In this series, you will be listening to the lightly edited recordings of Gelek Rimpoche’s 1995 teachings on Buddha’s Eightfold Path at Jewel Heart International in Ann Arbor.

The descriptions for the 7 sessions of Buddha’s Eightfold Path follow:

Session 1
Rimpoche shares that acknowledging suffering is where we begin to develop the right view. Looking at the historical life of Buddha and his realization of the truth of suffering following his life in an artificial environment, Rimpoche suggests that truth lies beyond denial. Choosing to not think about, talk about, nor acknowledge truth will not help free us from the sufferings of illness, old age or death.

Session 2
“We have a problem with being out of touch with compassion, not with being out of touch with suffering,” says Rimpoche before exploring the 2nd noble truth (the cause of suffering). He then elaborates on our addictions to ignorance, anger, attachment and jealousy as the causes that make us suffer.

Session 3
Rimpoche describes the essence of Buddhist practice as changing habitual patterns. He approaches right speech and right action from the perspective of our response to suffering, suffering that we experience due to our negative activities. “Where and how we handle negativity makes a difference” he says and presents the four powers as an antidote that can help to transform negativity.

Session 4
With a simple explanation of emptiness while discussing the nature of purification, Rimpoche offers wisdom and compassion as the ultimate antidote actions for all negativity. Wisdom and compassion are the primary supports of Buddhist understanding of right speech, right action, right aspiration, and right view.

Session 5
Rimpoche opens with love and compassion, noting they are two aspects of one mind focused on ourselves and other beings. One aspect wishes to separate self and others from suffering while the other wishes to make them happy. The remainder of the session includes meditation techniques to support right mindfulness and right concentration.

Session 6
Rimpoche reviews love and compassion as right view and insists we must include ourselves when practicing these meditations. He closes the session by bringing right mindfulness and right concentration together with practical insights.

Session 7
Rimpoche leads a guided meditation and closes with recitation and explanation of the mantra, Om Mani Padme Hum.

The sessions range from just under to just over one half hour in length.

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