This talk is organised in collaboration with the Contemplary in Melbourne and the Buddhist Council, Sydney Insight Meditators is delighted to be bringing David Loy back to Australia following his successful visit last year.
Climate breakdown, species extinction, a dysfunctional political and economic system with a growing gap between rich and poor — what does that have to do with Buddhism?
The Buddhist path is not about qualifying for heaven but living in a different way here and now. This supplements nicely the customary Western focus on social justice. As Gary Snyder put it, “The mercy of the West has been social revolution. The mercy of the East has been individual insight into the basic self/void. We need both.” Does the Buddhist tradition offer a way to bring these two types of transformation together in a new model of activism connecting inner and outer practice?
The bodhisattva path provides the archetype we need. Wisdom and compassion are its two wings: “Wisdom says I am nothing. Love says that I am everything. Between these two my life turns” (Nisargadatta). Wisdom is realizing that there is no “me” separate from the rest of the world, and compassion is putting that realization into practice. Contemplative practices deconstruct and reconstruct our sense of self, in service of social and ecological engagement. Cultivating equanimity and “don’t know mind” supports what is most powerful about spiritual activism: non-attachment to the results of our actions. We undertake to do the very best we can, not knowing what the consequences will be—not knowing if our efforts will make any difference whatsoever. And that is okay, because they are our gift to each other and to the earth.
David's talk will be followed by the launch of the latest book by Martine and Stephen Batchelor: What is this? Ancient questions for modern minds. Click here for more information about the book.
When: Friday 31st May
Time: 7:30pm - 9:00pm
Where: Buddhist Library & Meditation Centre, 90-92 Church St., Camperdown, NSW
Cost: Free + dana* (though registrations are required)
Additional cost: 'Dana' (act of generosity to support the teachers and the teaching). This is a free event and in the keeping with a 2,500 year old tradition no fee has been charged for the teachings. You are invited to give a donation to support David to continue his work.
Click here to register to this free event.
For inquiries, contact Gawaine Powell Davies (email) or phone: 0425-237 141.
About David Loy
David is a professor, writer, and Zen teacher in the Sanbo Zen tradition of Japanese Zen Buddhism and a founding member of the new Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center, near Boulder, Colorado. His main research interest is the dialogue between Buddhism and modernity, especially the social implications of Buddhist teachings. David is a prolific author, whose essays and books have been translated into many languages. He is also on the advisory boards of Buddhist Global Relief, the Clear View Project, Zen Peacemakers, and the Ernest Becker Foundation.
Click here for more information about David.