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Living Well

Module 14 of An Introduction to Buddhism.

While aimed at renunciation and liberation, the Buddha's teachings also offer practical advice for living in the world.

Photo by Joi Ito, CC BY 2.0

Readings

Biography of Shakyamuni Buddha – Ven Master Hsing Yun (.pdf) (.epub) (.pdf) (.epub)

Continue with Chapters 45–46, which introduce the Buddha’s greatest disciples: monastics and laity who still set the example for Buddhists to this day.

Chapter 11 covers the Ten Virtues (or “Perfections”) we can cultivate in every moment of our lives.

We conclude our study of the Noble Eightfold Path with Chapter 8: “Wisdom”—and the ability to act for the benefit of others.

(Optional) Chapter 8 covers “The World Today”—or at least the world of the 1960s (when it was written!).

Khp 5: The Highest Blessings (.pdf)

Read the Buddha’s own overview of ‘the good life’

And then listen to it chanted aloud.

I would like to offer you this blessing: May your life be thus blessed! 😊

We’ll conclude with the short “Conclusion” at the end of Fundamentals

Lecture

In this, Bhikkhu Bodhi’s final lecture, he discusses the relevance of the Buddha’s teachings to lay life.

Further Reading

If you enjoyed studying with Bhikkhu Bodhi, you may want to check out his course on the Early Buddhist Texts next. He’ll go more systematically through the core teachings of the Pāḷi Canon, guiding you through the Buddha’s teachings in his own words.

Homework

This also marks our final set of reflection questions, which can be found here. Thanks for sticking with them so diligently!

And when you’re ready for our final section…