West London Buddhist Centre

Online Retreat: Letting Go and Waking Up

Published in Uncategorized

 Day 2


Resources for Day 2:


Green Tara And Özer Chenma Retreat With Oliver Leick in Merigar East


Thursday 10.30am

Talk by Ratnadeva on The First Reminder – This Precious Opportunity


Thursday 4pm

Short reflection on the First Reminder led by Ratnadeva 
Q & A/ enquiry
Just Sitting




This death pays no head to what is done or undone, a killer of security not to be trusted by those sick or well, a shattering thunderbolt from nowhere’

Thursday 7pm

Talk by Bodhilila on The Second Reminder – Impermanence 
Short sit
7-fold Puja




Going without saying

It is a great pity we don’t know
When the dead are going to die
So that, over a last companionable
Drink, we could tell them
How much we liked them.

Happy the man who, dying, can
Place his hand on his heart and say:
‘At least I didn’t neglect to tell
The thrush how beautifully she sings.’
Bernard O’Donoghue

Thursday 10pm

Reflections on the past year – things to let go of
100 syllable Vajrasattva mantra
Reflections on the past year – things to bring into the new year
Song of Meditation
Ella Fitzgerald song, The Secret of Christmas
Salute to the Three Jewels
4 Reminders Puja
Just Sitting (20 mins)
12 Midnight Chimes to mark the New Year
Final Poem




Song of Meditation

All beings are from the very beginning Buddhas. It is like water and ice:
Apart from water, no ice,
Outside living beings, no Buddhas.

Not knowing it is near, they seek it afar. What a pity!

It is like one in the water who cries out for thirst; It is like the child of a rich house who has strayed

away among the poor.

The cause of our circling through the six worlds Is that we are on the dark paths of ignorance. Dark path upon dark path treading,
When shall we escape from birth and death?

The Zen meditation of the Mahayana
Is beyond all our praise.
Giving and Morality and the other Perfections, Taking of the Name, repentance, discipline, And the many other right actions,
All come back to the practice of meditation.

By the merit of a single sitting
He destroys innumerable accumulated sins. How should there be wrong paths for him? The Pure Land paradise is not far.

When in reverence this truth is heard even once, He who praises it and gladly embraces it has

merit without end.
How much more he who turns within And confirms directly his own nature, That his own nature is no-nature,- Such has transcended vain words.

The gate opens, and cause and effect are one; Straight runs the way-not two, not three. Taking as form the form of no-form,
Going or returning,

He is ever at home.

Taking as thought the thought of no-thought, Singing and dancing, all is the voice of truth. Wide is the heaven of boundless Samadhi, Radiant the full moon of the fourfold wisdom.

What remains to be sought? Nirvana is clear before him,
This very place the lotus paradise, This very body the Buddha. 





The 4 Reminders

This human birth is precious,
An opportunity to awaken,
But this body is impermanent; 

Ready or not, one day I shall die.

So this life I must know
As the tiny splash of a raindrop, 

A thing of beauty that disappears 

Even as it comes into being.

The karma I create
Shapes the course of my life, But however I act
Life always has difficulties

 No-one can control it all. 

Only the Dharma
Can free me and others 

From suffering forever.

Therefore I recall
My heart’s longing for freedom, 

And resolve to make use
Of every day and night
To realiz
e it.

Dhammapalam Gatha

(Verses That Protect the Truth)

English translation

Not to do evil
To cultivate the good
To purify the mind
This is the Teaching of the Buddhas.

Lead a righteous life
Not one that is corrupt.
The righteous live happily
Both in this world and the next.

He is not versed in Dhamma who
Merely speaks much. He who
hears but a little (of the teaching) but
sees the Truth and observes it well
indeed he is truly called
‘one versed in Dhamma’.

No other refuge than the Wake
Refuge supreme is there for me.
Oh by the virtue of this truth
May grace abound and victory!

No other refuge than the Truth
Refuge supreme is there for me.
Oh by the virtue of this truth
May grace abound and victory!

No refuge but the Fellowship
Refuge supreme is there for me.
Oh by the virtue of this truth
May grace abound and victory!

Homage to the Buddha!
Homage to the Dhamma!
Homage to the Sangha!

verses in Pali

Sabbapapassa akaranam
Kusalassa upasampada
Etam Buddhanam sasanam.

Dhammam care sucaritam
Na nam duccaritam care.
Dhammacari sukham seti
Asmim loke paramhi ca.

Na tavata dhammadharo
Yavata bahu bhasati.
Yo ca appam pi sutvana
Dhammam kayena passati,
Sa ve dhammadharo hoti
Yo Dhammam nappamajati.

N’atthi me saranam annam
Buddho me saranam varam
Etena saccavajjena
Hotu me jayamangalam

N’atthi me saranam annam
Dhammo me saranam varam
Etena saccavajjena
Hotu me jayamangalam.

N’atthi me saranam annam
Sangho me saranam varam
Etena saccavajjena
Hotu me jayamangalam.

Namo Buddhaya
Namo Dhammaya
Namo Sanghaya

Sadhu sadhu sadhu

The 4 Brahma Viharas 

May all beings enjoy happiness
And the causes of happiness;
May they be free from suffering
And the causes of suffering;
May they not be separated from the great happiness Devoid of suffering;

May they dwell in the great equanimity Free from craving, aversion and delusion.

[compiled by Viveka, and reworked by Vessantara and Vijayamala. This version 2014.] 


I will not live an unlived life
I will not live in fear of falling
or catching fire
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid, 
more accessible, 
loosen my heart until it becomes 
a wing, a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance,
to live 
so that which comes to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom 
goes on as fruit.
                             Davina Markova


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