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A Q&A with IMS Teacher Jeanne Corrigal – Insight Meditation Society

A Q&A with IMS Teacher Jeanne Corrigal – Insight Meditation Society


Jeanne Corrigal is the guiding teacher for the Saskatoon Insight Meditation Community. She has been meditating since 1999, and is a graduate of IMS’s Teacher Training Program and of Spirit Rock’s Dedicated Practitioner and Community Dharma Leader Programs.

Certified in Indigenous Focusing Oriented Trauma Therapy, Jeanne can be a licensed Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction teacher and Life Skills Coach coach with greater than 20 years’ expertise facilitating grownup applications. She is a member of the blended heritage Métis Nation, one in all three Indigenous communities acknowledged in Canada. One of her first academics in loving presence was Cree Elder Jim Settee.

In this Q&A, Jeanne talks about her upcoming on-line program which is able to discover how the Satipatthana Sutta, the Four Foundations of Mindfulness, is an experiential map displaying the way in which that exterior nature helps awakening in our inner nature.

Nature as Teacher of Awakening
Sunday, October 15, 2023
9:00 am – 5:00 pm ET
Register for this program right here.

Why is reflecting on nature as a way of awakening so vital proper now?

In this time of local weather disaster, I’m seeing the Buddhist teachings increasingly more as teachings from nature. For me, it’s about with the ability to transfer from our love of nature, of Dharma, into no matter we have to do to fulfill this time with knowledge. Opening to nature as the muse for a lot of of our teachings helps me to remain linked quite than to close down my coronary heart in concern.

Why is the Satipatthana Sutta such a great tool for serving to us discover awakening?

Many of us have experiences of feeling—even in very small methods—linked to nature. We might need a photograph or portray of nature that we actually like, or a beloved reminiscence of a time after we sat quietly by a lake. We don’t need to be outdoor to get pleasure from nature. House vegetation can deliver us happiness. The Satipatthana Sutta is an outline of how these easy experiences with nature may be understood and labored with deliberately as a doorway to understanding awakening.

Tell us a bit about how the Satipatthana Sutta is a nature observe.

The first line within the chorus from the Satipatthana Sutta is: “In this manner, a practitioner abides considering the physique as a physique internally, or they abide considering the physique as a physique externally, or they abide considering the physique as a physique each internally and externally.”

When we’re in a spot in nature the place we are able to loosen up, we start to tune in—by our senses—to all that surrounds us, and as we do that our inner nature calms down. What we’re doing is sensing the physique internally and externally. This occurs so naturally that it’s not one thing we have to study.

The subsequent line is: “The practitioner abides considering within the physique its nature of arising, or they abide considering within the physique its nature of vanishing, or they abide considering within the physique its nature of each arising and vanishing.”

When we’re sitting in a spot of nature, perhaps watching the solar set, or waves lap, or leaves rustle, we get it in our being—in an embodied, non-cognitive approach—that issues rise and cross. Our inner nature may be understood as a part of this circulation. We are capable of maintain our ideas and feelings as coming and going, a lot as we observe the approaching and going of birds, clouds, and waves. Nature teaches us how you can know that we’re part of it by this inner and exterior contemplation.

The subsequent line within the sutta is: “Or else mindfulness that ‘there’s a physique,’ is solely established within the practitioner to the extent essential for naked data and mindfulness.”

This invitations us to know—with simply sufficient effort—the physique internally and externally. This invitations us right into a approach of being that’s current and easeful, with out striving or tuning out. When we tune into exterior nature, we come right into a approach of being that’s extra in rhythm with the pure cycles. Nature is a teacher of this basic perspective.

And then the final sentence of the chorus is: “And they abide unbiased, not clinging to something on the planet.”

One approach of understanding this non-clinging is to really feel into the discharge we are able to expertise by spending time in nature.  We’re not clinging so tightly to the knot we had earlier than our stroll within the city park or our weekend within the nation. We’re just a little looser, clinging much less tightly, capable of see with extra knowledge how you can reply, quite than react. We’re dwelling just a little extra independently from exterior circumstances and leaning extra into this sense of our reference to this circulation of being.

We may even tune into this shift just by remembering ourselves in nature. At the start of his instructing in Still Flowing Water, Ajahn Chah invitations readers to “create the sensation that proper now you might be sitting on a mountain or in a forest someplace, all by your self.”

Give this a attempt someday! Stop no matter you’re doing for 15 seconds, and recall a favourite place in nature. As you do that, observe what occurs in your physique and thoughts. See in case you discover a relaxing in your inner nature, simply from recalling exterior nature. In a approach, this train is very similar to the observe of “Touching the Earth” and receiving assist, just like the Buddha did. Perhaps that is a part of what Ajhan Chah meant when he stated, “We can study all we have to know from nature to awaken.”

How can this sutta assist us perceive and face the acute challenges our planet is experiencing proper now?

This pure technique of launch from what Wes Nisker calls the “tight shoe of separate self” permits love, compassion, connection, spaciousness, and different healthful qualities to circulation naturally. We can then channel this like to wholeheartedly addressing the disaster on the planet now. We can transfer from love to like in motion. Reconnecting, touching the earth, repeatedly, particularly after we do that in group, can shield us, help us, and assist us discover clever response, even within the midst of the overwhelming challenges that every one beings now face.

What do you hope individuals who be part of you’ll expertise with this program?

I’d love for the sangha to have an expertise of the Satipatthana Sutta as a pure awakening course of that may help them in each day life and in any local weather care work they could do.

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