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Live Oak Thursday Zen

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  • layover3@att.net
    This Thursday, we will begin a chapter on karma from A Path With Heart. The term karma has often been misused, and Jack Kornfield does a good job here of
    Message 1 of 20 , Jan 3, 2012

    This Thursday, we will begin a chapter on karma from A Path With Heart.  The term karma has often been misused, and Jack Kornfield does a good job here of explaining it.  Also, attached and below is a meditation from the last chapter on the Emperor’s New Clothes to consider.

    Cheers,

    John

     

    Meditation Reflecting on the Shadow

    of Your Form of Practice

     

     

         Just as every community has a shadow, every set of teachings will also have areas of shadow, aspects of life that they do not illuminate wisely.  Every style of teaching will also produce its near enemy, the way that particular teaching can be most easily misused or misunderstood.  It can be useful to take some time to reflect on the strengths and limitations of the practice you have chosen to follow.  You can then consider to what extent these are issues in your own spiritual life.  The following examples hint at the possible shadows you may encounter.

     

         Insight Meditation and similar Buddhist practices can lead to quietude, to withdrawal from and fear of the world.  The emptiness taught in Zen and nondualist Vedanta can lead to a related problem, to being disconnected and ungrounded.  Any form of idealistic, otherworldly teaching that sees life on earth as a dream or focuses on higher realms can lead one to live with complacency, amorality, and indifference.  Physical practices such as hatha yoga can lead to bodily perfection instead of awakening of the heart.  Kundalini yoga can lead students to become experience junkies in search of exciting sensations of body and mind rather than liberation.  Those such as Krishnamurti and others who teach against any discipline or method of practice can lead people to remain intellectual about spiritual life without providing any deep inner experience.  Practices that involve a great deal of study can do the same.  Moralistic practices with strong rules about what is pure and what is not can reinforce low self-esteem or lead to rigidity and self-righteousness.  Practices of tantra can become an excuse to act out desires as a pseudo form of spiritual practice.  Devotional practices can leave clarity and discriminating wisdom undeveloped.  Powerful gurus can make us think we can’t do it ourselves.  Practices of joy and celebration such as Sufi dancing may leave students lacking an understanding of the inevitable loss and sorrows of life.  Practices that emphasize suffering can miss the joy of life.

     

         As you reflect on these shadows, consider your own spiritual path and tradition.  Let yourself sense its strengths and weaknesses, its gifts and the ways it can be misused.  Notice where you may be caught and what more you might need.  Remember that there is nothing wrong with any of these practices per se.  They are simply tools for opening and awakening.  Each can be used skillfully or unknowingly misused.  As you mature in your own spiritual life, you can take responsibility for your own practice and reflect wisely on where you are entangled and what can awaken you to freedom in every realm.

     

                                         from Jack Kornfield’s A Path

                                            with Heart

     

     

  • James Surles
    Thanks, John, for this reflective meditation recap of our last chapter. Since we missed last week and have not yet read the conclusion it is a great reminder
    Message 2 of 20 , Jan 4, 2012
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      Thanks, John, for this reflective meditation recap of our last chapter.  Since we missed last week and have not yet read the conclusion it is a great reminder of the good information in this chapter.  With my background it was a very meaningful and educational chapter in this book.

       

      Jim S,

       

      From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com [mailto:liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of layover3@...
      Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2012 5:09 PM
      To: LiveOakZen
      Subject: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen [1 Attachment]

       

       

      [Attachment(s) from layover3@... included below]

      This Thursday, we will begin a chapter on karma from A Path With Heart.  The term karma has often been misused, and Jack Kornfield does a good job here of explaining it.  Also, attached and below is a meditation from the last chapter on the Emperor’s New Clothes to consider.

      Cheers,

      John

       

      Meditation Reflecting on the Shadow

      of Your Form of Practice

       

       

           Just as every community has a shadow, every set of teachings will also have areas of shadow, aspects of life that they do not illuminate wisely.  Every style of teaching will also produce its near enemy, the way that particular teaching can be most easily misused or misunderstood.  It can be useful to take some time to reflect on the strengths and limitations of the practice you have chosen to follow.  You can then consider to what extent these are issues in your own spiritual life.  The following examples hint at the possible shadows you may encounter.

       

           Insight Meditation and similar Buddhist practices can lead to quietude, to withdrawal from and fear of the world.  The emptiness taught in Zen and nondualist Vedanta can lead to a related problem, to being disconnected and ungrounded.  Any form of idealistic, otherworldly teaching that sees life on earth as a dream or focuses on higher realms can lead one to live with complacency, amorality, and indifference.  Physical practices such as hatha yoga can lead to bodily perfection instead of awakening of the heart.  Kundalini yoga can lead students to become experience junkies in search of exciting sensations of body and mind rather than liberation.  Those such as Krishnamurti and others who teach against any discipline or method of practice can lead people to remain intellectual about spiritual life without providing any deep inner experience.  Practices that involve a great deal of study can do the same.  Moralistic practices with strong rules about what is pure and what is not can reinforce low self-esteem or lead to rigidity and self-righteousness.  Practices of tantra can become an excuse to act out desires as a pseudo form of spiritual practice.  Devotional practices can leave clarity and discriminating wisdom undeveloped.  Powerful gurus can make us think we can’t do it ourselves.  Practices of joy and celebration such as Sufi dancing may leave students lacking an understanding of the inevitable loss and sorrows of life.  Practices that emphasize suffering can miss the joy of life.

       

           As you reflect on these shadows, consider your own spiritual path and tradition.  Let yourself sense its strengths and weaknesses, its gifts and the ways it can be misused.  Notice where you may be caught and what more you might need.  Remember that there is nothing wrong with any of these practices per se.  They are simply tools for opening and awakening.  Each can be used skillfully or unknowingly misused.  As you mature in your own spiritual life, you can take responsibility for your own practice and reflect wisely on where you are entangled and what can awaken you to freedom in every realm.

       

                                           from Jack Kornfield’s A Path

                                              with Heart

       

       

    • Lisa Kuntz
      Maybe you can share more with us on Thursday, Jim. I would like to hear how it relates to your background. Lisa From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com
      Message 3 of 20 , Jan 4, 2012
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        Maybe you can share more with us on Thursday, Jim. I would like to hear how it relates to your background.

         

        Lisa

         

        From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com [mailto:liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of James Surles
        Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2012 10:21 AM
        To: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: RE: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen

         

         

        Thanks, John, for this reflective meditation recap of our last chapter.  Since we missed last week and have not yet read the conclusion it is a great reminder of the good information in this chapter.  With my background it was a very meaningful and educational chapter in this book.

         

        Jim S,

         

        From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com [mailto:liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of layover3@...
        Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2012 5:09 PM
        To: LiveOakZen
        Subject: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen [1 Attachment]

         

         

        [Attachment(s) from layover3@... included below]

        This Thursday, we will begin a chapter on karma from A Path With Heart.  The term karma has often been misused, and Jack Kornfield does a good job here of explaining it.  Also, attached and below is a meditation from the last chapter on the Emperor’s New Clothes to consider.

        Cheers,

        John

         

        Meditation Reflecting on the Shadow

        of Your Form of Practice

         

         

             Just as every community has a shadow, every set of teachings will also have areas of shadow, aspects of life that they do not illuminate wisely.  Every style of teaching will also produce its near enemy, the way that particular teaching can be most easily misused or misunderstood.  It can be useful to take some time to reflect on the strengths and limitations of the practice you have chosen to follow.  You can then consider to what extent these are issues in your own spiritual life.  The following examples hint at the possible shadows you may encounter.

         

             Insight Meditation and similar Buddhist practices can lead to quietude, to withdrawal from and fear of the world.  The emptiness taught in Zen and nondualist Vedanta can lead to a related problem, to being disconnected and ungrounded.  Any form of idealistic, otherworldly teaching that sees life on earth as a dream or focuses on higher realms can lead one to live with complacency, amorality, and indifference.  Physical practices such as hatha yoga can lead to bodily perfection instead of awakening of the heart.  Kundalini yoga can lead students to become experience junkies in search of exciting sensations of body and mind rather than liberation.  Those such as Krishnamurti and others who teach against any discipline or method of practice can lead people to remain intellectual about spiritual life without providing any deep inner experience.  Practices that involve a great deal of study can do the same.  Moralistic practices with strong rules about what is pure and what is not can reinforce low self-esteem or lead to rigidity and self-righteousness.  Practices of tantra can become an excuse to act out desires as a pseudo form of spiritual practice.  Devotional practices can leave clarity and discriminating wisdom undeveloped.  Powerful gurus can make us think we can’t do it ourselves.  Practices of joy and celebration such as Sufi dancing may leave students lacking an understanding of the inevitable loss and sorrows of life.  Practices that emphasize suffering can miss the joy of life.

         

             As you reflect on these shadows, consider your own spiritual path and tradition.  Let yourself sense its strengths and weaknesses, its gifts and the ways it can be misused.  Notice where you may be caught and what more you might need.  Remember that there is nothing wrong with any of these practices per se.  They are simply tools for opening and awakening.  Each can be used skillfully or unknowingly misused.  As you mature in your own spiritual life, you can take responsibility for your own practice and reflect wisely on where you are entangled and what can awaken you to freedom in every realm.

         

                                             from Jack Kornfield’s A Path

                                                with Heart

         

         


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      • layover3@att.net
        Peg is well again, so this Thursday, she will be visiting us. During the sitting periods, she will be offering practice discussion, which is a one-on-one
        Message 4 of 20 , Jan 30, 2012
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          Peg is well again, so this Thursday, she will be visiting us.  During the sitting periods, she will be offering practice discussion, which is a one-on-one discussion with a teacher and which will be done in Room 106.  Terry and Karen have earlier expressed interest in doing this, so that there should be time for one more participant.  After the sitting periods, instead of a reading, Peg will join us to give a Dharma talk. Afterwards, we will adjourn to Rudino’s for a bite and a sip if you can make it.

          Cheers,

          John

           

        • Connie Tortorelli
          John,  If no one else asks for the remaining slot with Peg, I will take it. I am not practicing as I should .  I figure I only need to just do it . But
          Message 5 of 20 , Jan 30, 2012
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            John,  If no one else asks for the remaining slot with Peg, I will take it. I am not practicing as I "should".  I figure I only need to "just do it". But would like to hear what Peg has to say... if no one else has need. Thanks, Connie


            From: "layover3@..." <layover3@...>
            To: LiveOakZen <liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 2:58 PM
            Subject: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen

             
            Peg is well again, so this Thursday, she will be visiting us.  During the sitting periods, she will be offering practice discussion, which is a one-on-one discussion with a teacher and which will be done in Room 106.  Terry and Karen have earlier expressed interest in doing this, so that there should be time for one more participant.  After the sitting periods, instead of a reading, Peg will join us to give a Dharma talk. Afterwards, we will adjourn to Rudino’s for a bite and a sip if you can make it.
            Cheers,
            John
             


          • layover3@att.net
            Connie: Let’s plan on it unless someone else says they have a pressing need. Bows, John From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com [mailto:liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com]
            Message 6 of 20 , Jan 30, 2012
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              Connie:

              Let’s plan on it unless someone else says they have a pressing need.

              Bows,

              John

               

              From: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com [mailto:liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Connie Tortorelli
              Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 3:25 PM
              To: liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: Re: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen

               

               

              John,  If no one else asks for the remaining slot with Peg, I will take it. I am not practicing as I "should".  I figure I only need to "just do it". But would like to hear what Peg has to say... if no one else has need. Thanks, Connie

               


              From: "layover3@..." <layover3@...>
              To: LiveOakZen <liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com>
              Sent: Monday, January 30, 2012 2:58 PM
              Subject: [liveoakzen] Live Oak Thursday Zen

               

               

              Peg is well again, so this Thursday, she will be visiting us.  During the sitting periods, she will be offering practice discussion, which is a one-on-one discussion with a teacher and which will be done in Room 106.  Terry and Karen have earlier expressed interest in doing this, so that there should be time for one more participant.  After the sitting periods, instead of a reading, Peg will join us to give a Dharma talk. Afterwards, we will adjourn to Rudino’s for a bite and a sip if you can make it.

              Cheers,

              John

               

               

            • John Daniewicz
              Attached and below is the latest chapter from the book that I am working on that might be of interest. As I look at the Happiness factors that are listed near
              Message 7 of 20 , Jun 12, 2013
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              • 36 KB
              Attached and below is the latest chapter from the book that I am working on that might be of interest. As I look at the Happiness factors that are listed near the end of the write up, I see that we are working to support #8, that besides the Four Seasons labyrinth walks we need to do some walking meditations in Mayfield park in support of #1, and we need to adjourn to Rudino's more often and have some pot lucks in support of #2. Any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
               
              This Thursday, we will read the chapter, "Putting It Together"  where we need to discuss what he means by, "The call is to tumble into the stream, to learn the current, to flow towards the great ocean." I think it might have something to do with the happiness factors that I have listed in my attached Chapter 11.
              Cheers,
              John
               
               
               
               
               
               
              Chapter 11. Our Hunter-Gatherer Inheritance
               
              While it took 10,000 years to go from the Tribal and Warrior-King periods to the present, the prior Hunter-Gatherer period took 2,990,000 years. Thus, this period represents 99.7% of human existence. As we have discussed in Chapter 4, the Hunter-Gatherer period was one of non-violence and egalitarian sharing, and it has had the major role in the development of our right brain and of our frontal cortex where we have our capabilities for empathy and intuition.
               
              Meanwhile, the most recent 10,000 years has had the major role in our left brain’s development of logic and reason. This has been a key factor for our successful adaptation to population growth, allowing us, so far, to increase food supplies to feed an ever increasing population. However, as we have discussed in Chapters 5 to 10, this development has also had the unwanted side effects of increasing:
              ·        Attachment to possessions and wealth;
              ·        Inequalities in gender, race, and class;
              ·        Separation from nature,
              ·        Violence and warfare.
               
              A good example of how we have been trained to disconnect and see ourselves as separate from other people can be found in our battlefield history. During World War II, based on soldier interviews, less than 20% of the soldiers actually aimed at the enemy soldiers when they fired their guns. The rest would aim their guns high, or low, or pretend to be unloading, or whatever, so as to avoid killing, even when they were being fired on by the enemy. After studying the World War II experience, the military began training programs to desensitize soldiers in order to condition them to kill. These programs were successful. The killing rate was raised from less than 20% to 65% by the Korean War and to 90 to 95% by the Viet Nam War. Although these programs increased the kill rate by overcoming our empathetic nature, they cost our soldiers increased rates of PTSD, suicide, alcoholism, and drug addiction. [Dennis, Sheila, and Matt Linn, “Healing the Future – Personal Recovery from Societal Wounding, pp. 51-53, citing Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, “On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society”; S.L.A. Marshall, “Men Against Fire”; and Alfie Kohn, “The Brighter Side of Human Nature”]
              (This side of war is shocking to us because it goes against the John Wayne type glorification of war that has suppressed realistic descriptions of war throughout history by a very strong patriarchal system. For an example of a true war experience, see Claude Thomas’s “At Hells Gate – A Soldier’s Journey from War to Peace”. In this story of a tail gunner on a U.S. helicopter gun ship in Viet Nam, he says about his father’s stories, who was a World War II veteran, and his grandfather’s stories, who was a World War I veteran, “They lied!”)
               
              This disconnection from our Hunter-Gatherer inheritance is further explained by Neuroscientist Marco Iacoboni:
              “. . . externally manipulated, massive belief systems, including political ideologies, tend to override the unconscious, pre-reflective, neurobiological traits that should bring us together. For example, the fear mongering of artificially created global scarcity may attenuate our empathetic response. Another is the military’s refusal to allow putting a face on the U.S. wounded and dead soldiers in Iraq. As Professor Robert Jensen puts it, ‘The way we are educated and entertained keeps us from knowing about or understanding the pain of others.’” [Gary Olson, “Research on Human Nature Is Cause For Optimism,” The Morning Call, June 29, 2007]
               
              Humans cannot go back to the Hunter-Gatherer life style because there is not enough land to support our current population using this way of finding food. However, we still carry with us the capabilities of the right brain that came out of this period. Our current culture has learned how to override these capabilities, but this training can be unlearned to become “saved” as they say in Christianity or “enlightened” as they say in Buddhism. Based on current research, there appears to be strong benefits to all of us for doing so. The Movie “Happy” is a 2011 documentary summarizing the recent results of happiness research. For many years, the causes of depression and sadness have been researched. Now, these same techniques have been used to look at the other side of the equation.
               
              As discussed in the movie at an overview level, the researchers have found that 50% of our happiness level is determined by our genetics; 10% is determined by our job, status, money, and health; and 40% is determined by actions that we choose to do.
               
              This 10% number will probably be surprising to our materialism indoctrinated ears, but as an example, the movie’s narrator discusses happiness levels with a 2-person rickshaw puller who works and lives in the slums of India. He has a happy life despite the fact that:
              ·        Some times he and his family only have rice to eat;
              ·        Sometimes the rain blows in on them in their makeshift shelter during the monsoon season;
              ·        Sometimes the drunks that he is pulling enjoy swearing at him.
              He says that he and his neighbors all work together; and he enjoys the way his kids welcome him home.
               
               For the 40% factor, here are the main actions that research has determined will increase our happiness:
              1.      Being out in nature.
              2.      Being in community and with extended family and friends.
              3.      Doing aerobic exercise which increases the dopamine levels in our brain.
              4.      Successfully dealing with adversity and suffering whereby we become more grounded and discover who our true friends are and what we should be grateful for (as exampled by the rickshaw puller described above).
              5.      Up to 20 families living in multi-family housing such as is being done in Denmark where house work such as cooking is shared and the feeling of community is strengthened despite the fragmentation of the extended family system. (This is the opposite of our single family isolation in the suburban environment.)
              6.      Writing down on a weekly basis what we are thankful for.
              7.      Doing acts of kindness on a regular basis.
              8.      Doing Loving-Kindness Meditation, or Metta as it has been called in Buddhism since prehistory, whereby a person meditates in turn on oneself, then on loved ones, then on associates, then on even people that we are having troubles with, then on the entire world of nature and the universe, wishing each in turn that they be filled with loving kindness, that they be well, that they be at peace and at ease, and that they be happy.1
               
              Looking at this list, note that all of the happiness factors except for #3 above involve getting us better connected to each other and to nature in an egalitarian and sharing way. This in turn gets us in alignment with our right brain values that came from the 99.7% Hunter-Gatherer period of our existence. This is the part of us that we really are most comfortable with. This is what makes us feel like we are home.
               
               
               
               
               
              Note 1: MRI studies of people doing this form of meditation confirm that through training, people can develop skills that promote happiness and compassion and that people are not just stuck at their respective set points. “Thinking about other people’s suffering and not just your own helps to put everything in perspective . . . and that learning compassion for oneself is a critical first step in compassion meditation.” It may also be useful for preventing depression in people who are susceptible to it. [Dian Land, “Study Shows Compassion Meditation Changes the Brain,” University of Wisconsin – Madison News, March 25, 2008]
               
               
               
               
              Note 1: MRI studies of people doing this form of meditation confirm that through training, people can develop skills that promote happiness and compassion and that people are not just stuck at their respective set points. “Thinking about other people’s suffering and not just your own helps to put everything in perspective . . . and that learning compassion for oneself is a critical first step in compassion meditation.” It may also be useful for preventing depression in people who are susceptible to it. [Dian Land, “Study Shows Compassion Meditation Changes the Brain,” University of Wisconsin – Madison News, March 25, 2008]
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
               
            • John Daniewicz
              This Thursday, Peg Syverson of Appamada will sit with us and lead us in Inquiry. Peg started her Zen group at Live Oak, and we are very thankful that she takes
              Message 8 of 20 , Jul 16, 2013
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                This Thursday, Peg Syverson of Appamada will sit with us and lead us in Inquiry. Peg started her Zen group at Live Oak, and we are very thankful that she takes this time to be with us.
                Bows,
                John
              • John Daniewicz
                This Thursday, we will resume reading/discussing from, If You re Lucky, Your Heart Will Break . The next chapter is on one of the precepts,  but reading
                Message 9 of 20 , Jul 24, 2013
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                  This Thursday, we will resume reading/discussing from, "If You're Lucky, Your Heart Will Break".
                  The next chapter is on one of the precepts,  but reading it,  I don't get it as a precept. It's called, "Do Not Cut Yourself Off From This World." So I am counting on you to help  bringing it to life.
                  Bows,
                  John
                • John Daniewicz
                  The next chapter is, Do not kill -- Reverence this mysterious life. We will get into chimpanzees vs bonobos. Cheers, John  The next chapter is, Do not kill
                  Message 10 of 20 , Jul 31, 2013
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                    The next chapter is, "Do not kill -- Reverence this mysterious life." We will get into chimpanzees vs bonobos.
                    Cheers,
                    John 
                  • John Daniewicz
                    This Thursday, we will start with a Four Seasons walking meditation at the Live Oak Labyrinth for the Summer Season since it is now warm enough. Then we ll do
                    Message 11 of 20 , Aug 14, 2013
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                      This Thursday, we will start with a Four Seasons walking meditation at the Live Oak Labyrinth for the Summer Season since it is now warm enough. Then we'll do a sitting meditations, then do a read/discuss of the next chapter from "If You're Lucky, Your Heart will Break" which is on "Do Not Steal -- Respect the Integrity of Things".
                      Before going to the Labyrinth, we will first meet up in Rm 109 at or before 7:00 PM.
                      Bows,
                      John
                    • John Daniewicz
                      For tomorrow, we will read and discuss the 3rd chapter of The Untethered Soul on Who Are You? . In preparation for this chapter, spend some time considering
                      Message 12 of 20 , Oct 2, 2013
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                        For tomorrow, we will read and discuss the 3rd chapter of "The Untethered Soul" on "Who Are You?".
                        In preparation for this chapter, spend some time considering your anwer to the question, "Who Am I?"
                        Last April, when I attended the Plum Blossom Sangha's annual retreat, there was a questiannaire that needed to be filled out at its beginning. The first quesiton on it was, "Who Am I?"  It is a good question to ponder.
                        Bows,
                        John
                      • John Daniewicz
                        This Thursday, we will return to reading Going Home -- Jesus and Buddha as Brothers Coincedently, we will be starting Part 2, which is on Going Home. It was
                        Message 13 of 20 , Dec 11, 2013
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                          This Thursday, we will return to reading "Going Home -- Jesus and Buddha as Brothers" Coincedently, we will be starting Part 2, which is on Going Home. It was written in December of 1995 right before Christmas so it is timely. We will be discussing where is our home.
                          Cheers,
                          John
                        • John Daniewicz
                          This Thursday (tomorrow) we will read about and sing a song about Thay s island within. Here s a link to the song:
                          Message 14 of 20 , Dec 25, 2013
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                            This Thursday (tomorrow) we will read about and sing a song about Thay's island within. Here's a link to the song: https://soundcloud.com/#tj-fool/island-of-self
                            Season's Greetings,
                            John
                          • Mary Connor
                            Cheers to you all! I ll be on my way to the airport when you sing this. All my family is meeting up in Colorado, if medical issues allow. I ll be missing two
                            Message 15 of 20 , Dec 26, 2013
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                              Cheers to you all! I'll be on my way to the airport when you sing this. All my family is meeting up in Colorado, if medical issues allow. I'll be missing two weeks, unfortunately.
                              Peace, Mary


                              On Wed, Dec 25, 2013 at 2:29 PM, John Daniewicz <layover3@...> wrote:


                              This Thursday (tomorrow) we will read about and sing a song about Thay's island within. Here's a link to the song: https://soundcloud.com/#tj-fool/island-of-self
                              Season's Greetings,
                              John



                            • John Daniewicz
                              The next chapter is Hopelessness and Death. If we truly believe in our and everything s impermanence then we get off of the treadmill of hope and fear. To
                              Message 16 of 20 , Sep 3, 2014
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                                The next chapter is "Hopelessness and Death."  If we truly believe in our and everything's impermanence then we get off of the treadmill of hope and fear.

                                "To undo our very ancient and very stuck habitual patterns of mind requires that we begin to turn around some of our most basic assumptions. Believing in a solid, separate self, continuing to seek pleasure and avoid pain, thinking that someone "out there" is to blame for our pain -- one has to get totally fed up with these ways of thinking. One has to give up hope that this way of thinking will bring us satisfaction. Suffering begins to dissolve when we can question the belief or the hope that there's anywhere to hide."

                                Bows,
                                John
                              • John Daniewicz
                                This Thursday, we will read and discuss the first half of the chapter, Servants of Peace, which covers the five Paramitas (generosity, discipline, patience,
                                Message 17 of 20 , Nov 19, 2014
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                                  This Thursday, we will read and discuss the first half of the chapter, "Servants of Peace," which covers the five Paramitas (generosity, discipline, patience, exertion, and meditation)  that are all supported by prajna (which I think of as intuitive wisdom).

                                  This chapter helps to explain the term prajnaparamita which is a key part of the important yet difficult ending of the Heart Sutra:

                                  "All Buddhas in the past, present and future have attained Supreme Enlightenment by relying on the Prajnaparamita. Therefore we know that the Prajnaparamita is the great magic Mantra, the great Mantra of illumination, it is the supreme Mantra, the unequaled Mantra which can truly wipe out all suffering without fail."
                                  Therefore, he uttered the Prajnaparamita mantra, by saying:
                                  "Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasemgate Bodhi-svaha!"
                                  (Which means...Gone, gone, gone over, gone fully over to the other shore. Awakened! So be it!)

                                  But this first half of the chapter will all be on just the first Paramita, generosity. Because of its importance and the difficulty that many of us have with it, I think it merits a discussion all by itself,
                                  Bows,
                                  John
                                • Mary Connor
                                  Bad news is that I have to miss tonight again because of Katie s schedule. Good news is that I accepted a job offer, and it was perfectly timed to save a
                                  Message 18 of 20 , Nov 20, 2014
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                                    Bad news is that I have to miss tonight again because of Katie's schedule.
                                    Good news is that I accepted a job offer, and it was perfectly timed to save a coworker of mine (a wonderful single mom) from being downsized with her group. That's a blessing!

                                    peace, Mary

                                    On Wed, Nov 19, 2014 at 4:27 PM, John Daniewicz layover3@... [liveoakzen] <liveoakzen@yahoogroups.com> wrote:


                                    This Thursday, we will read and discuss the first half of the chapter, "Servants of Peace," which covers the five Paramitas (generosity, discipline, patience, exertion, and meditation)  that are all supported by prajna (which I think of as intuitive wisdom).

                                    This chapter helps to explain the term prajnaparamita which is a key part of the important yet difficult ending of the Heart Sutra:

                                    "All Buddhas in the past, present and future have attained Supreme Enlightenment by relying on the Prajnaparamita. Therefore we know that the Prajnaparamita is the great magic Mantra, the great Mantra of illumination, it is the supreme Mantra, the unequaled Mantra which can truly wipe out all suffering without fail."
                                    Therefore, he uttered the Prajnaparamita mantra, by saying:
                                    "Gate, Gate, Paragate, Parasemgate Bodhi-svaha!"
                                    (Which means...Gone, gone, gone over, gone fully over to the other shore. Awakened! So be it!)

                                    But this first half of the chapter will all be on just the first Paramita, generosity. Because of its importance and the difficulty that many of us have with it, I think it merits a discussion all by itself,
                                    Bows,
                                    John



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