Open House: staying in the middle

Adelaide/Gong.jpg
Date:
Monday 1 July 2019 (19:00 -21:00)
Location:
Adelaide Shambhala Meditation Group
40A Pennington Terrace, Friends Meeting House
5006 North Adelaide SA

Friend's Meeting House, North Adelaide
Contact person : David Edwards
Staying in the middle

Open House is a gathering that provides a gentle introduction to mindfulness meditation, the Shambhala Buddhist teachings and our community.

It is an opportunity to learn sitting and walking meditation and engage in discussions about the application of teachings to everyday life from fabulous Shambhala teachers including Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and Pema Chodron. 

If you are planning to visit Open House for the first time you are invited to arrive 15 minutes early at around 6.45pm to spend time with our meditation guide who will introduce you to meditation practice and Shambhala before the program commences at 7.00pm. 

Join us remotely using Zoom 

We are exploring the use of Zoom software (like Skype) to allow people to join us remotely. Using Zoom is pretty straight forward, you simply click on this link    https://zoom.us/j/671305477  at around 6:45 pm Adelaide time and Zoom will ask you to install some software which will be your interface with the rest of us meeting at the Quakers Meeting Room. 

A typical Monday evening program includes:

  • Brief welcome followed by sitting meditation (7:00pm)

  • Walking meditation

  • Sitting meditation

  • Reading or video teaching...followed by contemplation, response and discussion

  • Pack-up (8:15pm)

  • Catch-up time including light refreshments and close around 9:00pm

Tonight's reading from Pema Chodron "Comfortable with uncertainty":
 

OPENNESS doesn’t come from resisting our fears but from getting to know them well. We can’t cultivate fearlessness without compassionate inquiry into the workings of ego. So we ask ourselves, “What happens when I feel I can’t handle what’s going on? What are the stories I tell myself? What repels me and what attracts me? Where do I look for strength and in what do I place my trust?”

The first thing that takes place in meditation is that we start to see what’s happening. Even though we still run away and we still indulge, we see what we’re doing clearly. We acknowledge our aversions and our cravings. We become familiar with the strategies and beliefs we use to fortify our cocoon. With mindfulness as our method we start to get curious about what’s going on. For quite a long time, we just see it clearly. To the degree that we’re willing to see our indulging and our repressing clearly, they begin to wear themselves out. Wearing out is not exactly the same as going away. Instead, a wider, more generous, more enlightened perspective arises.

How we stay in the middle between indulging and repressing is by acknowledging whatever arises without judgment, letting the thoughts simply dissolve, and then going back to the openness of this very moment. That’s what we’re actually doing in meditation. Up come all these thoughts, but rather than squelch them or obsess with them, we acknowledge them and let them go. Then we come back to just being here.

After a while, that’s how we relate with hope and fear in our daily lives. Out of nowhere, we stop struggling and relax. We see our story line, drop it, and come back to the freshness of the present moment.