The greatest gift is the
gift of the teachings
 
Dharma Talks given at Insight Meditation South Bay - Silicon Valley
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2018-01-23 Mindfulness 38:59
  Chris Clifford
Chris Clifford gave the first talk in a speaker series titled "Preparing the Mind for Awakening: Cultivating the Seven Factors of Awakening." In this talk, Chris explored the Buddha's teachings on Mindfulness in order to understand how this mental factor differs from ordinary untrained consciousness, and how it supports the unfolding of the Seven Factors of Awakening.
In collection Seven Factors of Awakening

2017-12-19 Feeling Emotions on the Meditative Path of Awakening 41:31
  Shaila Catherine
Shaila Catherine discusses the importance of developing mindfulness of emotions and mental states. Human beings have the capacity to experience a wide range of emotions—they may be subtle or intense, unwholesome or wholesome. Working with emotions requires energy and courage to be willing to face the raw fact that this mental state is present. We can become aware of, and work skillfully with, any emotional state including anger, hate, gratitude, fear, sadness, calmness, insecurity, contentment, grief, tranquility, lust, compassion, loneliness, jealousy, envy, restlessness, peacefulness, faith, love. Emotions are changing mental states that arise in conjunction with every perception. When we are mindful of emotions we drop the conceptual narrative of the story line and investigate how the mind operates. What conditions nourish each mental state, and what conditions cause them to end? How do these mental states affect the clarity of our perception? We can observe the dynamic interaction of emotions and the body, and learn to work with emotions in conjunction with their somatic manifestations. We might gather ideas for investigation by reviewing the detailed Abhidhamma categories of mental states and the factors that constitute each state, or we might simply observe the arising and ceasing of mental states in activity and our meditation.

2017-12-09 The Peace of Not-Clinging: A Guided Meditation 20:23
  Shaila Catherine
Shaila Catherine offers this 20-minute teaching on impermanence and not-clinging in the mode of guided meditation instructions. We practice being unattached to pleasant and unpleasant feelings and releasing all clinging connected with sensual desire or aversion. To cultivate non-clinging, first notice the experience of clinging, perhaps by observing physical tightness, mental contraction, or a sense of separation. As you become mindful of the changing nature of experiences, allow yourself to deeply accept this fact of impermanence. Allow experiences to arise and be known, and also let them end.

2017-12-09 Working with Hindrances in Meditation: A Guided Meditation Instruction 25:21
  Shaila Catherine
This 25-minute guided meditation by Shaila Catherine explores ways of recognizing and working with the five classic hindrances that arise in meditation: sensual desire, anger, sloth and torpor, restlessness, and doubt. We observe how hindrances arise, and learn how to respond wisely to them.

2017-11-21 Gratitude 33:02
  Shaila Catherine
In this Dharma talk given as Thanksgiving approaches, Shaila Catherine discusses the benefits of gratitude and a perspective of thankfulness. She notes that studies have shown that there is a strong correlation between gratitude and happiness, and awareness of well-being in life.

2017-10-17 Mahakaccana: Clarifying the Most Cryptic Teachings 42:18
  Shaila Catherine
Shaila Catherine concluded our lecture series on the Great Disciples, with a talk about the Venerable Mahakaccana. He was a monk famous for explaining difficult and perplexing teachings. The Buddha sometimes gave brief teachings that left the listeners confused. Sometimes the disciples did not ask the Buddha questions to clarify their doubt. Instead they sought out another monk to elucidate the matter and explain the detailed meaning. The Pali Canon preserves several insightful discourses in which initial enigmatic teachings by the Buddha are systematically explained by Venerable Mahakaccana. He addresses profound topics including the construction of I-making and mine-making, craving, conceit, views, mindfulness of sense perceptions, obsession with thoughts of past and future, and overcoming desire and lust. His methods of exposition became the basis of early commentary, and Mahakaccana became known as the first Buddhist commentator.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-10-10 Rahula: Son of Buddha 39:47
  Margaret Gainer
In this fifth talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Margaret Gainer, describes the life story of Rahula, son of the Buddha. After meeting his father for the first time at the age of seven, Rahula became the first novice monk in the Buddha's Sangha. He is known as foremost in his eagerness in receiving training. The teachings that he received from the Buddha are still relevant to us today, more than 2,600 years later.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-10-03 Kisa Gotami: Buddha's Deep Compassion Toward Women 40:55
  Ayya Santussika
In this fourth talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Ayya Santussika, tells the life story of two enlightened, fully ordained nuns. In fact, there were quite a few of enlightened, fully ordained nuns at the Buddha's time. The speaker also discusses how we can find the key to our own happiness in these nuns' stories, such as letting go, calming the mind, and realizing complete freedom from suffering. Finally, Ayya Santussika describes the Buddha's tremendous compassion for women. In his teachings, the Buddha acknowledged sufferings that were specific to women that are still relevant today.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

2017-10-03 Three Aspects of Concentration and the Simile of the Goldsmith: A Guided Meditation 25:21
  Shaila Catherine
In this meditation instruction Shaila Catherine shares a Discourse of the Buddha (AN 3:101) in which he employs the simile of a goldsmith to teach skillful ways to deepen concentration. From time to time meditators adjust the quality of attention to periodically increase calmness, intensify energetic effort, or observe with a relaxed and non-interfering quality of mindfulness. This meditation instruction offers practical meditation skills for strengthening concentration.

2017-09-26 Anathapindika: A Generous and Devoted Lay Follower 44:25
  Ed Haertel
In this third talk in a lecture series on the Great Disciples, the speaker, Ed Haertel, tells the life story of Anathapindika. He was not a monk, and he is remembered as the foremost in generosity among the Buddha's followers. He received teachings from the Buddha that consisted a comprehensive code of conduct for conscientious lay followers of the Buddha. In this way, Anathapindika has become a benefactor to all those in the future, who try to follow the path of liberation.
In collection The Great Disciples: People and Personalities in the Buddha's Community

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