Sunday February 1, 2015: Self Acceptance & Self Perception

Sangha,

Our relationship with our self has a big range of implications in our life. This week I’d like to draw out in our discussion the interactions between self acceptance, ideas of self, and how that relates to our ideas of integrating practice in our lives (outside of LMC meetings).

There are two ways we can look at self acceptance (to my mind).The most obvious is by considering all the ways that we do/don’t accept ourselves, such as loving our hair but hating our habit of judging others. We can thus improve self acceptance by working with these patterns. The more subtle and equally helpful is to also check in with our ideas and expectations of what a “self” can do.

The idea of an integrated practice weaves into this discussion by looking at our life and ourselves more holistically and honestly. Recognizing our patterns of self we can find a better appreciation for the ripples of formal practice outwards, and also appreciate that the divides between formal practice and the rest of life are less solid than we may otherwise be judging them to be. Further, we can also set more wise (and effective) goals/expectations/supports for ourselves to continue developing into the person we aspire to be.

I’m really looking forward to talking with you about this and will be spending the next few days gathering my thoughts on the topic. To help you do the same, here are some ideas of questions to ask yourself:

  • Consider how or when you don’t feel like you’re accepting yourself.
  • Do you have any old patterns of mind you know you have in relation to yourself? If so, what are they?
  • What does it feel like when you’re in a moment with a strong sense of self (eg you’re congratulating yourself on a job well done)
  • Do you have a sense of how you want practicing mindfulness and buddhist practices to grow/change you?
  • What would an integration of practice and life look like to you? How would you do that?

 

2015.01.25 – MOVIE NIGHT!!

MOVIE NIGHT!  MOVIE NIGHT! MOVIE NIGHT!

This Sunday, we will watch and subsequently discuss a short film on a dharma teacher named Josh Korda who works in NYC.  Blurb about it can be found below.  If you feel inspired to, please bring snacks to share. If you are going to bring anything, perhaps you should post below in the comments what it is, so that no one duplicates it. Annamarie and Ian will provide popcorn for everyone, so you may also want to bring a drink!

Movie: Against the Stream

In this short film, Josh Korda recounts his journey from young substance abuser to meditation teacher at Dharma Punx NYC. If we can learn, Korda says, to appreciate the ephemeral nature of everything we have, we’ll never feel like there’s anything missing from life.

2015.01.18 – Taking a Bigger Perspective

Pema Chodron is one of my favourite Buddhist teachers. This week, we’ll listen to and discuss a chapter from her book “The Wisdom of No Escape.” The chapter is titled, “Taking a Bigger Perspective.” It would be very helpful for our discussion if you listened to it before hand and jotted down some thoughts in your journal. Remember that you don’t have to agree with her!  The reading is 15 minutes long and you can listen to it here.