Teaching the Dharma

Tonight was my first official Dharma Teacher gig. I enjoyed teaching quite a bit. While I’ve had a lot of planning mind in sittings and daily life, and tension and nervousness about remembering everyone’s names and what I was going to say and whether someone would ask impossible philosophical questions; when it came time to teach, it felt easy and natural. 

The feedback I got from my co-teacher, Mary, was that I was a bit, how did she put it: exuberant. Perhaps I was leaning in a bit much or trying to teach too much — not giving people enough space to ‘figure it out’. She also thought we needed to communicate a little better between us and seek a little more balance or give and take. She did say that I know my shit. I appreciate her feedback. I’ll try to slow down more and let it all unfold more slowly. I was concerned I might get carried away and try to share everything I’ve learned — with too much enthusiasm. I guess I did… But not too badly!

All in all I was very happy — and so happy to be connecting with real people in a fairly formal dharma setting and really sharing the dharma. 

I lead the guided meditation. I was surprised at the softness in my voice. I had no problem leading the sit. If anything I said too much but I felt very good about what I said and how it went and everything came from the heart. I got some good feedback, especially about “feeling the texture of the breath” and “getting closer to the breath”. That helped a few people.

How interesting to receive Dana. I’d surely teach for free, but receiving Dana is special in its own way. 

Next week I give the talk: Four Noble Truths. Hopefully that goes just as well. I have a feeling it will; a pleasant feeling.