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A Buddhist Guide to WordPress Development - WCMTL 2018


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An unusual WordCamp talk where I teach you the basics of Buddhism as a frame for improving your WordPress development.

Honestly, it focuses more on Buddhism than on WordPress development!

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A Buddhist Guide to WordPress Development - WCMTL 2018

  1. 1. A BUDDHIST GUIDETO WORDPRESS DEVELOPMENT 2600 year old advice on accepting & letting go 🕊 Jer Clarke • Creative Commons Share Alike Download these slides:
  2. 2. JER IS AN EARTHLING WEB DEVELOPER • Communications Studies at Concordia University. • HTML+CSS since 2003 • Code Unicorn for GlobalVoices since 2006 • Founded WordCamp Montreal in 2009 THEY THEM THEIR
  4. 4. JER & BUDDHISM • "If any religion is right, it's probably Buddhism" • Visited Sri Lanka in 2017, needed help with life • Joined Refuge Recovery, Buddhist sobriety fellowship • Meditate 30+ minutes every day • 170 days in a row on InsightTimer
  5. 5. ON PĀLI &THERAVĀDA • Theravāda ("School of the elders") based on earliest Buddhism, found in Sri Lanka,Thailand etc. • Source for modern movements likeVipassana, Insight meditation, Secular Buddhism • Contrasted with Mahāyāna ("GreaterVehicle"), a diverse branch found in China, Japan etc. • FYI:Words here are in Pāli (Theravāda) not 
 Sanskrit (Mahāyāna)
  6. 6. RELIGION OR PHILOSOPHY? • Buddhism is both metaphysical and pragmatic • Most teachings apply directly to material life • It’s an ancient science, and got a lot of things right • Ancient Indian cosmology is weird and a bit crazy, but metaphorically it has a lot to teach us • Mainly: Buddhism is a series of very useful lists
  7. 7. ĀNĀPĀNASATI BREATHING MEDITATION • Breathing in, know you are breathing in • Breathing out, know you are breathing out. • Breathing in and out, experience your body right here in this place • Breathing in and out, experience your mind right here in this moment
  8. 8. PAÑHA CONTEMPLATIONS • Is there anything in this world that can fully satisfy you, that will never let you down? • If you could have no expectations about how things should be, accepting things as they are, would life be harder or easier? • When you do things you know are wrong, how does it feel? How does it feel to do what you know is right?
  9. 9. TILAKKHAṆA THREE MARKS OF EXISTENCE • Everything is impermanent • Everything is stressful • Everything is lacking in essential self • Ignorance about these causes clinging and suffering
  10. 10. ANICCA IMPERMANENCE • "Whatever is subject to origination is subject to cessation.” • Everything either changes or ceases and we are all going to die • Everything we have is borrowed; sickness, death or WordPress updates will take it all away
  11. 11. DUKKHA STRESS • Dukkha means suffering, pain, and dissatisfaction • Nothing lives up to our hopes, so everything brings disappointment and stress • Unpleasant things are dukkha because we can’t avoid them • Pleasant things are dukkha because we can’t hold on to them
  12. 12. ANATTĀ LACK OF ESSENTIAL SELF • There is no inherent meaning or essence (soul) in objects or beings • Everything and everyone are “conditioned phenomena” arising from causes, impersonal, and dependent • Our sense of “I am” is a delusion that holds us back • Your body is not you, your thoughts are not you, your opinions are not you and neither is your code
  13. 13. THREE FEATURES OF EVERY CMS, PLUGIN ANDTHEME! ✅ Impermanent: This shit won't last forever! ✅ Unsatisfying: Guaranteed to disappoint! ✅ Essence-Free: Just a bunch of code! Accept these things and let them go!
  14. 14. CATTĀRI ARIYASACCĀNI THE FOUR NOBLETRUTHS 1. Dukkha - Stress is inevitable 2. Samudaya -The cause of stress is clinging attachment 3. Nirodha -The end of stress is freedom from clinging 4. Magga -The way to freedom is the noble eightfold path
  15. 15. DUKKHA STRESS IS INEVITABLE • Problems are going to come up and there will be bad surprises • Having what you don't want, not having what you do want • Aging, illness and death all bring dukkha • Updates are dukkha, spam is dukkha, browser compatibility is dukkha
  16. 16. SAMUDAYA THE CAUSE OF STRESS IS CLINGING • The reason it hurts so much is our clinging to expectations • When we try to control the world, we suffer pointlessly • “The second arrow” is the one we shoot ourselves • Both desire and aversion hold us in this cycle of clinging and disappointment • It's when we imagine that WP won't challenge us that it makes us crazy
  17. 17. NIRODHA THE END OF STRESS IS FREEDOM FROM CLINGING • If we accept everything, without clinging to good and bad, we don’t have to suffer • Notice the impermanence of situations and relinquish the illusion of control • Letting go of expectations, roadblocks become surmountable and failures become survivable
  18. 18. MAGGA THE WAYTO FREEDOM IS THE NOBLE EIGHTFOLD PATH • We end clinging and achieve enlightenment by following The Noble Eightfold Path Wisdom RightView Right Intention Virtue Right Speech Right Action Right Livelihood Mindfulness Right Effort Right Mindfulness Right Concentration
  19. 19. DHAMMA TRUTH • "Dhamma" means the teachings, the truth, "Buddhadhamma" • It also refers to all phenomena, the way things are, and things themselves • Buddhism tells us to know things as they are: impermanent, conditional and impersonal • To live at ease, we accept all "dhammas", without judgement or preference
  20. 20. KAMMA CAUSE AND EFFECT • Kamma (karma) refers to cause and effect; how our actions determine our future • The word means “action” and “intention”, not ethical score • Kammic “fruition” are the effects of your karma • Intention is key, as long as we know our intentions are truly good we can live with peace of mind
  21. 21. SAṂSĀRA REBIRTH • Saṃsāra is the cycle of being reborn over and over, always suffering • Buddha:We are reborn as new people, but keep our kamma (good or bad) which continues to impact us • Jer: Rebirth happens each day and in each moment as you are affected by past intentions • Accept that your past actions lead to the present, but we can change and grow for the future.
  22. 22. SAṂSĀRA WP REBIRTH WP • We are reborn when we return to old themes, plugins, code and content • We inherit the decisions of our past selves, good or bad • Learn from the challenges you’ve passed on to yourself • See clearly how your current decisions will determine your future
  23. 23. SATI MINDFULNESS • Being aware of yourself, body and mind, in each moment • Remembering, over and over, to see things as they really are • Frees you from false perceptions, wakes you up to the truth • Let go of delusions and distractions, investigate honestly • Learn how to use the debug.log, and check it every day
  24. 24. SAMĀDHI MEDITATION • Samādhi means “concentration” as well as “meditation” • We meditate to develop focus and control our minds, practicing active mindfulness without distraction • Set aside time just for this training • Meditate on wholesome states to develop altered traits • Like any skill (e.g. web dev), regular focused practice is how we get better
  25. 25. • When we understand things as they are (impermanent, painful, impersonal), we understand that compassion and love are the only appropriate reactions • Compassion for others and compassion for oneself go hand in hand • The four brahmavihāras 
 (“divine abodes"): • Mettā - Kindness • Karuṇā - Compassion • Muditā - Compersion • Upekkhā - equanimity METTĀ LOVINGKINDNESS
  26. 26. PAÑÑĀ WISDOM • All experience is created in our minds, we are what we think • Accept things as they are and let go of what's painful • A clear conscience and open heart can do any task with joy • Be mindful of your thoughts, cultivate wholesome traits • Meditate as much as you can, and all of this will be easier
  27. 27.  NISSĀYA
  28. 28. INSIGHTTIMER • Free, simple meditation timer with various bells • iOS+Android • Thousands of free guided meditations (look for "Buddhism" category) • Social network and stats for motivation 
 (add @jerclarke) RECOMMENDED "TEACHERS" • Andy Hobson 
 (esp. "Accept & Let Go”) • Bodhipaksa • Josh Korda • Tara Brach
  29. 29. VIJJĀ
 KNOWLEDGE • Wikipedia - Dig into each teaching’s article • Doug's Secular Dharma - AccessibleYouTube channel (secular) • SuttaCentral - Read the original texts and compare translations PODCASTS • AgainstThe Stream - Accessible, modern talks and meditations • Joseph Goldstein - Great teacher w/ tons of talks • Dharmaseed - Advanced talks from meditation retreats
  30. 30. SAṄGHA COMMUNITY • True North Insight - Weekly meditation and multi-day retreats (paid & by donation) • Refuge Recovery - Weekly addiction recovery group 
 (by donation) • Vipassana Québec - 10-day intensive meditation retreats 
 (by donation) • Secular Buddhism Association - Online meditation group 
 (by donation)
  31. 31. A BUDDHIST GUIDETO WORDPRESS DEVELOPMENT 2600 year old advice on accepting & letting go 🕊 Jer Clarke • Creative Commons Share Alike Download these slides: