Open Buddha

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Bay Area, California

13 Week Meditation Class in Berkeley

Rev. Keisho, the Tendai priest who lives on Cobb Mountain (see is going to be teaching a class on shikan meditation for 13 weeks in Berkeley. This will start next Thursday, March 5 and will run from 7:00 to 9:00 PM.

It will be held at Berkeley Fellowship of Unitarian Universalists.


The class details are as follows:

  1. March 5. Introduction and overview: shamatha/vipasyana meditation using buddha-anu-smirti as the point of concentration

  2. March 12. Calming and discerning (shi-kan) methods of meditation over 2500 years; Shakyamuni Buddha; Tendai Chi-i’s Shoshikan; Shantideva and Kamalashila; Zen and Vipassana; contemporary Tendai shikan

  3. March 19. Shikan practice based on buddha-anu-smirti; the meaning, rationale, and repetition of mantras; advantages and disadvantages of mantra recitation vs. sitting silently; the four stages of meditation

  4. March 26. Doing a practice; the process; grounding in ethics; monks and householders; calming meditation by continued refocusing on the point of concentration; the thought of “I” and other obstacles to concentration

  5. April 2. An example of calming meditation practice by together reciting a mantra for 45 minutes or more

6,7. April 9, 16. The remaining classes are on vipasyana, or discerning the Dharma; first is a two-part telling of Shakyamuni’s six-year search for enlightenment; his one-pointed focus on realizing Nirvana

  1. April 23. Bringing to mind the following Dharmas: accumulation of wisdom and merit; the two obstacles to enlightenment; Buddha-Dharma-Sangha; the three bodies of a buddha; three types of Dharma; the three poisons; three mysteries

  2. April 30. Four immeasurables; four conversions; four visualizations; the four foundations of mindfulness; four paths to siddhis; dharmas of the four directions

  3. May 7. The five skandhas; the five bodhisattva vows; five buddhas; five faculties and powers; five obstacles to samadhi; the five prerequisites for practice

  4. May 14. The six realms of existence and the suffering in each; the six perfections of the bodhisattva

  5. May 21. The seven bodhyangas progressively and as antidotes to the meditative extremes of lethargy and restlessness; the eight-fold path to liberation; the eight thoughts of a Dharma practitioner

  6. May 28. The nine skillful means; the ten bodhisattva precepts; the ten reliances