What was behind the Buddha’s decision to go off into the forest? A desire to be happy, Thai forest monk Thanissaro Bhikkhu teaches in the talk below. In fact, he says, this desire underlay all of Buddha’s efforts. But this is no ordinary happiness he’s talking about: it’s a happiness “that kings can’t steal or water can’t wash away.” The monk’s talk touches on the core of the Buddha’s teaching: cultivating the qualities that bring about well-being, and abandoning those that bring suffering. But it does require effort, however much we’d like a path that’s all down hill—there is no such path, he assures us. So the talk is only effective if you put Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s teachings into practice! We know from experience: Than Geoff, as he is more familiarly known, has led several meditations here in the office, and we always look forward to his visits. For more teachings from Than Geoff, visit accesstoinsight.org. The talk below is also posted at a site offering relief from “stress, depression and anxiety.”

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