Entering the Way of Compassion—The Practices of a Bodhisattva
with Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi
January 22, 2022
A Precepts II Retreat in the Mountains & Rivers Order
The vow of the Bodhisattva is to alleviate suffering and give selflessly for the benefit of all beings—to live with compassion. According to Buddhist teachings, each of us is naturally endowed with compassion. So why do generosity, kindness and patience so often seem difficult to bring forth? What constricts our hearts and ability to respond skillfully? Indeed, what is it to be skillfully compassionate towards ourselves and others?
This retreat is open to all who are interested in practicing the Dharma and cultivating a life of wisdom and compassion. It is also part of the Mountains and Rivers Order training program for students receiving the Buddhist precepts. In this retreat, we will examine and discuss bodhicitta—the great aspiration to liberate self and other—and its important role in generating compassion. We’ll also study the teachings of the Paramitas or Perfections, those practices and enlightened views of selfless compassion: generosity, morality, patience, joyful effort, meditation and transcendent wisdom.
By exploring the issues that challenge us the most, we’ll see how we can bring compassionate action into our daily practice, both spontaneously and intentionally.
Donations are appreciated at this time, thank you!
Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi is the Head of the Mountains and Rivers Order and Abbot of Zen Mountain Monastery. Shugen entered full-time residential training in 1986 after studying mathematics and receiving a degree in classical music. He received dharma transmission from John Daido Loori, Roshi in 1997. His teachings on Zen, social justice and environmental stewardship have appeared in various Buddhist journals, and The Best Buddhist Writing 2009 (Shambhala Publications). His book of poetry, O, Beautiful End, a collection of Zen memorial poems, was published in 2012.
Learn more about Geoffrey Shugen Arnold, Roshi