What I most love in my teaching practice is seeing students become dedicated to their own liberation. As their spiritual practice matures, people light up from within when they begin to understand that personal freedom is possible. This commitment to freedom on the part of the student inspires me to find ways to express my deepest understanding and enthusiasm for liberation.
The mindfulness teachings of the Buddha are among the more direct, practical meditation techiques that we can cultivate. My focus is on sharing these practices in an accessable, down-to-earth way. How can we disengage from our habits of responding to the world through veils of confusion, greed, and hatred?
Mindfulness practice helps us recognize when we are responding to the world from the mental and emotional habits that obscure our true home, our radiant nature, which manifests as compassion and love. The Buddha's teachings show us that we are not isolated individuals who need to live defensive lives. Rather, we can learn to trust and live from our full potential as compassionate members of a connected planet.
Wisdom arises naturally when there is a steady momentum of "pure" awareness. That is, when the mind is not colored by views based in greed, aversion or bewilderment. Learning to recognize and trust this natural process is a keystone of the practice.
The First Noble Truth, that of "Dukkha" -- is to be understood, so said The Buddha -- yet often when we think about it, our reactions can tend towards aversion: "life is suffering." I feel this is an inaccurate reflection of the freeing potential of understanding this teaching.