At the essential level, everything is perfect and complete just as it is. There’s nothing to realize, nothing to do, nothing to improve–this is it! At the manifest level, as one Zen master said on his deathbed, with utmost honesty, serenity, and a dose of humor, my life has been an endless series of mistakes.
True awakening involves embracing both levels– pristine, radiant perfection and messy, imperfect humanness– without trying to impose one on the other, yet at the same time holding the aspiration to bring this unconditional embrace to every moment of life. Welcome to the paradoxical path of embodied awakening!
This three-week online retreat combines the perspective of awakened awareness with the insights of Western psychology to help us explore the razor’s edge where inherent perfection expresses itself through this particular, imperfect body and mind. Sessions are scheduled for the morning hours in the US to make it easier for participants in Europe, Latin American, and the Middle East to join.
Though there will be no pre-established agenda, we will inevitably deal with some or all of the following themes.
*Recognizing the impersonal nature of thoughts and feelings, rather than constructing a self out of them *Welcoming stuck places, habitual patterns, and difficult emotions like fear, rage, and shame with compassionate, nonjudgmental attention *Allowing awakened awareness to flower as love and compassion—especially toward yourself *Bringing your awakening into the realm of work and intimate relationships *Finding the deepest authenticity by being willing to tell the truth at every level *Embracing the paradox of being no one and nothing, yet awakening each day in this particular body and mind, with these preferences, patterns, and personality *Surrendering to the flow of life as it is, without argument or resistance *And any questions, insights, and experiences that you bring to bear
Each session will include teachings, guided and silent meditations, and plenty of time for dialogue and discussion.
This online course format is a powerful container that allows for deeper work with the consistency and support of a teacher and community — without the normal cost and logistics that an on location retreat entails. It also provides the unique opportunity to be opening and exploring deeply in integration with living your daily life. You will be held in the container of the meetings and the small groups and by email support if necessary by Open Circle facilitators.
For a complete schedule and to register, https://opencirclecenter.org/event/three-week-online-course-stephan-bodian/