"Mindfulness and Meditation allow us to open our hearts, relax our bodies, and clear our minds enough to experience the vast, mysterious, sacred reality of life directly. With Practice we come to know for ourselves that eternity is available in each moment.

Your MMM Courtesy Wake Up Call:
Musings on Life and Practice
by a Longtime Student of Meditation

Friday, August 14, 2015

Whenever Two or Three of You...

Originally Published July 5, 2013.  Revised.

"To begin a sangha find one friend who would like to join you for sitting practice or walking practice or tea meditation or sharing."
-- Thich Nhat Hanh

"Everyone has the seed of Buddhnature within themselves."
 -- Thich Nhat Hanh 

"For where there are two or three of you gathered in my name, I am there amidst you."
-- Jesus of Nazareth 

These past few weeks of Monday Morning Mindfulness have certainly reaffirmed a belief that I've held for quite awhile now: 

Anyone who makes a commitment to explore their own experience consciously through meditation, and then has the opportunity to compare notes on Practice with others similarly engaged, will come to understand themselves, one another, and the nature of Reality at a deeper level.  

As we sit and share Practice, the Truth of our Shared Presence becomes palpable.

As the small group of us who have been meeting for Monday Morning Mindfulness "Beginner's Mind--and Beyond" have continued our exploration of Mindfulness Practice and our relationship to the question, "Why Bother?",  it's only gotten better and better.  
As I sit here and turn my attention to the whisps of images that constitute the memories of the past couple of sessions, I am struck with a sense of awe and a feeling of gratitude for having shared those moments with other folks who have the heart and courage to explore Life and Practice -- and share their experiences.    

At a time in which clinging to problematic institutional "truths" or the unexamined personal "truths" that emerged from our unhealthy childhood reactions to a patently neurotic upbringing continue to wreak havoc, threatening  our very existence on this planet, the essential sincerity--and competence--of those gathered in the effort to Engage Life with an open heart and clear mind each Monday Morning* continues to amaze me.

It makes my heart glow.

Although I did my "teacher" thing this past week and made a point to share some ideas about commitment from the Buddhist traditions that I've worked with over the past few decades, it was again made obvious to me "The Teachings" are beyond any teacher or set of traditional teachings.  They emerge from Life itself.  We all have the on-board equipment to recognize Truth, to Love, to Heal.

Again and again during the past two sessions, the various members of the circle have offered forth, sometimes with tears in their eyes, powerful insights into the heart and mind.  These Truths came forth as simple expressions of their own experience. I learned a lot.

How cool is that? 

* There are now Mindfulness Circles on Tuesday and Wednesday as well.  See the left column for times and places of these and other Sitting Groups in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts. If you are not local, a google search can probably guide you to mediation groups in your area.  Check a few out.  See what feels right for you at this stage of your journey.  Roll your own Circle if necessary!


Anonymous said...

To know we are not teachers all of the time, To know we must venture out for different teachers, who have themselves experienced different forms of enlightenment, who have and continue to be, students as the world turns, variety IS the spice of learning.. and....to be able to turn down the volume of human chatter, able to hear our own soul speak to us as it listens and ventures out for joy while here, I have found to be profound. The teachings of Jesus are loud and more clear, when my soul is leading the way toward that narrow path of fun and 'dancing with God'. My mind doesn't like it, because that's the ego of earth. It's all in 'how' I want to hear, or listen, and from what source! Literally. It's amazing isn't it? Hearing is not always hearing,as seeing is not always seeing. My soul knows the way. I guess like a sheep who knows it's master's voice?
Yes, I see where power in numbers of souls who are listening on the same vibrational plane, can be a powerful enlightenment moment. Seeking to find.
Thanks for the re write here.
Blessings to all souls as they seek to shine brighter.

Lance Smith said...

If you can't find a regular meeting, a circle of souls who resonate with where you are at: Start One! There are many forms that this could take.

Sometimes a meeting to read and discuss a book is a viable beginning structure. (Eckhart Tolle's works are one good point of reference to share and discuss).

Of course, I highly recommend Sitting Still Together -- for at least a few moments as a way to connect on deeper, non-verbal levels, whatever form the Circle may take. Blessings on your journey beyond the chatter! One Love, Lance