Discovering Buddhism

How to Meditate

In this module, we will discuss the definition and purpose of meditation and learn basic meditation skills, including how to sit properly, how to set up a meditation session, the different types of meditation techniques, and how to recognize and deal with obstacles in meditation.

We will also explore questions such as:

  • What do motivation and dedication mean, and why are they important elements of meditation practice?
  • What are the antidotes to obstacles in meditation, such as restlessness, distraction, sleepiness, expectations about the practice, and regret?
  • What is the meaning of impermanence according to the Buddhist teachings, and how can understanding of this be used to counteract afflictions such as attachment and anger?

    This is the second in a series of 14 modules covering the complete Buddhist path to enlightenment. Students may join at any point in the cycle. Discovering Buddhism is designed for students who wish to deepen their understanding of fundamental Buddhist concepts. The program is designed to provide an experiential taste of the Buddha’s teachings and the skills we need to make our lives most meaningful. Each module includes teachings, meditations, readings, assessment questions, and a short retreat.

Schedule

Wednesdays, October 30, November 6, 13, 20, December 11 and 18 (optional review session) from 7pm to 9pm. 

Registration​

To register, click here.

Course Fee

$100 (or $20/session) to help support direct costs, including space rental, Dharma materials, and administration. Shantideva members: $90 (or $18/session). The optional review session on December 18 is offered by donation. 

If you prepay for the entire course (not including the review session), the discounted fee is $90 ($81 for Shantideva members). 

Readings

If you are a registered student, you may access the readings here on our password protected page. After registering, an online receipt will be sent to the email address that you used to register. The password will be on the receipt. Please feel free to contact us if you have questions about accessing this page.

Discovering Buddhism Certification

FPMT certification is available for those who complete all the components of the course. The completion certificate confirms the satisfaction of having accomplished a comprehensive engagement with the path to enlightenment and is symbolic of your commitment to spiritual awakening.

If you are interested in receiving credit for completing this module, please indicate your commitment to completing all of the module’s requirements by printing, completing, and signing the first page of this document. You can bring it to the first session of the module or email it to [email protected].
 

About the Teacher

Gustavo Cutz has been an active volunteer with Shantideva Center since 2008 and previously worked as an editor at Wisdom Publications in Boston. He was the facilitator for Discovering Buddhism until 2012 and has taught the course since 2017. He is in the process of becoming an FPMT-certified teacher. Gus also interprets and summarizes Geshe Thubten Soepa’s teachings on topics such as the Four Noble Truths, the eight worldly concerns, the six perfections, the “Eight Verses of Thought Transformation,” and, most recently, Shantideva’s Guide to the Bodhisattva’s Way of Life, chapters 1-3. Gus is a clinical psychologist and currently practices on Long Island.

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