dependent origination

How To Change Your Mind

by Peter Carlson on March 10, 2017

This evening’s talk  focused on the core teaching of Buddhism called “paticca samuppada” (pah-tee-chah sah-moo-pah-dah), traditionally interpreted as “dependent origination”.  Peter offered an alternative translation, “contingent provisional emergence” with explanation regarding the increased usefulness of this understanding.  It points out that the opportunity to “change your mind” occurs when the awakening factor of investigation of mental phenomena, combined with Right Effort, allows previously conditioned, reactive responses to be altered by inner awareness of feeling, that is, impulsive emotional or habitual reactions to not mature into internally conflicted self-state organizations.  This was accompanied by a graphic illustrating the self-reinforcing links of mental conditioning functions, with mindfulness of feelings as a key point of focus.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Contingent Provisional Emergence

Also posted here is a recorded guided meditation to foster increased capacity to investigate the sensations of breathing more persistently in greater detail.  It is entitled “Swimming In The Stream Of Dharma”.

Deerhaven 2016 Fifth Night Talk

by Peter Carlson on December 26, 2016

This talk fosters understanding a key concept of the Buddhist process of awakening, paticca samuppadha, typically translated as dependent origination.  Peter develops a different understanding of this concept, contingent provisional emergence.  This view is intended to emphasize the non-linear aspects of what conditions each moment of awareness, in the hope this will clarify the concept and make it more applicable to intensive retreat practices.  The ability to be aware in a non attached way to the direct experience of feelings as just internal impulses either toward or away from emerging self-state organizations is essential for vipassana practice to provide liberation from distress and confusion.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk:  Contingent Provisional Emergence

Cultivating Wholesome Emergent Self States

by Peter Carlson on September 1, 2016

This talk follows on the preceding exploration of paticca sammupada, traditionally translated as dependent origination, a foundational concept of Buddhist liberation practices.  During the previous talk, the organization of the 12 elements of the process of “selfing” was described, using non-linear terms.  This talk reviewed the 12 elements, emphasizing how clear awareness of the transition from unprocessed sensory data through the mental conditioners to the misperception of an enduring, separate self can be resolved.  The resolution emerges through mindful, non-reactive awareness of feelings and perceptions as just phenomena, not constituting an enduring self.  During the discussion period, two levels of awakening were described: personal/psychological, and ultimate/spiritual.

Those interested in further study of this talk should go to the prior talk entitled “How Selfing Operates August 24 2016 and download the two .doc files on paticca sammupada and cetasikas.

Next week’s discussion will begin to elaborate understanding regarding the cetasikas, the categories withing which personal karmic potential are organized, with an emphasis on how this understanding can support the process of awakening.

How Selfing Operates

by Peter Carlson on August 25, 2016

This talk adds to the discussion from last week, which focused on the Five Aggregates With Clinging doctrine.  This week’s topic is paticca sammupada, typically translated as dependent origination.  Peter applies a new translation, contingent provisional emergence, which connects the ancient Buddhist doctrine to modern theories regarding the complexity of the brain’s functioning.  The twelve functions of paticca sammupada were listed and briefly reviewed to clarify how the brain creates a meaningful self organizing process relative to what external circumstantial stimulation provides.  This review was followed by discussion about the implications of this conceptual understanding for fostering a less stressful self experience.

This exploration continues next week with a further elaboration of paticca sammupada, which is regarded as a core concept on the Buddhist path towards liberation from distress and confusion.  Here are the notes prepared for this discussion:  Contingent Provisional Emergence.  Participants are encouraged to read the notes to further familiarize with the twelve functions of this concept in order to understand this complex concept more thoroughly.  Next week’s talk will “dive deeper” into the doctrine to clarify the ways it might be psychologically and spiritually beneficial.

Here is an additional .doc file that replicates the Cetasikas poster on the wall of the meditation hall, referred to during the discussion:  CETASIKAS POSTER

Self State Liberation

by Peter Carlson on June 9, 2016

During this talk, Peter reviewed last week’s topic, “The Selfing Story” and added to the concept of the Five Aggregates the additional concept of paticca sammuppada, typically translated as “dependent origination”.   He substituted the term “contingent provisional emergence” as a more contemporary rendering of the concept.  This revised meaning conveys the importance of recognizing that momentary experiences of “selfing” are holistic and non-linear, very complex and dynamically changing.  The value of mindfulness of feelings as feelings, not as an enduring self, was emphasized.

Here are the notes prepared for this talk: SELF STATE LIBERATION  Additionally, here are the notes for a previous discussion of paticca sammuppada:  Contingent Provisional Emergence

Next week’s discussion will be led by Daniel Logan.  Here is a brief synopsis of his topic:  “Many practitioners find it difficult to let go of the doubts and fears that arise during sitting or in the course of their greater practice. The Buddha himself struggled with fear on the eve of his liberation. He acknowledges his experience of fear in an excerpt from sutta MN 36: “Why am I afraid of that pleasure that has nothing to do with sensuality, nothing to do with unskillful mental qualities?’ I thought: ‘I am no longer afraid of that pleasure that has nothing to do with sensuality, nothing to do with unskillful mental qualities.” The Buddha’s own words give hope to those of us who may not yet have found perfect ease and contentment on the cushion or off. This dharma dialogue will present a more hopeful antidote to heavy and afflictive states by focusing on the role of joy and contentment in one’s practice. It will be an interactive exploration and will include brief written exercises and structured dialogues with fellow yogis.”

Deerhaven 2015 Fifth Night Dhamma Talk

During this dhamma talk, Peter described paticca sammupada, typically translated as dependent origination.  Peter expressed a different view of this concept, calling the process contingent provisional emergence.  This contemporary view applies understandings derived from complexity theory, which is a non-linear perspective on the incredible complexity of the mind’s ability to respond to sensory input.  He […]

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Paticcasamuppada: The Creation Of Selfing

These are the notes I prepared for the Dhamma dialogue on Wednesday, August 6, 2014:  Contingent Provisional Emergence  I hope this is helpful for your studies.  Peter

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