Nov. 16th, 2009

zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
Today, I taught the General Program class at the Buddhist center. It was my first time teaching. It went pretty well, I think.

We did the death meditation (3rd Lamrim meditation), where you meditate to remember that you could very well die today, and it brings your priorities into stark illumination. It's actually not at all morbid, it really helps you to remember that every day is precious.

Teaching from the throne was intimidating -- but also pretty awesome. I was practically on the shrine itself, and there's this giant statue of Buddha right behind me, backing me up. I had had this completely irrational fear that climbing the stairs to the throne, I'd slip and fall, but of course I didn't.

During the questions part, someone asked the very obvious question, how to deal with the fear of death that arises when you meditate on death. And I didn't have a good answer at all. Part of it is that I'm lucky; there was a time in my life when I really was convinced that I was about to die, and I had the time to come to terms with that and it became pretty peaceful. Part of it also is that although I was teaching this meditation, I'm not a realized enough practitioner to have ever done more than push the fear into the background and use it as a motivator.

So, today I learned two things: I can teach meditation successfully, and I need to do the Lamrim meditations a lot more if I'm going to continue to teach about them.

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