We all participate in this generated ‘me’ experience, which is of being ‘in here’ afflicted by the world ‘out there’. But we can come to understand this scenario as conditions with causes and effects. We can cultivate the basis for contentment, for love, tolerance, acceptance, gladness. There is a Path.
This talk explores the three archetypal refuges of awareness (Buddha-nature), truth (Dharma) and love (Sangha) through stories, illustrations and reflections. We end with a Refuge ceremony that can be done by anyone who feels drawn. (To participate you will need a 20” red string.)
This guided meditation invites us to imagine a clenched fist relaxing open, and explores this in releasing contractions in the body as well as the grip of thoughts. When we deeply let go and let be, our energy flows freely. We reconnect with our natural aliveness, love and awareness.
In this second exploration of the nature of inquiry or investigation, we first review some of what was covered in the first talk. We situate inquiry or investigation within the teaching of the Seven Factors of Awakening, as one of the three "energizing" factors. After outlining five modes of inquiry and reviewing the first two--inquiring with mindfulness and deep listening--covered last time, we explore a third mode of inquiry--using a teaching to guide one's practice--pointing to using several possible teachings as examples. We then focus on a fourth mode--radical questioning--giving several examples. We end with a period of discussion and dialogue.
After a period of settling, we work with two main forms of inquiry or investigation (one of the Seven Factors of Awakening). The first is inquiry through mindfulness when an experience has some duration: Asking what's happening and exploring what's going in the body, the emotions, and the story-line or narrative. The second is inquiry through working with a teaching. Here we work with a simple teaching, coming from the Four Noble Truths: "If there's suffering (or struggle), where's the attachment (or fixed idea, etc.)?" We explore these in formal meditation; they can also be applied in the flow of daily life.