The greatest gift is the
gift of the teachings
Retreat Dharma Talks at Gaia House

Awakening in the World (1) - Establishing the Timeless Refuge of Awareness (online series)

We are living in extraordinary times. The converging crises are unprecedented in their scale and implication, and could quite literally change everything. So how can we galvanise a path of awakening in these times, and what might it look like?

The Dharma has much to offer, from transformative insight into our interdependent reality, timeless resources for facing and navigating uncertainty and challenge, and perhaps most importantly, a means for unlocking our hearts. The world is in deep need of more wisdom and compassion, and access to timeless Dharma supports and practice contexts are crucial. But the shape of our life and our path is for each one of us to discover, and practicing in our daily life setting provides an ideal opportunity for this exploration.

Over these four weekends of flexible practice, mixing formal silent practice with self-led practice, we cover some of the key teaching emphases that have emerged as these ancient teachings have met our cultures, and explore a path for the life and times we are living - grounding our practice in that which is timeless, whilst opening to what is emergent and particular to this era. And most importantly, summoning a wholehearted practice intention to galvanise momentum, for our own sake, and the sake of the world around.

The weekends can be attended individually, or together as a set of supports running across the year. There may also be the opportunity to attend in between group sessions, or 1-1 meetings, to support your practice in daily life. The dates for other weekends in the series are:

• Friday 21st – Sunday 23rd June
• Friday 27th – Sunday 29th September
• Friday 22nd – 24th November

2024-04-19 (3 days) Gaia House

2024-04-20 Morning Instructions, Guided Meditation, Daily Life Practice Instructions. 1:33:08
Gavin Milne
How making teachings more explicit can be helpful for practicing in daily life. Bringing some background assumptions and ideas into the light. Using the 'crossing the river' metaphor for how the path of cultivation works, as a support for gaining trust and momentum in daily life practice. Getting a feel for wise effort and beginners mind. The 'how' of practice - the aliveness of wise attitude, aligning with the timeless, and orientating in terms of the three wholesome roots. The importance of wise attention (Yoniso manasikāra), especially outside of retreat centres, and being curious about how it comes and goes. Experiencing life through the six senses.
2024-04-20 Talk - Turning Towards the Timeless 54:16
Gavin Milne
The inward turning - parallels across tradition, a natural maturation. Exploring a vertical and horizontal perspective on awakening, and how these trajectories interact. Disentangling from Samsara. Connecting with the vertical - attention, the ground of awareness, and inner peace. Normalising common challenges encountered. The value of beginning again, and infusing the body with wise mindfulness.
2024-04-21 Morning Instructions, Guided Meditation, Daily Life Pratice Instructions. 1:16:28
Gavin Milne
Relaxing into practice, taking care of the causes of awakening and freedom. To support this - refreshing wise attitude, keeping Yoniso manasikāra simple, and seeing the eight worldly winds. Embracing the first three factors of awakening, as the ones we always have some agency in. Linking them to connecting with the vertical. Relating to the next four factors, more as results of the first three - qualities of our depth. Guided meditation, exploring experience through the senses, and how things build from the raw sense contact. The imminence of all experience through the senses, and becoming curious about the feeling tone of all sense contact. Including feeling the experience of craving and aversion, as the 'suffering that leads to the end of suffering'. Embracing continuity of practice. Including the ways in which we lose our way - and taking ourselves less personally.
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