Four frontiers for secular Buddhists
A secular Buddhist weekend workshop led by Winton Higgins
This workshop will build on explorations of secular Buddhism that many of us have shared over the last four years. Secular Buddhism refers to our growing tendency to rework our understanding and practice of the dharma so that it more pointedly informs how we in the west live, feel and think now. So far in this exploration we’ve stayed close to the Buddha’s discourses and their interpretation. Now it’s time to take our secular dharma into four frontiers (unsettled, disputed regions) of western culture which have great existential and practical significance for us all.
In particular, we’ll toss around these questions: (a) What does the often confused conflict between religion and irreligion in our culture have to do with how we live now? (b) Why do we have such trouble accepting our finitude (mortality and limitedness) and disentangling from the yearning for transcendence? (c) How should we think about our ethical priorities in the way we live now? (d) Can we move on from these issues to draw some tentative conclusions about how to orient and intensify our daily dharma practice?
Each of these questions will claim successive sessions (morning and afternoon each day). Each session will consist of a silent, self-led meditation period; a tea break; a talk; and a discussion period.
Those who want to limber up before the workshop could read one or both of two recent books: Terry Eagleton, Culture and the death of God (Yale University Press, 2014); and Peter Watson, The age of atheists: how we have sought to live since the death of God (Simon & Schuster, 2014)
In keeping with the 2.500 year old tradition the teacher is not paid for the dharma teaching. Dana is the practice of generosity through which we offer donations to the teachers as a sign of respect for the teachings. Retreatants will have the opportunity to practise dana during the retreat.
Registration and payment
WHEN: Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 July
TIME: 9.30am - 4.30pm
WHERE: Well-Awareness-Centre, 14 Ridge Street North Sydney
COST: $85 (standard) or $50 (concession*) + Dana
*Concession = Students, pensioners, Seniors Card holders, low-income earners.
Morning and afternoon refreshments provided. Please bring your lunch.
This event is now closed for online bookings. Any queries contact Margaret Tung, workshop manager.