This program will be held online via Zoom. Registrants will receive the link to join the program in their Order Confirmation email.
In classical Buddhist tradition, meditation is not an end in itself; it is a means of accessing wisdom. Mindfulness meditation is meant to lead to insight into the three characteristics of experience: impermanence, suffering and non-self.
Join Buddhist scholar-practitioner Andrew Olendzki for an in-depth exploration of the third of these characteristics, non-self. In our time together, we will emphasize how it is encountered, not theoretically, but in the moment-to-moment flow of the mind and body. A close reading of key passages from the primary early Buddhists texts will help ground one's meditation practice in its appropriate traditional context.
No Buddhist idea is more central or more perplexing than “non-self”. Yet insight into non-self is the pivot point of wisdom, the gateway through which all the other teachings suddenly make sense. The realization that a person is not what we normally take them to be – that we are not what we take ourselves to be – arises gradually and naturally from the careful observation of moment-to-moment experience in the mind and body. And, this realization has the potential to change everything. This day-long workshop examines the early Buddhist texts and practices that walk us through this territory and provides an opportunity to understand the teaching of non-self in a way that is inspiring rather than challenging. Insight into non-self constitutes the wisdom that is ultimately liberating, in both large and small ways.
Appropriate for both new and experienced meditators, this online workshop will involve lecture, discussion and experiential investigation using both guided and unguided meditation. Beginners will find the language and the practices accessible, and experienced meditators will be guided towards the deeper meaning of insight meditation. Everyone is welcome.
A recording of this program will be made available to participants.
Andrew Olendzki is a professor at Lesley University in Cambridge MA, and the director of its Mindfulness Studies program. He is a scholar of early Buddhist thought and practice with a special interest in Buddhist psychology and its relevance to the modern world. Prior to joining Lesley, he worked for almost thirty years in Barre, MA, first as the original executive director of the Insight Meditation Society and then as executive director and senior scholar at the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies, where his focus was upon the integration of academic study with the practice of meditation. He writes regularly for Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, and is the author of Unlimiting Mind: The Radically Experiential Psychology of Buddhism (Wisdom 2010) and Untangling Self: A Buddhist Investigation of Who We Really Are (Wisdom 2016).