At this time, let’s recognize that Mindfulness is not about continuous serenity. If we are doing our work we experience wholeness, a dynamic state that involves working with emotions such as powerlessness and fear. Join us in this exploration.
In addition to teaching Zen, I have also trained in counseling and psychology, and done some training in trauma and recovery and have offered stress reduction classes in hospitals, universities, a variety of settings. I sense the Covid experience as a collective trauma, most skillfully addressed through somatic approaches. Like all trauma, it is also a kind of initiation, requiring that we uncover inner resources. In this podcast, I combine ancient wisdom with contemporary somatic psychology to increase our toolset for healing self and others. Please join us!
Open Gate Zen Collective
Saturday Morning 3.14.20
We are collectively going through a time of complete transformation: Kairos, a turning moment. Kairos, to the Greeks, referred to the sacred and vital nature of time, a choice point, in which we must seize the opportunity as it arises. Kairos is the root of chaos. Yet as we center ourselves in this moment, this experience of chaos can serve as an initiation, through which we uncover our hidden resources. We can treat this time with reverence and as sacred ceremony. Zen practice provides a grounding and centering force, through which we can find calm abiding in the middle of the storm.
Joanna Macy refers to this as the Great Unravelling, and the Great Turning. In the Hindu tradition, which served as a spiritual foundation for the Buddha, there is also such a prophecy—the Kali Yuga, which dates back roughly thirty-five hundred years, indicates we are within a long phase of complete transformation.
This prophecy is referenced within Buddhism by the Lotus Sutra. The Lotus Sutra describes the Kali Yuga as a time of great change—what Zen students call “hard training”—when people will need to actively and intentionally connect with their inner wisdom and act with alignment and integrity. Without this connection to source, people may act against the grain of their true nature, and experience tumult and struggle. At this point, a core teaching is brought forth, which is also a charge we are given to meet these changing times: the Lion’s Roar. The Lion’s Roar is a practice of complete openness. By moving toward our experience and seeing everything that arises as workable, we have access to the highest energy. We find ourselves in the middle of the sacred circle of our life, without anything left out. If just one person is able to find the center of their sacred circle, through the power of resonance, the people with whom they are interconnected begin to find a place of calm abiding as well. This is where the Great Unravelling becomes the Great Turning.
These practices will help you to be that person, to bring your awareness and compassion to full expression in this changing world.
As Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh notes, to see clear water, one must look past the reflection and the sunlight. In this episode we discuss the three bodies of Buddha: Dharmakaya, Nirmanakaya and Sambhogakaya-- and point directly to mind.
This Dharma talk was given on Saturday, October 19th at Chapel of Awareness, Encinitas.
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From a Buddhist perspective, it is believed that death, like life, is a journey. The consciousness opens up in a particularly powerful way at the time of death; there is the opportunity for awakening on that great journey ...
In this presentation, we will explore Buddhist approaches to end-of-life, as well as art and ceremonies that can truly be a celebration of life, as based in traditional Buddhist ritual practices. Participants participate in ceremony that commemorates their own life, including a simplified form of the Tibetan phowa practice. These have been adapted, so as to be experientially welcome those of any faith tradition.
This talk was given to the San Diego chapter of IANDS (International Association of Near-Death Studies) at the Om Center for Spiritual Living, La Mesa.