What supports awakening within the life we are living? And what is it that gets liberated? These are two useful guiding questions to have.
The Buddha speaks of the Citta, the animating and yet ungraspable knowing and feeling experience at the core of our being - often translated as the heart-mind.
This Citta is always present, but spends much of its time obscured or afflicted by different flows and patterns, to the extent that we lose touch with its inherently free nature. In this day and age, we can usefully understand these patterns as ‘inner parts’, each presenting with distinct needs and traits. Inner parts may arise in certain situations, take over the seat of our consciousness, or be in conflict with other parts of us, depending on the conditions at the time. Such a view on things can explain a great deal in fact; our avoidance and over efforting, our quirks and neurosis, our grasping and anxiety - can all be ‘parts’ trying to help us, but not necessarily succeeding. When brought into the light of loving awareness, they can relax, harmonise and become more like allies of awakening, rather than keeping us disconnected from that which we most deeply seek.
During this weekend of practice at home, we will explore and make use of the 'parts' perspective of Internal Family Systems, to help relate to our inner world in a way that supports awakening within the circumstances we are living. The path of awakening is not about escaping to somewhere else, a different realm or a retreat centre perhaps, but coming more deeply into connection with this very moment, wherever we are. By illuminating and understanding our inner environment, our conflict and entanglement with ‘what is’ can lessen, and our inherently free and curious heart can come forth and free-up the very patterns that obscure it.
This spacious practice weekend is suitable for all levels of experience, although some previous experience in meditation practice is assumed.