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Rambles Around the Yogachara: Talk 2

by Subhuti

This is the second in a brilliant four-part series by Subhuti on the Yogachara school of Buddhist philosophy, which provides a comprehensive psychological overview of the workings of 'consciousness'. In this instalment, we anatomize the whole process of 'selfing' - what we do and why when we are building our sense of being at the centre of things. At times uncomfortable, always fascinating - the big questions are all here, and they're not going away!

Please note, theses 'rambles' were given without notes and may contain quotational misrememberings and inevitable slips of the tongue!

Talk given at London Buddhist Centre, 2003

This talk is part of the series Rambles Around the Yogachara.

Tracks (click play to listen)

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1. Introduction - relaxing into immediate experience (led practice period) (11:13) 
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2. How does our sense of things arise? Atman (self) and dharmas (objects of experience) (5:06) 
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3. The alaya (root consciousness); vipaka vijnana - the distinction between karma and vipaka; alaya as a store; sarvabijaka - seeds of past action (12:01) 
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4. More on the alaya - questions and answers; experience, memory, time (10:02) 
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5. Absolute and relative alaya; practice versus metaphysics, explanation versus experience; a model of how consciousness works; Yogachara and the Heart Sutra (12:14) 
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6. Two dimensions of the alaya - internal and external, both part of experience; four aspects of experience - contact, feeling, interpretation, volition (9:06) 
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7. Practices for working with all this - mindfulness; influences that help re-structure consciousness; affinity and karma (10:09) 
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8. Purification; the manas (mind) and its relation to the alaya and to Reality; subjective versus objective in grasping; changing mind, changing actions (8:06) 
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9. The manas (mind) - the four atma kleshas (mental afflictions); ignorance, view, pride, attachment; cognitive and affective (7:07) 
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10. The Yogachara view of the kleshas - not morally wrong in themselves; ethical behaviour in relation to the kleshas; loving yourself - the metta bhavana and the kleshas (4:43) 
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11. Levels of ego identity - intrinsic (sahati) and acquired (4:17) 


Total running time: 1:34:04

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