December 26, 2013

This Sunday at Alameda Sangha, December 29 from 7-9 pm

Dear Ones,

How many of us have made sweeping, grandiose, New Year's resolutions only to find them hard to keep shortly after the new year begins? We often set our expectations beyond our capabilities when we make them despite the best intentions in formulating them.

The Buddha taught about intention or volition from one moment to the next which can certainly be much more doable in my estimation. He said that karma (kamma in the Pali) follows intention. If we use our tool of mindfulness to help us pause and set wholesome and skillful intentions before key moments in our lives or even starting the day with a wholesome intention (this is much like setting positive affirmations) think how much less suffering will be created and how much more people will be drawn to us!

For myself, setting the intention to be kind and respectful before each family encounter during the holiday celebrations this week really helped me remember to not allow my automatic reactions surface and manifest.

Come, explore and discuss this important teaching of the Buddha, which is yet another tool we can add to our kit of wholesome techniques and motivations.

with metta,

December 22, 2013

Yoga Cancelled on December 29th (Last Sunday this month)

Hello all,

I will not be giving a yoga class this month due to a family celebration on the same night!

Happy Holidays! I am looking forward to seeing you all for yoga on January 26th.


December 16, 2013

Sunday at the Alameda Sangha

Suzuki Roshi defined renunciation as "accepting that things pass away, that things change". The talk this Sunday will focus on the Parami of Renunciation. I look forward to seeing right before the holiday. Blessings and peace. Baruch

As a bee gathers nectar
And moves on without harming
The flower, its color, or its fragrance,
Just so should a sage walks through a village. (Dhammapada 49)

December 12, 2013

Sun 7-8:30 The Peace that Passes Understanding

Dear Friends,

Tinsel, shopping, parties, family… Hectic and exciting, this season resounds with the word "peace," but what does that mean? Is it even possible between now and January 2? This word that most religions claim as their great gift to humanity can be as slippery as quicksilver. It passes understanding on many levels.

This Sunday, 7-8:30, I'll look at the important place peace holds in Buddhist teachings and in our practice, from the pragmatic to the sublime. Bring your stories and friends to share the gift of peace as it has touched your own life.

December 5, 2013

Nuts and Bolts: An Inquiry into Mindfulness

Dear Friends,

This Sunday Dec. 8th I'll be reviewing some of the information from two weeks ago on what constitutes full-fledged mindfulness, with its associated healthy and beneficial mind states. Then together we will inquire into how we know whether or not we are mindful, how we can create the conditions for mindfulness to arise, and what it feels like when it is there. Bring your personal (or universal!) practice questions and insights to share.

with warmth,
Deb Kerr