11 Buddhist thoughts you should adopt in your life

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For more than 2,500 years, the religion we know today as Buddhism has guided many great civilizations, inspired refined cultural achievements and produced a vast body of profound teachings. Some of the wisest people to have ever walked the planet have been Buddhist monks and nuns. Today, large numbers of men and women from diverse backgrounds throughout the world are following the teachings of the Buddha.

1. Live with compassion
Compassion is one of the most revered qualities in Buddhism and great compassion is a sign of a highly realized human being.
Compassion doesn’t just help the world at large, and it isn’t just about the fact that it’s the right thing to do. Compassion, and seeking to understand those around you, can transform your life for a number of reasons.
First, self-compassion is altogether critical towards finding peace within yourself. By learning to forgive yourself and accepting that you’re human you can heal deep wounds bring yourself back from the worst.
We often get upset from the fact that we can’t understand everyone.
Compassion is understanding the basic goodness in all people and then seeking to discover that basic goodness in specific people. Because of this, it helps you from going through the often mental torture we experience because we don’t understand the actions of others.
But even more than that, expressing compassion is the very act of connecting wholeheartedly with others, and simply connecting in this way can be a great source of joy for us.
The reasons for practicing compassion are numerous and powerful. Seek to live in a way that you treat everyone you meet as you would yourself. Once you begin trying to do this, it will seem altogether impossible. But keep at it, and you’ll realize the full power of living with compassion.
2. Connect with others and nurture those connections
In Buddhism, a community of practitioners is called a “sangha”. A sangha is a community of monks, nuns, laymen, and laywomen who practice together in peace towards the united “goal” of realizing greater awakening, not only for themselves but for all beings.
The sangha is a principle which much of the world can greatly benefit from. People come together in groups all the time, but it’s usually for the purpose of creating monetary riches or obtaining substantial power and rarely towards the united goal of attaining peace, happiness, and realizing greater wisdom.
The principle of the sangha can be expressed in your own life in many ways. The sangha is ultimately just one way of looking at life, through the lens of the individual “expressions” of the totality.
By living in a way that you’re fully aware of the power of connecting with others, whether it’s one person or a group of 100, and seeking to nurture those relationships in the appropriate way, you can transform your life in ways that will pay dividends for years to come.
3. Wake up
One of the most important point on the list. Wake up to live every moment, cherish each and every second of the life, live as if there is no tomorrow.
Mindfulness, greater awareness, paying attention, whatever you want to call it- it changes every facet of your life and in every way. It’s as simple as that.
4. Live deeply
To live deeply, in a way that you become keenly aware of the precious nature of life, is to begin down the path of true peace and happiness.
The ultimate goal of life is to find happiness. When you start analyzing the law of nature, you get to know how incredible this world is and how much more you need to discover. You realize how everything is ever changing, constantly dying only to be reborn in another form. You get to know that change is the only constant.
This cultivates in us the ability to savor every moment of life, to find peace in even the most mundane activities, as well as the ability to transform your typically “negative” experiences into something altogether nourishing and healing.
5. Change yourself, change the world
Buddhists understand that you can hardly help another before you help yourself. But this isn’t referring to you gaining power or riches before you can help others, or living in a way that you ignore others.
This is mostly referring to the fact that because we’re all interconnected, by you helping yourself you create an exponentially positive effect on the rest of the world.
If you want to make an impact on the world, don’t falsely convince yourself that it’s “you or them”. You don’t need to drag yourself through the mud to help those around you. If you do this, you’ll greatly hamper your ability to create a positive impact. If you’re not happy, how can you make others happy? Its like you don’t have any chocolates with you but still you want to give them to others. Your intentions are pure but meaningless.
Take care of yourself and seek to be more than just a help, but an example of how to live for others to follow and you’ll create waves of exponential possibility that inspires others to do the same.
6. Embrace death
Death is an often taboo topic in the society. We do everything we can, to not only avoid the subject, but pretend that it doesn’t even exist.
The reality is, this is really unfortunate and in no way helps us lead better lives. Becoming keenly aware of your own impermanence and deeply understanding the nature of death with regards to our interconnectedness are both things which can help us find great peace.
In Buddhism, students in many sects at one point or another “meditate on the corpse” as it were (a practice which is said to have originated at least as far back as the Buddha’s lifetime).
This is literally what it sounds like. They meditate on the image of a corpse slowing decomposing and imagine that process through to its end, eventually resulting in a deep and profound realization on the true nature of death.
That might sound a little intense to you, but the truth is, if you live you’re entire life acting as if you’re never going to die or ignoring your own impermanence then you won’t ever be able to find true peace within yourself.
You don’t necessarily have to meditate on the image of a corpse, but simply opening up to yourself about death so that you’re no longer shielding it from your mind can begin to be a great source of peace and help you appreciate the many joys in your everyday life.
A true appreciation for life can never be fully realized until you come face-to-face with your own impermanence. But once you do this, the world opens up in a new and profound way.
7. Understand the nature of giving
Giving is more than the act of giving Christmas and Birthday gifts, it’s also about those gifts which we give each and every day which we don’t typically see as gifts at all. Even a small act of giving can save someone from drowning.
Buddhists hold a very deep understanding of the nature of giving, particularly in that life is a constant play between the act of giving and receiving. This doesn’t just help us find peace in understanding the way of the world around us, but helps us realize the amazing gifts we all have within us that we can give others in every moment, such as our love, compassion, and presence.
8. Work to disarm the ego
The primary obstacle in our way? The ego.
It is our biggest nemesis. It builds a false self within ourselves and doesn’t allow us to know our true selves.
To put it short and sweet, the reason the ego is the major obstacle in spiritual practice, or simply the practice of finding true peace and happiness (whatever you choose to call it, it’s all the same), is because it’s very function is to pull you away from the ground of your being by convincing you that you’re this separate self.
The process of unraveling the ego can take time, as it’s something which has been with us, intertwined with us, for years. But it’s infinitely rewarding and altogether necessary if we want to realize our best life.
9. Remove the 3 poisons
Life is filled with vices, things which attempt to bind us to unwholesome ways of living and therefore do the very opposite of cultivate peace, joy, and greater realization in our lives. Among these, the 3 poisons are some of the most powerful. The 3 poisons are:
1. Greed
2. Hatred
3. Delusion
Together, these 3 poisons are responsible for the majority of the pain and suffering we experience as a collective species. It’s perfectly normal to be affected by each of these poisons throughout your life, so don’t knock yourself for falling for them.
Instead, simply accept that they’re something you’re experiencing and begin working to remove them from your life. This can take time, but it’s a key aspect on the path towards realizing true peace and happiness.
10. Right livelihood
We should all strive to work and make our living in a way that’s more “conscious” or aware. This generally means not selling harmful items such as guns, drugs, and services that harm other people, but it goes deeper than that.
There’s ultimately two aspects to this: making a living by doing something which doesn’t inhibit your own ability to realize peace and making a living doing something which doesn’t inhibit others ability to realize peace.
Facing this can lead to some interesting situations for some people, and as Thich Nhat Hanh has mentioned this is a collective effort as opposed to a solely personal one (the butcher isn’t a butcher only because he decided to be, but because there is a demand from people for meat to be neatly packaged and made available for them to be purchased from supermarkets), but you should strive to do your best.
Following the teaching on right livelihood can help you realize the harmful effect that your own work is having on you and therefore coming up with a solution can result in a largely positive shift in your life as a whole. Only you can decide if a change needs to happen though.
Whatever the case, seek to make a living doing something that promotes the peace and happiness of yourself and those around you as much as possible.
11. Realize non-attachment
This is a difficult point to put into so few words, but a profound one I felt would be greatly beneficial to mention nonetheless.
To realize non-attachment in a Buddhist sense doesn’t mean to abandon your friends and family and live alone for the rest of your life, never truly living again just so that you don’t become attached to these desires.
Non-attachment refers to living in a way that you exist in the natural flow of life and generally living a typical modern life, building a family, working, etc., while simultaneously not being attached to any of these things. It simply means to live in a way that you’ve become aware of and accepted the impermanence of all things in this life and live in a way that you’re ever-aware of this fact.
Keep in mind, this doesn’t mean that you stop feeling emotions. On the contrary, these emotions are welcomed and expected, and fully experienced with mindfulness in the moment of their impact. But this is simply the natural course of things.
Once these emotions subside though, and when we have no mental formations or obstructions to block our path, a natural healing process takes place that heals the wound and allows us to continue on living in peace and joy instead of dragging us down into darkness.
Strive to live free, fully aware of the wonders of life and in the very midst of all of those wonders, while not clinging to any of it. To do this is to realize the greatest joy life has to offer.

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