Saturday, November 11, 2017

Day of Mindfulness November 18 2017, at Riverside Church

When Mindfulness Shines

When sunlight shines,
It helps all vegetation grow.
When mindfulness shines,
It transforms all mental formations
   Dear Friends,
Together we will begin our Day of Mindfulness by  cultivating  mindfulness of breathing; calming the body; and  experiencing ease, joy and quiet.
With this nourishment of calm, ease and joy we then can look deeply into the nature of our body and mind, suffering and well-being.

We will practice what Thay calls Active Concentration:
“In Active Concentration, the mind dwells on whatever is happening in the present moment, even as it changes.  We don’t think about or long for anything else."

The wind whistles
and the bamboo dances.
When the wind stops
The bamboo grows still.”
             “A Silver Bird flies over the Autumn Lake.
        When it has passed,
        The lake’s surface does not try to hold on to the image of the bird.”
        As the bird flies over the lake, its reflection is lucid.  After it is gone, the lake reflects the clouds and the sky just   as clearly.  When we practice active concentration, we welcome whatever comes along….We just dwell in the present moment with all our being.  Whatever comes, comes.  When the object of our concentration has passed, our mind remains clear, like a calm lake.” [Thich Nhat Hanh, Heart of the Buddha’s Teaching, p. 105-6]

The schedule of the Day is something like this:
10-12:10 Sitting and Walking Meditations/Mindful Movements.
                      12:15-12:55: Personal Practice***
1:00-1:50: Mindful Lunch [Bring your own vegetarian lunch; we eat mindfully, in silence.]
2:00-2:30: Total Relaxation Exercise
2:40-3:20:  Walking Meditation/Mindful Movements/Sitting Meditation
3:30-4:20pm:  Dharma Sharing
4:20-4:30: End of Day
***Personal Practice is time where each of us chooses what to do: sitting, walking, movements, journeying, resting, etc.

Noble Silence supports our practice throughout the Day.  [Meaning we do refrain from conversation during the Day, except during Dharma Sharing.  This allows us to deepen our concentration, and look into the habit-energies that drive much conversation and chit-chat.]

Beginners Welcome.
Chairs and cushions available.
Please do not wear fragrances.
Bring your own vegetarian lunch.

When: Saturday November 18, 2017.
          10:00am-4:30pm [Come for all or part of the Day.]
Where: Riverside Church, Room 20-T.  91 Claremont Avenue, NY, NY 10025. [Between 120-122nd Street, one block west of Broadway.]
The Day will be facilitated by David Flint.
David received Lamp Transmission from Thay in 2011
and practices with the Riverside Sangha and the Queens MorningStar Sangha.
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“For the Tathagata [Buddha] feelings are known as they arise, as they are present, as they disappear; perceptions are known as they arise, as they are present, as they disappear; thoughts are known as they arise, as they are present, as they disappear.”

[Quotation in “The Island,” by Ajahns Passano and Amaro. Original Source is The Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha.]