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Lions Roar : March 2009
SHAMBHALA SUN MArcH 2009 17 lowers our energy and hampers our growth. Thinking practice is over when we leave the house weakens our ability to engage wholeheartedly with the world outside. So how do we carry a dharmic view into the day? By seeing the day as our life, and our life as the path, we learn to regard ev- erything we meet as an opportunity to practice. There are seven facets of awakened mind that we can consciously cultivate to en- hance the path-like texture of our life. The first is egolessness. In order to grow, we must be willing to give up territory. We may look fervently for the teacher, teach- ings, or situation that fits into our comfort zone, but the path is not going to happen on our own terms. Are we prepared to abandon our habitual patterns—to give up the support of con- cepts, opinions, and comforts? To make progress, we need to be willing to change. The great Tibetan saint Milarepa said that to give up territory, we have to understand impermanence. If we don’t understand impermanence, we don’t have a sense of immediacy. Without a sense of immediacy, we remain under the influence of the pro- tracted illusion that we are eternal. In other words, we become very comfortable in our habits. Our practice is lazy and our mind tends to be thick. So every day we need to cultivate the willing- ness to give up the habitual patterns that warp our experience. The second element to awaken is faith. The word “faith” often How Will I Use This Day? Our day is our life and our life is the path. Here Sakyong MiphaM rinpoche offers us seven qualities of mind that we can cultivate in our daily lives. We Are AlWAyS MedITATIng—constantly placing our minds on an object and becoming familiar with it. But are we getting used to things that will take us forward on the path? Our modern culture does not encourage awakening, and without a sense of inner strength, we are easily invaded by the difficulties around us. If we don’t orient our day toward spiritual growth, the speed of our life takes over, fueled by habitual pat- terns. While some habitual patterns are a source of inspiration, others just drain our energy. Meditation trains us to notice these patterns, which create the fabric of the entity known as “me.” When we wake up in the morning, our first meditation is of- ten “What about me?” We can loosen this pattern by setting a different kind of view. Instead of “What do I have to do today?” or “Will I ever get enough sleep?” we can ask ourselves, “How can I use this day to let the dharma change my thoughts, words, and actions? What positive qualities shall I cultivate?” Carrying this view to the cushion will enrich our morning meditation. yet no matter how well our meditation goes, enter- ing into everyday life presents a schism: “I finished my practice and now I have to go to work.” It’s an insidious dilemma that IlluSTrATIOnByMISSyCHIMOvITz Sakyong MiphaM Rinpoche is the spiritual leader of Shambhala, an international network of Buddhist meditation and retreat centers. he is the author of Turning the Mind into an Ally and ruling your World. Meditating with the Body®2009 A five-month training for touching enlightenment with the body March 31–April 5, September 8–13 DR. REGGIE RAY brings us four decades of study and intensive meditation practice within the Tibetan tradition as well as a special gift for applying it to the unique problems, inspirations, and spiritual imperatives of modern people. He teaches within the dharma and meditation lineages of the great siddha Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. On the faculty of Naropa University since its inception, he is the author of several books including Touching Enlightenment, Indestructible Truth, and Secret of the Vajra World, as well as a new 20-disc audio publication, Your Breathing Body. DHARMA OCEAN is a non-profit foundation dedicated to preserving and extending the practicing lineages of the Nyingma and Kagyu traditions of Tibetan Buddhism and particularly the heart teachings and meditation instructions of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. DharmaOcean.org ©CHRISTINEALICINO IntheTibetanBuddhisttradition,thebodyisconsideredthegateway to enlightenment—to discover the body is to discover awareness and, eventually, the awakened state. Created for beginning and experienced meditators alike, this in-depth training focuses on a series of powerful “body-based awareness” exercises drawn from Tibetan Yoga. The program consists of two residential retreats and—to help deepen your practice between retreats—an extensive at-home curriculum that includes recorded lectures, guided somatic practices on CD, readings, and contact with a personal meditation instructor. Designed as a five-month program for optimum integration into your daily life, “Meditating with the Body” is a unique opportunity to study in-depth with Dr. Reggie Ray. Space is limited. Please register early. In-depth instruction in mindfulness-awareness practice (shamatha-vipassana) and how to establish strong inner and outer sitting posture based on the principles of alignment, relaxation, and awareness At each retreat, a small group interview with Reggie Ray to discuss your personal questions and experiences Uncovering the genesis and nature of the “self,” including how and why it is created and maintained Extensive instruction in the Tibetan Yoga practices of prana breathing, earth breathing, diagnostic breathing, and many more breath-awareness exercises Working directly with physical discomfort, illness, and disease Experiencing the body as the expression of your personal karmic history Relating to the body as the manifestation of enlightenment itself PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS Located in the beautiful Sangre de Cristo mountains of Crestone, Colorado, the two retreats will be held in Dharma Ocean’s new retreat center. For more information and to register, please visit DharmaOcean.org. DO70