July 2017 full moon – Gratitude

Just last week, I finished a one-month retreat at the Insight Meditation Society's Forest Refuge in Barre, Massachusetts, led by Sayadaw U Vivekananda.  What a relief it was, to temporarily put down some of the burdens I didn't even know I was carrying, and to have such a powerful opportunity to "disentangle the tangle" (as …

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Generosity part 4: Giving and Receiving

Greg Scharf and volunteer cook Donald Elniff enjoying cake dana at the Blue Mountains Insight Meditation Centre Right now, I'm assisting my friend Greg Scharf teach a two week retreat at the Blue Mountains Insight Meditation Centre in New South Wales, Australia.  And right about now, the annual three-month retreat at the Insight Meditation Society …

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Generosity part 3: The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer

This TED talk by a musician, Amanda Palmer, on "The Art of Asking" really resonated with some of my own recent experiences of giving and receiving.  It's not a classical Buddhist "dana talk" - it even features some brief nudity - but her courage in being willing to connect with a diverse cross-section of people, …

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