The Path to Happiness - An Introduction to Buddhism
An Introduction to Buddhism
Finding a sense of peace in this turbulent world is not easy. This course - A Path to Happiness - is another in our Introduction to Buddhism series and will show you how to create more positive mental states through the way you engage with the world. It is also a classic introduction to Buddhist thought and practice. You will also learn two kinds of guided meditations - one which follows the breath and helps calm the mind and one which cultivate loving-kindness to ourselves and others.
Complete newcomers are very welcome as this is a good introduction to Buddhism, but this course will also be useful for those who already have some experience. The Eightfold Path is a very comprehensive overview of the Buddhist life and, if we commit ourselves to it fully, it can transform our lives and eventually take us all the way to Enlightenment!
Week One: The Path of Vision - The Four Noble Truths, the Unsatisfactoriness of our Lives (dukkha) and the Eightfold Path
This week we'll be looking at the Buddha's analysis of the human predicament and how this suffering or dukkha can be overcome through the twin Paths of Vision and Transformation
Week Two: Emotion - cultivating a positive direction in our lives
Tonight we will explore what Buddhists call the Divine Abodes: Loving-Kindness, Compassion, Joy at others' good fortune and Equanimity. We'll see how by practising them we can transform our lives. This will be combined with a look at the benefits of cultivating gratitude
Week Three: Perfect Action and Perfect Effort
This week we'll be looking at Buddhist ethics and how they can help us to be more skilful in our interactions with others. We'll follow this with an exploration of the ways that we can guard our minds and avoid those experiences that cause us pain.
Week four: Right Speech - the gateway between our inner world and the outer world.
The way we speak has a powerful effect on other people and the world around us. This week we'll be exploring truthful and positive speech and seeing how it is an important aspect of transformation.
Week Five: Action and Livelihood - generosity and the contribution that work makes to our lives.
Ultimately Buddhism encourages us to see our lives as being about what we can contribute to the world, not what we can get for ourselves, so tonight we'll look at our approach to work and see how this might help or hinder us in our practice.
Week Six: Awareness and Meditation - overcoming what holds us back and pleasure in meditation
Tonight we'll round of the course with a look at what awareness is and the mental habits that hold us back from fully experiencing it. Then we'll look at the positive states of mind, or dhyanas that can arise when these mental habits or 'hindrances' abate.
BOOKING: The course itself is offered free of charge but there is a £20 booking fee which includes a copy of our teacher's Sangharakshita's book, "The Buddha's Noble Eightfold Path' (Retail Price: £9.99). To Book please follow the link below. You may pay by credit/debit card or PayPal.
DONATIONS: York Buddhist Centre has no outside income or support and no one is paid. So these classes are given freely in a spirit of friendship. However we do have rent to pay and utilities and other running costs and we could not meet these without the generous support of those who use our centre. So, if you can, we ask you to make a donation each week when you attend. This is entirely optional but it will help us enormously. We suggest £8 to £12 each week but please give more or less according to your means.
Booking Fee includes a copy of 'The Buddha's Noble Eightfold Path by Sangharakshita. Apart from the booking fee, there is no charge for the course itself, but we would very much appreciate a weekly donation of £5 to £10 to help cover our costs.