The world as we know it has changed a lot. What we have taken for granted for so long, has temporarily been removed and we most likely feel a sense of loss. In some places and areas of our lives things might be really out of hand, unpredictable and uncertain right now. Nevertheless, as scary as it may be, this is the human condition and things are happening according to causes and conditions, as always, just not in the same old way we have grown so accustomed to. The earth and all forms of life on it are fragile, tender and vulnerable, that’s why we have to gently care for all of them.
Some have suggested rightly that the coronavirus has to be faced with lots of Karuna (empathy, understanding & care). Especially its cousin the “I-don’t-care-virus”, which is also making its rounds globally and making the current situation only worse. Along with unconditional kindness/love, rejoicing in the goodness (which is still around as well) and with balance and a general groundedness in goodness.
As borders are closed and flights are cancelled, let’s keep our hearts open. The time has come to take things into our own hearts now. Let them in, accept and welcome them and let them touch us. Respond with wholesome mind states however, instead of reacting with unwholesome habitual thought patterns and behaviours. Fear, anxiety and frustration are to be expected and normal, but we can meet the current circumstances and our reactions to them with understanding, with a sense of gratitude (for what we still have or had), as well as with acceptance, gentleness and resilience to find balance and a grounding in peace again. Let us find ways to rest in reality, with a open and kind heart.
You are invited to join Bhantes Bodhidhaja and Cunda for another online we-retreat via the platform Zoom, offered free of charge from 17 to 19 April 2020. We will be practising and discussing the four highest hangout places for the mind, the four Brahma Viharas again. The teaching material was already presented during the Relax & Grow WE-Retreat 2019 at Jhana Grove (if you have attended that), but we will be building on it and making it relevant to the current circumstances.
Talks about Meditation & how to establish/grow Wholesome and avoid/overcome Unwholesome Habits, Guided Meditations, Personal Practice, Q&A and Group Interviews.
You can find the proposed timetable here (https://drive.google.com/open?id=1hbYtAwfYFIKRlH4Jd7GrCZqnsDp52q0M).
Timings: Friday 17 April 2020 8 pm to Sunday 19 April 4 pm (Perth-Time, GMT+8)
Venue: Online via Zoom
Some information about Zoom and on how it will work
If you are not familiar with Zoom Meetings (https://youtu.be/VnyitUU4DUY), which is a fairly easy platform to use, especially as a participant, we will offer guidance and a test run before the retreat starts.
Please do not sign up, if you can’t attend most of the online “Input Session” meetings, as you will be depriving others of a chance to benefit from this offer that way. The meditations in the “Digital Meditation Hall” are optional, but they will help with motivation and accountability. The group interviews are also optional and they will be limited to 20 devices, to keep them more personal. A Q&A session for all participants will be conducted on Saturday. We will send you an email and if you have a question, you will be able to reply to that message and send it to us that way.
If you live in one household or a flat together, please join as a group on one device (if your situation permits that and if it does not put you at risk of getting infected or infecting others). This will allow more people to join, if there is enough interest.
Computers and tablets are more suited for this than mobile phones, as we will be presenting (screen sharing) some slides and videos, which display better on larger screens. Who knows, some of you might even be able to stream it to your plasma TV screens or project it onto a large screen (if you are so inclined and also tech savvy).
We will offer further guidance to participants, who are not familiar with Zoom in the week leading up to the retreat. You will be able to join test meetings (on Tuesday and Thursday evening) to see how it all works and we will send you instruction videos on how to join a Zoom meeting on your computer or tablet, once you have registered.
This offer is free of charge, however if you wish to donate to the BSWA after the event, feel free to do so on our homepage here (https://bswa.org/support-us/donate/donating-to-the-bswa/).