Buddhist Studies Classes:

The Wonderful Teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh

Our true home is in the present moment. To live in the present moment is a miracle….The miracle is to walk on the green Earth in the present moment, to appreciate the peace and beauty that are available now. Peace is all around us—in the world and in nature—and within us—in our bodies and our spirits. Once we learn to touch this peace, we will be healed and transformed. It is not a matter of faith; it is a matter of practice. —Thich Nhat Hanh

Thich Nhat HanhThich Nhat Hanh is one of the most important teachers of mindfulness in the world today. Now 90, he has been active his entire life in presenting ways of engaging with the challenges of our lives and our world that are profound, inspiring, and accessible to everyone. His example and teachings have greatly influenced the development of Compassionate Ocean, our members, and our teachers.

Joen first met Thich Nhat Hanh in 1982 when he visited Minneapolis on a peace tour. Since then she has studied with him and his community on numerous occasions, including two extended retreats at his community at Plum Village, France, as well as at several retreats in the United States. His writings have been used extensively as texts for courses offered at Compassionate Ocean.

Each class will include sitting meditation; a talk based on readings from the course text, The Essential Teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh; small group discussions; and practices and songs from Plum Village. The text will be available at the first class.

Download course description (PDF).

Registration Information

Wednesdays, June 7—July 26 (eight sessions) 7:00-8:45 P.M.
$160 (members $140) (includes course text: The Essential Teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh)

Member rates apply to members of all local Dharma centers. Reduced fees are offered as needed; please contact the Center at (612) 781-7640.

Register online, print and mail a registration form, or call (612) 781-7640. (There are options for registration under the options for contributions on this site.)

Living Zen Series: A Special Year-Long Program of Study and Practice

The monk Zuigan used to start every day by saying to himself out loud: "Master, are you there?" And he would answer himself: "Yes sir, I am!" Then he would say, "Better sober up!" Again he would answer, "Yes sir! I'll do that!" Then he would say, "Look out now, don't let them fool you!" And he would answer, "Oh no, sir, I won't! I won't!"

In this year-long series of courses we will explore Zen approaches to meeting the challenge of human life. Each course will focus on one of the three questions that the ninth-century Chinese Zen monk Zuigan asked himself each day.

Fall 2016: Zen Awakening "Are you there?"

It is easy for us to not be present—to miss our appointment with life. But we can turn toward aliveness—we can discover how to wake up. This course will look closely at the actual process of awakening, strengthening our familiarity with this practice and this potentiality of human life.

Winter 2017: Zen Action "Better sober up."

We tend to become intoxicated with our opinions, our prejudices, our moods, and our projections. These then condition our actions in the world. This course will focus on how our actions can be stable, upright, and beneficial to ourselves and to others, even—and especially—in the midst of challenging circumstances.

Spring 2017: Zen Insight "Don't let them fool you."

The main source of fooling ourselves is ourselves, even when it seems to come from others. In this course we will explore vivid and expansive expressions of wisdom, cultivating an orientation to our experienced reality that encompasses deep truth.

Spring 2017: Zen Insight

Taught by Michael O’Neal and Joen Snyder O’Neal

In Buddhist practice one of the basic trainings is in prajña, usually translated as wisdom or deep understanding. When we look very deeply into the nature of our lives and our world, what do we see? What does it mean to transcend duality and touch ultimate reality? What is the wisdom of nondiscrimination? And how does this affect our everyday lives?

In this course we will explore the interplay of unity and differentiation that makes up the contents of our experience. We will study interbeing and sunyata—emptiness. We will examine how wisdom practice connects with meditation and ethical conduct. And we will see how the cultivation of this practice is beneficial both for ourselves and for others.

The course texts will be two by Thich Nhat Hanh: The Heart of Understanding and No Death, No Fear.

Registration Information

Minneapolis (#B81)
Wednesdays, March 29 – May 10 (seven sessions) 7:00-9:00 P.M.
$180 (members $160) (includes course text)

Member rates apply to members of all local Dharma centers. Reduced fees are offered as needed; please contact the Center at (612) 781-7640.

Register online, print and mail a registration form, or call (612) 781-7640. (There are options for registration under the options for contributions on this site.)