Contemplative Studies Program Blog
Offer a Mandala & Prayers | Step 6 of Awakening in 30 Steps Jul 16, 2021

 Step 6 concludes the Six ‘Ordinary Preliminaries,’ a container or crucible for our visualization practice.

Can you integrate your personal spiritual practice - yoga, dance, martial arts, art, writing etc. - into this container?

Conclude your daily practice by offering a...

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Seven Step Mentor Bonding Process Part 2 | Step 5 of Awakening in 30 Steps Jul 14, 2021

Seven-step Mentor Bonding Process = a virtual reality psychotherapeutic encounter that we can have as many times as we wish, for however long we need, at no cost.

1) Admire Qualities - orients us towards the good in others countering the negativity bias.

2) Make Offerings - builds reciprocity,...

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The Mentor Bonding Process | Step 5 Jul 13, 2021

Work with virtue and vice using the mentor-bonding process.

The engine of enlightenment is a sacred relationship.

It’s in the context of a close relational bond that we will eliminate vice, and cultivate virtue, and achieve enlightenment. No one makes it alone!

We must strike a balance, a...

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Evoke the Mentor and the Jewel Tree Refuge | Step 4 Jul 11, 2021

If you’d like, start memorizing the steps and recalling them prior to hitting play on the next video in the series. By the end of our journey they will be installed in your heart.

Humans learn best through mimicry with more skilled parental figures or mentors. Unlike childhood we now get...

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Prepare Body & Mind with Posture & Motivation | Step 3 Jul 09, 2021

Steps 1-6 are called the Ordinary Preliminaries and have to do with our meditation practice.

Prepare your body for meditation with a dignified and comfortable posture.

Prepare your mind for meditation with one of three kinds of motivation depending on your predisposition and capacity.

1)...

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Set Up an Altar & Make Offerings | Step 2 Jul 05, 2021

The altar is our workbench.

What’s on the altar is that which we aspire to become.

The purpose of offering is to exercise or cultivate good qualities that will hasten maturation or manifestation.

With a pure heart offer anything - pure water, fresh fruit, flowers, lit candles, sweet...

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Create a Sacred Space | Step 1 Jul 04, 2021

 Create a sacred space to do the work.

What is the relationship between the environment and our state of mind?

Do we prioritize our psychological growth enough to designate an actual workspace for it?

What design elements would go into a space to make it inviting for you?

What about Mother...

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Awakening in 30 Steps Jul 03, 2021

Awakening in 30 Steps is a series of contemplations on each of the lam rim steps from Dr. Miles Neale's book Gradual Awakening: The Tibetan Buddhist Path of Becoming Fully Human.

The lam rim is not a linear sprint to a final destination, it’s a spiral-like process of gradual awakening.

...

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Coping With Your Darkest Night Jul 02, 2021

Raw and full of lived wisdom, Dr. Miles Neale returns to the Inner Truth podcast to talk to David Newell about navigating through the dark night in the the midst of his own dark night.

Listen on Apple Podcasts

Listen on Spotify

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Create a Sacred Space & Make Offerings Jun 29, 2021

Sitting cross-legged in an upright meditation posture facing an altar, I take refuge in the Three Jewels in Pali and then Tibetan. My voice is overshadowed by an unfamiliar sound on a loudspeaker – the call to prayer beckoning the Islamic devotees to the mosque. A reminder that I am no...

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Journey of Awakening: A Virtual Buddhist Pilgrimage May 20, 2021

Acclaimed photographer and author Julian Bound and Buddhist therapist joins Dr. Miles Neale for an intimate conversation about the journey of awakening.

Julian’s stunning photographs from his many travels to sacred Buddhist sites throughout Asia as well as his latest book By Way of...

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Contemplative Psychology in a Modern Context May 17, 2021

Dr. Miles Neale recently talked to Tom Parkes of the Mentally Flexible podcast. In this episode they discuss:

  • The Contemplative Studies Program
  • How Miles’s childhood informed his spiritual life
  • The importance of presence in helping another person feel...
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