Hugh Byrne, Ph. D. is a senior teacher with the Insight Meditation Community of Washington. He completed a four-year teacher training at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and the Insight Meditation Society led by Jack Kornfield. Hugh is also trained in and teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and has completed training in Somatic Experiencing, a mind-body approach to healing trauma. He is a co-founder of the Washington Buddhist Peace Fellowship.
Hugh is the author of The Here-and-Now Habit: How Mindfulness Can Help You Break Unhealthy Habits Once and For All (New Harbinger Publications, March 2016).
Hugh has been on IMCW’s Board of Directors and a member of the Teachers Council since 2003. He teaches three weekly classes in Washington, DC, leads retreats and workshops nationally and abroad, and is available for teacher interviews. He is also one of four teachers for the Meditation Teacher Training Institute (MTTI).
This talk explores the Buddhist archetype of the bodhisattva and its universal quality across spiritual and other traditions of commitment to the transformation and awakening of one’s own heart for the benefit and freedom of all beings.
The civil rights movement in the U.S.—and the role and courage of Rosa Parks and other ordinary people—is presented as a ‘bodhisattva movement’ and a model and encouragement for the challenges we face today.
This talk and guided meditation includes reflections on how cultivating compassion towards ourselves is essential for our own well-being and happiness—and a key to opening our hearts to the suffering of others. It concludes with a guided self-compassion meditation.
As we bring loving awareness to our all that is arising in our bodies, hearts, and minds, there is a natural falling away of the illusion of separation - of ‘us’ and ‘them’ - and the cultivation of a wise and compassionate heart. With our hearts open to the suffering of the world, the Bodhisattva path of commitment to healing suffering, division and separation provides us with a vision of engaged action in the world in these difficult times.
Compassion has been called ‘the quivering of the heart in response to suffering.' Cultivating a compassionate heart helps us to hold kindly our own painful feelings and emotions, and engage with the suffering of others, near and far.