Thursday, June 26, 2008

Meditation Curriculum

The following is a proposal for a possible meditation curriculum for a five-day, four-night forest camp in the surrounding woods and hills of Kathmandu some friends at Universal Peace Foundation are organizing.


Proposal for Meditation Curriculum

Possible courses at the Shivapuri retreat

— Ananda / June 25, 2008

The following four courses, covering the core of my meditation studies and experiences, may be given at the Shivapuri forest retreat at any length desired. I would prefer to do the first three on three consecutive days, and a shorter session of the fourth one at the closing of each night’s program.

1. Wisdom Contemplation

Drawing from extensive personal introspection, counseling sessions and the vast, ancient heritage of Buddhist psychology, the wisdom contemplation course leads the participant deep into the uncognized areas of the human mind. The primary objective is to equip the meditator with a wholesome understanding of the workings of the human mind, with wisdom tools for transcending our self-imposed limitations.

2. Breathing Meditation

A very classical form of meditation, watching the perpetual flow of the breath is an excellent means of developing concentration. The participant is led with a guided meditation not only to a deep and liberating focus on the ordinary breath, but also into the subtler areas of pranic breathing and an extensive awareness of the energetic prana-field pervading the body.

3. Basic Vipassana

A deeply psychological form of meditation taught by Buddhist masters, vipassana is an invaluable tool in transcending the conditioned mind. Meditators participating in the course will learn how to explore, confront and deal with the common tricks of the conditioned mind. Breaking through habitual patterns and the deep bondage of reactions, one is no longer subject to the pulls of pleasure and pain, reposing in deep tranquility.

4. Universal Goodwill

Good things are best shared, and so it is with the good energy we accumulate in the course of our daily life and spiritual practices. Meditation on the four brahma-viharas, the immeasurable spiritual assets — compassion, kindness, sympathy and equanimity — allows the meditator to pervade all of existence through an expansion of goodwill, unifying his heart with the hearts of all living beings, sharing in the infinite good energy of the infinite universe.

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