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The three poisons as effects of the self

JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matterNetherlands Veteran

I was reading this article on the buddhist magazine Lions Roar, about 5 practices to purify the 3 poisons, and I thought the introductory remarks were very interesting. Basically they cast the three poisons as originating from the illusion of the self, desire as wanting to do whats pleasant for the self, aversion as wanting to avoid whats unpleasant for the self, and indifference or ignorance as ignoring what’s irrelevant to the self. It then goes on to talk about mindfulness, love, letting go, wisdom, and transmutation.

These five practices are different ways of resolving the three poisons, interesting but maybe a bit short to introduce such different practices in one piece of writing. You can see the authors are from different traditions, and are showing their approach to this fundamental problem. Its therefore a good article to serve as a pointer, showing different approaches in short so that you can see what might fit you.

Good for beginners, or for people into learning to cope with the poisons.


  • howhow Veteran Veteran
    edited April 2022

    Anyone who thinks they are no longer a beginner might do well to study this until they know otherwise.

  • JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter Netherlands Veteran

    Thats true @how, coping with the three poisons is an enduring topic which carries on for a long time.

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