Special Events

Please Save the Date 
Join Valley Insight in Celebrating 
Vesak Day 
Wednesday, May 26, 2021
5:30 PM

Everyone is invited to join us for our Vesak Day celebration. PLEASE let us know you are coming so we can add you to the email list for a Zoom invitation, which will be sent by 3:00 pm on Wednesday. You can RSVP by email to this address: info@valleyinsight.org

And we invite everyone to bring a candle: we will light our candles as part of our opening for the evening.

We’re hoping to see you on Wednesday from 5:30-6:30 p.m.!

Buddhists across the world celebrate Vesak Day, a special holiday in all the Buddhist traditions. Celebrated at the time of the first full moon of May, it marks the day of the Buddha’s birth, his awakening, and his death––all in one. This year it is Wednesday, May 26. Valley Insight will be gathering in our Zoom Dharma Hall to celebrate.

Stephen Batchelor in After Buddhism points out that the Dharma arose in an agrarian people and is rooted in a visceral understanding of the cycles of nature. Bhavana, a word often used for meditative practice, literally means “cultivation.” We tend the mind. We nurture the wholesome states there, the good, the healthy, and we discourage the weeds, which grow from deeply rooted human tendencies towards greed, hatred, and delusion. This cleaning out of the destructive aspects from the garden of our heart, helping it to thrive in ways that are of benefit to ourselves and to others, plays an important, invaluable role in the path to freedom, but this is not the whole of it. The Buddha stepped out of the endless cycle of birth, death, and birth-again inherent in the seasonal rounds of nature. He died, but before he did, he knew the deathless; and this knowing was his liberation.

WHEN AND WHERE:   We will open the Dharma Hall at 5:15 p.m. and begin promptly at 5:30 p.m. We will talk briefly about the meaning of Vesak Day, and the teachers will lead a meditation on the Brahmaviharas. We will also invite you to offer a word or very brief statement about something that brings you joy, what the sangha means to you, your practice, or a current concern. Last year, emerging from the silence, several very moving stories were told. We will conclude at 6:30 p.m., but leave the Dharma Hall open until 7:00 for informal sharing.

Everyone is invited to join us for our Vesak Day celebration. PLEASE let us know you are coming so we can add you to the email list for an invitation, which will be sent by 3:00 pm on Wednesday. You can RSVP by email to this address: info@valleyinsight.org

We’re hoping to see you on Wednesday from 5:30-6:30 p.m.!

With metta,

Valley Insight Teachers and Board

 

GATHERING FOR REFUGE AND CLARITY

Starting on Monday, November 2nd at 7:30 am, VIMS will be offering a half-hour community time to be together and remember our connection to one another and to these teachings, which show us a way to have greater peace, ease, and openness in our hearts and minds––even in times of polarization and dissension––and even as we engage actively in working towards making the world better for all sentient beings.

As long as followers of the Way gather together and meet in harmony can they be expected to prosper and not decline. As long as followers of the Way care for the vulnerable among them can they be expected to prosper and not decline. As long as followers of the Way tend the sacred places in their environment can they be expected to prosper and not decline.   –– Maha Parinirvana

Meetings will begin with silence. Then we will use the formal “Going for the Three Refuges” to speak/chant the intention to seek safety and support from

    1) our connection to Buddha, as a symbol of our commitment towards being awake, wise and kind in thought, speech and action; 

    2) a trust and a willingness to try out the practices that Dharma teachings offer; 

    3) a confidence in one another as fellow practitioners and support––even in the solidarity of silence.

Then we will speak the Five Training Precepts together. You are free to take only those which you feel pertain to you and to the extent that you decide. Remember: these are not “commandments,” they are “mindfulness bells,” considerations which nourish wisdom and strengthen the possibility of appropriate, compassionate action. The Precepts are to refrain from

    1) harming any living creature; 

    2) taking what is not freely given

    3) sexual or sensual misconduct

    4) harsh, incorrect, or intentionally polarizing speech

    5) drugs or alcohol which may cloud the mind and lead to carelessness.

In time, we plan to have a silent time that will be open for people to speak into––sharing their cares and concerns for themselves and other––thereby creating a space for contemplative holding.

We will be meeting daily every day of election week, which undoubtedly will be a time of intense emotions. You can come as many or as few times as you like. There is no need for a commitment or preregistration. After that, we will likely meet at least once weekly, on Mondays, or we may decide to hold the gathering daily for a while.

Zoom invitations will be sent out to all sitting group members as we come closer to November. If you are not on a sitting group list or for more information, please contact: greetingsfromvalleyinsight@gmail.com

Concluded Events

Venerable Dr Pannavati
Co-Founder and Co-Abbot of Embracing Simplicity Hermitage and Co-Director of Heartwood Refuge, Dharma Talk: March 13, 2021

Mindfully Facing Climate Change (A four-part series), April 16 & 30 and May 14 & 28 2020. We used Bhikkhu Analayo’s course material from the BCBS website for our discussion.

Judson Brewer Dharma Talk — A talk with Judson Brewer, February 29, 2020. Dharma Teacher and noted Psychiatrist Judson Brewer, an expert in the field of mindfulness-based habit change and a long-time practitioner, offered a dharma talk on
The Factors of Awakening and Reward-Based Learning.”  

Being Mindful of Race — A talk with Ruth King, June 25 2018

Senior Vipassana teacher Ruth King discussed her book Mindful of Race: Transforming Racism from the Inside Out.
For a synopsis

Vesak Day (Buddha Day) May 29, 2018. We celebrated Vesak Day 2018 with a sit and potluck at St. Barnabas in Norwich.

Menu