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Retreat Dharma Talks

Monday and Wednesday Talks

Regular weekly talks given at the lower Spirit Rock meditation hall

Spirit Rock Meditation Center

  
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2022-03-24 Embracing Strong Emotions, Part 1 (6 Step Vagal Nurturing Sequence) 7:24
Kaira Jewel Lingo
Credit for Polyvagal Nurturing based on Dr. Marti Glenn's work & research. Kaira Jewel also offers this video as an aid for Vagal Nurturing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0ozoPNTqig
2022-03-24 Embracing Strong Emotions, Part 2 (Dharma Talk & Guided Meditation) 1:12:24
Kaira Jewel Lingo
2022-03-28 Open, Spacious Awareness Meditation | Monday Night 27:27
Jack Kornfield
Reflect on the value of a peaceful heart. What is it like to have a peaceful heart among the worldly winds of praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and pain, joy and sorrow, fame and disrepute. These are the worldly winds that constantly change. It's important to stop, take a pause, and feel that we are part of something so much greater than the individual life that we live. Our awareness is big enough to hold all of this, because we are awareness itself.
2022-03-28 Peace is Possible | Monday Night Talk 45:38
Jack Kornfield
We are in a time of great transition. The climate crisis, the pandemic, war, injustice, racism: they're all pressing on us to live in a different way. And if you live with a peaceful heart, the point is not to let your heart get hardened. Don't turn your gaze away. But see another possibility—see with the great heart of compassion. My teacher Ajahn Chah said, "We human beings are constantly in combat, at war to escape the fact of being so limited by so many circumstances we cannot control. But instead of escaping, we continue to create suffering, waging war with evil, waging war with good, waging war with what is too small, waging war with what is too big, waging war with what is too short or too long, or right or wrong, courageously carrying on the battle. It's time to stop the war. " The sociobiologist Edward O. Wilson said, "The real problem of humanity is the following: we have Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and god-like technology." The first response is tend the wounds, feed the hungry, and stand up for peace in whatever way you can. But there is also an inner response needed. We know where war starts—it starts in the human heart. We must make the heart a zone of peace. Set your compass to your highest intention. Something in us knows there is another way.
2022-03-30 Reflections after Returning from Four Weeks on Retreat 68:28
Donald Rothberg
A few days after returning from four weeks on retreat at Spirit Rock, Donald reflects on a number of themes related to his retreat, including: the importance of retreat (as well as short periods of meditation) and getting away, if possible, from everyday demands and busyness; the centrality of noticing habitual tendencies and patterns; opening to the unknown and the mysterious; attending to what surfaces, including difficult material, deep aspirations, and insights; the importance of exploring "non-doing" in meditation and activities, and an opening to what is larger than oneself; and taking everything as part of a path of learning.
2022-04-13 Cultivating a Wonderful Mind 1:23:15
Sylvia Boorstein
Meditation & Dharma Talk
2022-04-20 Awakening and Liberation: Buddhist Practice, Passover, Easter, and Ramadan 67:08
Donald Rothberg
At this time of the confluence of Passover, Eastern, and Ramadan, we look at their core messages of liberation, going beyond death, and spiritual purification, and the links of such messages to Buddhist practice, with the aid of images and music.
Attached Files:
  • Awakening and Liberation: Buddhist Practice, Passover, Easter, and Ramadan by Donald Rothberg (PDF)
2022-04-25 Opening the Heart Meditation | Monday Night 26:56
Jack Kornfield
Let yourself settle here on the Earth. Feel how the Earth can completely support you. You can let go. Let the heart be soft to receive whatever arises with compassion. Invite presence. Acknowledge the waves of experience.
2022-04-25 Tending the Garden of the World, Tending the Garden of the Heart | Monday Night Talk 55:26
Jack Kornfield
What kind of seeds are you planting and tending with your words and your deeds? Every seed watered can become something that changes the world. If you want to practice, take a walk and look at the buds on the trees in the spring. Each bud is an answer to despair or apathy. You start to sense you are part of something so much bigger. Feel the survival of thousands of years of ancestors in your bones supporting you. “Though I do not believe a plant will spring up where no seed has been, I have great faith in a seed. Convince me you have a seed there, and I am prepared to expect wonders.”—Thoreau
2022-04-27 Practicing with Fear 1 65:30
Donald Rothberg
After a brief review of last week's exploration of the relationship of Buddhist practice to Passover, Easter, and Ramadan, we explore a theme that is part of those holidays, and central to our practice--how we work with fear and anxiety. We look at the centrality of such practice, and the different types of fear, distinguishing the unskillful aspects (such as confusion, reactivity, and the continual repetition of negative narratives) from the at times skillful aspects (such as recognizing danger). We then suggest ways of bringing mindfulness to fear, as well as ways of understanding and responding to fear.
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