January 15, 2011

American Buddhism: An Online Exploration.

A Study in American Buddhism.

Table Of Contents:

(click the links below to read that week’s topic)

Week 1: The Art Of Self Deception.

Overview Of The Course

Do you know where Lumbini is? Can you chant in Pali? Do you know all 32 major and 80 minor marks of a Buddha?

No… I do not even know what Lumbini is.

Well who cares!

“Discovering Meditation in America” is an online exploration of Buddhist principles and the practices designed to uncover these principles. We will address this subject from a western point of view. This will be an online workshop and discussion group all rolled into one. I (Ben Riggs) will be your guide on this 10 week journey.

Having racked my brain for years trying to understand complex philosophical ideas it finally dawned on me, “I ain’t suppose to be studying meditation… Meditation is suppose to be studying me!” Over the next ten weeks I plan on bringing that same perspective to bear on Elephant Journal.

We will cover the entire Buddhist path— all the way from spiritual materialism to total freedom! We will study the stages of the path to enlightenment, and my emphasis will be on translating the material into a practical, user-friendly, western language. There will be guidance in the practice of meditation, and of course intelligent discussion.

Elephant Journal has provided us with a wonderful opportunity to come together as a community, and engage in a rich conversation about what it means to be fully human. I hope we are able to genuinely commit to the process… That is actually use the principles we are discussing to investigate our own internal condition. Part of this process will be sharing our insights, voicing our concerns, and asking penetrating questions.

To assist with regularity or consistency I have set up a Facebook Fan Page (click here to join Elephant Meditation). If you prefer, click here to follow my twitter feed.

I have not decided on a day of the week yet, nor do I really care… In the comment box below please let me know what day is best for you. When we get a consensus, I will publish it on those days. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for “Discovering Meditation in America” please post them below as well.

I really look forward to the coming weeks… Exchanging ideas about the Buddhist path, sharing our experiences in meditation, and touching the ground we all stand on!

Ben Riggs

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