April 2008 is "Celebrate EARTH AWARENESS" Month:
- Buddhist "Quote of the Week"
- Sunday evening meditation topics at "Breath of Life" at Unity Church of Dallas
- EARTH DAY Meditation & Potluck Dinner -- Sunday, April 20 <--- IMPORTANT !
- Monthly "Mini-Sanghas" (small groups) forming soon
- Request for 10 persons to make a $108 Monthly Pledge
- Ordered meditation mats & cushions will arrive by April 27
- Beginners' Meditation Manual —
available online at: weblife.org/beginning
- We need more volunteers on Sundays at "Breath of Life"
QUOTE OF THE WEEK:
"Our aim is to have complete experience or full feeling in each moment
of practice. What we teach is that enlightenment and practice are
one, but my practice was what we call stepladder Zen: 'I understand
this much now, and next year,' I thought, 'I will understand a little
bit more.' That kind of practice doesn't make much sense -- I could
never be satisfied. If you try stepladder practice, maybe you too
will realize that it is a mistake.
"If we do not have some warm, big satisfaction in our practice, that
is not true practice. Even though you sit, trying to have the right
posture and counting your breath, it may still be lifeless zazen
[sitting meditation], because you are just following instructions.
You are not kind enough with yourself. You think that if you follow
the instructions given by some teacher, then you will have good zazen,
but the purpose of instruction is to encourage you to be kind with
yourself. Do not count your breaths just to avoid your thinking mind
but to take the best care of your breathing.
"If you are very kind with your breathing, one breath after another,
you will have a refreshed, warm feeling in your zazen. When you have
a warm feeling for your body and your breath, then you can take care
of your practice, and you will be fully satisfied. When you are very
kind with yourself, naturally you will feel like this."
— by Shunryu Suzuki
(from Not Always So: Practicing the True Spirit of Zen)
At "Breath of Life" on Sundays at 5:30-7:30 pm at Unity Church of
Dallas, we are finishing up our series on the Buddha's Four Noble
Truths and Eightfold Path: "The Teachings of Enlightenment on
Happiness and Suffering"
|APRIL 2008 is "Celebrate EARTH AWARENESS
||EARTH DAY CELEBRATION — Br. ChiSing
Music by Robin Hackett & others
(plus Community Potluck Dinner afterwards)
||Spiritual Movie Night, facilitated by Monica Lecrone
|MAY 2008 is "ENLIGHTENMENT MONTH" —
||"Awakening to Enlightenment" (part 1) — Br. ChiSing
Music by Michael Gott
||"Awakening to Enlightenment" (part 2) — Br. ChiSing
Music by Robin Hackett
||*** WESAK: Celebration of BUDDHA's Enlightenment Day
— Br. ChiSing
Music by The Dreamsicles and others
(plus Community Potluck Dinner afterwards)
Our next Community Potluck Dinner after meditation will be on
EARTH DAY, Sunday, April 20 (meditation is at 5:30 pm,
dinner is at 7:30 pm). Please bring a vegetarian dish and/or
non-alcoholic drinks to share. Expecting about 50 persons or so. Click here for more info on "Breath of Life".
Br. ChiSing would like to encourage members of the "Breath of
Life" community to form "mini-sangha" affinity groups that
could meet once-a-month outside of the larger weekly Sunday
sangha. During the next several months this year, Br. ChiSing will
work closely with those who are strong enough in their own mindful
practice to start and facilitate a "mini-sangha." Please share your
ideas with Br. ChiSing or the "Seva" Volunteer Support Team.
* Br. ChiSing and Monica Lecrone will be co-facilitating a
"Diving Deeper" mini-sangha starting in May for those who are
ready to go deeper in their meditation practice and spiritual growth
(location and day/time to be determined). Open to those who are
fairly committed to their personal practice and sangha practice. More
info coming soon…
We are looking for 10 persons to make a pledge of
$108/month for this year in support of the spiritual work that
Br. ChiSing and the Interfaith Mindfulness Ministries are doing, not
only here in Dallas, but also in other states and countries (so
far, we have about 5 persons). Br. ChiSing wants to be able to
continue offering free or low-cost retreats and workshops to
youth and college students in Texas and around the country. He
has already offered or will be offering free retreats and workshops
this year in Austin, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Denton and St. Louis,
etc. Please help us to bring the message of mindfulness to more
people who cannot afford high-cost retreats and workshops.
You can give online by credit card at: http://intermindful.com/contact/support.htm. Or, you can send a check to:
Thank you for your practice of "dana" (generosity).
Interfaith Mindfulness Ministries
P.O. Box 863961
Plano, TX 75086
Thank you to those who contributed to the purchase of more new
meditation mats & cushions. All orders will be arriving by the end of
the month, so if you ordered a personal set, please pick it up on
April 27 or May 4 (and bring your checkbook with you). Thanks!
One of the best beginners' meditation manuals is available
online in its entirety. It is called "Beginning to See" by
Sujata, based on Vipassana ("Insight Meditation"). Here
is the link: http://weblife.org/beginning.
Here is a link for meditation instructions from a Zen perspective:
Would you like to volunteer on Sundays at "Breath of
Life"? If so, please contact
John Lochner at: JohnLochner aol.com