About

Open Path,
Where everything is fruitful.
Restricted Path,
Where a particular route is discerned by
what is not the path. Where more of the universe
is not path than is path. Where ‘getting it right’ is very important.
When life awakens within itself – wide open in wonder,
Paths open wherever we look.
Living dharma, life unfolding,
Human engagement with all our faculties thrumming creatively,
This is nature awakening – a natural awakening.
It is the inborn path of buddhadharma lived by all sages in all times and places.
Called many names that satisfy the namers,
living dharma is to live within the truth
truth which preceded and gestates all naming.
This pathless ‘path’ of buddhadharma is truly open.
It is available to all who seek.
Open Path,
this living dharma,
this world awakening
may we realize it!
Tarchin Hearn, May 2010

Open Path is a vehicle for the teaching and sharing of Buddha-dharma in its largest sense, the diverse body of teachings about human unfolding and awakening common to the great spiritual traditions of humanity. It is co-ordinated by Bill Genat and Kathryn Shain who have been teaching meditation and Buddha-dharma together for about eight years. Bill and Kathryn have as their foundation the teachings and practice of Buddha-dharma as taught in the tradition of the late Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche.

Bill has been a student in this tradition for over thirty years receiving teachings from the Rinpoche and senior teachers of this lineage as well as from other senior lamas in the Tibetan tradition. He was he principal meditation teacher for the Melbourne University Buddhist Studies Society from 2003 until 2010.

Kathryn has been a Dharma practitioner for over twenty years and specialises in the teaching of Movement Meditation, a profound and rich pathway to kaya-nupassana, deep awareness of the profound mystery called body, the first classical Buddhist foundation of mindfulness leading into the experience of spacious and luminous mind.

In early 2008, Open Path rented a studio in Hawthorn in Melbourne in order to provide a venue for both teaching and the mutual support of people interested in exploring Buddha-dharma. The aim was to bring together a group of people, or sangha, to support each other’s practice, study and exploration of the path of awakening.

Open Path gathered together people with an existing interest in the Dharma and introduced many new people to the Dharma, if sometimes somewhat fleetingly. Nevertheless, many seeds have been sown. A circle of mutually supportive friends has emerged associated with Open Path who are engaged in the exploration of the path of awakening.

In early 2011 the Shoreham Open Path teaching space developed when Bill and Kathryn moved to the Mornington Peninsula, 80 kilometres from Melbourne. At the time, they were looking for a dedicated space, away from the noise and bustle of the city to run weekend workshops and retreats as well as regular weekday classes. The peace of the sea and beautiful natural bushland surroundings of Shoreham are proving to be a wonderful space for this purpose.

Their aspiration is to continue to offer a dedicated space for practice, study and shared exploration of the path of awakening, as understood, shared and bequeathed in unique forms by all the great spiritual traditions of this planet. In the spirit of the late Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche, the teachings from the Buddhist tradition will be drawn upon as a touchstone.

 

about the teachers

Bill Genat

Bill has been practicing and studying the Dharma since meeting his first teacher Karma Chime Shore in 1977. Karma Chime, a senior student of the late Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche and profound teacher in his own right, was the inspiration for the establishment of both the Wangapeka Study and Retreat Centre in New Zealand and the Origins Study and Retreat Centre in Western Australia. Bill was a foundation member of the Origins Centre and over the years served as coordinator and in other roles within that organisation. Bill received teaching directly from the Rinpoche himself on an almost annual basis over a period of twenty years in Australia, India, Sri Lanka, Wales and Switzerland. Bill’s teachers also include a number of other senior students of the Rinpoche, also recognised as profound teachers in their own right, including Tarchin Hearn, the late Cecily Kwiat, and the late Sonia Moriceau. In his teaching, Bill also draws on his work experience and practice in the areas of community development, socio-drama, group work and health sociology.

Kathryn Shain

Kathryn has been practicing meditation and studying with a number of teachers for approximately 25 years. For the first part of that period she followed a devotional path and spent many months on meditation and service retreats in ashrams in India, America and Fiji. In 1998 her focus of study turned to Buddhist Teachings when she was inspired by gifted teachers Karma Chime Shore and the late Cecily Kwiat. About ten years ago she was blessed to meet her main Teacher Tarchin Hearn and since then has spent much time in meditation retreat and study with Tarchin, primarily at the Wangapeka Study and Retreat Centre in New Zealand but also in Australia. Kathryn has also studied under other inspirational Buddhist teachers such as the late Sonia Moriceau and Lama Mark Webber. Kathryn is greatly indebted to Leander Kane, with whom she studied Liberation Through the Body – a remarkable series of body movements that centre and calm the body/mind bringing physical and mental healing and liberating stuck patterning. Kathryn, like Leander, integrates these movements with her teachings of Buddh-dharma to bring a rich awareness and greater understanding of the body/mind.

The Teaching

A huge blessing in the tradition of the teaching bequeathed by the late Venerable Namgyal Rinpoche is his emphasis on pith teachings of the Buddha-dharma unencumbered by any particular cultural overlay. The Rinpoche devoted his teaching ministry to the development and transmission of the Buddha-dharma in ways that could skilfully illuminate and liberate the western mind. To that end he gave great emphasis to craft and artwork and to the study of western teachings and practices of the mystical life. Within his teachings of the Buddha-dharma the Rinpoche interwove his deep insights in psychology, the sciences including physiology, microbiology, astronomy, geology, physics, zoology and the arts. Nevertheless, the Rinpoche held up the classical teachings of the Buddhist tradition – the Theravadin, Mahayana and Vajrayana – as the most intact living traditions of awakening on the planet.

Bill and Kathryn are committed to sharing the rare blessings of this extraordinary teaching tradition to all levels of practitioners.