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9/15 Bohm Dialogue — Mindfulness

Posted by on Sep 11, 2019 in General News, Religious Exploration, Salon - Bohm Dialogue

For September our topic is Mindfulness.

“Mindfulness helps us freeze the frame so that we can become aware of our sensations and experiences as they are, without the distorting coloration of socially conditioned responses or habitual reactions.”

– Henepola Gunaratana

“Mindfulness of the body is awareness of… the taste and smell of this moment.”

– Steve Hagen

“Mindfulness meditation doesn’t change life. Life remains as fragile and unpredictable as ever. Meditation changes the heart’s capacity to accept life as it is.”

– Sylvia Boorstein

“Mindfulness is about falling awake rather than asleep.”

– Shamash Alidina

“Mindfulness has helped me succeed in almost every dimension of my life. By stopping regularly to look inward and become aware of my mental state, I stay connected to the source of my actions and thoughts and can guide them with considerably more intention.”

– Dustin Moskovitz

“Mindfulness means being aware of how you’re deploying your attention and making decisions about it, and not letting the tweet or the buzzing of your BlackBerry call your attention.”

– Howard Rheingold

“Mindfulness is about love and loving life. When you cultivate this love, it gives you clarity and compassion for life, and your actions happen in accordance with that.”

– Jon Kabat-Zinn

“Mindfulness helps you go home to the present. And every time you go there and recognize a condition of happiness that you have, happiness comes.”

– Thich Nhat Hanh

“I like mindful people. Fear prevents mindfulness, and then greed marches in because you are fearful, so you feel like you have to shore everything up.”

– Ursula Goodenough

“Disassociating, mindfulness, transcendence-whatever the label-it’s a sort of loophole in our contract with reality, a form of self-rescue.”

– Diane Ackerman

“The purpose of meditation practice is not enlightenment; it is to pay attention even at extraordinary times, to be of the present, nothing-but-in-the-present, to bear this mindfulness of now into each event of ordinary life.”

– Peter Matthiessen

“The Noble Truth of the Path leading to the Cessation of suffering is this: It is simply the Noble Eightfold Path, namely right view; right thought; right speech; right action; right livelihood; right effort; right mindfulness; right concentration.”

– Pali Tipitaka

“I came to the conclusion then that continual mindfulness… must mean, not a sergeant major-like drilling of thoughts, but a continual readiness to accept whatever came.”

– Marion Milner

Mindfulness to me is just attending to the present conscious moment – whatever thoughts, feelings,  sensations and intuitions are there right now, not getting swept up in them, not judging or interpreting them, just noticing them, and beyond that, noticing the noticing itself. What’s so hard about that? It’s easy to get swept up and stop noticing. But that’s OK, just let the thoughts, etc. pass, come back to the moment and resume noticing. That’s it.

Why do it? Well, for me the alternative is to be always trapped by the automatic flow of thoughts, etc., and believing they are more real than they are. So mindfulness is seeking freedom from that, it’s the practice of freeing yourself. Other benefits accrue. What’s your experience?

Join us to listen to what others think and to share what you think.  The Religious Exploration Salon is a group that meets 3rd Sundays to discuss various topics in the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see this intro.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.  We next meet Sunday September 15 at 7pm in the Brackett Room.

Contact Paul Reising, Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh for more information.

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Lughnasadh! — The Earth Centered Group

Posted by on Aug 4, 2019 in Worship Services

Join the First Parish Earth Centered group as we celebrate Lammas, also known as Lughnasadh and First Fruits, comes from the Anglo-Saxon hlaf-mas, “loaf-mass”. It is a Cross Quarter Day, along with Halloween, Groundhog Day and May Day, half way between the solstices and the equinoxes. It is the first of the three harvest festivals and celebrates the reaping of the grain. In Gaelic traditions it is called Lughnasadh in honor of the Celtic blacksmith god Lugh.


 

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7/21 Bohm Dialogue — Human Reasoning

Posted by on Jul 19, 2019 in General News, Religious Exploration, Salon - Bohm Dialogue

For July our topic is Human Reasoning.

“To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead.”
―Thomas Paine

“In a republican nation, whose citizens are to be led by reason and persuasion and not by force, the art of reasoning becomes of first importance.”
―Thomas Jefferson

“We must trust to nothing but facts: These are presented to us by Nature, and cannot deceive. We ought, in every instance, to submit our reasoning to the test of experiment, and never to search for truth but by the natural road of experiment and observation.”
―Antoine Lavoisier

“NOUMENON, n. That which exists, as distinguished from that which merely seems to exist, the latter being a phenomenon. The noumenon is a bit difficult to locate; it can be apprehended only by a process of reasoning – which is a phenomenon.”
―Ambrose Bierce

“The philosophy of reasoning, to be complete, ought to comprise the theory of bad as well as of good reasoning.”
―John Stuart Mill

“All of our reasoning ends in surrender to feeling.”
―Blaise Pascal

“When the intensity of emotional conviction subsides, a man who is in the habit of reasoning will search for logical grounds in favour of the belief which he finds in himself.”
―Bertrand Russell

“To say that man is a reasoning animal is a very different thing than to say that most of man’s decisions are based on his rational process. That I don’t believe at all.”
―Rex Stout

“The purpose of writing is to inflate weak ideas, obscure pure reasoning, and inhibit clarity. With a little practice, writing can be an intimidating and impenetrable fog!”
―Bill Watterson

Is reasoning our noblest faculty? It has been suggested that human reasoning evolved as a group process, with speakers arguing to persuade the group and listeners trying to poke holes in the arguments. By this reasoning, individual reasoning is apt to go astray.

Join us to listen to what others think and to share what you think.  The Religious Exploration Salon is a group that meets 3rd Sundays to discuss various topics in the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see this intro.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.  We next meet Sunday July 21 at 7pm in the Brackett Room.

Contact Paul Reising, Tom Yelton or Jan Hardenbergh for more information.

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What Is Church For? A Dialogue. — Tom Yelton

Posted by on Jul 7, 2019 in Worship Services

What is church for? What is it not for?
What is life for? 

The service will not have a sermon or lecture. It will use the format called Bohm Dialogue which emphasizes respectful listening and balanced, synergistic sharing. For more details about how Dialogue works, please see this intro. Basically we will sit in a circle with a talking stick in the center. Whoever wishes to speak on the topic “What Is Church For?” will take the talking stick (or ask for it if they need help) and return it to the center when done speaking.

Bohm Dialogue is a cooperative endeavor to explore a topic. People are therefore allowed to refer to what others have said, build on it, ask questions about it, or even disagree with it, as long as it is done thoughtfully, respectfully, sticks to the topic, and is addressed to the whole group rather than to individuals. Dialogue is mostly about respectful, attentive listening.

Everyone is welcome. You are welcome to think about the topic beforehand but no preparation is required or expected — come as you are with whatever thoughts/intuitions you have, ready to listen, learn and contribute.

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First Parish Sudbury presents a July 4 Cook Out

Posted by on Jun 29, 2019 in Community, General News

The First Parish grilling team of chefs is ready for our annual summer cook out on Thursday July 4. We’ll be selling beef and vegetarian burgers, beef hot dogs, sausages with peppers and onion, french fries, popcorn, cookies, cakes and cold drinks at 12 noon on the front lawn. We’re at the corner of Concord and Hudson Roads. The weather is going to be perfect, ie. hot and sunny. Bring your family and neighbors to the First Parish lawn for a picnic and parade viewing. This is the best spot to see the Sudbury July 4 parade.

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