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Sangharakshita Launches The Essential Sangharakshita and Living Ethically

by Sangharakshita (2009)

In a recent interview Sangharakshita spoke of his threefold legacy of Dharma teachings, practices and institutions. In this talk he suggests two additions, a material legacy consisting of Buddha statues and thangkas and a literary legacy consisting of his many written works. Added to this literary legacy we now have The Essential Sangharakshita, compiled by Vidyadevi.

At different times Bhante has chosen to emphasise different parts of the Buddhist tradition and more recently he has stresses the importance of reading and being acquainted with the Pali scriptures.

Over the sixty years of his teaching career there have been a few minor adjustments in his presentation of the Dharma. He gives the example of the three yanas. Within Tibetan traditions the three yanas are seen as being progressive but Bhante has come to see them as all operating on the same level, albeit from different perspectives. He no longer sees them as being successive.

As well as drawing from his writings and seminars on the Dharma, Vidyadevi has also included a few of Bhante's poems in The Essential Sangharakshita. Bhante recites his poem 'Meditation' and gives a short discourse on it's meaning.

He then goes on to speak of Nagarjuna and his work 'The Precious Garland'. Bhante's seminar on this work is the source of 'Living Ethically', compiled and edited by Vidyadevi. The main theme is the ten precepts, and various aspects of ethics, for example, gratitude and friendship. He talks about the term sila, suggesting that a fitting translation would be 'ethics and manners'.