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Lions Roar : March 2019
though in Buddhism the emphasis is on equanimity, repose, and the contempla- tive flow of chanting, there’s also deep joy that arises from the feeling of release from the bonds of attachment and suffer- ing and of the great compassion realized in interdependence with all beings. If you chant as part of a sangha, in time you’ll find that your voice more eas- ily blends with the voices of others. Yet, in blending with others, we do not erase our individuality. Rather, our individual- ity enriches the sound of group chanting and, indeed, the chorus is greater than the sum of its parts. Each of our voices carries the imprint of our personality and experiences. No-self or emptiness is inseparable from the multifarious mani- festations of form. Because our existence is imperma- nent, and each moment is precious, we should devote our entire being to each opportunity to chant and to each and every syllable. When we’re fully embod- ied and mindful in chanting, then many minds become as one mind, and one mind releases into no mind, emptiness, and the great flow of the oneness of real- ity. Ultimately, whether we’re physically in a group or alone, each time we chant, all beings—everywhere, past, present, and future—blend, dissolve, and become as one with us in the great journey of boundless compassion. 1. Prepare the Space Select a chant such as the Heart Sutra, either in an Asian scriptural language or in English translation. You might find an online recording to see what it sounds like in any given tradition. Find or create a contemplative space with an altar containing a statue, image, or scroll. Light incense (optional), and if available, place a chanting bell next to your meditation cushion or seat, arranged to face the altar. 2. Prepare Body-Mind Briefly prepare body-mind with a moment of seated, silent meditation. Bow to conclude the meditation, and pick up the chant with both hands. It can help to have the chant on a stiff card if you don’t have a book. Lift the chant above your head and bow lightly. Begin chanting by ringing the bell, relaxing into it. 3. Let the Chant Unfold The power of chanting arises from deep within, as you let go of the dualistic mind’s desire to control reality. So, allow the chant to unfold. Focus more on the continuous sound of the chant rather than on the meaning of the words. Over time, as you deepen your chanting and enter into the flow of oneness beyond words, the meaning will become appar- ent naturally. To finish, lift the chant card, book, or paper above your head and bow lightly. Ring the bell and bow again. ♦ • A unique practice oppor tunity for sincere Dharma students in the exquisite high country of Taos, New Mexico. Grounded in the Theravada-Vipassana lineage. • Special scholarship rates available for Dharma students who could not otherwise attend. No fee for monastics. JUNE 2 - JULY 7, 2019 FIVE WEEK VIPASSANA RETREAT with Sayadaw Vivekananda & Marcia Rose ••• SEPTEMBER 13 - 20, 2019 SEEING THINGS WITH LOVE: INSIGHT & LOVING KINDNESS RETREAT with Winnie Nazarko ••• NOVEMBER 11 - 20, 2019 10-DAY VIPASSANA RETREAT FOR EXPERIENCED STUDENTS with Annie Nugent ••• APRIL 24 - MAY 1, 2020 FINDING FREEDOM THROUGH INSIGHT MEDITATION RETREAT with Brian Lesage ••• JULY 8 -29, 2020 THREE WEEK SUMMER HERMITAGE RETREAT with Ariya Baumann Guiding Teacher: Marcia Rose P.O. Box 807 Ranchos de Taos, NM • 87557 575-758-0633 email@example.com www.mountainhermitage.org Guiding Teacher: Marcia Rose P.O. Box 807 Ranchos de Taos, NM • 87557 575-758-0633 firstname.lastname@example.org www.mountainhermitage.org The Mountain Hermitage LION’S ROAR | MARCH 2019 30 CULTURE • LIFE • PRACTICE