An introduction to meditation and Buddha’s first teaching
Regardless of who we are, the main purpose of life, the very heart of being human, is to be happy. All of us have the same wish to be happy and to avoid suffering. In the Buddha’s very first teaching called the Four Noble Truths he outlines a step by step guide to discovering happiness.
Even though we all want happiness, we constantly experience the ups and downs of everyday life. How do we relate to these experiences? This is the subject of Buddha’s very first teaching.
Buddha taught that our actions and the emotions that underlie them are powerful forces in shaping how we experience the world.
At the very heart of Buddha’s teaching is the understanding that we all have the potential for lasting happiness. Central to this is discovering our own enlightened nature. This is something we all have and can realise. The goal of the entire path of practice is creating the circumstances for this to come about.
Along the way we learn to work with all the things we meet by working with our mind and heart. Through the practice of love and compassion we make friends with ourselves and care for others.
Working with our mind
A unique feature of the Buddhist understanding is seeing how our mind is central to all our experience. If our mind and heart are well, then we are well. The opposite is also true. One of our main tools in working with our mind is the practice of meditation.
The first practice of meditation is learning to allow our distracted and busy minds to settle in a state of natural peace. We will explore methods of working with our mind and heart with the goal of establishing a daily meditation practice that we can continue at home. Meditation is really the greatest gift we can give ourselves and a direct way to discover our basic goodness and well being.
Throughout the course we will also look at other important topics that directly impact our everyday lives. We will look at our habits that shape the perception of ourselves and the world.
Each evening there will be guided instruction, discussion and an opportunity to practice together.
This course is suitable for everyone
Rigpa Athlone, 1 Bastion Street, Athlone
Wednesdays 7.00pm to 8.30pm
Suggested donation €8 per class, €6 low income or what you can afford
For more information and questions don’t hesitate to contact us
Telephone: +353 (0)86 061 7701
Veronica first learned to meditate in 1996 when she went on her first retreat to Dzogchen Beara. Since then she has continued studying and practising in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, and completed a one-year closed retreat in 2004 in Dzogchen Beara. Learning to meditate changed her life and this inspired her to train as a meditation instructor, and since 2001 she has been helping on retreats in Dzogchen Beara and other Rigpa centres around Ireland. She lives in Offaly and is a photographer and artist – her book Observing Offaly, a photographic record of life in her adopted county, was published in November 2016.
After a chance encounter with The Tibetan Book of Living & Dying Anthony became deeply interested in the Buddhist teachings on life, death and everything in between. He is one of the co-founders of Rigpa Athlone where he regularly facilitates courses in meditation.
He lives and works in Athlone where he runs a small business with his brother. He loves to travel, cook and spend time in the garden!