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Retreat Dharma Talks

March Insight Meditation 1-Month

An extended period of retreat offers the rare opportunity for sustained and dedicated practice. This retreat emphasizes quieting the mind, opening the heart, and developing profound clarity and depth of insight practice. Instruction will follow the traditional four foundations of mindfulness, combined with training in loving-kindness and compassion, through a daily schedule of silent sitting, walking, dharma talks and practice meetings with teachers.

2019-03-02 (29 days) Spirit Rock Meditation Center

2019-03-11 Confidence in the Path: Learning to Trust (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 53:31
Oren Jay Sofer
Faith (Saddha) is an essential quality on the path to awakening. This talk explores how we can understand this factor, cultivate it, and make use of it in our practice.
2019-03-12 Developing Samadhi (Concentration) (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 63:31
Donald Rothberg
We explore how to develop samadhi or concentration in samatha practice, through examining: (1) the nature of samadhi and samatha practice, (2) their place and importance in our practice, (3) some ways to practice to develop samadhi or concentration, (4) some of the challenges of samatha practice and how to work with them, and (5) how samadhi or concentration supports insight practice.
2019-03-13 Cycles of Deepening Insight Practice (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 61:00
Heather Sundberg
This Talk explores how deepening stages of Insight practice lead to awakening. Beginning with the ground of Sila (ethical conduct), supporting the development of Samadhi (concentration) which provides the power & pliancy of mind for Panna (seeing clearly) practice. The Three Characteristics (impermanence, unsatisfactoriness, not self) are explored, as well as working with cycles of purification. With continuous practice a new cycle into mature Equanimity can emerge as a jumping off point to further awakening.
2019-03-14 Review of Insight Meditation Full Instructions (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 42:32
Heather Sundberg
Includes guidance about practicing with: 1. A Primary Object such as the breath, 2. Secondary Objects such as other body sensations or sounds, 3. Opening into Choiceness Awareness of numerous arising & passing objects - In addition the guidance includes some tips on how to listen to our practice to know which instructions to engage in during different cycles of meditation practice.
2019-03-14 Being with Dukkha: The Truth of our Humanity (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 50:06
Sharda Rogell
Understanding the truth of suffering, or that things are generally unsatisfactory, we can loosen our grip and open more sensitively and respectfully to how things are.
2019-03-17 Monday Night 2:42:36
Diana Winston
2019-03-17 Right Understanding (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 60:57
Oren Jay Sofer
For the practice to be effective we must integrate the proper understanding, known as "Right View." This talk explores right view in three ways: as a foundation for the practice through understanding our everyday life, as a view of all events as a natural unfolding of causes and conditions, and as the liberating understanding of the Four Noble Truths.
2019-03-18 Practicing to Investigate Anatta (Not-Self) (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 60:24
Donald Rothberg
After a brief overview of the “three ways of seeing that liberate” (into anicca, dukkha, and anatta, or impermanence, reactivity or suffering, and not-self), and how to practice investigating anicca and dukkha, we explore a practical way to understand and investigate anatta or not-self. We focus on two ways of investigation: (1) noticing when the sense of self is “thick,” and studying it; and (2) learning in a number of ways to be with the flow of experience with less or little or no sense of self, as we “thin” the self.
2019-03-20 Mature Mindfulness, Emptiness, and Release (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 64:43
Heather Sundberg
Offered on the Spring Equinox Full Moon, the Talk opens with stories & metaphors of the Moon, and then moves into exploring a map of practice from the Thai forest tradition from the perspectives of theory, practical application and guided practice. Sati (Mindfulness) - MahaSati (Great Mindfulness) - Sati-Panna (Mindfulness Wisdom) - Panna-Vimutti (Wisdom which leads to Release).
2019-03-21 Meeting the Buddha: Commentary on Sutta 54:11
Sharda Rogell
This talk is an offering of one of the discourses from the Majjhima Nikāya (MN 140) in which the Buddha gives a disciple named Pukkusāti, who has never met the Buddha and doesn't know he's talking with him) a powerful teaching on the destruction of all suffering.
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