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Afflictions and karma, their seeds and latencies

34 Samsara, Nirvana, and Buddha Nature

Part of an ongoing series of teachings (retreat and Friday) based on the book Samsara, Nirvana, and Buddha Nature, the third volume in The Library of Wisdom and Compassion series by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Venerable Thubten Chodron.

  • Afflictions and karma
  • Innate afflictions and acquired afflictions
  • When acquired and innate afflictions are eliminated
  • Subtle and coarse afflictions
  • Seed and non-seed latencies
  • Seeds of afflictions as the basis for the continuity of afflictions
  • Non-seed latencies are cognitive obscurations
  • Latent and manifest afflictions

Samsara, Nirvana, and Buddha Nature 34: Afflictions and Karma, Their Seeds and Latencies (download)

Contemplation points

  1. What is the difference between innate and acquired afflictions? Make examples in your life of acquired afflictions – certain biases, prejudices, fears, resentments, or jealousies – that you learned from faulty philosophies or from listening to others who have those ideas. Consider the many reasons why those beliefs are false. Try to view those people or places from a different perspective so that your mind can be clearer and free from anxiety, bias, and incorrect conceptions.
  2. What is the difference between a seed latency and a non-seed latency? Go through the four possible permutations?
  3. What connects the prior and later instances of afflictions in the mind?
  4. What habitual tendencies are the strongest for you? With what afflictions are they associated?
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.