Greetings from New Mexico!
Summer is in full swing! How is your heart? We wish you well and hope you are taking good care in the midst of the chaos, sadness, beauty and potential of the world. We have a lot to share with you this month. Sorry for the long absence! Without further ado….
We are excited to announce the launch of The Virtual Academy, Lotus Institute’s home for online courses, and our first course, The Four Reliances; Tidy Up with Dr. Larry Ward. This course is for anyone who wants to go deeper into their practice beyond getting caught in linguistics or surface meaning. As many of you know, the Virtual Academy has been a long time coming, and we are happy to offer this first course as a free course. It’s 4 weeks featuring a short (3-5 min) dharma talk each week and suggested practice homework.
The theme of Tidy Up was inspired by Larry’s study and practice of early teachings of Zen Master Bodhi Dharma.
In the end of July we recorded Larry’s series of talks on America’s Racial Karma in Taos, NM. Thank you to those of you who came from 8 states around the US to be with us. Here are the recordings, free to all, thanks to our patrons. The topic of race is an existential crisis, and always has been since the founding of America. If one looks deeply at the historic patterns around this social construct over the last 500 years, you will find a window into our immense planetary suffering that is beyond the construct of race. It reaches into every aspect of life because it is one of the most successful binary creations in our history. Therefore, it gives permission to all other binaries to stay binary.
Talking about race is not enough, we must practice to release ourselves from habitual states of dualism and its individual and collective impact on ourselves, each other and the earth.
Soon we are off to Japan! There are still spaces in the Kyoto Retreat if you are able to join. In the meantime, we are working on the Virtual Academy’s next course, The Earth Gate, and preparing for a whirlwind fall tour in Thailand, Japan, California, Philadelphia, Minnesota, and Oklahoma. Check the website for details- we’d love to practice in person with you. Remember, thanks to patrons we have some scholarships available for every retreat, and we hope this makes it accessible for more of you to join in person.
Wherever we are, as we practice we are meeting one another.
Lastly, we wanted to say a word about The Lotus Institute’s commitment to justice and liberatory practice. We are on a path of love in action; in the coming months we’ll be working intensively with local retreat planning teams to refine our in-person offerings to embody our vision of creating beloved community. As our dear board member, Samantha Rise, offers:
Our lineage of peace is also a lineage of action
Best In Love,
Larry and Peggy
A NOTE ABOUT PATREON
Since the launch of our Patreon page in August 2018 we’ve gained 61 patrons who make it possible for us to bring you things like the audio files in this email, a new website, an online home to make retreat recordings accessible (free and downloadable) for participants, a home for online courses, and more secure and stable technology to keep in communication. Our next goal of 75 patrons will help us secure funding for the tech/organizational support to continue the work we’ve started, launching our next online class (Deep studies into the intersection of mindfulness and neuroplasticity as it relates to trauma and resiliency). If you want to read our goals in more detail and/or become a part of our Patreon community that makes this work sustainable, become a patron here. AND THANK YOU to all of the existing patrons who make our work possible!