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The Buddha’s life and teaching

A talk given during Sravasti Abbey's annual Exploring Monastic Life program in 2015.

  • The purpose of bowing and recitations before teachings
  • The purpose of the mandala offering
  • The life story of the Buddha and how it relates to us
    • How he grew up in line with his parents’ and society’s wishes
    • Sneaking out of the palace and seeing the four messengers
    • Giving up palace life to pursue a spiritual path
    • How the three higher knowledges map onto the three principal aspects of the path
    • Attaining full awakening
    • Teaching the first five disciples
    • Establishing the nuns’ order

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.