Philip Jones has practiced meditation since 1987 and has been teaching Insight Meditation since 1996. He has studied with teachers from Spirit Rock and the Insight Meditation Society and graduated from the first Community Dharma Leader program in 2000. He also studied for a number of years with Matthew Flickstein and more recently has been practicing with teachers from IMS and with Shaila Catherine. He has served on the board of directors of Mid America Dharma, the regional retreat organization, since the mid-'90's. Many of his talks and writings can be found at http://silentmindopenheart.org.
Pain and suffering are common occurrences during retreats. How do we respond to mental, emotional, and physical pain and what alternatives does the practice offer us to deal with pain? The common pattern is to seek escape from pain through pleasant sense experiences. The effort to escape and find sense pleasure leads to suffering. The practice offers practical methods for cultivating wholesome pleasant feeling in response to pain, especially the development of detachment and equanimity.