Dharma Care is an online resource on pastoral care (often one-time or infrequent), short-term pastoral counseling (about four, hour-long sessions) and long-term pastoral counseling (could be months or years long) created primarily for Insight Meditation Community Buddhist teachers, chaplains, leaders and care council members.
Why Prepare Yourself for Pastoral Caregiving?
When you speak and live the dharma, you become attractive to those who suffer. Words and actions of healing are attractors and those who speak and embody healing, attract. If a practitioner is vulnerable enough to say, "I suffer." and they share the particularities of their suffering, you have been invited into the realm of pastoral care. Sometimes, through compassion, you will take a risk and invite yourself into a pastoral care situation. Are you willing to take some time to prepare yourself?
The Origins of this Advice
The teachings, reflections, advice and insights in Dharma Care comes out of the Pali Canon and experience. You need not be a Buddhist to explore these teachings or apply the wisdom found in this tradition. You need not be a Buddhist to learn from Buddhism how to be a good spiritual friend. Much of what you find here can be used in cross religious contexts and situations.
May all sentient beings experience moments of peace and joy. May all people choose to be present to suffering with a heart and mind of compassion, loving kindness, equanimity and sympathetic joy. May we all make moments throughout the day to ask ourselves, "How can I be more wise and more skilled in providing care?"
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With metta for all sentient beings