The Integrated Dharma Program is a new approach to understanding and embodying the teachings of the Buddha. It is intended to bring contemporary people living in the modern world into very intimate contact with the thoughts and words of the historical Buddha. The approach is respectful of the classical tradition and faithful to the original teachings, but also secular in its orientation and focused more on the practical psychology of Buddhism than upon its religious or metaphysical aspects.
Participants are invited to look closely at two teachings presented in the classical texts each week, to investigate the meaning of these teachings in their own experience and in the context of their own lives, and to explore ways of putting these ideas into practice through meditation and other trainings. The passages are short, carefully selected, and presented in a way that makes them easily accessible. The primary work of the program is not to cover a lot of material, but to penetrate deeply into the meaning of key teachings and see how they are demonstrated in one’s own experience and can be enacted in one’s own life.
The second course in the program, Developing the Mind, focuses on samādhi, or the practices of meditation. When the mind can get free of its habitual restlessness and settle down upon a chosen object of attention, with some stability and clarity, one can one begin to see what the Buddha is pointing to in his teachings. Beginning with some basic ways of looking at mental training and clarifying the difference between directed and undirected meditation, the course takes a very close look at the classical instructions for meditation found in the Establishment of Mindfulness Discourse, including its important refrain, and at all four foundations of mindfulness individually. The higher concentration practices of absorption or jhāna are examined carefully, and each of the four ‘sublime abidings’ or brahma-vihāras are also investigated thoroughly. It goes on to address the issues of skillful effort and working with mental states, and concludes with a close look at the Mettā Sutta, the well-loved discourse on how to cultivate loving kindness and the many benefits of doing so.
Each week’s downloadable PDF includes two passages from the early Buddhist teachings of the Pali canon as well as accompanying study material. The side-by-side Pali-to-English translation also comes with an explanation of key Pali terms and the rationale for their translation, as well as Andrew’s guidelines for investigating and practicing the teachings. There are also downloadable audio files of all the material, including the reading of the Pali passages in their entirely, for students who want to listen to the teachings in addition to, or instead of, reading them. The class unfolds over the course of 16 weeks, allowing ample time and space for the material to truly sink in and begin to inform and transform your life.
Part 2 (Living With Integrity) and Part 3 (Deepening Wisdom) of the Integrated Dharma Program are not prerequisites for this course.
– Two texts a week, plus accompanying material, sent according to the lunar calendar (this is a feature that follows traditional Buddhist rhythms)
– Downloadable audio teachings
– Pali-to-English translations, new and updated in gender-neutral language
– Language analyses
– Guidelines for investigating and applying the teachings in your daily life
– Course begins on Thursday, December 29th
– Registration opens on Tuesday, November 29th
– Registration will remain open through Sunday, January 29th
– $240 General student
– $199 Returning students (those registered for Part 1 or 2)
Dec 29: What Is Meditation?
Jan 5: Directed And Undirected
Jan 12: Establishing Mindfulness
Jan 19: Mindfulness Of Body
Jan 27: Mindfulness Of Feeling
Feb 4: Mindfulness Of Mind
Feb 10: Mindfulness Of States-1
Feb 18: Mindfulness Of States-2
Feb 26: Jhanas 1 & 2
Mar 5: Jhanas 3 & 4
Mar 12: The Brahmavihāras
Mar 20: Lovingkindess & Compassion
Mar 27: Gladness & Equanimity
Apr 3: Skillful Effort
Apr 11: Working With Mental States
Apr 19: A Discourse On Lovingkindness
Apr 25: Summary & Conclusion
The Integrated Dharam Program consists of three parts:
Part One: Living With Integrity (info)
Sep 1, 2016 through Dec 28, 2016
Part Two: Developing The Mind
Dec 29, 2016 through Apr 25, 2017
Part Three: Deepening Wisdom (info)
Apr 26, 2017 through Aug 21, 2017