Posts Tagged meditation

OQ13: Buddhism: what’s in it for me?

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Episode description:

What can the teachings of Buddha offer to us, people living in the fast-paced Western world of today? How can the Buddhist practice of meditation help us build capacity to face the world as it is?

Contemporary Buddhist teacher and writer, best known for his secular or agnostic approach to Buddhism, Stephen Batchelor in his book Buddhism Without Beliefs: A contemporary guide to Awakening “ explains that what the Buddha taught was not something to believe in or understand but rather something to do. He writes: “The dharma is not a belief by which you will be miraculously saved. It is a method to be investigated and tried out. It starts by facing up to the primacy of anguish, then proceeds to apply a set of practices to understand the human dilemma and work toward a resolution.” (p. 18)

On this show Irina speaks with a long time Buddhist practitioner and teacher Ken McLeod.Ken began his studies in 1970 with the Tibetan meditation master, the Ven. Kalu Rinpoche and is one of the few people in the West who did two three-year retreats.

Ken is a translator from Tibetan and is the author of the books Wake up to your life: Discovering the Buddhist Path of Attention and An arrow to the heart. He is a founder and the executive director of the non-profit Buddhist service organization The Unfettered Mind, which he established in 1990 and which provides instruction, training programs and guidance in Buddhist methods for being awake in your life. The tagline on the organization website reads – Pragmatic Buddhism.

Together with Dave Radden Ken developed an executive coaching and consulting practice, applying the skills and methods of Buddhism in the corporate environment. His clients included Volvo Design, ReadyPac, HBO, Warner Bros., TimeWarner, and others.

In this conversation Ken talks to us about the central question within Buddhism, explains why we are better off experiencing emotions rather than expressing or suppressing them, how meditation can help us bild capacity to see things as they are and how meditating on death and impermanence can help us understand and accept death as a part of life. 

Featured music track:

We close the episode with Uma visita – the track by Brazilian-born musician Raphael Oliviera who can be heard playing the soft rhythms of bossanova in Uppsala and Stockholm, Sweden.

Episode related resources:

Unfettered Mind – Pragmatic Buddhism

Musings by Ken

Unfettered Mind Podcast

Unfettered Questions Podcast

Interview with Ken McLeod on Secular Buddhist Podcast

Martin & Stephen Batchelor’s website


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OQ6: Living well with a chronic illness, Part 2 (EN)

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Episode description:

In this second part of the two-part conversation, Andy McLellan and Erica Hamilton share some of the techniques they found useful in coping with the physical and emotional pain on their path towards healing.

Useful resources:

Vajra breathing technique

Guided audio meditations with the Buddhist teacher Tara Brach (including the loving-kindness/metta meditation)

The Practice of Tonglen

Written instructions for the practice of Tonglen (by Pema Chödron)

Video instructions on Tonglen  (by Pema Chödron)

A blog post on Tonglen by Andy McLellan

Turning Suffering Inside Out: A Zen Approach to Living with Physical and Emotional Pain by Darlene Cohen

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