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Retreat Dharma Talks

Awakening Joy and Wellbeing

The Buddha was known as “The Happy One.” However, the teachings often seem to emphasize working with suffering. Joy and happiness can seem frivolous even though joy is one of the Seven Factors of Awakening. In this retreat we will practice with an emphasis on cultivating wholesome states to develop our natural capacity for well-being and happiness. Our own development of well-being and joy then becomes our gift to a troubled world.

The retreat includes silent sitting and walking periods with instructions in Mindfulness meditation, practice meetings with teachers, and some experiential exercises. This retreat is appropriate for both experienced and new students.

2022-05-27 (6 days) Spirit Rock Meditation Center

2022-05-28 Getting Started: Learning the Basics of Mindfulness (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 57:05
Diana Winston
This first day instructions guides students who are just starting out with their practice. We learn to find our meditation anchor and work with distraction.
2022-05-28 Awakening Joy as a Practice (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 58:17
James Baraz
In his teaching on The Four Wise Efforts, the Buddha taught us to maintain and increase wholesome states (kusala) when they arise. This talk explains how to make that a central part of our practice.
2022-05-29 Including body sensations and sounds in the field of awareness. (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 57:58
James Baraz
After establishing our anchor or home base in the meditation we can expand the field beyond the breath to skillfully include other body sensations and sounds.
2022-05-30 Cultivating Self Compassion as a Path to Joy 56:33
Diana Winston
Since so many of us struggle with self-judgment, what practices and tools will help us find more self-compassion and cultivate more joy? In this talk we explore the roots of self-judgment, and the ways in which mindfulness, loving kindness, and the recognition of our shared humanity and inner goodness can work together to alleviate the critical mind and promote joy and resilience.
2022-05-30 Metta for Self (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 38:01
James Baraz
Sometimes the hardest person to send metta to is oneself. This guided meditation invites us to see ourselves through a loved one's eyes to see who we really are.
2022-05-31 Equanimity Stories and Practice (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 40:13
Diana Winston
This session offers an overview of equanimity, the quality of even-mindedness, balance, and non-reactivity. We discuss how it is cultivated, hear some stories about it, and do a guided equanimity practice.
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