Mental non-virtues

53 The Foundation of Buddhist Practice

Part of an ongoing series of teachings (retreat and Friday) based on the book The Foundation of Buddhist Practice, second volume in “The Library of Wisdom and Compassion” series by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Venerable Thubten Chodron.

  • Covetousness, malice, wrong views
  • Three non-virtues associated with attachment, anger, confusion
  • Wrong view, denying things that exist
  • Harmful effects of ten non-virtues
  • Four branches, for a destructive action to be complete
  • Basis, attitude, performance, completion
  • Attitude comprises of correct discernment, affliction, motivation
  • Explanation of the four branches for physical destructive actions
  • Discussion on contemporary issues such as abortion, euthanasia

The Foundation of Buddhist Practice 53: Mental Non-virtues (download)

Contemplation points

  1. Reflect: How might you explain to a colleague that you don’t support killing of any kind as a result of your conviction in karmic cause and effect?
  2. Bring to mind a situation where you took something from a family member, friend, or your company that had not been freely given. Work through the four branches for your action(s) if they were present.
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.