Posts Tagged ‘buddhist’

Cultivating the heart keeps our practice balanced and provides inspiration to go deeper into our own lives with authenticity and fearlessness. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 07/02/13.

Vassa, the Theravada Rains Retreats, is a season of mindfulness that can be a wonderful inspiration for our practice and give us an opportunity to cultivate right effort. This is a talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 6/18/13.

Exploring difficult moments as our path to freedom. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 6/11/13.

A 25 minute guided meditation on the 7 chakras of the body with a brief introduction. Led by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 6/4/13.

Exploring how our energy is depleted and can be restored through our practice and an introduction to chakra meditation. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 6/4/13.

Exploring right concentration as part of the path that leads to well-being. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 5/28/13.

Exploring right mindfulness as part of the path that leads to well-being. A talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Meditation Group on 5/21/13.

Finding the balance in life and on the cushion, exploring Right Effort as part of the Eightfold Path that promotes well-being. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 5/14/13.

Exploring our actions & livelihood as part of the Eightfold Path that promotes well-being. A talk by Lyndon at Cenla Meditation Group on 5/7/13.

Exploring loving speech and deep listening as part of the Eightfold Path that promotes well-being. A talk by Lyndon Marcote at Cenla Mediation Group on 4/30/13.

Exploring Right View as part of the Noble Eightfold Path that leads to the end of suffering and promotes well-being. This is a talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Meditation Group on 4/9/13.

Exploring the Fourth Noble Truth as the path that leads to the end of suffering and promotes well-being. A talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Mediation Group on 3/24/13.

A 12 minute guided meditation on Lovingkindness (metta) with brief instruction. Led by Lyndon Marcotte of Cenla Meditation Group

A 12 minute guided meditation on mindfulness of the posture and the body. Led by Lyndon Marcotte on 3/21/13.

Exploring the Third Noble Truth of the cessation of suffering and the realization of well-being. A talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Meditation Group on 3/19/13.

The Second Noble Truth is that there is a cause for suffering. By looking deeply into our suffering we can set out on the path toward healing and liberation. This is a talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Meditation Group on 3/12/13.

Life doesn’t always go according to plan. The First Noble Truth is that life contains suffering. By recognizing suffering in our lives we can begin to heal. This is a talk by Lyndon Marcotte at Cenla Meditation Group on 3/5/13.

I’m not sure how to answer that question anymore. I was raised as a Christian and claimed that faith for my own when old enough to understand what I was doing. I have committed over half of my 35 years on this planet to Christian ministry as a minister. I have a weakness for this faith that makes me swoon over things like Jesus, grace, incarnation, hymns, and liturgy, but so much of what is considered “Christian” these days in America repulses me and makes me want to run away. The expression of Christianity that resonates most with me is old, simple, organic, and real. Krista Tippett’s answer to this question really reflected how I feel also:

I do consider myself to be Christian, or this is the way I would say it: that’s my mother tongue. That’s where I come from, and that’s my mother tongue. That’s my heritage.

– Krista Tippett, from an interview with Buddhist Geeks podcast, “Carving Out a Life of Meaning”

Christianity is my mother tongue. It’s what I know, who I am, and in my blood. I’m very comfortable and fluent in speaking it, even though most conversations are about what it isn’t as much as what it is.

I first began practicing mediation about two years ago in response to a health crisis I experienced. (You can read more about it here: My Journey Into Real Happiness) It was a purely secular, self-help attempt on my part because medication was not working. I didn’t even entertain the thought of Buddhist teaching for a long time. It was simply something that helped me and made me feel better. Almost a year ago I started reading more about Buddhist teaching to gain some understanding and context for what I was experiencing in meditation. The dharma, the teaching, really ignited my meditation practice and helped me to take the practice off the cushion and apply it to everyday life.

Buddhism isn’t a religion as such. There is no one to worship. There are teachings but not some universal dogma which everyone must believe or suffer for all eternity for rejecting. We’re already suffering here and now, and most of it is of our own making, Buddhism teaches. In Buddhist practice we can walk back down the path that led us into this mess. We can begin to understand it. We can make choices to be aware of our thoughts and actions. We can be kinder to ourselves and others.

Somewhere I read that Buddhism isn’t something you believe or something that you are, it’s something that you do. When one master was pressed on the question “Are you a Buddhist?,” he simply answered, “I practice Buddhist meditation.” I don’t think Buddha himself would self-identify as a Buddhist, nor would Jesus likely be able to identify with all that has been done in His name.

I think my best answer today at this point in my life  is that I am a follower of Jesus who practices Buddhist meditation. Christianity may be my mother tongue, but I’m bi-lingual. As I become more fluent in this Eastern tongue, it has informed my Christian faith and enriched my daily life. There will never be a day when I cease to follow Jesus, but I have incredible respect and appreciation for this ancient path that has at last introduced me to myself.

Namaste and Peace Be Unto You


If you are interested in the correlation of the two practices, I highly recommend:

  • Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian by Paul Knitter
  • Living Buddha, Living Christ by Thich Naht Hahn
  • The Enoch Factor by Steve McSwain
  1. Recognizing that I am not separate from all that is.
  2. Being satisfied with what I have.
  3. Encountering all creations with respect and dignity.
  4. Listening and speaking from the heart.
  5. Cultivating a mind that sees clearly.
  6. Unconditionally accepting what each moment has to offer.
  7. Speaking what I perceive to be the truth without guilt or blame.
  8. Using all of the ingredients of my life.
  9. Transforming suffering into wisdom.
  10. Honoring my life as an instrument of peacemaking.

Taken from Jean Smith’s The Beginner’s Guide to Zen Buddhism