Durango SENGENs

  sponsored by the Durango Dharma Center

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  2017 SenGen Announcements

What's new on the site since Nov 1, 2017?

  CLICK to navigate to the following:


  Click to view the 2017 SenGen schedule (Finding Joy Right Where You Are)

  Click to view the November SenGen Newsletter

  Check below for an invite and info concerning the Oct 24 SenGen session

  Our next SENGEN Facilitator meeting will be Tuesday, Dec 5, 3 - 4:30PM at the DDC

                  All SENGENers are welcome, Click here to read the draft agenda















The Durango Dharma Center offers the Senior Generation (SenGen) Kalyana Mitta (Spiritual Friends) Mindfulness Group. A place for those of us 60 and over who are interested in investigating the three messengers of aging, illness, and death that will visit us all, and in discussing all aspects of how to live a full and joyful life as we continue the journey. Join us as we delve into these exciting topics.

            Our mentors are Katherine Barr and Bill Ball, Dharma Leaders Council.

Our group norms include:

     •Connectedness, the very definition of a Kalyana Mitta or Spiritual Friend group, our need to feel      connected, unspoken or otherwise, to others who are sharing the same experiences, helplessness and challenges

    •Safety,  the ability to share experiences and challenges in an environment where we will not be judged

   •Privacy, the knowledge that what we say will not be shared with others outside this room

   •Inclusivity, everyone 60+ is welcome, whether or not on a Buddhist path, and while Buddhist teaching may infuse the conversations, they are not central to our discussions

   •Respect for each other’s  personal preferences: for example, everyone is invited to speak, but it is not necessary to speak - many of us have personalities more suited to individual processing of knowledge gained in a session

We invite all within this age group to join us on the 2nd and 4th Tuesdays of each month from 3 to 4:30PM at the Durango Dharma Center, 1800 east 3rd Ave.

For more info please email to the address below.

Next meeting: Tuesday, November 14, 3-4:30 PM at the DDC. Dear SenGens,

 We invite you to our next SenGen session to be held on Tuesday, October 24 from 3 – 4:30 at the DDC.  Our facilitators will be Ellen Matthews and Jim Bertrand.

Their topic is:  Wise Speech: Wise Listening

From Ellen M. & Jim, some background as well as a little practice to consider:

At our last Sen Gen session, using the Book of Joy as our guiding light, we discussed joy as our birthright. This coming session, we'll discuss our communication with other people as something that can strengthen our inner sense of joy and well-being.

Please be thinking of some challenging communication issues that may have arisen and contemplate how you may have addressed them with wise speech and wise listening (or perhaps not). 

To prepare for this session, we may want to practice this week during everyday ordinary conversations by being mindful of when you are not really listening. Notice, for example, when you may be about to speak in circumstances that you may be better off listening.

You may want to bring some examples of possible circumstances that could be benefited by engaging in some wise speech and/or listening.

Here are some possible examples...

Conversations with someone who:
1. Carries on a monologue.
2. Interrupts
3. Is distracted by his or her phone or other device, and doesn't seem to be paying attention
4. Pontificates
5. Seems to be lacking self-awareness and maybe to be self-destructive 
6. Is sure he or she is right about everything
7. Has a different political outlook than you do
8. Gossips negatively about others
9. Speaks what you consider hate speech 

We will discuss ways to connect with others and strengthen our natural joy by using our mindfulness, wisdom, and compassion when interacting with the people in our lives.

Here is some advice from U Tejaniya (via Katherine Barr) that you might want to consider.



 We should be mindful while speaking. So often we notice that speech is happening with no sense of what amount is enough or is necessary. We're just freewheeling. Speech pops up and keeps going.

To be mindful when we are talking, we need to have developed some momentum of mindfulness even before we begin. We can know what we want to say and how we feel. 

Then when we start speaking, we can know the tone of our voice, what we are thinking as we speak, and how we feel. We can know all this and much more when we maintain mindfulness while speaking.

When we say things we shouldn't have said, it brings agitation to the mind. The converseis also true, that when we don't say the things that we should say, there is again agitation.

To recognize this and learn from it, mindfulness must be present. 

We tend to pay a lot of attention to the person we are speaking to, instead of to ourselves while we are speaking. If you put too much attention on the other person then there is not enough attention left for yourself.  We need to build this skill of how to speak while knowing that we are speaking, and how we are speaking.

If you start speaking about yourself, be extra vigilant because we are most likely to get carried away when we speak about ourselves. The Buddha said that when you are silent, know that you are silent, and when you are speaking, know that you are speaking. We need to put this into practice.

If you are mindful throughout the time you are speaking, you will find that you feel good after that.

f you are mindful every time you speak, you will feel more confident and sure about yourself. Even if you make a mistake in speech you will know it and learn a lesson immediately, so you can decide how to do it next time and be prepared.

With kindness,

Ellen Park and the SenGen Facilitators 


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