Fri, 27 April 2007
Time for another talk from Vajradarshini. More poetry, more Rumi, more listening joy. Actually, we just liked the title so much we had to go for it this month – but, in fact, it’s another splendid journey around the idea of Enlightenment, using the languages of surrender and discipline from the Sufi context. It’s as heady as a sumptuous wine, but also sobering and down to earth, whether we’re “following a railing in the dark” or walking lost “inside the red world”. Drink up!
Talk given at Taraloka Retreat Centre, 2005
01 Starting with a poem by Rumi – not a ‘sensible’ talk
02 ‘Enlightenment’; following a railing in the dark; wine in Rumi’s poetry; the Dharma as studying the self; surrender and discipline
03 The Tavern – pushing off for Truth; ‘managing’ samsara and settling down
04 Fermentation; being cooked – slowly
05 How we are cups; two ways we limit ourselves – i. literalism; a quote from Aloka – abandoning ideas of what the ‘path’ is
06 Sangharakshita on literalism and craving; effective Going for Refuge and giving up limited ideas; the antidote to beauty
07 ii. Utilitarianism; Sangharakshita’s idea of the Greater Mandala of Uselessness; literal takes on aesthetics; breaking the cups
08 Pushing off into truth; kinds of connection with Buddhas and Bodhisattvas; Reality and form and emptiness; visualistaion practice and life – things arising and disolving
09 ‘Fana’ and ‘baka’ in Rumi’s poetry – two streamings across the doorsill; Shams-e-Tabrizi – Rumi’s teacher
10 The importance of reflecting on form and emptiness; the eight-point mind training – taking all obstacles with you on the path; the Bodhisattva Ideal from the perspective of emptiness; spiritual practice in a world neither real nor illusory
11 Pema Chodron on how to avoid burn-out; shunyata and unrealistic ideals; a quote by Dennis Potter near to death; the trivial and the important; birdsong
12 Hsuan-Tsang’s ‘trusting mind’; introducing the dirt we buy to the dirt we already have
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