"Hell is other people" - The magic, misery and mystery of relationships
Teacher: Louis van Loon
Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R.150 surcharge
Dates: Friday 14 July 2017 - Sunday 16 July 2017
Hell is Other People: these words by the French existentialist philosopher, Jean-Paul Sartre, often seem to be too true for comfort. But we can neither choose our parents nor our siblings. And that is only the beginning of a life that is dominated by interpersonal relationships - some of which will prove to be harmonious, others deeply problematic. Relationships expose our expectations and projections; the psychological games we play with ourselves and others. We tend to stagnate and become rigid, unavailable, because we fear that opening up to another person leaves us vulnerable to manipulation, abuse and hurt. But that is good news: relationships can become dynamic opportunities to move beyond narrow self-interests and fixations - enabling us to grow beyond our inhibitions and boundaries. This retreat suggests ways of doing this.
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Louis van Loon lectured in Buddhist philosophy at the Universities of Cape Town and Durban-Westville for 22 years. He established the Buddhist Retreat Centre in 1980 and, along with his wife, Chrisi, directs its affairs. Both were involved in the compilation of the BRC's popular recipe books "Quiet Food", "The Cake the Buddha Ate" and "Plentiful:The Big Book Of Buddha Food". His interest lies in the psychology of meditation and in the relationship between art, science, religion and philosophy. He is an architect and consulting civil and structural engineer in private practice in Durban. He teaches Sumie, Japanese brushwork painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.