This afternoon we will look into the structure of ego-type using the classic Buddhist teaching of dependent coorigination. This perspective, which the Buddha considered the heart of his teaching, looks at the causal processes by which we give birth to ourselves as egoistic beings, and the anxiety and suffering produced by ego-birth. Many of the terms used by the Buddha can be linked with crucial aspects of type, e.g., basic proposition, defense mechanism, attentional style, identity, and passion. This reveals the`self’we strive to be as merely a concoction out of emptiness. While the suffering is real enough, the dynamic recycling of the type-stuff sustains an illusion that recycles the suffering unnecessarily. When type is deconstructed or released, the full potentials of awakening are liberated.
Santikaro is the founder and guiding teacher of Liberation Park in Oak Park, Illinois, near Chicago. He went to Thailand with the Peace Corps in 1980 and remained there for 20 years, mainly as a Theravada Buddhist monk. He lived at Suan Mokkh, a forest monastery in Southern Thailand, for fifteen years, where he studied under Buddhadasa Bhikkhu, an influential teacher and reformer (who died in 1993). Santikaro taught meditation and Buddhism in Thailand for many years and initiated Enneagram teaching that has grown into the Thai Enneagram Association. He continues to lead meditation retreats in the USA and various corners of the world.
He now lives and teaches in the Chicago area, pursuing his vision of Liberation Park, a modern American expression of Buddhist practice, teaching, community, and social responsibility. He continues to translate his teacher’s work, along with pondering the application of Buddha-Dhamma to our hectic high-stress ways of life, working in socially engaged Buddhism, and breathing mindfully. His Enneagram work focuses on its application to Buddhist practice and how Buddhist meditation can deepen, as well as be informed by, Enneagram studies.
2005 IEA Global Conference
San Francisco, California, USA