Helping us past our endless wanderings on the hamster wheel of samsara, Spring Washam illuminates Buddha’s way to freedom and lasting happiness.
In this Dharma talk from the Insight Meditation Society’s People of Color Retreat on June 16th, 2010; Spring Washam explores the Buddha’s Second Noble Truth in an illuminating discussion on desire, craving, and clinging.
This talk from Spring Washam was originally published on DharmaSeed.org
Buddha & The Way to Freedom
Digging directly to the root of the human experience, Spring Washam investigates the mysterious situation of being born into a body as an impermanent being in an ever-changing universe with very little direction to go or inkling about what this is all about. Through this inquiry, recognizing that at our core what most of us are looking for is the path to peace and happiness; Spring shares Buddha’s well-maintained Way to freedom.
“The Buddha removed all the obstacles to this ancient path and said, ‘Friends, the path to peace and happiness is this Way. This is the road. I didn’t invent it; it’s been here since the beginning of time. Many beings have walked this path, and at times the path has been covered, unrecognizable and forgotten.’ But he cleared it away and here we are on this path.” – Spring Washam
Ram Dass describes his relationship with the Four Noble Truths, on Ep. 6 of Here & Now
Lasting Happiness & The Origin of Suffering (10:08)
What lasts? Offering Buddha’s view on short-lived happiness versus true lasting happiness, Spring Washam outlines the Four Noble Truths, focusing especially on #2: the origin of suffering is attachment—craving, desire, clinging. From this lens of noticing the ’cause to our illness,’ she invites us into mindful awareness around our stream of external wants; which won’t bring lasting happiness or freedom despite all of our craving.
“What are we willing to do to feed our addiction? We harm ourself in the pursuit of these desires. We cause harm to ourself and others. But here’s the sad thing; we don’t know that. We kind of know, but we’re trying to be happy. We’re doing the things that lead to unhappiness and trying to be happy.” – Spring Washam
Joseph Goldstein explores the Nature of Craving and the End of Craving on the Insight Hour
Samsara, Endless Wandering (27:00)
Illuminating Buddha’s prescription to not follow your desires—for they do not lead to lasting happiness, and will naturally subside in their ephemeral nature—Spring shares how these very desires are what keep us lost on the hamster wheel of Samsara, endlessly wandering from one desire to the next, thinking the ‘next one’ will give us lasting freedom, when, in fact, the search for happiness itself is the cause for the suffering in the first place.
“Samsara means Endless Wandering. Buddha is saying that’s what you’ve been doing. In our search for happiness we endlessly wander. Wander, wander, this path, that path, looking for peace; doing the very things that create unhappiness because we’re not seeing clearly.” – Spring Washam