Year: 2011


Editor’s Note: The following is the first in a series of posts by Nora Murphy about the “10 paramis,” or qualities of heart-mind. With these posts, she’ll take an informal, personal approach to each of the paramis, in an effort

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The Pond: A Post-Retreat Reflection

“I haven’t been this un-mindful for ages,” I confessed to a dhamma friend a few weeks ago.  We were checking in after a Monday night Buddhist Studies class at Common Ground. “Me, too,” she said folding up her bench. “Seriously? 

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The Experience of Compassion

Dear Friends, Although we can probably agree that compassion is a good idea, there might be confusion about what the actual experience of compassion is. Buddhist practice emphasizes a clear connection with each moment as it arises. This intimate connection

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The return I want to feel Spring In my heart once again All over Borne anew I want to wash my hands of this cold, achy Tale and begin again As a flower unfolded from the dark earth Sings After

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Stepping Twice Into the River

I have a pesky habit of getting stuck in the past, of brooding over relationships and events, analyzing and wishing for a different outcome along the way. Sometimes, I find myself tête-à-tête with a particularly unsmooth shard from the past’s

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It’s Just Vedana: Reflections on the (Rain) Forest Retreat

There is a sound I hear when my mind is clear and focused. It is not a high-pitched ringing sound like you might hear when you are underwater or leave a loud rock concert… It is a musical note that

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The Imperfect Meditator (Sound Familiar?)

A couple of weeks ago during a weekly practice group, a woman shared that she is having a difficult time meditating recently.  “I keep looking at my watch,” she said. Her comment resonated with me.  Except that I don’t just

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Post-Retreat: Reentering Life’s Freeway

Imagine laying in a forest, bathed by the fourth-dimensional serenity of nature and sunlight playing across the landscape.  And, suddenly, a wormhole opens and you are thrust onto the middle of a freeway junction with cars zigzagging in every direction. 

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Buddhist Retreat, With Kids

My daughters and I just returned from a 6 day retreat at Aranya Bodhi Monastery in the forest of Northern California. We were immersed in the beauty and tranquility of the forest, taken away from our usual distractions, and had

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The Practice of Dana

As many of you know, Common Ground Meditation Center is supported entirely by the practice of dana, or generosity. Although dana often takes the form of donations, the practice of dana signifies quite a bit more than that. By way

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