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A Four-Week Online Course to Study the Heart Sutra
September 30 @ 11:00 am - 1:00 pm
What is the Heart Sutra?
The Heart Sutra (or Prajnaparamita Sutra) is one of the central texts in all of Buddhism. It is widely known, demonstrably powerful, and, I would say, thoroughly incomprehensible. I’ve been chanting it almost everyday for 30 years and while I can’t tell you that my understanding has improved (“Form is emptiness, emptiness also is form”?), my relationship to it continues to deepen. Each time I recite it, I notice something new. Some days I love it beyond description. On other days, I can’t stand it or it bores me. Just like a relationship. But throughout, it continues to invoke some kind of magic that does not play by ordinary rules of intellectualizing. It introduces us to transcendent wisdom, beyond conventional thought. It is a strange doorway and I would love to walk through it with you.
The full Prajnaparamita Sutra is hundreds of pages long but there is also a version that is one page long. That is the one we will study together. (Parenthetically, I have it on good authority that while the sutra can be elucidated by hundreds of pages or a single page, it can also be expressed in a single syllable: Ah.)
Where does the power of the feminine enter in?
In some schools of Buddhist thought, wisdom itself is considered synonymous with the feminine principle, a kind of rich, full, luminous emptiness. What arises from this emptiness is true compassion (which is associated with the masculine principle). In our time together, we will visit the dark and often obscured power that comes from recognizing that we are not separate.
How will we study together?
When you are fully registered, you will receive a link to the text we will study. Crystal Gandrud and I will meet with you for four two-hour classes in September (details below). In each class, we will present topics related to the Heart Sutra. We will go over the sutra line by line and practice it together. You will receive suggestions for incorporating it into your daily practice. We will make sure to leave plenty of time for discussion.
In addition to our class time, you will be assigned to a WhatsApp group (based on your time zone). Our hope is that you will get together once a week to practice via Zoom (we will provide the link). There will also be optional essay questions to answer each week with a chance to respond to each other’s reflections.
Live attendance is strongly requested because this material is quite deep and personal. It comes alive within a community. That said, each class will be recorded so if you need to miss one, you can catch up easily.
SCHEDULE & DETAILS
September 9, 16, 23, & 30
11AM – 1PM ET
Space is limited to 50 participants. Two full scholarships are offered.
Enrollment is now closed.
What is the refund policy?
Cancellations made by August 26th are eligible for a refund.
Two full scholarships will be awarded. The application period is now closed and all applicants have been notified. If you do not see your letter regarding your application status, reach out to us here.
What if I have other questions?
Email us! Happy to answer any questions.