Online Class Series

How to Defeat Distraction

Sometimes meditation feels like a daily battle against the wandering mind, with the odds stacked against us. Our high stimulation, media-saturated lives are a fertile garden for the weeds of obsessive thinking and the endless replay of songs, conversations, fantasies, and fears. The teachings of the Buddha are rich with tools to help us weed the garden of the mind and make space for the beautiful qualities we want to grow. In this round of our sutta study series, “The Refuge of Dhamma: Exploring the Discourses of the Buddha,” we will explore discourses (suttas) that teach practical tools for working with distraction and the root causes of mental suffering. We will read suttas addressing distracting thought (MN 20), fear (MN 4), and the foundational skill of mindfulness of the body (MN 119), and we will discuss how to bring the training of the mind more fully into our meditation and daily lives.

Teaching Team

Sean Oakes, PhD

Sean Oakes, PhD

Teacher

Sean Oakes, PhD, teaches Buddhism and Yoga focusing on the integration of meditation, trauma resolution, and social justice. He received teaching authorization from Jack Kornfield, and wrote his dissertation on extraordinary meditative states. His current research explores identity, ancestry, and rebirth, and working with the body in contemplative inquiry.

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