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Dharma Talks Access for Retreatants

Cultivating Clear Seeing, Opening the Heart

In this retreat we will emphasize the development of wisdom and compassion through practices that help us to quiet our minds, strengthen mindfulness, and lead to insight, as well open our hearts and ground us in our bodies. There will be a special emphasis on the Four Foundations of Mindfulness and the Divine Abodes--lovingkindness, compassion, joy and equanimity.
2007-10-19 (9 days) Spirit Rock Meditation Center

2007-10-20 Cultivating Clear Seeing - The Path Of Mindfulness 62:51
  Donald Rothberg
In this retreat, we are cultivating clear seeing especially through development of mindfulness and wisdom. In this talk, we focus on mindfulness- exploring its qualities of bare attention, directness, non-reactivity, present centered-ness, and interest. We introduce the Four Foundations of Mindfulness, with a particular focus on mindfulness of the body, and how this leads to wisdom.
2007-10-21 The Five Difficult Energies 65:12
  Donald Rothberg
We sometimes feel very connected with our love, wisdom, and mindfulness. At other times, we may feel disconnected from these qualities, stuck in what the Buddha called the five "difficult energies" (or hindrances). We explore compulsive desire and aversion, sloth & torpor, restlessness, and doubt - suggesting how to respond to these when they arise, both in meditation and daily life.
2007-10-22 Practicing With Sates Of Mind And Heart 58:24
  Donald Rothberg
After a framing of why we practice and how this intensive practice can inform our wider lives, and a short account of the qualities of mindfulness we explore how to practice in states of mind and heart. Using the model of RAIN (Recognition, Acceptance, Inquiry, Non-identification), we examine a number of ways to work with states of mind and heart, using as case studies, working with anger, judgment (harsh reactive judgment) and others.
2007-10-23 Metta And The Opening Of The Heart - How Metta Transforms Us 63:15
  Donald Rothberg
Metta is generally described and set in the context of the Brahmavihara - the divine abodes. A number of stories are told illustrating the quality of metta and four ways that metta transforms us are identified - (1) We learn to lead with our hearts; (2) We develop in concentration; (3) We purify our being; and (4) We connect more fully with others.
2007-10-24 Wisdom 56:52
  Donald Rothberg
How do we live and act wisely, whether in our meditation practice or in the rest of our lives? The core of our practice is to come back to wisdom moment-to-moment. The main teaching on wisdom that can guide us is the Four Noble Truths. We explore this teaching as a practical guide, requiring an understanding of causes and conditions. Yet wisdom ultimately must also be connected to to two further qualities to be whole - to compassion, and to courage.
2007-10-25 Invoking The Beautiful - The Divine Abodes Of Lovingkindness 66:19
  Donald Rothberg
There are two main approaches in our practice - mindfulness and invoking beautiful and exalted states. They complement each other in important ways. After considering these two approaches, we explore the nature of each of the divine abodes, their near and far enemies, and their complementary nature - each requires the other three for its mature development.
2007-10-26 Supporting And Deepening Daily Life Practice 53:25
  Donald Rothberg
Practicing mindfulness and metta in the United States is definitely challenging for a variety of reasons which are explored briefly. We outline a number of basic supports for practice (daily practice, community, study, etc. ) and then focus on four main ways of deepening daily life practice - (1) Finding regular ways to break habits, (2)Working with a mentor or teacher, (3) Grounding in the body, and (4) Learning to take obstacles and suffering as opportunities. (note: There is a 15 minute gap about 11 minutes into this talk and cuts out again at 53 minutes, due to technical difficulties.)
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