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Friday, September 14, 2007

Pleasure and Joy in Buddhism

All the delightful things of the world--sweet sounds, lovely forms, all the pleasant tastes and touches and thoughts--these are all agreed to bring happiness if they are not grasped and possessed.

But if you regard them merely as pleasures for your own use and satisfaction and do not see them as passing wonders, they will bring suffering.

-Sutta Nipata

James: Pleasure doesn't always mean that we suffer. It seems that some of us believe that one must live an austere and bland life in order to avoid suffering and delusion. Yet, even if we rid ourselves of all pleasure we ironically still suffer. That is because separating ourselves from all the joys of life is an extreme that the Buddha taught us to avoid. The Buddha tried this path and yet some of us seem to not believe him that it doesn't realize Buddhanature.

Desire and pleasure are not bad but rather the clinging to such things is where the problem arises.

I am leary of Buddhists and especially Buddhist teachers who take themselves too seriously and lack a sense of humor. I find laughter to be an integral part of the Dharma because life can become taxing and overwhelming at times and laughter is a great way to relieve tension, stress and worry. It is a very physical form of letting go. So take your path seriously but don't forget to smile, have a feast now and then, make funny faces and laugh. In fact, laugh a lot.

Speaking of laughter, Why can't a Buddha vaccuum under a sofa? Because they have no attachments.

One more:

A student went to his meditation teacher and said, "My meditation is horrible! I feel so distracted, or my legs ache, or I'm constantly falling asleep. It's just horrible!"

"It will pass," the teacher said matter-of-factly. A week later, the student came back to his teacher. "My meditation is wonderful! I feel so aware, so peaceful, so alive! It's just wonderful!"

"It will pass," the teacher replied matter-of-factly.

James: Have some fun and enjoy life as it passes by and realize that joys and pleasures are like beautiful sunsets. There are meant to be enjoyed but not possessed.

~Peace to all beings~

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Tim said...

Q: What is a Buddhists favorite movie?
A: The one he/she is watching.

Almost as good as;

Q: Why did Mickey Mouse hate his father.
A: Because his father was a rat!

abacus said...

good one Tim :-)

Why did Tom not like Tim ?
Because he was not Tom

abacus said...

one day gautama buddha decides to pay a visit to his wife and son ... the visit is now getting over and Gautama is ready to leave... his wife Yashodha nudges her son towards Gautama as if saying 'stay for your son or take him along, do not deny Rahul his heritage, your legacy'

Gautama turns around and lowers his begging bowl towards his son -

Greenwoman said...

"Desire and pleasure are not bad but rather the clinging to such things is where the problem arises."

Best line in the post....and the thing I've been struggling with the most for a long time now...Sangha works....((hugs))

They call him James Ure said...


I like the first one best.


What a powerful story with Buddha giving him his begging bowl.


Yes, it is a big one that many of us struggle with, it not all of us. I certainly do.

FRITZ said...

I have just found your blog, and am thrilled.

Okay, I know. it's not 'your' blog, because you are not really you, just a mere representation of the Other,but 'you' know what I mean.

Am educating myself about Buddhism--thinking it is very much something to take seriously.

or not?

Wade M said...

Hi James, Great post, thank you as always.



They call him James Ure said...


Welcome, welcome!! I am happy that I am able to bring the peace of the Dhrama to as many people as possible.

If you feel the path of Buddhism calling then by all means head it's call. It has literally changed my life and helped me be more peaceful and less angry.

I bow to the Buddha within you.


I bow in return to you dear friend and you're very welcome. I'm happy that the post was beneficial to you.

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