Is it the Practice of Relationship or the Relationship of Practice

Good Morning:

Tonight we are beginning a new practice topic.  We are going to start talking about Relationships.  I have been having some trouble thinking about where to start this conversation.  Finally, something came to me this morning during meditation.  We need to start with understanding the nature of relationship.

To be human is to be in relationship.  We are in constant relationship with people, with animals, with the earth, and with our experience.  Why is it that some relationships bring us great joy and some much anguish?  Why can’t we see our destructive relationship with people, animals and the earth?  We completely ignore some relationships and obsess over others.  How does this come to be?

Buddha taught the interconnectedness of all life.  The more I practice, the clearer this becomes.  I no longer think of practice as a private thing.  I think of it as a community.  I need every experience and every living being in my life to bring my practice alive.  On the other hand, the more I practice the more alive living beings and experiences become in  my life.  Practice brings me closer and more intimate with life.  And yet it is this symbiotic relationship – this attachment – that underlies all my difficulties with life.

Tonight we will begin by looking for questions.  We will explore this thing we call “relationship”.  What do we want to learn about its nature, its power over us and the gift it brings to our world.



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