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Session Eight

Reflecting and Going Forth

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The trees, water, air, birds, and so on can all be members of our sangha. A beautiful walking path may be part of our sangha. A good cushion can be also. … When you allow yourself to be in a sangha the way a drop of water allows itself to be in a river, the energy of the sangha can penetrate into you, and transformation and healing will become possible.

Thích Nhất Hạnh, from Friends on the Path: Living Spiritual Communities

In the closing session, we’ll explore how the process of letting go, going deep and reforming ourselves can become a regular part of our practice. We’ll also look at how we can create sacred and nourishing spaces in our Sanghas that support authentic investigation and diverse forms of engagement. We might take our own EcoSattva Vows together and discover how connections we’ve made here can go forward.

Session Resources

Session Leader

Myokei Caine-Barrett

Myokei Caine-Barrett, Shonin, first encountered Buddhism in 1963. She has been practicing the Lotus Sutra ever since. In 2002 she began training to become a priest. She became head priest and guiding teacher of the Nichiren Buddhist Sangha of Texas in Houston, also known as Myoken-ji Temple, in 2007. Myokei Caine-Barrett has active prison and hospice ministries and deeply committed to healing our culture. She is currently bishop of the Nichiren Shu Order of North America.

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Opening the Space

We invite you to open your engagement with each session (or group gathering, if applicable) by practicing a Living Earth Acknowledgment. A Living Earth Acknowledgement can nourish our relatedness and avail us to truths beyond domination. Incorporating our ecological nature as well as the calls of justice, it is an exploration, not a formula, to recognize and remember. Through practices like this, we are setting the conditions for shifting minds that are conditioned by domination into more skillful ways of seeing, speaking and acting.

Living Earth Acknowledgment and Prayer

Meditation is an integral part of the EcoSattva journey. If you do not have a meditation practice, now is the perfect time to start. We invite beginners and seasoned practitioners alike to view this guided meditation grounded in our relationship with Earth, created especially for EcoSattva Training participants by our guiding teacher Catherine McGee.

Guided Meditation

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Dharma Offerings

Introduction with Lou Leonard

To view videos in full screen, click the expand button on the lower right.

Featured Guest: Myokei Caine-Barrett

EcoSattva Vows Ceremony (see the EcoSattva Vows phrases here)

Closing with Kristin Barker (see the Dedication of Merit phrases here)

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We offer here a set of inquiries and group practices that support this step in our journey. Consider these suggestions and feel free to customize, replace and augment. But we strongly suggest that you explore at least one inquiry with each session.

Below are this session’s inquiry questions in bold, followed by a short commentary. We invite you to gently hold these questions. If this form of exploration is new to you or you would like a refresher, you can learn more about inquiry practice here.

  • What has shifted for me through this journey, and what has stayed constant?
    Take a moment to reflect on your experience in this training, through the descent, abiding with uncertainty, and the reemergence, the letting go, being with, and letting come. What changes do you notice within you, and in your relationship to others and the world? What has subsided, what has strengthened, and what remains the same for now?
  • What comes up when I contemplate hiei, that is, “jumping unreservedly” into working as sangha?
    Myokei suggests that in relating to our communities, we could be as a parent who would do anything to save their child’s life. What arises for you as you imagine this wholehearted commitment to working with sangha?
  • How might I carry the EcoSattva Vows with me?
    Reflecting on the EcoSattva Vows, which of these resonate strongly with you? If you feel called to use them going forward, how might you customize them to be more powerful for your practice and engagement?

Format for group inquiry: Liberating Structures is an excellent resource and we especially like 1-2-4-all and Conversation Café.


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Course Survey

It would be enormously helpful to us if you could take 15 (or even five) minutes to provide feedback on the EcoSattva Training. Please complete our brief survey about your experience.

Take Course Survey

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Supplemental Resources

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Dedication of Merit

At the close of each session, we encourage you to dedicate the merit. Core to our path is the practice of release, not holding tight to the material, emotional, or even spiritual. Instead we offer whatever we may have gained to benefit others. You can do so in any way that feels right; you are welcome to use One Earth Sangha’s dedication, found below.

Dedication of Merit

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