Is happiness something that can be retrieved as a reward for arriving at a specific destination, or more realistically, is it something we can co-create for ourselves in each moment of the day?
Often it’s simply easier for us to blame outside causes and conditions for the phenomena that dictates our life. We find it less painful to blame our circumstances rather than to look in the mirror and come to terms with the tending of our own heart, mind, passion and intuition.
We talk a lot about cleaning up our external environment, but it’s equally important to purify our internal environments through clear intentions, claiming responsibility and getting real in an increasingly complex and confusing world.
This is where karma comes in.
Karma is a massive topic, and there are many different interpretations and understandings of karma throughout many traditions. To put it simply, karma is the realization that the world is not coming at you, the world is coming from you.
How we act and move through our world creates the quality of life we have, and the way we tend to our hearts and minds in each moment determines our habitual patterns. Ultimately, we create happiness right now by what we do and how we think. Our present is our future and we create both, here and now.
Getting real with the truth of karma is easier said than done, especially when we are forced to face our shadows, our deepest fears and our perceived inadequacies. But it's absolutely necessary if we are true seekers on the path towards fruitful authenticity.
It’s up to us to decide how we will carry ourselves in the world, and what seeds of beauty we choose to plant and water. That is the ultimate key to understanding karma and getting real.
Are you ready to breathe life into the things you value, like awareness, intention and compassion, every day?
This 4-week course features the wisdom teachings from a group of the most renowned Buddhist and Bhakti practitioners of our time: Ram Dass, Sharon Salzberg, Robert Thurman, Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein, Roshi Joan Halifax, Dr. Robert Svoboda, Lama Tsultrim Allione, Dr. Mark Epstein, Dr. Gabor Maté, David Nichtern, Ethan Nichtern, Lama Surya Das, Raghu Markus and Dale Borglum (Ram Dev).
Ram Dass - Teacher, author and one of the first wisdom leaders to bring Bhakti Yoga to the West
Sharon Salzberg - New York Times Best selling author and teacher of Buddhist meditation practices in the West.
Jack Kornfield - Bestselling author and teacher in the vipassana movement in American Theravada Buddhism.
Robert Thurman - Author and worldwide authority on religion and spirituality, world philosophy, and Indo-Tibetan Buddhism,
Roshi Joan Halifax Buddhist teacher, Zen priest, anthropologist, and pioneer in the field of end-of-life care.
Dr. Robert Svoboda - Author and Ayurvedic practitioner & Aghora tradition wisdom holder.
Joseph Goldstein - Author, co-founder and guiding teacher of Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, Massachusetts.
Dr. Mark Epstein - Psychotherapist and author, exploring the interface of Buddhism and psychotherapy.
Lama Surya Das Author, poet, chantmaster, spiritual activist, and author of many popular works on Buddhism.
Lama Tsultrim Allione - Author, Buddhist teacher, and the founder and resident lama of Tara Mandala.
Ethan Nichtern - Buddhist teacher and author of the acclaimed book 'The Road Home: A Contemporary Exploration of the Buddhist Path'.
Gabor Maté - Renowned speaker, and bestselling author, known for his expertise on addiction, stress and childhood development.
Raghu Markus Director of Love Serve Remember Foundation and host of 'Mindrolling' podcast and 'Here & Now' podcast with Ram Dass.
Dale Borglum (Ram Dev) - Teacher of meditationand healing for those with life threatening illness, and on caregiving as spiritual practice.
David Nichtern - Senior Buddhist teacher, author, meditation guide and Emmy award winning composer and musician.
This week we explore how we inherit karma from our familial and spiritual lineage, and the ways that we can begin to become masters rather than victims of our circumstances. Trying to explain the law of karma is difficult, particularly because, as we see, life is becoming increasingly more complex and increasingly difficult to understand. But there is a way in which we can begin to look at how we plant seeds based on previous reactions to life experience, that filter our direct perception of the present moment, and how that creates responses and reactivity in the future. This is all within the study of karma.
This week, we discover the importance of getting real by seeking a deeper understanding of reality ‘as it is’ – this includes our need for authenticity. This simply means a real connection with the self in order to understand our feelings so that we can properly act on them. How does our Dharma help us to align ourselves with truth and integrity in everyday situations? Getting real is easier said than done when we are forced to face our shadows, our deepest fears or perceived inadequacies. But it's absolutely necessary if we are true seekers on the path towards fruitful authenticity.
This week we begin to understand the depth at which one can be affected by habitual patterns and tendencies. These patterns include the way we think, the way we act and the projections we relate to ourselves and those around us on a daily basis. We look at the ways we recondition and decondition our minds, and glean the importance of maintaining a healthy internal environment. None of these things are independent of the greater unfolding process, and each moment serves as an opportunity to affect ourselves and those around us in unimaginable ways.
This week, we observe that how we tend our heart and mind and then use that to express ourselves creates the kind of life and world that we'll experience. It doesn't mean we won't have pleasure and pain and gain and loss, but as we go through these things, we learn to view them through a different lens. So this is really what karma means: That you can see how you are, how you tend your heart, and how you act becomes the way that you move through the world and how the world responds to you. The beautiful thing is that it's available moment to moment. This is where it's most helpful, because one of the keys to karma is intention.
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