Donald Rothberg, PhD, has practiced Insight Meditation since 1976, and has also received training in Tibetan Dzogchen and Mahamudra practice and the Hakomi approach to body-based psychotherapy. Formerly on the faculties of the University of Kentucky, Kenyon College, and Saybrook Graduate School, he currently writes and teaches classes, groups and retreats on meditation, daily life practice, spirituality and psychology, and socially engaged Buddhism. An organizer, teacher, and former board member for the Buddhist Peace Fellowship, Donald has helped to guide three six-month to two-year training programs in socially engaged spirituality through Buddhist Peace Fellowship (the BASE Program), Saybrook (the Socially Engaged Spirituality Program), and Spirit Rock (the Path of Engagement Program). He is the author of
The Engaged Spiritual Life: A Buddhist Approach to Transforming Ourselves and the World
and the co-editor of Ken Wilber in
Dialogue: Conversations with Leading Transpersonal Thinkers.
We look at "reactivity" as a non-literal "translation" and clarification of the nature of dukkha, and examine, through a talk and discussion, a number of ways to practice when reactivity or dukkha arises. We remember the Buddha's teaching: "I have taught one thing and one thing only, dukkha and the cessation of dukkha.”
We explore a powerful teaching found in variants in many traditions, from the Gita to Chuang Tzu to the book of Job to the teachings of the Buddha to Gandhi. This teaching could be expressed as bringing together, paradoxically, committed action and non-attachment to outcome. The Gita and Gandhi spoke of disciplined action without attachment to the fruits of the action. The Buddha pointed out the ways of getting attached through the Eight Worldly Winds. We explore the nature of the teaching and some ways to practice it, as well as what a mature expression of the teaching looks like. There is also discussion.
An overview of the importance and nature of engaged practice in our times, using the traditional Buddhist framework of training in wisdom, meditation, and ethics. We point to what such training means traditionally as well as to several aspects of each of these dimensions of engaged training.