Lesson One Contemplations

The prompts below offer an opportunity to self-reflect and integrate the teachings in this lesson into your lived experience. For guidance, see How to Work with the Contemplations.

 

  • Buddhists circumambulate sacred sites to remind them of what is central in life. What is central in your life? What do your thoughts, emotions, and activities pivot around?
  • How does your sense of self arise? As you go through your day, notice when you have a strong sense of “me.”
  • Contemplate how beings in the six realms are caught in the deathly cycle of samsara. Notice the effect of this contemplation in your own heart and mind.
  • Throughout your day, notice the qualities of your sense perceptions (colors, sounds, etc.). Does any quality of judgment or commentary arise? Do you notice a subtle quality of struggle?
  • What is an example from your own experience of how a small flicker of thought or emotion can escalate into a full-fledged realm?