What if we could meet the world with kindness that is fearless?
With compassion that never gets exhausted?
With appreciative joy that is boundless?
With equanimity that holds everything?
In a world overwhelmed with conflict and uncertainty, the Buddha's framework of the four boundless hearts (aka brahma-viharas) offers a grounding force for transformation and service. They provide a sense of purpose that is not trapped in our stories (or other's stories) about ourselves. They free the heart from coldness and entanglement, opening to warmth, spontaneity, and courage. While they may appear simple, their cultivation has many nuances and traps often referred to as the "far enemies" and "near enemies." This is where we will begin our journey together.
Join us for a 7-day pod, from March 14-21, dedicated to cultivating these four virtues with two Buddhist monks -- Jin-Chuan Shi and Jin-Wei Shi from DRBU! Each day will include "head" readings and videos, "hands" practices, and "heart" reflections. In addition to the orientation and final call, we will have optional calls with guided meditation and discussions for those who want to dive deeper.
Each of these four boundless hearts of have precise definitions. Kindness is the wish for other’s well-being; compassion is the wish to relieve suffering; joy is delighting in others' happiness; and equanimity is the open and balanced mind free of prejudice. Compassion and joy are simply expressions of metta. If we want others to be happy and peaceful, then when we see suffering, we naturally want to relieve it. If we see others happy, then we naturally rejoice in it. Equanimity allows us to have this open-hearted care not be “personal” or “self-based.” I don’t want you to be happy because you are my mother, father, brother, friend, or fill-in-the-blank; rather, I want you to be happy simply because you are a living being who suffers and wishes to be happy, just like me. No strings attached. The metta practice begins first with directing this unconditional caring attention to ourselves. We are a "case study" that is then expanded out to all living beings.
||March 14th: Orientation Call
We'll start with a virtual orientation call to introduce you to the four boundless hearts, connect you to all the pod participants and volunteers, and take you through the process of daily prompts and other immersion details.
Time: 120 minutes (7:30PM PST)
March 15-20: Diving Deep! (+ Bonus Practice Sessions)
Every day, you'll get a prompt with a "head" reading and a "hands" practice, and a "heart" reflection. As you submit your responses, you'll also get to read other participant responses.
Time: 1-3 hours per day. It's self-regulated, depending on how deep you want to dive. :)
* March 16 and 19: Bonus guided meditations with discussion and Q&A to help digest the material. Optional, but highly recommended.
Time: 90 minutes (8:00PM PST)
||March 21: Group Call
On Sunday, we'll host a virtual gathering to marinate our collective learnings, hear from our anchors, and explore daily life applications. Open to all who have completed prior prompts.
Time: 120 minutes (7:30PM PST)
To join us in this journey of cultivating the four boundless hearts, please fill out the form below.