Tuesday Sangha Evening (7.30 – 9.30pm)
Open to all who have some experience of meditating focusing on the breath and preferably are familiar with some basic Buddhist teachings such as the Four Noble Truths our Sangha night class is a chance to explore Buddhism and Meditation through a programme of Meditation, ritual and study. The introduction to Meditation and Buddhism course gives a particularly good entry into this class.
Our Sangha night’s are a combination of both stand alone evenings and themed blocks. Each block will be for 3 or 4 weeks where we will explore different themes. These will be run by a team of people who will each lead an evening on the theme. We would like to encourage people to come for the whole block to get the most out of it but if you can’t make all of them feel free to just drop in during these times.
Sangha night classes are run on a donation basis.
6th – 20th March, “Going for Refuge” with Dhiraka
According to Sangharakshita ‘Going for Refuge’ is the central act of the
Buddhist life. Over the next three weeks we will explore this (I think)
mysterious teaching. In successive weeks we will discuss each of the
6th, We start this week with: What does Going for Refuge to
the Buddha mean to you and how do you express it in your life?
Nauseating ‘Good Buddhist’ answers strictly prohibited! Put the books
away and come prepared to think, feel and express!
13th, What is the Dharma, in what sense is it a refuge, and what does it
involve ‘to go for refuge to the dharma’? Following on from our lively
and comprehensive discussion on the Buddha as a refuge (which
successfully avoided all nauseating good Buddhist answers) we will pick
up the enquiry again into this most mysterious but defining Buddhist
act. Come prepared to reflect on and share some wisdom from your very
own unique Dharma Life.
20th, The Sangha, that most precious of jewels, is a particular emphasis of
our tradition. So we should be on safe ground. But what can it possibly
mean: ‘to the sangha for refuge I go’? And who are the Sangha anyway??
Following on from last weeks lively debate on the Dharma refuge we’ll
plunge on into deeper more mysterious waters: people, community and
personified archetypes. Hope to see you there for the finale of this
closer look into what is ‘the definitive act of the Buddhist life’.
27th , Topic TBC, with Maitrinaga (from Glasgow Buddhist Centre)
3rd – 17th, with Sasanaratna and Jane
In these three weeks we will explore the significance of the symbolic Buddhas and Bodhisattvas as developed
in Tibetan Buddhism and also look at the lives and teachings of two of Tibet’s most celebrated gurus; Milarepa and Padmasambhava.
3rd, Sasanaratna will introduce the principle of the “Three bodies,” of a Buddha and the Mandala of Five Buddhas and Jane will describe the qualities of a particular bodhisattva as an example of Indo-Tibetan symbolism. We will then conclude with a practice of the Metta Bhavana incorporating some of this imagery.
10th, Jane will give a brief introduction to the fascinating story of the yogi, Milarepa after which we will study a section from the popular, “Songs of Milarepa.” Sasanaratna will start the evening with a meditation influenced by the method known as Mahamudra, an approach to insight associated with Milarepa’s lineage.
17th, Jane will lead a meditation and then introduce the part historical, part mythical figure of Padmasambhava. We will then have a puja incorporating a shared reading of some of his teachings.
24th, with Sraddhadharini
1st, with Ele & Jane
8th – 15th, with Dhiraka
22nd, with Jamie