Archive of Talks

Liberation and Interconnection

Steve was this Sunday’s Topic and Presenter. He drew on a talk by Jack Kornfield, in which Jack fearlessly confronts some of the most difficult and divisive issues afflicting our society and reminds us: “The inner practice of liberation is not an individual matter. One of the deepest realizations that comes when we meditate, as…

Stepping Free of Habitual Suffering

Our habit energy, invested in trying to control the world, leads to our suffering. The Buddha instructs us to lay down the burdens of life and experience freedom. Following the Buddha’s path insulates us from external conditions. This week Jeff shared a talk given by Mark Nunberg entitled, “Mountains are only heavy if you try…

Subtle perspectives on the climate crisis

Our role in the climate crisis is usually understood as the heedless use of energy polluting the atmosphere, resulting in escalating temperatures which produce aberrations in the environment at large. Perhaps a greater depth of understanding can be discovered in the image of Indra’s Net, a symbolic representation of interdependence with ramifications in many dimensions…

Coming out of nowhere

We have all had them, these “coming out of nowhere” moments when we are just here right now; when nothing happens but everything is different somehow. Ron guided our visit to this mysterious territory this week, drawing on the insights of a dharma talk by Brian Lesage, who leads us to look deeply into these…

The Greatest Question

As 2023 begins to unfold, we find ourselves in the midst of what Duane Elgin calls a “global initiation process for humanity”, with climate chaos intensifying suffering for all sentient beings. How can our meditation and mindfulness practices help us to work constructively with the anger and grief that naturally arise in response? Jane led…

Just starting over

What does it mean to just start over? Under the eye of mindfulness it is a profound practice. When we cultivate the practice of starting over, we are reconnecting to the “wise” or “right intention” of the Noble Eightfold Path, renewing our intention to be present with our values at any given moment. This week…

Winter Solstice

The winter solstice has held a special place in the routines of many cultures throughout history. Its observance has varied considerably but there are countless traditions associated with the end of a cycle and the beginning of a new one. How does the theme of renewal and the rebirth of the wheel of seasons resonate…

The Obstacle is the Path

Turn all obstacles into the path for practice.  What does it mean to say, “I will take this situation or relationship as a way for learning”? We look at so many patterns and we have to ask – is there learning? This week, Eveline guided us with a talk by Donald Rothberg, “Taking Everything As…

Being somebody and being nobody

This Sunday’s talk built upon last week’s talk about letting go of our clinging to the stories that serve to define our present and future experiences. Buddhism helps us loosen the limitations and dissolve the solidity of who we think we are, what we think we have.  But is it ever healthy to have a…

Clinging to nothing

The classical teachings of the Buddha are from time to time presented in very compressed form. Quoted in last weeks sangha discussion, this exchange between the Buddha and Kappa, in the Sutta Nipata collection, caught Sam’s particular attention: “Having nothing, clinging to no thing: That is the ‘island’, there is no other. That is Unbinding,…

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