How We Cause Suffering: Exploring the Three Poisons of Greed, Anger and Ignorance, with Ron Hogen Green

New York City  

February 2, 2013
10:00 amto4:00 pm

Zen Center of New York City

In renderings of the Wheel of Life—a symbolic representation of samsara—a trio of animals at the wheel’s hub represents the three poisons of greed, anger and ignorance. The Buddha taught that it is from these three poisons that the whole of cyclic existence and suffering arises. Many of us find our way to Zen practice through our own experience of suffering, and we take up spiritual practice sensing that transformation is possible. But in order to truly transform our suffering, we have to see deeply into its nature—we have to address the matter of our suffering at the root.

This retreat will focus on the three poisons and the effects they have on every aspect of our lives—internally, within our work. By clearly seeing and acknowledging the effects that greed, anger and ignorance have on our lives, we begin to something about them. Our usual strategies—repression and avoidance on the one hand, and acting them out on the other—only serve to perpetuate the cycle of suffering, but sincere practice opens another door. In their essence, the three poisons are powerful energies that arise in this negative form because of our self-centered views. As our hold on these views begins to loosen, our greed, anger and ignorance naturally begin to transform into the three virtues of compassion, wisdom and enlightenment. This is the path of liberation that the Buddha taught.

About the Instructor: Ron Hogen Green is a senior lay practitioner and Dharma Holder in the MRO. He has been engaged in Zen practice since 1978, and was in residential training at the Monastery for twelve years, many of those as a senior monastic. In 2007, he returned to lay life. He lives with his family in Pennsylvania, where he works as a pharmacist.

Cost: $75 (MRO Students: $65)

For more information, or to register:
How We Cause Suffering with Ron Hogen Green
Zen Center of New York City
500 State Street
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(718) 875-8229 •