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Janson Pottery Blog

~ Sunday, August 24, 2014

Looking Inward

I like to live my slow from an inward perspective. I like to take things apart and look at what they really mean. This is the kind of parent that I am and also the kind of potter too. I see everyone rushing around these days and always checking their phones, texting and surfing the web. Don’t get me wrong, I love the internet and love looking things up but I don’t have a phone that I can do that outside of home. I like to read thinking books and listen to thinking people. One of those people is Pema Chodron.
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Pema Chodron is a Buddhist nun in the Tibetan tradition. She attended Sarah Lawrence College and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley. Pema Chödrön taught as an elementary school teacher for many years in both New Mexico and California. While in her mid-thirties, she traveled to the French Alps and encountered Lama Chime Rinpoche, ultimately receiving her ordination as a Buddhist nun from his Holiness the Sixteenth Karmapa.
Since her ordination in 1974, she has taught and conducted meditation retreats in North America, Europe, and Australia. She served as the director of Gampo Abbey, the first Tibetan Buddhist monastery for monks and nuns in North America. Pema Chodron is also a master teacher in the lineage of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. She currently teaches in the United States and Canada when she is not spending time in solitary retreat.
Pema Chodron sees sitting meditation practice as the basis for unconditional friendliness toward oneself and all beings. She has grounded her teachings about compassion in the Tibetan practice of “mind training,” whereby difficulties are transformed into insights. Under this way of looking at things, intimacy with fear and chaos is the beginning of wisdom..
In a relaxed teaching style, Chodron enables us to look at ourselves clearly, to touch the soft spot of our hearts, and to dissolve the barriers that separate us from others. Whether focusing on loving kindness, the art of peacemaking, or tonglen meditation practice, she enables us to develop a sense of sacredness and tenderness toward ourselves and the world in which we live.
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