Our Online Meditation Courses
Member Program ($95)
Path of Mindfulness and Love" ($65)
Your Mind" ($65)
the Heart" ($65)
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Course Schedule for 2004
Bodhipaksa is taking a few more breaks this year in order to
go on retreats, to teach a summer course at the University of
New Hampshire, and to concentrate on writing projects, so please
remember to plan ahead if you're interested in taking one of our
courses. You can sign up for any course at any time.
Courses start on the following dates:
Seven Great Reasons to
take a meditation course online:
In your online journal you'll have an ongoing practice discussion
with Bodhipaksa, who will give you encouragement and personal
feedback based on over 20 years' experience of meditation.
Depth: As you
reflect in your journal, get feedback, and gain insights from
learning new practices, you'll take your meditation practice
to a new level of effectiveness.
to outstanding written and audiovisual materials online.
benefit from the discipline of a structured four-week course.
Log on when you want, fitting classes into your schedule when
Download audio files that will guide you through meditation
at any time.
There are many opportunities each year to take a course. See
the dates above for details.
A current student writes...
What can I say? These weeks went by astonishingly quickly. I
enjoyed the 'talks' we had so very much, as I did the discussions
at the forum. I have digitally saved every morsel of information
- be they RealAudio recordings or PDF files - and I feel quite
certain they will be used and revisited quite frequently . I am
very much interested in taking further online courses at Wildmind.
Dear Wildmind Subscriber,
Welcome to our latest, and slightly redesigned,
Once again we bring you a roundup of recent news-stories
about meditation, a book recommendation, a quote of the month
with commentary -- and of course news about Wildmind's forthcoming
online meditation courses as well as a workshop Bodhipaksa is
leading in New York City..
Our online meditation courses can help you to achieve
your full potential, so that you can experience more freedom from
stress, happiness, and creativity in your life. Make sure you
your place now so that you can experience the benefits of
Our next online meditation courses start Monday,
May 3. This is the last course before Bodhipaksa's summer
break, when he'll be visiting the UK, teaching at the University
of New Hampshire, and concentrating on writing. The following
course will be in September.
In this issue:
- Meditation in the news
- Support our translation project
- Workshop in NYC
- Our online courses
- Book of the month
- Quote of the month
Meditation in the news
Here are last month's news stories concerning meditation, from
meditation being taught to stressed executives on Indian airplanes,
to the health benefits of meditation in reducing blood pressure
in African-American teens.
Sahara introduces meditation sessions for passengers (Khaleej
An Indian airliner has decided to introduce meditation sessions
on flights beginning on Thursday to help passengers use their
flight time to relieve stress.
Buddhism was reincarnated (The Toronto Star, Canada)
By rights, Tibetan Buddhism should have faded like the dying light
in a thousand butter lamps before a thousand knowing Buddhas.
But something extraordinary happened after the Dalai Lama rode
a mountain pony into exile in 1959, disguised as a soldier, his
glasses in his pocket: Tibetan Buddhism found a new incarnation.
Pursuit of Happiness (Phayul, Tibet)
Erin Gammel is a shoo-in for the Canadian Olympic swim team. Canadian
record holder, champion backstroker - unless something wildly
unexpected happens, she's going to Athens. But four years ago
she was a sure bet for the Sydney Olympics, too. "Everyone kept
telling me you're a shoo-in," she says. "And we had the strategy
and everything was perfect. And I thought this is it, I'm going
to the Olympics."
'In Praise of Slowness' a manifesto on deceleration (Star
A few years back, Canadian journalist Carl Honore decided to put
the brakes on his life after hearing about an absurd concept:
The one-minute bedtime story. Honoré was bothered by the idea
of a 60-second "Little Red Riding Hood," but he was bothered more
by how much it initially appealed to him. However hyperactive
modern life is, he realized, fast-forwarding through quality time
is even worse. There is, he notes, "a gnawing disconnect between
what we want from life and what we can realistically have, which
feeds the sense that there is never enough time."
Joins S*x, Shoes in Women's Magazine (Yahoo! News)
Is this a sign of the times or what? The British edition of Cosmopolitan,
the glossy bible of s*x and shopping for the single girl, has
launched a new monthly column on spirituality.
is key to finding the spiritual in your work (The Arizona
Socrates was right: "The unexamined life is not worth living."
But for 21st-century Americans, self-examination is unnatural.
Some people, especially men, act as if personal reflection is
only for wimps. We find it easy to criticize others, from the
boss to co-workers to the "system," but many of us are reluctant
to shine a critical light on ourselves.
new meaning to food for thought (Fort Wayne News-Sentinel,
Last summer, while vacationing at Chautauqua Institution in upstate
New York, I caught a lecture by a psychologist from Florida. I
can't remember what he talked about. But I can still see him,
neatly groomed and quiet spoken, telling those gathered about
his plans for dinner that night. He had already packed his food
in a brown bag, he said. He intended to spend a full hour eating
alone in an open, grassy area, where he would chew each bite and
savor each taste. What he described was the practice of eating
monk's milieu (The Statesman, UK)
Till the age of 21, Tenzin Norbu had not seen a car. Or a television
set. Or even the household refrigerator. In fact, he had not even
seen a tree. He might have been living in a different planet altogether.
Actually, that's how most people regard Jupal, the village he
meditating our children (Globe and Mail, Canada)
David Lynch's latest production may not involve talking logs or
dancing dwarves, but it is, nonetheless, bizarre. The Twin Peaks
auteur, who has been meditating for 90 minutes twice a day for
the past 30 years, recently became the spokesman for an initiative
called the Committee for Stress-Free Schools, which aims to introduce
transcendental meditation into classrooms across the United States
as a way to combat the stress of high school and improve grades.
way is best if you want to combat stress (The Times, London)
In case more than 20 centuries of gruelling spiritual journeys
towards harmony and balance have not persuaded you, scientists
have now proved that Buddhist meditation relieves stress. Researchers
at Wisconsin University monitored the brain activity of 25 randomly
chosen individuals and concluded that Buddhist meditation causes
a significant reduction in anxiety and correspondingly increased
levels of positive emotions.
want schools to introduce meditation (Access North Georgia)
A group of people who practice transcendental Meditation want
officials to consider introducing the technique into Lexington's
Meditation: Death of the Self (The Times of India)
The practice of Christian meditation dates back to the beginning
of Christianity; its objective is to daily 'empty the self' to
experience the fullness of God. It is consonant with Jesus's invitation
to his disciples to take up their cross daily and follow him.
It is central to Easter celebrations, 'dying' to rise to a New
Lowers Blood Pressure in Teens (Health Day)
Black teens at risk of becoming hypertensive adults lowered their
pressures with just two 15-minute meditation sessions a day, a
Georgia physiologist reports.
Forest Monk's Lesson in the New York Jungle (New York Times)
The stolen bag did not contain much in the way of material value.
But its sudden absence greatly distressed the Buddhist monk who
had been victimized, and so the police were summoned to the scene
of the crime: a Starbucks at the opulent trump Tower on Fifth
Quote of the month
"Consider how much more you often suffer from your anger
and grief, than from those very things for which you are angry
and grieved. "
-- Marcus Antonius
Shantideva, an 8th Century Indian teacher, said that although
we all desire happiness, we destroy it as if it were an enemy,
and that although we all want to avoid suffering, we embrace it
as if it were an old friend.
The difference between what we want in life and what we actually
get is delusion -- our inability to connect our actions and the
consequences those actions give rise to. We tend to assume on
some level that anger will help to protect us, and yet the "protection"
can often be more painful to us than the thing we're trying to
guard ourselves against.
Meditation helps us to notice what's actually happening in the
mind. It allows us to notice that at the very moment we're angry
we are suffering as a result of that anger. It also allows us
to see other suffering that emerges later on as a consequence
of our anger -- regret, perhaps, or maybe that other people are
fearful or aggressive around us.
As we develop a greater degree of mindfulness, we start to consider
the consequences of our actions even before we perform them. As
we see anger arising, we can consider where it is likely to take
us so that we can consider whether we actually want to go there.
Now of course there may well be times when anger is appropriate
and helpful, but there are undoubtedly many more times when it
is not. The important thing is that without mindfulness we are
unable to recognize that we even have a choice.
trusting Your Own Deepest Experience
by Sharon Salzberg (paperback, $10.40)
(Click on the title to purchase from Amazon.com, or click
here to purchase from Amazon.co.uk, paperback £14.79)
I read Sharon's latest book shortly before going on a recent
retreat that she was leading. When I had the opportunity to talk
to her about it, I mentioned that I considered it to be, in terms
of quality and depth, a quantum leap ahead of anything else she
had written. She answered simply, "I know".
That answer actually says a lot to me about the effect that writing
"Faith" has had on Sharon's life. Writing "Faith"
has evidently been a practice in its own right, and one of the
most noticeable qualities that has emerged from the process is
... faith. Her "I know" was not a statement that communicated
arrogance; there was nothing inflated about it. Instead it was
a simple acknowledgment of what she took to be the truth. It was
a statement of confidence -- of faith.
"Faith" is a work of spiritual autobiography, but the
thread that hold everything together is not so much the chronology
of events in Sharon's life -- a succession of teachers, for the
most part -- but a deepening understanding of, and confidence
in, herself. It is this confidence that is known, in Buddhism,
Two events in the book stand out for me. One is Sharon's account
of spending time with her friend Ram Dass after his stroke in
1997, a stroke that left this unusually fluent teacher with only
halting powers of speech. He asks how her new book ("Faith")
is coming along. She replies that it's never been so hard to reach
inside herself, then corrects herself; it's never been so hard
to reach inside herself and to bring it outside in words. Ram
Dass answers, "It's like that for me every day now".
The other account that particularly moved me was her visit, with
Joseph Goldstein, to see their Tibetan teacher, Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche,
as he was dying of cancer. She describes the realization she had
that she had been going for refuge to Rinpoche rather than with
him; bathing in the glow of his wisdom and marveling at his insights,
rather than using those insights to change her own life.
From such incidents Sharon shows how from experiences of suffering
can arise great faith; how life in fact is our greatest teacher.
She writes with a complete honesty and total lack of sentimental
gloss, showing in her style what she shows in her words; that
when we embrace life, with its often painful changes, we embrace
our own potential for wisdom and compassion -- and for a truly
meaningful and satisfying life.
This is a message that is profoundly encouraging, and Sharon
is evidence that although you can have an immense amount of suffering
in your life, you can face up to that and come through the other
side as a warm, compassionate, and wise being.
I consider this to be one of the most important works of spiritual
autobiography in modern times, and highly recommend it as a source
of inspirations to all struggling beings everywhere.