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Retreat Dharma Talks

Metta Retreat

Metta, or lovingkindness, 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.

2021-01-10 (7 days) Spirit Rock Meditation Center

2021-01-10 Our Training in Cultivating Metta: An Overview 55:07
Donald Rothberg
Practicing metta is an ancient vocation in which we incline toward metta, toward a warm, expansive friendliness, each moment. In doing so, we also come to see what gets in the way of metta. A metta retreat offers us a focused period of training, helping us then to bring our metta more into our formal practice, our daily lives, and a world deeply in need of metta. Yet there are challenges in metta practice. We also identify a number of these challenges, and how responses to the challenges point to some of the fundamental ways that training in metta transforms us.
2021-01-11 The Challenges of Metta Practice and Guidance from the Metta Sutta 58:39
Konda Mason
2021-01-12 Equanimity and Loving Our Enemies within the Framework of the Four Brahmaviharas 59:04
Kaira Jewel Lingo
The talk begins with an introduction to the Four Brahmaviharas and an exploration of how they are distinct (drawing on Ven. Analayo's sun simile). We then explore what equanimity is and how it supports metta when it comes to keeping our hearts open to those we find difficult. We also explore how equanimity helps us to stand up for what we believe in. The talk ends with a song based on a Thich Nhat Hanh poem about how to face injustice and hatred and still continue on.
2021-01-13 Practicing Metta with the Difficult Person 54:28
Jeff Haozous
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