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Healing, Transformation, Awakening:
FCM Study and Practice Guide

2. Cultivation: The Dharma Path (pouring pure liquid into the bowl)

No longer unconsciously tossed about by emotional afflictions and negative habit energies, our practice has allowed us to be more grounded and sure-footed in daily life and more stable and open in our relationships. We now have a solid foundation for progressing upon the path to transformation and awakening. Looking more deeply into life, we seek to retrain the mind to see with intelligence and clarity, and to develop a life of meaning and altruistic purpose.

Core Teachings

The core teachings of the Dharma Path are as follows:

  • The Four Noble Truths and Eightfold Path
  • The Three Marks of Existence
  • The Seven Factors of Awakening
  • The Four Mind Turnings and Five Remembrances
  • The Bodhisattva Way: Considering an altruistic life and what it means; walking a transformative and selfless path in life
  • The Four Immeasurables, the Buddha's teachings on love
  • The Six Paramitas, the practices of a noble being


  • Developing a meaningful daily practice of meditation and study
  • Calm-abiding meditation to develop mental stability and concentration
  • Loving-kindness and compassion meditations
  • Deep looking and analytical meditations that retrain the mind to see with intelligence and clarity
  • Taking refuge in the Buddhist Three Jewels: the Buddha, Dharma and Sangha
  • Selfless Service 

Recommended Dharma Talks

The following Dharma talks provide helpful insight into important aspects of this Path. A complete listing of Dharma talks related to this Path can be found in Dharma Talks and Series Talks.

Suggested Readings

  • Old Path, White Cloud and Fragrant Palm Leaves, Thich Nhat Hanh
  • Basic Buddhist texts or books about Buddhism, e.g. The Heart of the Buddha's Teaching (Thich Nhat Hanh), Breath by Breath (Larry Rosenberg), plus many others are available.
  • Words of My Perfect Teacher, Patrul Rinpoche
  • The Way of the Bodhisattva, Shantideva
  • Interbeing: Fourteen Guidelines for Engaged Buddhism, Thich Nhat Hanh
  • The Great Path of Awakening, Jamgon Kontrul


  • Receiving the Five Mindfulness Trainings and Three Refuges
  • Participating in Dharma Path Intensives
  • Attending silent retreats
  • Working directly with a teacher or mentor
  • Participating in the full life of the FCM community, including offering selfless service to your local sangha
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