These sessions are grounded in the framework of The Four Noble Truths, the Buddha’s first teaching after his Awakening. The Four Noble Truths—dissatisfaction, desire, cessation and the path—offer us a perspective on the inevitable joys and disappointments that life brings, as well as a way to integrate our spiritual understanding with the ordinary experiences of our lives.
They show us the essential nature of life, and how we set ourselves up for constant struggle and discontent by seeing what we want to see, rather than recognising how things actually are. The teaching then goes on to point out a path through the world, showing us a way out of our self-deception that encompasses the main areas of our lives—our points of view, how we think, how we act, ways of earning a livelihood and so on.
In this way, the Four Noble Truths describe how to live skilfully in the midst of our world, with our responsibilities, relationships, confusion and everything else that comes our way. In the words of Dogen:
Those who see worldly life as an obstacle to Dharma—Dogen Zenji (1200-1253), founder of the Soto school of Zen Buddhism
see no Dharma in everyday actions.
They have not yet discovered that
there are no everyday actions outside of Dharma.
Come with an open mind and the willingness to do a lot of self reflection. These classes are open to all.