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Upekkha not indifference by Bhikkhu Bodhi

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  • Antony Woods
    The Pali word that the Pope interprets as indifference is presumably upekkha. The real meaning of this word is equanimity, not indifference in the sense of
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 12, 2006
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      "The Pali word that the Pope interprets as "indifference" is
      presumably upekkha. The real meaning of this word is equanimity, not
      indifference in the sense of unconcern for others. As a spiritual
      virtue, upekkha means equanimity in the face of the fluctuations of
      worldly fortune. It is evenness of mind, unshakeable freedom of mind,
      a state of inner equipoise that cannot be upset by gain and loss,
      honor and dishonor, praise and blame, pleasure and pain. Upekkha is
      freedom from all points of self-reference; it is indifference only to
      the demands of the ego-self with its craving for pleasure and
      position, not to the well-being of one's fellow human beings. True
      equanimity is the pinnacle of the four social attitudes that the
      Buddhist texts call the "divine abodes": boundless loving-kindness,
      compassion, altruistic joy, and equanimity. The last does not
      override and negate the preceding three, but perfects and consummates
      them.
      http://www.accesstoinsight.org/lib/authors/bodhi/bps-essay_30.html
      From: Toward a Threshold of Understanding by Bhikkhu Bodhi Source:
      BPS Newsletter cover essays nos. 30 (2nd mailing, 1995) & 31 (3rd
      mailing, 1995).
      For free distribution with the kind permission of the Buddhist
      Publication Society and Access to Insight.
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