required

Link to the information: https://web.facebook.com/suanmokkh.bkk
I will speak about some of the important features of the book along with anecdotes of my time with the Ajahn during my years as a Buddhist monk in Thailand.
Do lend an ear.
19.00 – 20.30 Thai time (14.00 -15.30 CET). Thursday 7 April 2022
JOIN ZOOM MEETING
https://bit.ly/3JDZsdW
Meeting ID: 487 652 6053
Passcode: 12345

The Buddha inspired a Buddhist tradition of more than 2000 years. The tradition includes responses to the Dhamma from illustrious teachers, including Buddhaghosa, Nagarjuna and Dogan. Ajahn Buddhadasa (1907 – 1993) stands in the same company as these masters.

Probably the most outspoken Thai teacher of the 20th century, Ajahn Buddhadasa called upon a radical change in priorities to make Buddhism fit for the 20th and 21st century. He addressed governments, religious leaders, educators, secular culture and spiritual seekers offering a diverse range of teachings.

He endorsed meditation, reflection, inquiry, research and public discussion to develop ethics and wisdom in daily life. His teachings regularly irritated conservative and liberal wings of the Buddha-Dharma with his determination to forge a middle way requiring boldness, realisations and vision. He does not fit into any kind of box.

Seeing with the Eye of Dhamma (Pali spelling. Sanskrit spelling: Dharma) embraces the expanse of his teachings, rich with insights, suitable for daily life. Readers will find in the pages a body of teachings to open the mind to the depth of the human experience. The book offers teachings/reflections on cultivation of the mind, inquiry into the self/ego, superstitious beliefs and the importance of the observation of life.

You will find explanations of the core Buddha’s teachings on mental suffering, conditionality, dependent arising, emptiness of self, the elements, mental concoctions, emptiness, the goal and Nirvana. As with the Buddha, the Ajahn steers away from identification with the religious features of Buddhism and its secular features, such as reliance on mindfulness. He has a truly expansive view of liberating insights.

There is a wealth of Buddhist academic books, Buddhist self-help books and books on specific Buddhist themes. Readers will benefit through contact with a wide range of important points, reflecting on them and applying into daily life. Grounded in direct experience, his teachings contain countless jewels in this straightforward text backed up with the deep teachings of the Buddha.

Ajahn Buddhadasa spent more than 60 years in the forest in southern Thailand engaged in meditations, reflections, study of the words of the Buddha, living close to the elements and teaching. He revealed an exceptional range of realisations throughout his life.

Translated by Dhammavidu and Santikaro, the text captures in English the teachings of Buddhadasa often given in a clearing under the trees to monks, nuns and householders.

Note to Readers: Ajahn means Teacher. Buddhadasa means Servant of the Buddha. Dhamma is the Pali (language of the Buddha) for the Sanskrit word Dharma – meaning teachings/practices and the nature of things.

A profound book provides a mid-opening reading experience. Seeing with the Eye of Dhamma falls into this category.

Seeing with the Eye of Dhamma
Ajahn Buddhadasa
translated by Bhikkhu Dhammavidu and Santikaro
Published 2022 by Shambala Inc, USA.
310 pages.
$22.95

Christopher Titmuss, a senior Dharma teacher in the West, offers retreats, facilitates pilgrimages and gives Zoom teachings worldwide. His teachings focus on insight meditation (vipassana), the expansive heart and enquiry into emptiness and liberation. Poet, blogger and social critic, he is the author of numerous books including Light on Enlightenment, The Political Buddha and Poems from the Edge of Time. Christopher is a former Buddhist monk in Thailand and India. His primary teachers were Ajahn Buddhadasa at Wat Suanmoke and Ajahn Dhammadharo at Wat Chai Na, Nakornsridhammaraj, Thailand. He lives in Totnes, Devon, England.

 



A Deep Teaching in the Song ‘Ruby Tuesday’ by the Rolling Stones

While lifting a modest number of kilos through the air in the gym, I listened to Spotify through my earphones.

An old favourite rock song came on – Ruby Tuesday by the Rolling Stones. Composed in 1966 in Los Angeles by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, the song conveys a depth of lyrics, which caught my attention. Continue reading 



Was Darius Guppy born with a silver spoon in his mouth? ROLL THE DICE. A True Saga of Love, Money and Betrayal. A book review. Lessons to learn.

Handsome and talented, Darius Guppy was born with a silver spoon in his mouth – meaning he came from a very wealthy family in the upper echelons of influential British society. He made a spectacular nosedive into a five-year prison sentence owing to his rampant desire to accumulate personal wealth. Continue reading 



AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE. The Art of Embodied Awareness. By Martin Aylward. A Book Review.

I found AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE a refreshing book to read. Readable, practical, insightful with a wise priority – to develop and realise an embodied freedom.

The book captures the style of teaching of Martin through consistent reference to the immediacy of experience while pointing to a freedom beyond the limits of the immediate experience. AWAKE WHERE YOU ARE communicates a depth of wisdom. Continue reading 




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