Mindfulness Retreat.Learn and practice calming the
mind so you can open your heart to true peace and gratitude. Our annual one day retreat will take place on May 19, 2013 from
9 a.m. - 3 p.m. Registration closed on May 14.
Buddhist Film Festival 2013. Learn about the Buddha's teachings through
film. Our 4th annual Film Festival will take place between January 16 - May 15, 2013 in Middletown on the third Wednesday
of the month. See Festival's web site for more deals and showcased films. Visit http://buddhistfaith.tripod.com/film
Mother Dharma. Connecticut's only mother and infant buddhist group. It is a support group to begin or continue mindfulness
and meditative practice and explore the buddhist teachings amidst the joys and challenges of motherhood. Meets once a
month. See our web page for Meetup calendar.
Podcasts on iTunes. Listen to over 80 of our podcasted talks and discussions online free of charge through iTunes.
See web page.
Sunday School for the Family. Looking to integrate the Buddhist teachings
with your family? Join Connecticut's first and only Family Buddhist Sunday School. If you wish to learn about this unique
program, then please visit our web page, Sunday School.
Sunday Mornings at the BFF of Ct
(Updated on April 20, 2013)
The Path for Foolish Beings
04/14. Let It RAIN. Learn about
being in the now, letting go and practicing love. Inspired by Tara Brach's new book True Refuge: Finding Peace and
Freedom in Your Own Awakened Heart, this talk will speak about the guided reflection she calls "RAIN" which stand for: Recognize what is happening, Allow life to be just as it is; Investigate
inner experience with kindness, Non-identification. This
talk will be presented by Jinshu.
04/21. The Tibetan Book of the Dead
- This talk will explore the symbols of Amida and the Pure Land in this classic text.We will discuss how those symbols and the book's message can be used to deepen one's 'true entrusting' and explore
the Shin concept of 'deep hearing'. Presented by Abhaya.
04/28. Number One Fool. The
discussion will explore the essence of boundless compassion and all- inclusiveness from the teachings of Taitetsu Unno from
this Tricycle magazine article. “Buddhism is the path of supreme
optimism, for one of its basic tenets is that no human life or experience is to be wasted or forgotten, but all should be
transformed into a source of wisdom and compassionate living. This is the connotation of the classical statement that sums
up the goal of Buddhist life: ‘Transform delusion into Enlightenment.’ On the everyday level of experience, Shin
Buddhists speak of this transformation as “bits of rubble turn into gold. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
05/05. A Guide to Daily Practice &
Observances. This how-to-do talk and discussion will look into the day to day religious and spiritual activities,
and holidays of Shin Buddhism, as engaged by our community members. It takes an easy step by step approach on the meaning
of Going for Refuge, prayer, meditation, chants, affirmations in order to experience the Shin life of faith, understanding
and compassion. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
05/12. Do Dishes, Rake Leaves –
And Don’t Forget the Endless Loads of Laundry. Inspired by a Shambhala Sun magazine article by Karen
Maezen Miller, this talk/discussion will look into how daily chores and domestic work can become practical forms of meditation.
She says, “When we cultivate nondistracted awareness as a formal practice we call it meditation. When we cultivate it
in our home life, we call it the laundry, the kitchen, the yard.” Presented by Daishin Senpai.
05/19. One Day Mindfulness Retreat - Our
11th annual one day Buddhist retreat (sesshin) will take place at the beautiful Dae
Yen Sa Temple in New Hartfordfrom 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. The theme is This Present Moment which underscores
presence and the profound sense of gratitude and interconnectedness. Our sesshin includes: basic sitting meditation instruction
and practice, walking meditation, voice and eating meditation, noble silence, discussions, qiqong, and a delicious Korean
vegetarian lunch. This retreat will be lead by Dharma Teacher Daikan. Registration is open from April 1 - May 12. Register
via the New England Institute of Buddhist Studies. Beginners and the most advanced are welcomed.
05/19. Q & A on What Shin Buddhist Believe? at
the Mansfield Freeman Center Dharma Talk . While some members and friends will be at our Mindfulness Retreat,
our community will continue to provide practice and discussion for those not attending at 10 a.m. at our regular Sunday morning
location with Rev. Daishin Senpai.
05/26. Memorial Sunday Picnic -No Sunday morning gatheringbut our 11th annual potluck Memorial Day
Weekend/Wisteria Festival Picnic will take place at Veteran's Memorial Park from 1:00 - 4 p.m.. Wisteria Festival
celebrates the birth of Shinran Shonin, the founder and foremost teacher of Shin Buddhism, over 750 years ago in Japan. All
members and friends and their guests are invited to attended. *** Buddhism 101 Winter class will be
meeting at the Field from 10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. under the pavillion.
06/02. The Lotus Effect. The
discussion will focus on answering the question "Who am I" from the Buddhist perspective. We will examine our desire to define
our essential "self". We will discuss how the concept of impermanence can help to liberate us from this craving
to cultivate a specific identity. Inspired by the book The Lotus Effect:
Shedding Suffering and Rediscovering your Essential Self by Pavel Somov. Presented by Jinshu.
06/09. Mindful Shopping and Consuming.
A look into how to apply Buddhism into the shopping experience. How can we be socially conscious and practice mindfulness
at the moment when we are deciding whether to buy something.This talk will
explore how to look at consumerism and its impact on ourselves and the Earth, and offer tips on how to make the best choice
based on your buddhist values. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
06/16. The Path of Gratitude. The essence of Shin’s
central practice, the nembutsu, is not to attain enlightenment but to express the awareness of gratitude for all that we have
received.This talk will look into what is the Shin teaching of Other Power? What
is the grateful life? Why are we grateful to the Primal Vow?Presented by Daishin
of the Heart - a Summer Solstice Practice -Celebrate the wonderful of life with light, balance
and renewal by chanting the seven chakras and reflecting on a very buddhist words with time-lapse photography of a benedictine
monk, David Steindl-Rast on nature, beauty and by grateful everyday. Presented by Senpai Daishin.
06/30. The Meaning of Life.This dharma talk is based on a quote from Alfred Bloom's book,Strategies
for Modern Living, "For Shinran and his followers, the meaning of life is not in struggling against an uncertain destiny,
but in living with gratitude for the compassion that sustains our being." What is the meaning of life according to Shin? Why
is living in thankfulness so essential in Shin life and practice? Presented by Shoju.
07/07.Desire - if one of the goals
of Buddhism is to be set free from desire, why should I desire to achieve shinjin? Or desire to be a good person? Or
desire to practice Buddhism at all? What is the Shin Buddhist perspective on this issue? In this talk we discuss desire
- the unskillful and the skillful kinds! Presented by Abhaya.
07/14.Buddhism 101: Starting from the Beginning - 1. "We are what we think. With our thoughts,
we make the world", so says Verse One - Line One of the Dhammapada. The Dhammapada is a collection of teachings
of the Buddha- believed to have been written down in Ceylon in the 1st century before the Common Era. The Dhammapada
became the principal source of scripture for Buddhists in Ceylon and Southeast Asia and is the oldest Buddhist scripture.
Presented by Shoshin.
07/21.Gotami and the Magic City: What is it to embrace impermanence and death? How can we recognize
our obstacles to spiritual growth? This talk will look into the Buddhist path through three classic parables: the Mustard
SeedThe Magic City, The Blind Men and the Elephant. Presented
by Daishin Senpai.
07/28. Sharing Reverence for Life
- What do Shin Buddhists hold sacred? How do we express, nurture, and live with reverence? From Becoming Buddhist,Becoming Buddhas, Liberating All Beings by Rev. Gregory G. Gibbs. Presented by Shoju.
08/04. Limits of Compassion.
Amida is the Buddha of infinite life and light, of boundless wisdom and compassion. But in our limited human life,
we face limits to our compassion and in our wisdom to be compassionate to both ourselves and others. This talk will
utilize personal examples and the essays of Gregory Gibbs and other Buddhist writers to explore ways our Shin practice
illuminates the working of great compassion in our lives. By Dojin and B. Rarey.
08/09-11. SHIN BUDDHIST RETREAT
- This annual and unique event in
North America and perhaps in the Western world. Perhaps only by traveling to Japan can one partake in such
deeply Shin spiritual experience.
retreat will take place on August 9 -11 at the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies (BCBS), Barre, Ma, from Friday
7:30 p.m. – Sunday 2 p.m. It will explore the deeper dimensions of Shin Buddhism and looks into how the Shin teachings
may be applied in everyday life. Also, it surveys Shin’s larger philosophical and cultural contexts, taking up the core
issues, dissolving dualistic boundaries, and ultimately assists the participants in realizing the oneness of reality (Pure
is minimum sitting meditation, some chanting, and memorable and profound discussions that will make you think about the meaning
of life, connecting with it and with all beings. Depending on where you are in your life, this retreat experience could be
a life changer. This is not a Buddhist Faith Fellowship program. Please register directly with BCBS at http://www.bcbsdharma.org/
No gathering because of Shin Retreat Weekend.
08/18. Boundless Grace. How is it that lost,
despair and confusion can be transformed in the substance of purpose, love and understanding? What is the shadow? What is
the Primal Vow of Grace? How can we experience faith, hope and salvation? Participants of the previous weekend Shin
retreat will reflect on and share their retreat experience. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
08/25. River of Fire, a Lost Child
and the Abyss: What is the Shin path? What is it to be a Buddhist? This talk will look into the Buddhist path through
five classic parables: A Man Hides in a Well, The Burning House, A Diver, A Lost Son, and River
of Fire, River of Water. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
09/01. No gathering. Labor Day
of Infinite Life and Light. Our very spiritual
annual Water Ceremony witnesses the Shin experience of interdependence, faith and gratitude. Please
bring a vial of water from a location visited during the summer months (it can be tap too that symbolizes the place)
that represents an experience of either interconnectedness, deep gratitude or entrusting faith. All vials will be poured into
a large vase that symbolizes the Oneness of Reality. Participants may share their spiritual experiences. Members, friends
and guests are invited to participate. Presented by Daishin Senpai.
Buddhism 101 Course
Spring – Autumn Session
"This is not just a course but a transformational experience."
Registration open until April 10, 2013
We have room for a couple
of more students. If you have been interested in taking this 101 course, now you have another opportunity to do so. Let
2013 be the year for you to engage the Buddha’s teachings for lay people in a direct and structured way.
This is the tenth year
of our most popular and comprehensive course on the Buddha’s teachings. It surveys the Buddhist life, his disciples
and teachings, and how they may be applied to daily living in 21st century America. This non-sectarian course covers the vastness
of the Buddhist religion through Theravada and Mahayana traditions. Classes start on April 21, 2013. It will meet for 6 sessions
in 6 months. Open to Buddhists and Non-buddhists. No pre-requisites. This course is oriented to beginner’s who are looking
for a concrete, practical and sequential study of Buddhism. See web site below.
Furthermore we offer
intermediate and advanced courses like our Buddhism 201, 301 and 401 courses.
To keep the courses
engaging, there is limited enrollment in all of our courses. We highly suggest that if you are interested in registering
that you do so, sooner than later.
Visit our New England
Institute of Buddhist Studies, located at the BFF of Ct in Middletown Connecticut for more details and online registration.
about the Buddha'ss teachings through film"
annual Connecticut Buddhist Film Festival returns on Wednesday, January 16, 2013 in Middletown and will run for five months
through May 15, 2013. We will showcase 5 cinemagraphic works that explore the Buddhist spiritual experience or that take on
Buddhist themes. This Buddhist Film Series is a free of charge educational program of the New England Institute for Buddhist
Studies (NEIBS) for its students and to the general public.
Social: Connect with others who are interested in the
film content or religious/spiritual themes. The social will be from 6:30 – 7 p.m. It is always a friendly crowd. Refreshments
will be served.
Time: 7 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Discussion: There is always
a short lively discussion after the films. We know it’s a work night so if you cannot stick around for it, that is ok.
Location: Buttonwood Tree Performing Arts and Cultural Center, 605 Main Street,
Cost: No admission is charged
To Learn More about the Film Festival and the Showcase of films, visit:
Grow together in inspiration, mindfulness and compassion
The Buddhist Faith Fellowship
families a unique opportunity to grow together in a fun, hands-on and inspirational Sunday School format. This program is
truly a rare treasure because it is the only Buddhist Sunday School/Family Dharma in New England.
This Sunday School is not
just a place to leave your child(ren) on Sunday morning to be taught about Buddhism. On the contrary, it requires participation
of at least one parent. Family Dharma is a place for everyone to learn together.
Our Family Dharma has been
designed to meet the needs of children PK-12th grade and their parents, married or single. Lessons and activities
are age and grade level appropriate. Everyone in attendance will be deeply enriched with the traditional Buddhist themes such
as values of compassion & wisdom, the Eightfold Path, daily practice and the stories of the Buddha and his disciples.
We will explore how to integrate Buddhist holidays and traditions to share with future generations.
To learn more, please visit
our web page and there or visit our Meetup web site above (click the icon) to learn more and/or to join
Our Buddhist Facebook
BFF of Ct's Facebook
connects people with other people of similar beliefs and/or who are interested in our style of lay Buddhist practice. Share
your stories, practice, buddhist spiritual experiences and photos etc. and in addition you will receive regular
updates of our activities, courses and retreats. Looking for a web community? Come and join BFF Facebook.
Our Meetup Group
you like to receive automatically sent weekly e-mail notifications of our activities, courses and retreats, then we suggest
you join our Meetup.com group. It is free of charge to join this social network.
"His Light penetrates
to the utmost ends of space and guides people to Nirvana, the Buddha is the King of the Truth, he is the Teacher of
Gods and humans."
Larger Sutra, Chap. 33
The BFF is a tax-exempt, non-profit membership
organization under Section 501(c) (3) of the U.S. Tax Code.