Course: An Introduction to Social Meditation

An Introduction to Social Meditation Course 
When: Thursday evenings, 7 PM 
Dates: July 7 to August 4, 2022 
Where: National Avenue Christian Church, parlor 

Over the five weeks of this course I will introduce some of the techniques of social meditation. Social meditation was originally created by Kenneth Folk as a more effective way to teach noting practice. It has been further developed by Kenneth Folk, Vincent Horn and other teachers working with Vincent into a robust and effective means of teaching and of sharing practice. 

Social meditation acknowledges and takes advantage of the fact that we, as humans, are deeply social beings. When we gather together to meditate we are already using a type of social meditation. The difference is that in the formal technique of social meditation we meditate aloud in a structured manner. In the words of Vincent Horn we make what is implicit in group meditation explicit, using a word or phrase to share our meditation aloud. 

Together we will use social meditation to explore the mental and physical sensations that make up our experience of being. These sensations are known in Buddhism as the four foundations of mindfulness. While this technique is very effective in teaching mindfulness meditation, the aim of this course, while teaching mindfulness to those unfamiliar with it, will be to tap into the power of sharing meditation with our fellow practitioners and exploring what happens when we intentionally share our minds, our hearts and our presence as a group. 

I hope that you will join us on Thursday evenings at 7 pm, starting July 7 through August 4. 

John Ruff started practicing with Ozark Dharma Community in 2007 or 2008 when it met on Walnut Street. He attended his first week- long residential retreat in 2008 with what was then Body of Work and has since attended retreats led by Leigh Brasington, Santikaro, Shaila Catherine, Vince and Emily Horn, Shinzen Young and Kenneth Folk as well as several week long self-retreats. He has worked under his teachers, Vince and Emily Horn since 2012. He completed a two year teacher training course with Vince and Emily in 2020 and was authorized by them as a dharma teacher in their traditions passed down from Jack Kornfield and Trudy Goodman on one hand and Kenneth Folk and Daniel Ingram on the other.

Photo by Firshad Tuttoos

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