The Buddhist Centre: buddhism for today
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 6: Upekkha & Ratnasambhava

By jvalamalini on Thu, 19 Mar, 2015 - 15:17

Day 6: Upekkha & Ratnasambhava

By jvalamalini on Thu, 19 Mar, 2015 - 15:17A cold bright day in Bristol, and a deep quiet atmosphere in the Buddhist Centre, as we move into cultivating upekkha (equanimity).

As a brahma vihara, equanimity is more than the dictionary definition of ‘calm and composed especially in adversity’. It is a composite of metta, karuna and mudita pervaded by Dharmic understanding, like metta with a wisdom eye. It sees joy and suffering, their conditionedness and the constant flux of everything.

After just sitting in the mandala,...
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 4: Guided Karuna Bhavana Meditation (Cultivation of Compassion)

By Centre Team on Thu, 19 Mar, 2015 - 00:10
Ratnavandana leads a full practice of the second of the Brahma Viharas, the Cultivation of Compassion (Karuna Bhavana) in the face of suffering. Strong, necessary medicine for the heart and mind…

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Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 4: Guided Meditation - Sitting In The Mandala (With Amitabha Mantra)

By Centre Team on Thu, 19 Mar, 2015 - 00:08
Another session with Ratnavandana, helping establish where we are in the Mandala and in relation to our heart this morning as we set up for the day by chanting the mantra of Amitabha, the great red Buddha of love and light in the West.

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Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

the divine smile on the face of the enlightened one

By jvalamalini on Wed, 18 Mar, 2015 - 19:02

Did you never observe how in moments of happiness a person’s features change and become bright with joy?  Did you never notice how joy rouses people to noble aspirations and deeds, exceeding your normal capacity?

Sympathetic joy gives to equanimity the mild serenity that softens its stern appearance. It is the divine smile on the face of the Enlightened One, a smile that persists in spite of his deep knowledge of the world’s suffering, a smile that gives solace and hope, fearlessness and confidence: “Wide open are the doors to deliverance” thus it speaks.

Nyanaponika Thera
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 5: Mudita & Amoghasiddhi

By jvalamalini on Wed, 18 Mar, 2015 - 18:58

Day 5: Mudita & Amoghasiddhi

By jvalamalini on Wed, 18 Mar, 2015 - 18:58We’ve had a wonderful sunny spring day today in Bristol, perfect for us to dwell in what Sangharakshita has described as the bright dancing colours of mudita.

Ratnavandana talked about mudita as a natural response that happens often, but which we don’t always recognise. She suggested consciously appreciating moments of gladness in our lives, particularly when it connects us to others - for example she enjoyed seeing three small girls with mother’s day bouquets in the street at the...
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

The Suffusion of the Divine Abidings (Brahma Viharas)

The Suffusion of the Divine Abidings (Brahma Viharas)

By Centre Team on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 18:40Some reflection verses from the retreat to help dedicate your intention…

To download, read the document in full screen mode and choose ‘download’ from the sharing options (top right of the navigation panel).

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Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 3: Notes on Love - Approaching the Metta Bhavana

By Centre Team on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 17:29
Some lovely, personal notes on the core practice in the Brahma Viharas sequence - the cultivation of loving kindness (metta), which is said to glow, shine and blaze forth like the sun… From Rumi and Subhuti to the Itivuttaka, we hear about how love transforms both self and world in ways extraordinary and everyday.

The short guided meditation and initial notes are by Ratnavandana. The main talk is by Jvalamalini.

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Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

Day 4: Karuna & Amitabha

By jvalamalini on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 14:57

Day 4: Karuna & Amitabha

By jvalamalini on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 14:57After days of gloom outside it’s wonderful to have spring sunshine today as we move into contemplating karuna - which Sangharakshita has described as like metta with a shadow over it.

Ratnavandana says:
It is good to reflect on our attitudes to suffering, whether it’s physical or emotional. I know for a long time I had this a sense that somehow suffering was wrong, that I shouldn’t be suffering, so there was a feeling of failure there which was...
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

compassion acting on sympathetic joy

By jvalamalini on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 14:36
Compassion prevents love and sympathetic joy from turning into states of self-satisfied complacency with a jealously-guarded petty happiness. Compassion stirs and urges love to widen its sphere; it stirs and urges sympathetic joy to search for fresh nourishment. Thus it helps both of them to grow into boundless states.
Nyanaponika Thera
Bristol Buddhist Centre
Bristol Buddhist Centre

not mere luxuries

By jvalamalini on Tue, 17 Mar, 2015 - 14:33
Compassion and love are not mere luxuries.As the source both of inner and external peace, they are fundamental to the continued survival of our species
Dalai Lama

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