The Buddha provided extensive and specific guidance for monastics as to how to live a life inclined towards awakening. Ethics were meticulously spelled out; how to engage with the requisites of food, lodging, robes and medicine was made clear; and community life that supported wisdom, generosity and compassion was variously described and inspired. The monastic life evolved to successfully carry the Buddhadhamma forward while providing conditions for the development in sangha members of meditative qualities and liberating wisdom. For laypeople, and westerners lacking a Buddhist cultural context, the guidance for a life fully rested in the Noble Eightfold Path is thin and spotty. During this retreat, with the support of Insight Dialogue and silent meditation, we will explore five tenets that will help us to craft a whole life path that is fully rooted in early Buddhist teachings and that suits our character and circumstances. This retreat will empower us to touch the suttas as living teachings and to participate in a community of awakening.
To experientially engage the five tenets of a whole life path sufficiently to return home and begin to explore crafting such a path; experience the effectiveness of relational meditation for illuminating the power of spiritual friendship; become familiar with the eight factors of the Buddhist path; feel motivated and empowered to approach the suttas for inspiration; and experience and intuitively understand the synergy and complementarity of silent and relational meditation practices for unbinding.
Prerequisite–Four Insight Dialogue retreats and two vipassana retreats.