During this talk, Peter reviewed his self-retreat from May 9-22. The experience was related to the previous discussions about the Anapanasati Sutta (the discourse on mindfulness of breathing), and to the sorts of experiences that might arise during an intensive retreat. He specifically associated the cultivation of the the seven awakening factors–mindfulness, investigation of mental phenomena, energy/effort, joy/interest, tranquility, concentration and equanimity–to the experiences during the retreat. This was followed by discussion among those present to clarify some of what was described.
Next week, the topical theme will change significantly. Since Peter has been a psychotherapist nearly as long as he’s practiced and taught mindfulness, there will be discussions about stress in this culture, producing anxiety, depression, addictive behaviors, relationship discord from a Buddhist perspective, with suggestions about how Buddhism may be useful in providing relief from the stress.