Erric Solomon was born in Boston, USA and has been studying and practising Buddhism under the guidance of Sogyal Rinpoche since 1984. Under Rinpoche’s guidance Erric also studied under Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Chökyi Nyima Rinpoche and Tsikey Chokling Rinpoche in Nepal, and has received teachings from many of the most accomplished Tibetan teachers of the last 30 years.
Erric worked in Silicon Valley, California as vice president of software engineering in one of the world’s largest software companies, before he moved to France in 2006 to do the Three Year Retreat in Lerab Ling. Since the end of 2009 he has been an Executive Director of Rigpa International, where his management experience and his Dharma knowledge are brought to bear. Erric directs the department of Educational Resources and plays a key role in curriculum development. Under Sogyal Rinpoche’s guidance, he has been directing the devlopment What Meditation Really Is, a new dynamic approach which combines a blog, online access to teachings, courses given in Buddhist centres and an online course in order to offer meditation instruction to as broad an audience as possible. Erric is especially interested in developing Public Programmes and exploring ways of communicating the principals of Buddhism outside of a traditional Buddhist context.
This is from Karén, who came all the way from Moscow, to attend the What Meditation Really Is 2012 retreat:
I have been interested in Buddhism since the age of 14 when I read my first book about it. Since that time I’ve read a lot of books but never really practised. First of all because, there are very few Buddhists in Russia, especially where I live, and I couldn’t find a master I could trust.
We just finished the 2nd annual What Meditation Really Is retreat at Lerab Ling, France. Here is what one of the participants, Drew from Ireland, wrote about it:
On this retreat there have been many moments of beauty, learning, breakthrough, breakdown, pain (both physical and emotional), truth and realization. But really, it all comes down to the teaching, “Water, if you don’t stir it, will become clear; the mind, left unaltered, will find its own natural peace.’ When I first came, I had many questions. Some I asked, many I kept to myself. All were usually answered fairly quickly.
By popular request, here is the entire video, 111 minutes worth, of Sogyal Rinpoche's teaching at AWAKE 2012 in Amsterdam. It's great, don't miss it. And if you were there, see it again.
Recently I caught up with Professor Robert Thurman at Tibet House in New York City. We were talking about some of the comments he made at his Occupy Wall Street talk (which I recorded and posted here) and how it is important not to just leave your practice behind as you leave the cushion. We then made this six minute video on What Meditation Really Is. You can watch it after the jump.
This year is the twenty-year anniversary of Sogyal Rinpoche’s The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying. To celebrate this auspicious anniversary, there is a new website: The Tibetan Blog of Living and Dying.
Here is Khandro Rinpoche on how we can keep the mindfulness we discover on the cushion as we go about daily activity. Hearing from my friend Gabriele that Rinpoche would be teaching in Berlin, I asked Gabriele to ask Khandro Rinpoche to make another What Meditation Really Is video. Rinpoche quickly agreed!
One of the most common questions that come up for beginning meditators is something like: “although I want to establish a regular daily meditation practice, I start out great at first but then after a while it fades away. What can I do?”
Actually, it isn’t all that hard to establish a lifelong habit of meditation, but it does take a little time to build it up.
By following these five easy steps, our meditation practice will gradually become an effortless habit. Guaranteed!
This video features Sogyal Rinpoche “hot off the press” from his Easter Retreat at Haileybury College in the UK. At his playfully provocative, incredibly pithy and insightful best, he is teaching children and adults the key points of meditation practice. Best would be to find your cushion and then press play, but you do not want to miss this one!
Here’s more from my What Meditation Really Is Skype with Vincent Horn, co-founder of Buddhist Geeks. We discuss first how technology can support contemplative practice. In the second video we speak about some of the exciting challenges and opportunities when bringing scientists and contemplatives together in the same room. Enjoy!