SP2016 Brunswick Classes


PEMA CHODRON:The Freedom to Choose Something Different
Dates: January 13- February 17, 2016
Wednesday Evenings 6:30-8:30pm in Brunswick
FMI: see MaineShambhala.org or contact  Christopher St. John at [email protected]

Ever feel triggered and stuck in a reactive tailspin despite all your efforts?

It is from this place — this hooked feeling — that we find ourselves responding in less than ideal ways. These are the moments when we may speak with venom, act out, or completely shut down when faced with challenging situations.

It is only later, when we’ve had the opportunity to calm down and reflect on our actions, that we wonder where we went wrong and how we could have chosen a more grounded response.

In The Freedom to Choose Something Different, Pema Chödrön examines and illuminates this nebulous process, clearly identifying where and when you have the opportunity to change your habitual response patterns. . . to choose something different. In this eight-part video course, Pema personally walks you through the landscape of these internal thunderstorms and guides you through the tools to cultivate inner freedom.



The Basic Goodness Series is an introduction to the view of Shambhala, taught in an experiential way.

The first principle of Shambhala is that everyone has a primordial nature of goodness. Humanity is basically good.Learning to relax with the goodness in our hearts, we will become more skilled at recognizing it everywhere else. ~Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, Treatise on Enlightened Society.

Who am I?… How can I help?… What is real?…
These questions are universal. They have arisen in some form across cultures and traditions throughout human history. The Basic Goodness Series is a three-part journey that explores each of these questions in the format of  study and practice. Meant for new and seasoned meditators alike, the Basic Goodness series introduces the view of Shambhala experientially. Participants receive teachings and support for exploring their present experience—with gentle curiosity and appreciation. From that starting point one can discover what it is to be fully human.
The main reference text is The Shambhala Principle by Sakyong Mipham. The core meditation instructions introduced during the retreat refer to the Feeling/Being/Touching process illustrated in this book.

Dates: March 9-  April 13, 2016
Wednesday Evenings 6:30-8:30pm in Brunswick
FMI: see MaineShambhala.org or contact  Christopher St. John at [email protected]

The first part of the journey uses this lifelong question “Who Am I?” to enter into a genuine process of contemplative inquiry. In the space of meditation practice and with the help of contemplative and dialogue exercises, we can look at how we relate to ourselves. It includes teachings on basic goodness, selflessness, the arising of ego and cocoon, buddha nature, and the confidence of warriorship.  We will practice contemplative investigations of the self, based upon the Foundations of Mindfulness. The notion of basic goodness also means adopting an attitude of gentleness and openness, as opposed to assuming that there is already a basic problem or something to be fixed. Buddhist teachings on how our sense of self arises moment by moment will be offered as reference point.

Dates: May 3- June 7, 2016
Tuesday Evenings 6:30-8:30pm in Brunswick
FMI: see MaineShambhala.org or contact  Christopher St. John at [email protected]

How Can I Help? The Basic Goodness of Society explores our relationship with others and society, and our aspiration to help the world. We look at a Shambhala understanding of society, and what enlightened society may be. We focus on relating with four aspects of society: family and friends, work and professional life, culture and entertainment, money and economy. The traditional mahayana practice of “sending and taking” (tonglen) is introduced.

Pre requisites:

  • Anyone who has completed BG1: Who am I?
  • OR Level I: The Art of Being Human
  • OR Contentment in Everyday Life
  • OR is a graduate of the previous paths.
  • If you missed ‘Who Am I’ , you can still take ‘How Can I Help’ !


Dates: March 15- April 12, 2016
Tuesday Evenings 6:30-8:30pm in Brunswick
Details to follow.
FMI: see MaineShambhala.org or contact  Angela Lutzenberger at [email protected]
Wednesday Evenings 6:30-8:30pm
FMI: see MaineShambhala.org or contact  at