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Practice Circle 4/14: New Attitudes of Mindfulness: Curiosity 

| April 12, 2019 | 0 Comments
Practice Circle 4/14: New Attitudes of Mindfulness: Curiosity 

At Practice Circle, we have worked with Jon Kabat Zinn’s Seven Attitudes of Mindfulness: Acceptance, Nonjudging, Nonstriving, Letting Go, Patience, Humor, Trust, and Beginner’s Mind.  In their terrific training manual for mindfulness teachers, A Clinician’s Guide to Teaching Mindfulness, Christina Wolf and J. Greg Serpa add three more: Curiosity, Kindness, and Gratitude and Generosity.  Over […]

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A Buddhist Utopia from an Unlikely Source

| April 9, 2019 | 0 Comments
A Buddhist Utopia from an Unlikely Source

In the 1890s Rudyard Kipling wrote “The Song of the Cities”, a poem comprising quatrains in which 16 of the chief cities of the British Empire report to London (and/or Queen Victoria).  Most of them, it seems, are doing fine.             A typical example is Singapore’s contribution :- Hail, Mother !  East and West must […]

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Metta Meditation from Loving-Kindness to Fellow-Feeling

| March 27, 2019 | 0 Comments
Metta Meditation from Loving-Kindness to Fellow-Feeling

For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you. – Whitman, “Song of Myself”                 Four Cardinal Virtues of Buddhism are Metta ‘Loving-Kindness’, Karuna ‘Compassion’, Mudita ‘Empathetic Joy’, and Upekkha ‘Equanimity’.  As with all Buddhist virtues, these are to be applied to oneself as well as to others.  But one, Metta, seems to […]

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Practice Circle 3/24: Relax

| March 21, 2019 | 0 Comments
Practice Circle 3/24: Relax

I think every contemplative technique I’m aware of involves at least some degree of relaxation. The practices I was taught in MBSR all begin with bringing awareness to areas of tightness and holding in the body and inviting them to relax; the Body Scan, which is the first technique one learns in MBSR, consists of […]

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Our Website Needs Your Help

| March 12, 2019 | 0 Comments
Our Website Needs Your Help

You have probably noticed something funny going on with the SBA website recently – like the fact that there’s been no new content in months, articles and other content disappeared, and recent comments and forum posts are missing. You probably have been unable to log on to your account.  Worst of all, Ted’s podcast, Doug’s […]

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Two Important (but Rather Overlooked) Episodes in Human History

| August 27, 2018 | 4 Comments
Two Important (but Rather Overlooked) Episodes in Human History

I Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta — Setting the Wheel of Dhamma in Motion – Samyutta Nikaya 56.11 The End of the Buddha’s First Sermon The Buddha’s First Sermon is a very important event in human history indeed – but fortunately it cannot be said to have been overlooked. In it the Buddha expounds the Middle Way and […]

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8/26 Practice Circle: Getting Out of Default Mode

| August 23, 2018 | 1 Comment
8/26 Practice Circle: Getting Out of Default Mode

I have tended to give concentration practice short shrift. To me, devotion to intense concentration – jhana practice, long sesshins, and the like – seemed like spiritual calisthenics, meditation for its own sake, another skill to attach the ego to. Coming out of the vipassana-influenced MBSR tradition, I thought the tangible benefits of exploring the […]

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Of Onions and Anatta

| August 20, 2018 | 1 Comment
Of Onions and Anatta

Of all the central notions of Buddhism, anatta ‘no self’ is the hardest to understand. At least it is the most counter-intuitive. Of course I have a self! If I tread on someone else’s toe, I may feel apologetic but I do not feel pain. If someone else treads on my toe I do feel […]

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10/12 Practice Circle: Soften, Soothe, Allow

| August 10, 2018 | 0 Comments
10/12 Practice Circle: Soften, Soothe, Allow

How do we deal with truly difficult emotions when they arise in our daily life? Can we meet them without being overwhelmed or using distraction or numbing to avoid them? When Practice Circle meets again this Sunday evening at 6 Pacific, 7 Mountain, 8 Central and 9 Eastern, we’ll share another practice from Kristin Neff […]

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Secular Buddhism and the Real Reasons to Meditate

| July 23, 2018 | 8 Comments
Secular Buddhism and the Real Reasons to Meditate

In the most recent issue of Lions Roar magazine (July 2018), Buddhist teachers representing Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajryana lineages discussed the “real” reasons to meditate. While the responses were insightful and reflected the full range of beliefs among Buddhist lineages, there is a glaring omission: no one presents a secular Buddhist view of the real […]

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