Miksang Level 1

with Trudy Stern & Ray Ball

November 4th—November 5th (2017) -Date postponed or cancelled

Date details +
  • $130 Patron Fee
  • $110 Program Fee
  • Or pay what you can afford (enter your amount below)
Room: Meditation Hall

Miksang Level I 

Introduction to contemplative photography. This weekend we will spend time looking at our visual world with fresh eyes.  It is a uniquely pleasurable way to spend two days sharing the vividness of our world. Nalanda Miksang is a course of study that uses Shambhala Buddhist teachings to discover our already-existing connection with our world through photography

Saturday,  November 4th  and  Sunday, November 5th
9 am - 4:00 pm each day with a break for lunch

Miksang Level I: Looking: The Phenomenal World

The first level of training purifies our visual perception by working directly with the elements or forms of the visual field: color, light, and form (texture, lines, and patterns). In this level, we also attend to the "flash of perception" which discloses a direct presentation of the phenomenal world.  No experience with photography required.  Bring a digital camera.
Recommended text: The Way of Seeing by John McQuade and Miriam Hall.
Level I:  Opening the Good Eye / The Phenomenal World
The first level of training purifies our visual perception by working directly with the elements or forms of the visual field: color, light and form (texture, lines and patterns). In this level we also attend to the "flash of perception" which discloses a direct presentation of the phenomenal world.

This introductory training includes instruction, assignments, photo reviews and supervised field trips.
No previous photography or meditation experience required. Just bring a digital camera and your curiosity. 
About the Teachers
Jennifer Fendya
Ray Eigen Ball is a Miksang practitioner and a Zen practitioner in the Mountain and Rivers Order, a student of the late Roshi John Daido Loori.
Trudy Stern - PhotoTrudy Stern has been a Miksang practitioner since "before we had digital cameras". She studies with John McQuade and Miriam Hall.  She is a member of the Shambhala Buddhist Meditation Group of Buffalo and a student of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche.

What is Miksang?

Miksang is a Tibetan word that translates as "Good Eye". The Miksang Society offers a number of programs, courses and events that present a form of contemplative photography. This school of contemplative photography brings together the art of photography, the discipline of meditation and the Dharma Art teachings of the meditation master and scholar Chögyam Trungpa.
In general, meditation refers to the state of being awake: the realization of unselfconscious awareness which allows us to connect with the full reality of our being. Meditation also refers to practices of synchronizing mind and body which enable us to cultivate that state of being.
In contemplative photography, we work with the synchronization of eye and mind. When eye and mind are in the same place the moment by moment vividness of the visual world manifests and is appreciated fully. This manifestation is spontaneous - a flash of perception - the ordinary magic of the phenomenal world. When one connects with pure perception there is no struggle in making a heartfelt and brilliant photographic image that one can share with others.
These moments of pure perception and appreciation happen all the time but we often ignore and devalue them. However, it is worthwhile to recognize and cultivate these moments because they recollect the inherent openness and goodness of our being.

The Miksang Path of Perception and Photography

Although the experience of clear seeing is available to everyone, people come to contemplative photography with different motivations. Some want to give expression to what they experience through the discipline of meditation. Some have recognized some direct and vivid quality of perception in their own experience and want to explore and express that potential. Others have trained in photography or other arts and are curious about the contemplative approach. The common element is an interest in clear seeing.
The Miksang Society offers a path of perception and photography through a three level course of training. No photographic experience or knowledge is required although you will need a 35mm camera with manual capacity. You do not need a background with meditation and we do not teach meditation as part of the training.
The three levels of training, based on Chögyam Trungpa's teaching on the three levels of perception, follow a traditional contemplative path of transforming confusion into wisdom. Often it seems that our inherent capacity for insight is obscured by preconceptions and habitual patterns. Each level and each class will present teachings and exercises which work through the obstacles to clear seeing by cultivating the purifying power our natural synchronization and wisdom.

Generosity Policy

In order to make our programs accessible to everyone, we have a “pay what you can afford” policy. If the program price is an obstacle for you, please decide what works for you and offer whatever you can.

For those who can offer more, we invite you to pay more to help cover the costs for others who are not able to pay the full price.