Impermanence Class Syllabus

Overview of the topics to be covered

Live sessions: Thursday, 7-8:30 pm, on the following dates:

  1. April 26
  2. May 3
  3. May 10
  4. May 17
  5. May 24
  6. May 31

Week I. Introduction to Impermanence: The Bedrock

Impermanence (called anicca in the ancient Pali language) is considered the bedrock of the Buddhist teaching and one of the three basic facts of existence.  The other two are suffering and no (or not) self. Does the fact that everything is impermanent imply that we have to suffer or be dissatisfied with life? We will look a little deeper at the nature of reality and at our understanding of change.

Week II. Changes Big and Small

How do we experience change in our lives? Do we react to impermanence with resistance? We can start by training ourselves to recognize change in formal meditation. We can investigate change at the level of a microsecond and experience change over a lifetime. This can lead to insights into the nature of reality and eventually into a letting go of much of our suffering.

Week III. Change and the Three Messengers.

The three divine messengers were the Buddha’s original incentive into discovering the essential unsatisfactoriness of human existence. The three messengers are: old age, sickness, and death. As we all start on our journey of discovery, can we view life’s transitions in a different light? Change may be the basis for our dissatisfaction with life, but there is also the potential that understanding the transient nature of all things can lead to liberation.

Week IV. What’s Wrong with Just Feeling Blissful?

What kinds of choices do we make when we meditate and practice mindfulness? Do we really want to experience impermanence? This week we will examine our ideas about what this practice is designed to do and what our aspirations and intentions are when we practice meditation.

Week V. Change and No Self

Everything changes around us, but you and I are changing all the time as well! Who is this person we call our Self? Where do we find a firm footing? When we stop resisting change, the possibility of redefining ourselves can arise.

Week VI. Going Forth

How can our new perspectives on the concept of impermanence help us make sense of today’s overwhelming world?  In this final week, we will examine how to engage with our loved ones and society with compassion. We can find the energy to integrate these insights into our lives and into in a very turbulent and cynical period in human history.

Coming April 22: online class on impermanence!

Impermanence: A Buddhist Perspective on Coping with Change
An Online Course with Wendy Eisner
April 22-May 31, 2018

live sessions: Thursdays from 7-8:30pm

Course Registration: $60 for 6 weeks

We all know that everything changes, but do we really understand impermanence? The Buddha considered the concept of impermanence to be a core teaching, and encouraged his followers to meditate upon it, discuss it and contemplate it. I am offering a 6-week course on this topic to do just that. The course will be accessible to everyone: Buddhists, non-Buddhists, beginners as well as experienced meditators. The views and topics that will be introduced in this course can be as simple or complex as you, the student, want to make them, but the material will be presented in a way that will be understandable and stimulating. Most importantly, I will present talks, discussions, and recommend practices that can potentially enrich your life in a practical way. This is an important point, because the Buddhist practice of Insight meditation is designed to be completely relevant to your life–right here and right now.

Take the course at your own pace. The only scheduled event will be the weekly video dharma session. This will be recorded live, so even if you miss it, you can access it from the website and watch it any time. Registration gives you exclusive access to course materials available at

Please note: in keeping with Tri-State Dharma’s policy, no one will be turned away for lack of ability to pay. Contact Wendy if you are in need of a scholarship. Donations help to make scholarships possible.

The course includes:

  1. Access to the course materials (password protected). You can download the syllabus, worksheets, dharma talks, meditations, and readings 24/7.
  2. Live Weekly Dharma talk: This will be a real online class with Q&A, discussion and guided meditations (1.5 hours). They will be recorded and accessible any time for all enrolled students. Zoom technology has proven easy to use for everyone, and you can sign in via phone, tablet, or computer.
  3. One-on-one, online or phone conversation with Wendy (if desired).
  4. Weekly worksheets with study guide and links to readings and meditations.
  5.  Invitation to join my ongoing online sitting group.
  6. Guided online meditations and meditation instructions (video and text).
  7. Weekly contemplation (text).

Interested? Register today!

Questions? Contact me!