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Chapter 1: Verses 49-56

Chapter 1: Verses 49-56

Chapter 1 addresses what to abandon and what to practice to attain upper rebirth and highest good. Part of a series of talks on Nagarjuna’s Precious Garland of Advice for a King.

  • Mutual dependence and causal dependence
  • Refuting the extreme of nihilism or nonexistence and refuting the extreme of absolutism or inherent existence
  • The middle way view is that things do exist conventionally but don’t exist inherently
  • The Prasangika refutation of the Svantantrika position that things conventionally exist inherently
  • Things appear to have their own essence but if they did then when we look closer using analysis we should find them
  • The aggregates are not the person and the aggregates themselves are not inherently existent
  • Liberation from cyclic existence is not possible without abandoning the two extremes—that things are totally nonexistent or that things are inherently existent
  • We needlessly suffer because we run after things that we think are real, inherently existent, but they are not

Precious Garland 17: Verses 49-56 (download)

Venerable Thubten Chodron

Venerable Chodron emphasizes the practical application of Buddha’s teachings in our daily lives and is especially skilled at explaining them in ways easily understood and practiced by Westerners. She is well known for her warm, humorous, and lucid teachings. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in 1977 by Kyabje Ling Rinpoche in Dharamsala, India, and in 1986 she received bhikshuni (full) ordination in Taiwan. Read her full bio.