It is wonderful to be here. I love this space (DC Shambhala). I taught meditation to Congressman Tim Ryan and his staff earlier. Like being in the belly of the beast. Its’ such an interesting city- a distinct flavor – what people do here. I have a friend named Adam Smiley Poswolsky who wrote book called the Quarter-Life Breakthrough. He had a decent government job, and kept getting asked “what do you do?” He got tired of it and ran off to become a writer. I think I just gave away the ending of his book. (laughter)
Even in NYC, people ask, “where are you from? What train do you take?” but then start talking about work.
I was here for the tour for my first book, and went and got drinks with people afterwards. After writing a book called The Buddha walks into a bar…, people wanted to go to a bar with me a lot. (laughter) But when we got to the bar, everyone wanted to talk about work. Continue reading
For this evening, I have been working on talk based on Sakyong Mipham’ s book Ruling Your World, which is quite an important book for the community and the teachings. It is important because Sakyong Mipham spells out the path to Enlightenment by way of Shambhala explanation. There is only one enlightenment, not Shambhala enlightenment and a Buddhist one. There is only one ultimate nature of reality, but the way we go about it is different. The understanding and approach need to be clarified. That is one reason it is a good base to talk about path to enlightenment in Shambhala. And I need to connect to weekend program on Nagarjuna. Have to figure out as I go along. (Laughter) Questions? Please ask. Continue reading
Feast practice in the Vajrayana came out of Hindu feast practice. In Ancient India, the “pure” Brahmin were shocked by eating meat and drinking alcohol. This shock is lost on us. It seems to us more like having people over for dinner.
What we are eating is our neurosis, our ego. It is fixation, doubt and bullshit. We are gobbling up our dark, conflicted energy and transmuting it to enlightened energy. The notion of feast is ENJOYING all we normally avoid and turning the tables, extracting the essence of our experience.
Earthiness, community and celebration are important for feast. Celebration of what we have instead of wanting more. It works with the obstacle of poverty mentality. Continue reading
I’ve been asked by several newer students to explain my lineage. My path is not exactly the usual “person-curious-about-meditation-comes-into-the-shambhala-center-and-follows-the-curiculum”. Ok, it’s not even CLOSE to ‘normal’.
If I had to describe my stream, it would be Drikung Kagyu-Mindrolling/Nyingma-Shambhala-Karma Kagyu.
You were warned it would be a mouthful! 🙂
To give the short version:
- Soto Zen practitioner – 1995-1997 (sporadically)
- Shambhala practitioner- 1997-present
- Dharma Art practitioner – 1998-present
- Mindrolling lineage practitioner – 1999-present
- Drikung Kagyu practitioner – 2000-present
…and Karma Kagyu mixed in with all the other lineages.