Wake Up, Now! Transforming Our Lives Through the Buddha’s Wheel of Life (Session 1)

From February 07, 10:00 am until 12:00 pm

Why do we need to Wake Up, Now! and what’s the Buddha’s Wheel of Life have to do with it?

Why are we in this situation? Where are we going? Do our lives have any meaning? How should we make use of our lives? How does Buddhism view the position of beings in the world and the ways humans can make their lives meaningful?

These questions are addressed in a famous Buddhist painting of a wheel (known as The Wheel of Life) with twenty-one parts that outlines the process of our lives in existence.

The Wheel, said to be designed by the Buddha himself, depicts an inner psychological cosmology. It is much like a map of the world or the periodic table of chemical elements, but it is a map of our internal process and its external effects.

It vividly describes how we become trapped in a counterproductive maelstrom of suffering and how this process can be reversed, showing how Buddhists place themselves in an ever-changing universe of cause and effect.

By illuminating the causes behind our situation of limitation and pain, the wheel of cyclic existence reveals how, through practicing antidotes to these causes, we can overcome the painful and limiting situations that are their effects. It shows the altruistic purpose that can make life meaningful. The unsettling description of the steps of entrapment is a call to action, for it shows how the prison of selfishness can be turned into a source of help and happiness for both oneself and others.


These sessions purposefully examine texts that deeply explore The Wheel of Life, specifically its meanings and how to apply practical, meaningful, and most importantly, relatable meditation and mindfulness practices to breaking through our habitual tendencies, in order to truly free ourselves from perpetuating patterns of suffering.

They will start off with an introductory session by John Cerullo, revealing the Wheel’s various components and how they represent a complete system of our existence, both internal and external.

This will be followed by a series of additional sessions with specific guided readings from the primary texts (see below). Each reading will be discussed in detail, followed by a presentation of specific tools and techniques one can use, such as meditation practices, as an aid in actively working to develop an ability to awaken and clearly experience a more meaningful and fulfilling life.

The discussion group is for both Buddhist and non-Buddhists, as the Wheel and all of its components are presented in a modern and practical way, geared toward providing not only meaning and understanding of what the Wheel represents, but in connection with how we actually live and tackle the challenges life presents to each and everyone of us.

About John Cerullo:

John has studied and practiced Buddhism for 40 years, including Zen Buddhism with Philip Kapleau and Tibetan Buddhism with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, His Holiness the Sakya Trichen, and currently with Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Jampa and Geshe Lobsang Dhargey.  Additionally, he holds certification in the Asian Classics Institute’s 18 Foundation Courses series which is a seven-year formal study program, that parallels the same core information taught at Tibetan Buddhist monasteries.

John has also been in the book business for over 40 years, publishing books on performing arts, Buddhism, and Yoga.

ZOOM Information:

https://zoom.us/j/4522777814, Password 057655

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+19292056099,,4522777814# US (New York)

+16699006833,,4522777814# US (San Jose)

Principle/Primary Texts:

  • Awakening from the Daydream, Reimagining the Buddha’s Wheel of Life, by David Nichtern
  • The Wheel of Life, Buddhist Perspectives on Cause and Effect, by His Holiness, the Dalai Lama.

Secondary/Supplemental Texts:

[Note: not required, only here for reference for people who might want to do further exploration of the main topics presented in, “Wake Up, Now!”):

  • The Tibetan Book of the Dead: First Complete Translation, introductory commentary by His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, translated by Gyurme Dorje, Graham Coleman, and Thupten Jinpa.
  • Like a Heart So Dearly Needed For Liberation, by Sermey Khensur Rinpoche Lobsang Tharchin
  • Mind Training: The Great Collection, translated by Thupten Jinpa
  • The Buddhist Psychology of Awakening: An In-Depth Guide to Abhidharma, by Steven D. Goodman.
  • Myriad Worlds, Buddhist Cosmology in Abhidharma, Kalacakra, and Dzogchen, by Jampon Kongtrul Loddrro Taye, foreword by His Holiness, the Dalai Lama.
  • Buddhist Cosmology: Philosophy and Origins, by Akira Sadakata.

Event repeats