Archive of Talks

Four Truths, Tasks, or Vows

What are the Four Noble Truths? Buddhist practice epouses practice and insight, and yet the core teaching of the path is a short list of statements. How can we look at this teaching from another perspective? Perhaps the Truths are meant to be activity rather than philosophy. This week Eric played a talk by Stephen […]

How Nature reveals dharma

The natural world offers us readily accessible opportunities to become intimate with the wisdom and qualities we work so hard to cultivate in enclosed spaces. Bringing our bodies and our senses into the present, nature reveals the laws of dharma, things just as they are. Mark Coleman’s talk, “The Wisdom of Nature Practice,” presents a […]

Dharma & the Ancient Wisdom traditions

The time before, during, and after the teaching career of the Buddha were rich in other Wisdom traditions worldwide. Some of these can shed light on the dharma with implications for a richer practice. Michael guided our discussion of these intersections this week and their possible potential. Some quotes from the talk and discussion: Lost […]

Social Anxiety and Buddhism

While it’s not a new phenomenon by any means, the physical distance created between people by the Pandemic has made the topic of social anxiety much more ubiquitous in our culture. The fear of judgement by others, always present in our minds, can suddenly be debilitating. This can make everyday activities become traumatic events and […]

Unresolved pain in the heart

Last week’s sangha conversation ended on the topic of dealing with the dissatisfaction of our current worldly condition and the ‘death of optimism.’ This week, Evelien played off of that topic and the concept of ‘death and rebirth’ with Mark Nunberg’s talk called ‘Meeting and Healing the Unresolved Pain in the Heart’.   Mark Nunberg talks about […]

Easter, Death and Rebirth – a Buddhist perspective

On this Easter Weekend, Drawing on a talk by Matthew Brensilver, Sam guided our reflections on the themes of death, renewal and rebirth from the Buddhist point of view. Points of divergence, similarity, and resonance between the Christian and Dharmic perspectives can enhance our sense of the meaning of this season for all. Sam played excerpts from these talks: Death and […]

Right Action Here; Right Action Now

There is comfort in the dharma’s ability to remain relevant and impactful over thousands of years. Yet while these seemingly timeless universal truths can anchor our navigation of the life experience, at times it can be important, if not essential, to pause and consider how the teachings pertain to the uniqueness of life on earth at […]

Where does the mind disappear to, and why?

The idea of staying mindfully present seems so elegant and simple.  Why is it so difficult to do?  Borrowing metaphors from a recent talk by Mark Nunberg, instead of maintaining attention on what is being known in the moment, we get “lost in the whirlpools of the mind,” and our minds create narratives for experience,  “reacting […]

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness

The very American political affirmation of the values of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness takes on new meanings when framed in a Buddhist context.  Steve guided our reflections on seeing this familiar phrase through a new lens, drawing on a talk by Thich Nhat Hanh.  You can listen to the talk here:

Stillness

We usually associate change with lots of moving around, but deep change comes through stillness. It’s associated with pleasure – not sense pleasure but heart pleasure. It’s a shift to learn to pause and lift from the engagement. Citta (heart/mind) qualities come through in this stillness and we can meet what arises with openness and […]

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