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Buddhist Faith Fellowship at the Mansfield Freeman Center

 
 
 

Welcome!

 

 

Buddhism is a lifelong education to learn how to realize our human potential by transforming suffering into peace, joy and liberation.

 

 

 

  

A Place for Refuge and Renewal

 

 

Practice with us,

on Sunday mornings,

 

Mansfield Freeman Center for East Asian Studies,

Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut,

10 a.m. to 12 noon

 

 

 Please try to arrive 10 minutes early but if you are late,

 feel free to join us.  Dress informally and comfortably.

Open to all beginners and advanced seekers.

 

 

 

Sunday morning activities are offered Free of Charge 

but a donation is greatly appreciated.

(a minimum suggested donation is $10)

 

See our Calendar & Activities below.

 

 

e-mail us

amida@bffct.net

or call us for more information

 

(860) 529-2933

 

Join our American Shin community
Practice and live a happy life.

 New To Site 

 

 

 

Buddhism for Beginners Course. Learn about the Buddha's life and teachings. Discover the Noble Eightfold Path. Explore mindfulness. Open you heart with the Shin teachings. Find a renewed life. Interested? Starts June 8th. See below for more information and registration or visit http://dharmaquest.bffct.net/id22.html


Mindfulness Retreat. Join us for our annual one day mindfulness retreat. June 8, 2014 from 9:00 a,m. to 3 p.m. Open to beginners to the most advanced. See below for more information and registration.


Buddhist Benefit Luncheon Event. Learn about and practice mindfulness and the loving-kindness chant.  Sunday, April13, from 12:30 - 2 p,m. at the Vietnamese Lan Chi Restaurant, Middletown. The theme of this month's event is Flower Festival which celebrates the Buddha's birthday. All are welcome.

 

Buddhist Sunday School.  Central Connecticut's only Buddhist Sunday School resumes classes on January 12, 2014. Visit our comprehensive Family Dharma Sunday School web site.  

 

Podcasts on iTunes. Listen to  over 80 of our podcasted talks and discussions online free of charge through iTunes. See web page.

 

Come as you are and practice with us
Sunday Mornings at the BFF of Ct

 

MIDDLETOWN

CALENDAR

 

(Updated on April 8, 2014)


Spring Theme:

The Heart of Buddhism

 


03/02. Life is a Process of Change and Growth. A look into the deep spirituality and basic values of Shin Buddhism.  This well-done and inspirational video explores why Shin is attracted to Westerners and how its changes lives. This video is from the Honpa Honganji Mission of Hawaii. Presented by Rev. D. Senpai.

03/09. Why Am I A Buddhist and particularly a Shin Buddhist? Shoju will explore the Buddha's teachings to discover how they inspire us the path to true entrusting and ease suffering. What makes the Buddha’s way so attractive to people? Why is the Shin Way so appealing? Presented by Shoju.

03/16. How the Dhammapada Set Me Free. The Dhammapada is an ancient collection of the Buddha’s sayings. They are insightful, spiritual and quite psychological. It is a scripture that is accepted by all school of Buddhism. This talk will unveil how the Buddha’s words hold a powerful effect for over 2,600 centuries.  Shoshin will talk how these sayings changed her life. She is one of the contributors of the BFF’s book “I Stumbled Upon A Jewel” and this talk is based on one of her chapters. Presented by Shoshin.

 03/23. The Dharma of Richard Gere.  This short but insightful BBC video looks into Richard Gere’s perspective on the Buddhist teachings.  Mr. Gere has been on a spiritual journey for over 30 years and since the early 1980s has been a student of the HH Dalai Lama.  The discussion will reflect on his viewpoint, the challenges and gifts of our spiritual journeys, and the significance of American Buddhism. Presented by Rev. D. Senpai

03/30. Shin Buddhist Spirituality.  An exploration of Shin spirituality that touches on themes of eternal life, interdependence, love, compassion and many other topics. This talk is a modern explanation  of Shin teachings?. Inspired by the book, River of Fire, River of Water. Presented Rev. D. Senpai..

04/06. No gathering due to marathon and closed road around Mansfield Freeman.

04/13. A Child of Destiny: Buddha's Birthday. Celebrate Flower Festival, known as Hana-masturi, which honors the birth of the historical Buddha, Siddhartha Gautama over 2,500 years ago. Come and join us in our multi-media presentation of the birth story and learn about the basic teachings of the Buddha, wash and offer flowers to the baby Buddha, listen to sacred chants and more. Bring flower(s) to offer to the baby Buddha on the altar. This community event is perfect for new to Buddhism, families and friends. Lead by Rev. Daishin Senpai. 

There will be a special Benefit Luncheon after the gathering at 12:30 p.m. at Lan Chi Restaurant on Main Street, Middletown. The theme of this month's luncheon will be the Buddha's birthday. 25% of the proceeds will be donated to the BFF of CT. All are welcome.

**Buddhist Faith Fellowship's Birthday - In addition, this date commemorates the 13th anniversary of the founding of the Buddhist Faith Fellowship. On this date, in 2001, Rev. Daishin Senpai, founded this community in his apartment in Bristol, Connecticut with five others in attendance.

04/20. EASTER: Relax, Trust, Thank.  Learn about the 3 Essential Daily Practices in Pure Land Buddhism to encourage a happier and more meaningful life. Presented by Shoju based on an essay by Ven. Zhi Sheng.

04/27. Suicide and the First Buddhist Precept: Buddhism teaches that suicide is an act to be avoided, as it is the taking of life. In America, suicide is looked at with a combination of horror, fear and revulsion, even to the point of being a taboo subject. However, how is suicide viewed in other predominantly Buddhist cultures? Based on two articles that appeared in New Yorker magazine last year, this Dharma talk examines suicide in Japan, which has one of the highest suicide rates in the world, and in Tibet, where a significant number of politically motivated suicides have occurred in recent years. Presented by Daikan.

05/04. Buddhist Teachings on Aging. .The video and discussion will explore the Buddha’s teachings that promote physical and spiritual well-being, and longevity.  Also, the topics of the afterlife and the meaning of life will be covered. The video is an interview with Buddhist teacher Lewis Richmond and the author of "Aging as a Spiritual Practice: A Contemplative Guide to Growing Older and Wiser. Presented by Rev. D. Senpai.

05/11. Buddha Is My Personal Trainer. How does Buddhism view our youth and body image obsessed ideas about "Fitness"? Dharma teacher Shoju  talk and discussion will be based on his 30+ years as a health professional and regular exerciser. Presented by Shoju.

05/18. Buddhist Parables that Inspire the Heart. The Buddha taught in many way and freely used parables as wonderful tools to help seekers to engage his teachings at a deeper level. The intent of these parables is to transform the lives and inspire the seekers on the Bodhisattva path. Presented by Rev. D. Senpai.

05/25. Memorial Sunday Picnic – You are invited to our 12th annual potluck Memorial Sunday Weekend/Wisteria Festival Picnic. It will take place at Veteran's Memorial Park in Middletown from 1:00 - 4 p.m..  We will celebrate the coming of summer, our fellowship under the pavilion closest to the main entrance; it will be decorated with Buddhist Prayer Flags and the Buddhist Flag. There is plenty of free parking at the parking lot in front of the pavilion.

**Wisteria Festival or Fujimatsuri celebrates the birth of Shinran Shonin, the founder and foremost teacher of Shin Buddhism, over 700 years ago in Japan. All members and friends and their guests are invited to attend. 

06/01. Does Science Own Truth? Based on a Tricycle magazine interview with the author of a new book called The Science Delusion, this talk will look into ever growing domination of "scientism" as the sole possessor of truth in our world. How does scientism impact us as religious people, parents, and educators. What are the alternative possessors of truth? What is the Buddhist view of science and religion? Presented by Shoju.

06/08. To be announced.

 

06/08. Mindfulness Retreat.  Our 11th annual one day Buddhist retreat (sesshin) will take place at the beautiful Dae Yen Sa Temple in New Hartford from 8:30 a.m. - 3 p.m.  The theme is This Present Moment which underscores presence and the profound sense of gratitude and interconnectedness. Our sesshin includes: basic sitting meditation instruction and practice, walking meditation, voice and eating meditation, noble silence, discussions, qigong, and a delicious Korean vegetarian lunch. This retreat will be led by Dharma Teacher Daikan. Registration is open from March 18 – June 2. Register via the New England Institute of Buddhist Studies.  Beginners and the most advanced are welcomed.

Registration ends on June 2. Sign up at http://dharmaquest.bffct.net/ or this Sunday morning at the BFF of Ct in Middletown.

06/15. Putting the Mind Back into Mindfulness. We will explore some of the concepts that are discussed in The Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom by Rick Hanson, PHD. This fascinating book combines modern discoveries about the workings of the brain with age old insights in the nature of mind. Presented by Jinshu.

06/22. Renewal of the Heart - a Summer Solstice Practice -Celebrate the wonder of life with light, balance, and renewal through meditation, chanting; and then discuss the interconnection between nature, beauty and gratitude with the Pure Land Way.  There will be a toning practice with mantras; toning is a good way to raise positive vibrations. release emotions, balance energy, and quiet the mind. It's a perfect practice to enhance the light energy within. Presented by D Senpai and Juliane Cooley.

06/29. To be announced.

 07/06. No meeting due to the 4th of July weekend.

 

07/13. Therapy with a side of Zen. Explore some of the concepts discussed in Zen and the Art of Psychotherapy by Robert Rosenbaum. This book combines some of the principles of Zen practices with common themes explored in therapy and the results are greater opportunities for healing on both a practical and spiritual level. Presented by Jinshu.

 

07/20. To be announced.

 

07/27. To be announced.

 

08/03. To be announced.

 

08/09 - 12. Shin Retreat.  This annual and unique retreat will take place on August 9 -12 in Barre, Ma, from Friday 7:30 p.m. – Sunday 2 p.m. It will explore the deeper dimensions of Shin Buddhism and will look into how the Shin teachings are applied in everyday life.There is minimum sitting meditation, some chanting, and memorable and profound discussions that will make you think about the meaning of life and connect with it and everyone at the retreat. Depending on where you are karmically, this retreat experience could be a life changer. To register visit, http://www.dharma.org/bcbs/ Limited Enrollment.

 

08/10. No gathering at Wesleyan due to Shin Retreat.

 

08/17. Primal Grace. How is it that lost, despair and confusion can be transformed in the substance of purpose, love and understanding? What is the shadow? What is the Primal Vow? How can we experience faith, hope and salvation? Participants of the previous weekend Shin retreat will reflect on and share their retreat experience. Presented by Rev. D. Senpai.

Buddhism for Beginners Course 


"This is not just a course but a transformational experience."

 

Registration is open


Learn about the Buddhist path from the ground up. Who was the Buddha and his disciples, and the Eightfold Path? What is meditation? How do can you meditate?  What are the Buddha's teachings for lay people and what is the Shin path?

 

We have room for a couple of more students. If you have been interested in taking this Buddhism for Beginners course, now you have another opportunity to do so. Let 2014 be the year for you to engage the Buddha’s teachings for lay people in a direct and structured way.

 

This is the tenth year of our most popular and comprehensive course on the Buddha’s teachings. It surveys the Buddhist life, his disciples and teachings, and how they may be applied to daily living in 21st century America. This non-sectarian course covers the vastness of the Buddhist religion through Theravada and Mahayana traditions. Classes start on June 8, 2014.  Open to Buddhists and Non-buddhists. No pre-requisites. This course is oriented to beginner’s who are looking for a concrete, practical and sequential study of Buddhism. See web site below.


To keep the courses engaging, there is limited enrollment in all of our courses. We highly suggest that if you are interested in registering that you do so, sooner than later.

 

Visit our New England Institute of Buddhist Studies, located at the BFF of Ct in Middletown Connecticut for more details and online registration.

 

Mindfulness Retreat

Our 12th annual one day Buddhist retreat (sesshin) will take place at the beautiful Dae Yen Sa Temple. The theme is This Present Moment where life is truly lived. Practice calming the mind so you can open your heart to true peace and gratitude. Beginners to the most advanced are welcomed. Basic instruction will be given to beginners. Our sesshin includes: sitting meditation walking meditation, qigong, voice meditation, noble silence, discussions, and a delicious Korean vegetarian lunch.

Retreat Time: from 9 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

 

Intro to Meditation for Beginners: 8:30 a.m.

 

Arrival:  8:30 a.m. to 8:50 a.m.

  

No prerequisites: for beginner to the most experienced

 

Donation: $60 for non-member, $40 for members

 

Open to the public: for non-members, non-buddhists, members and buddhists

 

Korean Vegetarian Lunch Included

 

To learn more visit our New England Institute of Buddhist Studies for more detail and online registration.  http://dharmaquest.bffct.net/id22.html

Family Dharma

Buddhist Sunday School

 

 

 

Registration is now open - classes resume on January 12, 2014

 

Grow together in inspiration, mindfulness and compassion

 

The Buddhist Faith Fellowship offers Connecticut families a unique opportunity to grow together in a fun, hands-on and inspirational Montessori inspired Sunday School format. This program is truly a rare treasure because it is the only Buddhist Sunday School/Family Dharma in New England.

 

This Sunday School is a place for  your child(ren) to be taught the Buddhist teachings such as mindfulness, virtue and compassion. It is a place where parents and children can learn and growth together.

 

Our Family Dharma has been designed to meet the needs of children and their parents. Lessons and activities are age and grade level appropriate. Everyone in attendance will be deeply enriched with the traditional Buddhist themes such as values of compassion & wisdom, the Eightfold Path, daily practice and the stories of the Buddha and his disciples. We will explore how to integrate Buddhist holidays and traditions to share with future generations.

 

To learn more, please visit our comprehensive Family Dharma Sunday School web site and/or visit our Meetup web site above (click the icon) to learn more and/or to join.

 

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Our Buddhist Facebook
 
BFF of Ct's Facebook connects people with other people of similar beliefs and/or who are interested in our style of lay Buddhist practice. Share your stories, practice, buddhist spiritual experiences and photos etc. and in addition you will receive regular updates of our activities, courses and retreats. Looking for a web community? Come and join BFF Facebook.

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Our Meetup Group
 

If you like to receive automatically sent weekly e-mail notifications of our activities, courses and retreats, then we suggest you join our Meetup.com group. It is free of charge to join this social network.

 
"His Light penetrates to the utmost ends of space
and guides people to Nirvana, the Buddha is the
King of the Truth, he is the Teacher of Gods and humans."

Larger Sutra, Chap. 33

Visitors:

 

 

 
 
 
 

The BFF is a tax-exempt, non-profit membership

organization under Section 501(c) (3) of the U.S. Tax Code.