Seminary Program

This is where we post the essays from many of our Universal Life Church Seminary students. When students finish a ULC course, they write a comprehensive essay about their experiences with the course, what they learned, didn't learn, were inspired by, etc. Here are their essays.

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Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Throughout this course I learned more about the numerous schools of Buddhism and the evolution of these schools, and the effects of the cultures in the countries where the individual schools were established. From the beginning after siddhartha passed into parinirvana it seemed that at the first council people couldn't decide on what was the most significant things Siddhartha taught, so they kept a great amount of information that was sometimes overlapping and influenced by the different regional cultures. The development of mahayana from madhyamika from mahayana all of the greater vehicle schools from Tibetan to Zen vary quite a bit.

The history of Buddhism is essential to understanding the contemporary buddhism, but to return to the basics is the best approach to begin down the path. The four noble truths and the eight fold path.Life is difficult economics politics socially and religiously it is hard to find moments of peace and happiness, and they must be cherished, so life is suffering so long as we allow ourselves to be controlled by external influences and let go of our own character and ideas. We must look within and see the sources of our hardships, there we see we often cause ourselves the majority of our problems just by having poor views and grand expectations of other and situations.We must focus on this source and change.
The changes we make must be to learn to view the world as it is rather than how we would like it to be, a great amount of frustration comes from our tendencies to romanticize and idealize, without considering the other 6.5 billion people that might not feel the same way. Once we look at how we trouble ourselves we must begin to correct our thoughts and behaviors for some that means becoming a monastic which in some ways is an enviable life but in other it may be unfulfilling, I am a father of two and that has been a blessing. This is where the eightfold path becomes very important to the redevelopment of the basic thought process' which help us to heal.

Right view-the world as-is, right intention,to bring goodness without stipulations, right speech to stop contributing to the constant noise in the universe which throws things out of balance, right effort the precepts for behavior and interaction, right livelihood to refrain from causing further disturbance,right action only that which is necessary to create balance and moderate living, right mindfulness being congnizant of our self control and influences, and right concentration through mediation, these greatly change our expectations and attachment to ideas and romanticized ideas.

Rev. Joseph D. Brave-Heart


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