Dzogchen center summer meditation retreat with Lama Surya Das

The Natural Great Awakening

We are all Buddhas by nature–we only have to awaken and recognize who we are and how we fit perfectly in this world. This is the teaching of the innate Great Perfection–Dzogchen. Introducing us to this natural wisdom and compassion is the life-work of Lama Surya Das. For the annual Summer Dzogchen Meditation Retreat, he will teach the View, Meditation and Action of the Great Perfection: timeless and inspiring heart-essence instructions passed down in this contemplative tradition for many centuries.
We invite you to join Dzogchen Lineage Holder Lama Surya Das for a week of awakening to the joy of naturally-arising timeless awareness. Lama Surya will teach throughout the week and offer lively Q&A sessions. In addition to guided and silent meditations, dharma talks, heart-opening chanting and private interviews, this retreat will also feature optional and uplifting Tibetan Energy Yoga each morning.

Outside of the teaching hall, the precious gift of Noble Silence is observed, allowing us the peace and spaciousness to explore the mind, as well as to rest and retreat from the busyness of everyday life & chatter.

In addition to formal sessions, there is plenty of opportunity to enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings preserved by the Open Space Institute on the banks of the mighty Hudson River. Those preferring to stay inside can relax in a lounge looking out, or browse selected postings in the retreat reading room.

Registration fees are inclusive of accommodation and delicious vegetarian meals for this seven-day retreat. Additional discounts are available for students in full-time education. House-Jobs are available for a lower cost and are typically 1 hour per day required work. Registration does not include compensation for the teacher, which will be accepted in the traditional form of dana (voluntary donation) in honor of the teachings.

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My Metta Practice

Metta Practice With Lama Surya Das
Metta Practice With Lama Surya Das

As I travel on book tour around the country this month, my formal meditation sitting practice is really challenging but oh so necessary. I like to use as a Go-To the Metta practice I have evolved with over the years.

Metta (maitri) is the practice of loving-kindness meditation and friendliness taught by the Buddha himself, 2,600 years ago. It is a vital component of the Buddhist wisdom teachings and their daily practice as applied compassionately in life. I have taken the basic sacred phrases from the Metta Sutra (Loving-kindness Scripture) and added many of my own over the years as they come up for me in my own prayer and chant life; you are welcome to do the same

Try repeating them with loving-awareness at the conclusion of your own daily meditation, or at any time you wish, however briefly–in your car, walking, in an elevator or airplane, washing dishes, making the bed, or anyplace, anytime. The essence of loving-kindness is WOW, wishing others well. This can be applied at every single encounter, in every kind of relationship–human, animal and otherwise–and is a discreet Bodhisattva’s way of blessing, reverencing, and cherishing every single sentient being, of whatever color, or nationality, age or gender, religious or political persuasion– day to day, moment to moment, whoever you may encounter along the Path.

May I be happy, content and fulfilled.
May all beings be happy!
May we all be equally peaceful, safe and serene.
May all beings be free from harm, danger and fear.

May we walk together the path of wisdom and compassion.
May I practice loving kindness.
May I practice equanimity, acceptance and non-reactivity.

May I be free from suffering and enjoy peace and ease.
May my heart remain open.
May I enjoy and appreciate the holy Now.
May I awaken to the intrinsic Light of my own original true nature.

May I be healed and whole again;
May the planet be healed and restored.
May I recognize my intrinsic interconnectedness and interdependence with others,
And help overcome inequality and poverty through generous sharing and nonattachment.
May I live in gratitude and grace.

May I love deeply, and with full acceptance, and may I open my heart also to receive love.
May I forgive and be forgiven.
May I be free from suffering, stress and anxiety.
May I see the radiant light in all people and things, including those who disagree with me.

I bow to true Buddha-nature, equally innate in one and all.

I dedicate the merit of this Metta practice to the harmony and deliverance of one and all! May they be edified, awakened and free!

Original Source –