Triratna Resources

Dharma Teaching - Beginners Buddhism: What Makes You A Buddhist? (A Six-Week Course By Vajrapriya)

On Sat, 16 July, 2016 - 19:12
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Centre Team

This is Module 1 of the Level 2 Buddhism Course by Vajrapriya used at Cambridge Buddhist Centre, UK (November 2007). 

The resources include: notes for the course leader (including learning objectives, guide lines for input and exercises, background information, suggestions for home practice), and handouts

Week 1: Sraddha – Faith within a Buddhist context
Topics: Grounds of faith; developing faith; faith and doubt; faith and inspiration; experiences of faith.

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout 1 (2 pages): Faith within a Buddhist Context
  • Handout 2 (1 page): Quotes on Faith

Week 2: Going for Refuge
Topics: Historical expressions of refuge; GfR as commitment; what are we taking refuge from?; where do we usually take refuge?; true and false refuges; Going for Refuge to the Three Jewels.

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout 1 (2 pages): Going for Refuge
  • Handout 2 (6 pages): Background Reading on Going for Refuge

Week 3: The Buddha and Enlightenment 
Topics: What is Enlightenment? Epitaphs & metaphors from the Pali Canon; qualities in terms of the 5 skandhas; the psychology of goal-setting (advantages and disadvantages).

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout (2 pages): The Buddha and Enlightenment

Week 4: Dharma as Truth Teaching
Topics: Buddha Vacana; Dharma as Truth Teaching; attitude to doctrine; importance of views; Going for Refuge to the Dharma

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout 1 (2 pages): Dharma as Truth Teaching
  • Handout 2 (5 pages): Edited talk by Sangharakshita “The New Man Speaks” (background reading)

Week 5: Dharma as Path and Method
Topics: a toolkit of practices; the ‘three trainings’; progressive nature of the path; attitude to practice

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout 1 (2 pages): Dharma as Path and Method
  • Handout 2 (1 page): One-week practice diary on threefold training

Week 6: The Sangha
Topics: What is the Sangha and why is it important?; how to Go for Refuge to the Sangha; Review of the 6-week course.

  • Notes for the course leader
  • Handout (2 pages): The Sangha
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