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Retreat Dharma Talks

January Metta Retreat

Metta, or loving-kindness, practice is the cultivation of the intention of benevolence as the orientation of our heart and mind. It is also a path to wisdom. We develop our capacity for metta through meditation (which is practiced steadfastly on retreat) in order for it to manifest in an ongoing way in our daily lives.

In this retreat, we will learn the formal practice of metta along with its companion practices of compassion, joy, and equanimity. All four of these practices – known as the Brahma Viharas or Divine Abodes – strengthen self-confidence, self-acceptance, and steadiness of mind and heart, revealing our fundamental disposition toward kindness.

2020-01-13 (8 days) Spirit Rock Meditation Center

2020-01-14 The Transformative Power of Metta Practice (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 56:21
Donald Rothberg
Guided by a recent translation of a poem about metta practice by an early Buddhist nun, from The First Free Women, we contemplate the simple yet radical and profound spirit of metta practice. The author tells us: "I have followed this Path of friendship to its end. And I can say with absolute certainty—it will lead you home.” We look at how metta cuts through fear, how it deepens concentration, how we work with the challenges of metta practice, how we navigate the “purification process” linked with metta practice, and how we integrate the kind heart, mindfulness, wisdom, and skillful action.
2020-01-15 Brahmavihara Practice 46:28
Donald Rothberg
Instructions for "radiating metta" and guided practice.
2020-01-15 Compassion, Community-Metta (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 52:15
Beth Sternlieb
"One who loves has the key to unlock the door to ultimate reality: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
2020-01-16 When we consider suffering, kindness is the only response 58:38
Sylvia Boorstein
2020-01-18 Happiness and Letting Go (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 44:38
Beth Sternlieb
Generosity, Sila, Wisdom, Compassionate Listening on the Path to awakening.
2020-01-19 Metta (Lovingkindness), Equanimity, and Daily Life Practice (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 66:05
Donald Rothberg
We explore two dimensions of integration in metta practice: (1) connecting metta and the awakened heart with wisdom, especially through the connection between metta and equanimity; and (2) pointing to ways to continue our metta practice in several dimensions of daily life—in individual practice, in being with others, and in our participation in the wider social world.
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