When Things Fall Apart: Book Study Group

with Shastri Christopher St. John & Eunice St. John

November 5th—December 10th (2018)

Date details +
  • $60.00 Sustaining
  • $75.00 Patron
  • My Price
Room: Brunswick


Book study group in Brunswick :

When Things Fall Apart by Pema Chodron

Facilitated by Eunice and Shastri Christopher St John

Six Mondays Nov 5- Dec 10, 2018, 6:30-8:30pm.

Drop-ins welcome.

Pema subtitled these talks “Heart Advice for Difficult Times”.

As she prepared to publish this book in 1997 from talks she had given over the previous decade she reflected,  “ the view behind every single talk is that we could step into uncharted territory and relax with the groundlessness of the situation…. Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche described this as ‘leaning into the sharp points’. … I’d simply been trying to digest and communicate the very helpful and very gutsy instructions that Trungpa Rinpoche gave to his students.”

As often as we may have heard or read these teachings they remain especially relevant to the groundless situations we continue to find ourselves in, and no one has made them more accessible than Pema Chodron.

When things are shaky and nothing is working, we might realize that we are on the verge of something. We might realize that this is a very vulnerable and tender place, and that tenderness can go either way. We can shut down and feel resentful or we can touch in on that throbbing quality.


Students can find used or new copies of the book at their favorite book outlet and begin reading anytime.

Reading suggestions from When Things Fall Apart, Pema Chodron

Each week we will discuss the following chapters:

First meeting Monday, Nov. 5.:

Chapter 1: Intimacy With Fear;

Chap. 2: When Things Fall Apart;

Chap.3: This Very Moment is the Perfect Teacher;

Chap. 4: Relax As It Is

Second meeting Monday, Nov. 12:

Chap. 5: It’s Never Too Late;

Chap. 6: Not Causing Harm;

Chap. 7: Hopelessness and Death;

Chap. 8: Eight Worldly Dharmas

Third meeting Monday, Nov. 19:

Chap. 9: Six Kinds of Loneliness;

Chap. 10: Curious about Existence;

Chap. 11: Nonaggression and the Four Maras;

Chap. 12: Growing Up

Fourth meeting Monday, Nov. 26:

Chap. 13: Widening the Circle of Compassion;

Chap. 14: The Love that Will Not Die;

Ch. 15: Going Against the Grain;

Ch. 16: Servants of Peace

Fifth meeting Monday, Dec. 3: 

Ch. 17: Opinions;

Ch. 18: Secret Oral Instructions;

Ch. 19: Three Methods for Working with Chaos;

Ch. 20: The Trick of Choicelessness

Sixth meeting Monday, Dec. 10:

Ch. 21: Reversing the Wheel of Samsara;

Ch. 22: The Path is the Goal


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The Brunswick Portland Shambhala Center is funded solely by your membership and program donations. Thank you for your generosity as you consider what you can pay for each program at our Center. We strive to price our programs in a way that accurately reflects the financial need of our Center and the cost to us of producing the program.

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For those who can offer more than the program price, we have a “patron price”. Your generosity in offering the patron price helps cover the costs for others who are not able to pay the full price.


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