Building community can seem like a worthy purpose, a high aspiration, even a wholesome ideal. But the teachings of the Buddha invite us into experiencing all of that and much more. The Dharma invites us into the experience that Sangha is as integral to Awakening as much as the Buddha (the possibility of freedom) and the Dharma (the path and teachings towards freedom).
This makes the Refuge of Sangha so precious—it is an indispensable part of our Spiritual Path and a dire necessity in this complex world that often feels more fragmented and splintered than interconnected and interwoven. We are invited to strengthen skills of community and collective consciousness that are so needed in a world that sometimes feels like it is eating itself alive.
Even though feelings of isolation and separation can arise, the teachings are that we never ever walk this path alone. What are your contemplations and practices in bridging the personal and the collective aspects of spiritual practice—the internal and external invitations of the Satipatthana? How do you, and we, practice mindfulness together, cultivate metta together, and awaken together?
The impact of opening our minds and hearts is the creating of the interdependent relationships. How does our spiritual path towards liberation and freedom look, feel, and manifest—collectively? The personal and the collective are one and the same awakening. Can you feel that? And if you don’t, are you curious about feeling that? Use that curiosity and investigation, the first factor of Awakening, to deepen your practice together with all of us.