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Thursday Evening Class
Buddhist Concepts

 
This ten-week course running from 13 January to 24 March 2011 introduces the core concepts at the heart of Buddhism while also advising participants how to build meditation into their everyday life. The course will be held at the Northwest Centre for Buddhist Meditation in Stockport, Cheshire.

The course will be held weekly, every Thurday evening from 7.30 - 9.30p.m. The course starts on 13 January 2011 and consists of ten lessons (the lesson content is shown below). Note that there may be a gap of one week during the course owing to a previous commitment abroad by the speaker (date TBA).

Teaching is free, however it would be appreciated if you would make a minimum donation of £5.00 each time you attend a session towards the cost of centre renovation, tea & biscuits.

The meditation course will be led by Ven. Phra Nicholas Thanissaro
MA, PGCE, BSc. who is a Thai Buddhist monk of UK origin. He has been a monk for fourteen years and has over twenty years of Buddhist experience. He has been giving popular meditation courses in Europe since 1997 and has several TV guest spots, audio CD's, books, book translations and academic articles to his name.

The course is usually attended by a group of twenty comprising seasoned meditators and newcomers alike. A brief introduction to meditation is provided each time a newcomer attends and the group meditates together each time for approximately forty minutes.
 

Session 1: 13 January 2011
METAPHYSICS BEYOND THE NAKED EYE

  • Meditation
  • Overview of Course Material 
  • Revision of knowledge on defilements
  • Defilements: Environmental & Retributional Contexts
  • Advantages & Disadvantages of a Metaphysical Map

Session 6: 17 February 2011
PURIFYING THE MIND

  • Meditation
  • Forty types of meditation and their potential
  • Unified pathway of attainment 
  • Steps on the pathway of attainment 
  • Underpinning virtues for states of mind

Session 2: 20 January 2011
INTRODUCTION TO COSMOLOGY

  • Meditation
  • Arising & Falling of the Universe 
  • Defilements and the Genesis Account
  • Defilements & the Average Human Lifespan 
  • Time measure in world cycles 

Session 7: 3 March 2011
LIFE, DEATH AND (RE)BIRTH

  • Meditation
  • The nature of life 
  • Common knowledge of the death transition
  • Modes of birth, realms of birth 
  • Self-preparation for death

Session 3: 27 January 2011
INTRODUCTION TO KARMA

  • Meditation
  • Three modes of action & reaction 
  • The function of the mental storehouse 
  • Classification of Karma by function
  • Classification of Karma by potency

Session 8: 10 March 2011
PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS TO SALVATION

  • Meditation
  • Principles behind practice
  • Breaking the cycle of rebirth 
  • Practical contributions to salvation
  • Classification of Karma by time of action

Session 4: 3 February 2011
DOING WHOLESOME DEEDS

  • Meditation
  • Merit: the outcome of wholesome deeds 
  • Characteristics of merit and its accrual 
  • Examples of meritorious outcomes 
  • Factors in the speed of outcome

Session 9: 17 March 2011
CAREER OF SELF-IMPROVEMENT

  • Meditation
  • Merit and Perfections
  • Ten Perfections on three levels
  • Case History of Perfections pursued to successful conclusion
  • Timescale for Îbodhisatvaâ fulfillment of Perfections

Session 5: 10 February 2011
AVOIDING UNWHOLESOME DEEDS

  • Meditation
  • Demerit: the outcome of unwholesome deeds
  • Characteristics of demerit 
  • Examples of demeritorious retribution
  • Avoidance of unwholesome deeds 

Session 10: 24 March 2011
PUTTING BUDDHISM IN PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE

  • Meditation
  • Overview of Scriptural Resources 
  • Buddhism: Religion, philosophy or lifestyle? 
  • Retrospect of Course Work 
It would be appreciated if you would reserve your place in advance by submitting a the online reservation form.