Vairochana: the illuminator

What is Spiritual Practice?

I'm afraid I've had a glitch with my website and we've lost the copy for this page. I'm in the process of rewriting it.

I tend to look a bit confused when people describe themselves (or me) as ‘spiritual’, because it's usually not very clear to me what they mean. Things can get quite complicated if you aren't clear about abstract ideas like spirituality and spiritual practice.

From a Buddhist perspective, spiritual practice is any activity that leads us in the direction of fulfilling our potential, and overcoming the limitations we create by thinking of ourselves as fundamentally separate, fixed and unchanging. You could say that spiritual practice is anything we do that helps us to connect more fully with ourselves and with other people.

Traditionally this involves three specific areas of training, or what Buddhist scholar Robert Thurman (yes, he's Uma Thurman’s dad) prefers to call Three Educations. These three can be seen as covering the way we act, feel and think - suggesting that spiritual practice needs to be worked on from a number of different angles.


This is normally translated as ‘ethics’, which I think is a little unhelpful. More here soon


This is usally translated as meditation, and since I say quite a lot about this elsewhere on the site I won't say very much about it here.


Wisdom More here soon

One of my friends recently asked me what three things he should do to most effectively develop himself. My suggestion was that he needed four things:

  • a meditation practice to transform consciousness
  • a physical practice to maintain health and free flowing energy
  • a study practice to explore new ways of sense-making
  • some objective feedback on his practice to help address blind-spots and avoid self deception

More here soon