The Shambhala Meditation Center Los Angeles offers meditation instruction every week at the Center for Living Peace in Irvine. Please feel welcome to drop by for every Wednesday evening at 7:00pm or Sunday morning at 9:00am, excluding public holidays.
We will begin with meditation instruction for the first half hour, and then practice meditation together, which will be followed by a brief reading.
What Is Meditation?
Meditation is an ancient practice of self-discovery, primarily from the Buddhist tradition, that is rooted in the simple, but revolutionary premise that every human being has the ability to cultivate the mind's inherent stability, clarity and strength in order to be more awake and compassionate in everyday life.
Meditation is a way to make the mind more stable and clear. From this point of view, meditation is not purely a Buddhist practice; it's a practice that anyone can do. It doesn't tie in with a particular spiritual tradition. If we want to undo confusion, we're going to have to be responsible for learning what our own mind is and how it works, no matter what beliefs we hold.
The word for meditation in Sanskrit is "shamatha" in Sanskrit (Tibetan: shi-ne), which means "peacefully abiding." Peacefully abiding describes the mind as it naturally is. The word "peace" tells the whole story. This doesn't mean that we're peacefully ignoring things. It means that the mind is able to be present, without constantly leaving.
In meditation, what we're doing is looking at our experience and at the world intelligently. The Buddha said that this is how we learn to look at any situation and understand its truth. This is what a Buddha does—and we are all capable of being Buddhas, whether or not we are Buddhists. We all have the ability to realize our naturally peaceful minds where there is no confusion. We can use the natural clarity of our mind to focus on anything we want. But first we have to tame our minds through shamatha meditation.