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Learning without taking notes

Updated: Jun 13

When we try to learn something, our conditioning from early school years is to take notes. If we don't take notes, we may miss important details that may come up in a test.

Starting last evening, I am with the Plum Village community again. I will help with translation in various sessions, such as sharing and guided meditation.

I am already feeling somewhat different: calmer, more grounded, and in tune with things around me.

In his increasingly energetic Dharma Talk last evening, Brother Phap Dung from Deer Park Monastery in the US said, we should not take notes but try to absorb what we experience in our whole bodies. Taking notes brings interpretation, and conceptualization brings bias. Direct insight is what we are after, he said.

When I saw many familiar faces in the venue, I remembered that this in my 9th year with the community. It all started when I joined a "Mindful Friday" event in Central Hong Kong in the Spring of March 2015.

Then I attended my first retreat in Japan around Mt. Fuji.

I was happy to see the picture in the announcement of the Plum Village Japan 2024 Tour.

Another highlight was the sponsorship from The University of Tokyo. They provided a venue in their Komaba Campus.

In his opening speech, a faculty member said the university doesn't support any particular sect or religion, but like many big universities in the US and UK, it is focusing on the interaction of society and technology.

It is no secret that there is a mental health crisis everywhere, and the holistic approaches to mind and body have been explored by Buddhist practitioners for 2500 years.

Plum Village's depiction of the relationship between Awareness-Lookin deeply-Understanding:


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