Buddhism has been a living tradition for more than two thousand years, and this class will explore each of the three great “turnings of the wheel of Dharma” from a contemporary 21st century perspective. We will use short excerpts from the great sutras, four core chapters from James Coleman’s book, The Buddha’s Dream of Liberation: Freedom, Emptiness, and Awakened Nature, and group discussions of our own personal experience to explore the theory and practice of Buddhism, and how we can bring them into our hectic modern lives. This class is suitable both for beginners and more advanced practitioners.
About the Book
This series will be based on James Coleman’s book, The Buddha’s Dream of Liberation: Freedom, Emptiness, and Awakened Nature which explores the three great teachings of the Buddha:
• The First Turning of the Wheel: Insight into the nature of suffering—and the way out of it—from the four noble truths and the eightfold path
• The Second Turning of the Wheel: Teachings on emptiness from the Heart Sutra and the Diamond Sutra
• The Third Turning of the Wheel: Guidance for practitioners and teachings on awakened Buddha nature
The book guides readers through the ancient sutras that preserve the Buddha’s message, illuminating their meaning for today’s world and tying the Buddha’s wisdom together for us. The book includes chapters from Reb Anderson from the Zen tradition and Lama Palden Drolma (founder of Sukhasiddhi Foundation) from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, on how to use meditation to bring the Buddha’s wisdom into our daily lives.
About the Series
Five Thursday evening sessions from August 12 to September 9, 7:30-9:00 pm Pacific
Sliding scale donation for the series: $75 – $100 – $125
Please bring your own copy of The Buddha’s Dream of Liberation: Freedom, Emptiness, and Awakened Nature to the sessions
About the Teacher
James Coleman was born and raised in Southern California, and earned an MA and PhD from the University of California Santa Barbara with a specialization in the sociology of religion. His numerous articles have been published in such places as the Journal of Christian/Buddhist Studies, Buddhadharma and the American Journal of Sociology. His books include The New Buddhism: The Western Transformation of an Ancient Tradition, published by the Oxford University Press in 2001 and The Buddha’s Dream of Liberation: Freedom, Emptiness, and Awakened Nature published by Wisdom Publications in 2017, and he was the editor of Roshi Reb Anderson’s book on the Samdhinirmocana Sutra, The Third Turning of the Wheel (Rodmell Press, 2012). He has been a Buddhist practitioner in the Zen and Vajrayana traditions for over 30 years, and is a founding member of the White Heron Sangha in San Luis Obispo, California, where he currently teaches and practices. James is also a member of Sukhasiddhi Foundation’s board of directors.