This talk is the first in a series that focuses on representing contemporary cultural distress as dukkha, the fundamental dissatisfaction we all experience. Peter reviewed the three forms of dukkha described by the Buddha: dukkha due to physical discomfort, dukkha due to mental fabrication and dukkha due to the impermanent fluctuations of life circumstances. During the next several weeks various causes and conditions conducive to dukkha such as consumerism and the rapidly escalating nature of modern media will be described relative to the practice of mindfulness of breathing meditation. Peter, through his training and experience as a mental health professional, made a distinction between the mental health benefits of regular meditation practice and the truly liberating goal of the practice which is the transformative experience of nirvana, the unconditioned. Mental health is a foundation through which liberation can be realized.
Here are the notes prepared for this talk: Awakening Through Distress and Confusion
Next week’s talk will focus on current levels of stress experience in this culture, using contemporary statistical data.