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Fundamentals of being a Dharma guide

Fundamentals of being a Dharma guide

Final session of a workshop conducted at Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery in Singapore on October 27-28 and November 26, 2001. During the interval between the October and November sessions, participants were asked to do a daily practice, meet twice and take turns to lead meditation or discussion sessions.

Checking your own fundamentals

  • Common reasons for not doing a daily practice
  • Importance of doing this if you are going to lead

Trg IV 01: Daily practice (download)

Building the fundamentals of your practice

  • “Tricks” to establish a regular meditation practice
  • Experiences from the homework sessions
  • Consider important steps during leading a meditation
  • Imagining the good qualities of the Buddha as a support and to develop equanimity

Trg IV 02: Group practice (download)

Developing your role

  • Experiences about leading discussions—anxiety, use of a journal, not making up meditations, having one’s own teacher as a guide, being humble
  • Using silence and open-ended questions
  • Closing with four immeasurables, dedication, bowing

Trg IV 03: Group practice (download)

Creating good external and internal conditions

  • Dealing with groups when people don’t talk
  • Overcoming self-centered shyness
  • Setting up structure to encourage participation
  • Reducing distractions
  • Setting a beginning and end time, not letting session go over 1 ¾-2 hours
  • Usefulness of brief meditation/silence when starting discussion
  • Informal discussion structure
  • Happiness, challenges, difficulties, suffering
  • Knowing when to break the rules
  • Do meditation as you are leading it

Trg IV 04: Group practice (download)

Venerable Thubten Chodron

Venerable Chodron emphasizes the practical application of Buddha’s teachings in our daily lives and is especially skilled at explaining them in ways easily understood and practiced by Westerners. She is well known for her warm, humorous, and lucid teachings. She was ordained as a Buddhist nun in 1977 by Kyabje Ling Rinpoche in Dharamsala, India, and in 1986 she received bhikshuni (full) ordination in Taiwan. Read her full bio.

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