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Retreat Dharma Talks

Three-Month Retreat - Part 2

This three-month course, including its six-week partials, is a special time for practice. Because of its extended length and ongoing guidance, it is an opportunity for students to deepen the powers of concentration, wisdom and compassion. Based on the meditation instructions of Mahasi Sayadaw and supplemented by a range of skillful means, this retreat will encourage a balanced attitude of relaxation and alertness, and the continuity of practice based on the Buddha’s Four Foundations of Mindfulness.

2011-10-22 (43 days) Insight Meditation Society - Retreat Center

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2011-11-17 Steadying the Mind, Opening the Heart 50:20
Winnie Nazarko
Equanimity - that quality of mind which is balanced, steady, and non-reactive - is developed by learning to open skillfully to the full range of our experience. It is equanimity which allows the heart to feel safe enough to open to our own difficult states, and the difficult states of others. Deep equanimity is " the peace that passes understanding", a wisdom and equipoise which can hold it all.
2011-11-18 What is insight? 57:40
Greg Scharf
An exploration into the nature of insight and how it unfolds in practice on both personal and more universal levels.
2011-11-21 Patterns Of Greed, Aversion and Delusion 54:49
Myoshin Kelley
Understanding our temperament can help to personalize habituated tendencies.
2011-11-23 The Problem With Greed 50:19
Winnie Nazarko
Our relationship with sense pleasure is complicated. Moving towards what is pleasant is instinctual,and we need to be able to experience what is pleasant without clinging, fear or attachment in order to be whole. Yet pleasant vedana (sensation) is not a reliable goal or guide on the spiritual path. Pleasure - like all conditioned things - has its limitations and does not work well as the orienting principle in our practice and lives. Like the Buddha, we need to be able to swim upstream, and not be limited by our conditioning towards ease.
2011-11-28 Not Making Two 61:41
Winnie Nazarko
At the end of retreat, there are often concerns about how to take "this" back home. If we define "this" too narrowly, with a dualistic mind, we will miss the chance to practice effectively when we return to the conditions of lay life.Lay life is different, and offers the opportunity for practice which is broader, more dynamic, and more relational than that done on retreat. The Buddha himself saw his teachings as useful and beneficial to lay people as well as monastics, sometimes in surprising applications. Some of his teachings for lay people are discussed, clarifying that the 8 Fold Path can be practiced outside of silent retreat, in daily life.
2011-12-01 Love and Emptiness 52:18
Greg Scharf
This talk, given at the close of the annual 3-month retreat at IMS, examines the practice of Loving-kindness as an expression of the deepest wisdom.
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