Dhamma Talks from Retreat with Venerable Khemako

Venerable Khemako’s talks recorded during his November, 2018 visit to TBC are now available on our Resources page. These include:

Friday evening talk

Title: The Buddha’s alternative

Venerable Khemako discusses Dukkha in everyday life and how the typical worldy way of responding to it is inherently unsatisfactory. He then explains how the mind gets entangled in the 5 Khandas in its desire for happiness, but that the result is a kind of mirage. There is a description of the Buddha’s alternative to this grasping – a path that allows one to see how the mind creates its own suffering.

Saturday morning

Title: Questions and Answers

Venerable Khemako answers questions on the following topics: how to develop peace through receptivity and curiosity; How to combine the peacefulness of meditation practice with the busyness of life; How to face recurrent fears; Explaining anatta / not self; the usefulness of the 8-fold path to train the mind

Saturday afternoon

Title: How to best use our precious life

Venerable Khemako reflects on the rarity of being born human and being able to practice and reflect on the dhamma. He also discusses how to prioritize practice in everyday life. He then explains the way meditation can help in the development of insight.

Sunday morning

Title: Samsara and politics

Venerable Khemako discusses how desire for becoming leads to forming an identity, which leads to opinions, including political opinions. The metaphor he provides regarding political opinions in the human realm are that they are like sunspots. Sunspots necessarily have both positive and negative ions – you cannot have one without the other. In the same way, polarization of political opinions and movements are by their nature unsettled, incomplete, and dynamic. He also makes the point that our opinions are due to causes and conditions, and therefore not a fixed part of one’s identity. The solution to the mind’s tendency to reify political opinions is to cultivate wise reflection through the 8-fold path.

TBC is Moving!

Our current meeting place, The Centre on Dupont Street, has been sold and we’ve had to look for a new location for our Sunday morning sessions. We’re very fortunate to have found a wonderful new spot close by on Prince Arthur Avenue near Bloor and St. George.

Starting in December, we’ll be meeting at the Xiaolan Health Centre at 88 Prince Arthur Avenue.

A New Tisarana Dhamma Hall

Below is an excerpt from the announcement on Tisarana Buddhist Monastery’s website:

There is something auspicious in the air. And you can be part of it.

As Tisarana grows, the need for a larger sala (hall) has become apparent. The present sala can hold only 50 people in close quarters. The envisioned new dhamma hall is planned to replace the current (Kusala) sala and will comfortably hold 150 people, with extra space available in a conjoined foyer for large events.

Hedges, gates, trees, paths and courtyards will help to define the new geometry of the landscape in which the dhamma hall and the proposed buildings will sit. These will also serve to shield cars from view, create a clear sense of entry, guide day visitors to the main entrances – and walking paths beyond – and create defined areas for outdoor activities.

The construction of the dhamma hall will be a major project for the monastery. Currently in the planning phase, it is expected to take three to four years to complete.

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To view the full announcement, visit sala.tisarana.ca

 

Stillness Flowing – The Life and Teachings of Ajahn Chah

Now available: “Stillness Flowing – The Life and Teachings of Ajahn Chah” by Ajahn Jayasaro, the long-awaited biography of Ajahn Chah with an introduction by Luong Por Sumedho.

From Ajahn Jayasaro’s preface:

Although it has been my intention that this book should be, as far as possible, a biography as opposed to a hagiography, I am not sure that I have been completely successful. My love for Luang Por and my belief in his enlightenment inevitably colour the text. What I have not done is suppress any scandalous or embarrassing information out of concern for his good name. Hard as it may be to accept nowadays when there is so much – and often well-founded – cynicism about the integrity of religious figures, Luang Por Chah had absolutely nothing to hide. The only skeleton in a cupboard at Wat Pah Pong was the one hanging on public display in the Dhamma Hall. In fact, that is one of the strongest reasons for my belief that the life of Luang Por Chah is so worthy of study.

Electronic versions are available for download on the Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery website, where you can also request a print copy.