For Prague

Speaker: Henk Barendregt (The Netherlands)

Title: Two Faces of Emptiness
and other Dhamma ‘paradoxes’

Date: April 15 (Sunday), 2012

Location: Maitrea, Prague

Abstract: The way the Dhamma is presented by different teachers may seem contradicting to each other.

The path: has a goal — has no goal;
Enlightenment: is sudden — is gradual — does not even exist;
Nirwana: comes after the path — is the path.

These ‘contradictions’ will be discussed and solved. Apart from these theoretical opposites, there is an actual opposite how emptiness is experienced: as something to be avoided, or as a source of freedom. This is the main ‘contradiction’ to be solved, not only theoretically in this workshop, but also experiential in our practice.

CV: Born in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Henk Barendregt (1947) enjoyed (1952-1965) a form of education developed by Maria Montessori. He studied mathematical logic at Utrecht University, where he obtained his PhD in 1971 under Dirk van Dalen and Georg Kreisel. In 1992 he became member of Academia Europaea and in 1997 of the Royal Dutch Academy of Science. He is presently professor of Foundations of Mathematics and Computer Science at Radboud University, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. In 2002 he obtained the Spinoza prize, the highest scientific reward in the Netherlands, and in the same year he was appointed Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion.

In California (Los Altos, Tassajara) he studied from 1972 until 1979 Zen meditation mainly under Kobun Chino Roshi (1938-2002); and later in the Netherlands from 1979 until 2006 Vipassana meditation under the most venerable Phra Mettavihari (1942-2007). Barendregt teaches Vipassana since 2001 in Nijmegen, and was qualified in 2006 by Phra Mettavihari to direct Vipassana retreats in the style of Mahasi Sayadaw. In 2008 Barendregt founded with colleagues Biophysics and Psychiatry at Radboud University a research centre for Vipassana meditation and its clinical application of Mindfulness interventions. In the fall of 2011 Barendregt joined Prof. Antonino Raffone at Sapienza University, Roma, designing computational models of the mind inspired by vipassana meditation. Henk Barendregt has conducted Vipassana retreats in The Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Greece.

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