Having been in treatment for the last eight months for metastatic cancer in her pelvis and lungs, Suvarnaprabha offers a few informal reflections about how this deep experience of impermanence has influenced her life and practice.
Maitrivir-Nagarjuna's excellent talk recorded for the San Francisco sangha's celebration of the anniversary of the great mass conversion initiated by Dr. Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar, the great leader of the Dalit community of Indian Buddhists. It is a pretty comprehensive oveview of why Dr. Ambdekar converted to Buddhism, the significance of the anniversary itself, and Ambedkar's vision of 'prabuddha bharat': Enlightened India, and, in fact, an Enlightened world.
Here's a talk by the wonderful Suvarnaprabha given at a meeting of the San Francisco Gay Buddhist Fellowship just after the U.S. election of 2008. Tempering the general delight at Barack Obama's win was the knowledge that the people of California had voted to outlaw gay marriage, reversing the then current law. Suvarnaprabha's talk is perfectly weighted to the context and the time, looking at the 'perfection of patience', one of the training principles of the Bodhisattva and its application in our own challenging spiritual lives.
Talk given at San Francisco Buddhist Center, November 2008
What do we revere? Is reverence a Buddhist practice? When we bow, does it mean we are unworthy?
This talk explores "the problem of how to translate knowing into being"- the function and meaning of reverence in general and bowing in particular; introduces the Three Jewels of Buddhism and the Threefold Puja; discusses religion, the rational mind, and the dangers and fetters of reverence.
With quotations by Urgyen Sangharakshita, Lama Suyra Das, and Shunryu Suzuki.
Here's a wee jewel from San Francisco - an introduction to the idea of spiritual community in Buddhism. Suvarnaprabha is a thoroughly delightful guide as she explores her subject with a depth of feeling that comes startling through at times. There are also plenty of laughs here - it's a human and grounded presentation of one of the Dharma's best kept secrets, one of its greatest potential gifts to the West.
Talk given at San Francisco Buddhist Center, St. Valentine's Day 2007
As part of a whole year at San Francisco Buddhist Center dedicated to the theme of 'Going for Refuge', we have this talk from Viveka. It's a personable and wide-ranging look at one of the most important aspects of Buddhist practice, whose significance is upheld in every tradition. What is it to look to the 'Three Jewels' as a response to our dissatisfaction? A thoughful exploration, taking in traditional Dharma approaches and contemporary counter-cultural art forms and ways of living...
Please note that some small noise artefacts can be heard occasionally on this talk due to a poor original recording.
Talk given at San Francsisco Buddhist Center, 2006
A short but sweet talk from San Francisco's very own Suvarnaprabha, in which she explores the Buddhist vision of compassion through her own experience of meditation and contact with inmates within the U.S. prison system. The talk was given in response to Chandrakirti's lines: "Like water in a waterwheel, helplessly we circle. I bow down to the compassion that arises for all beings." Moving stuff.
Talk given at the Western Buddhist Order Women's Convention, 2005
Padmatara is an Order member who has been working with ways to bring more awareness to her own communication and is still learning from resistance and obstacles along the way. In this interesting, down to earth talk, she discusses the ethics of speech as well as authenticity, kindness and miscommunication.