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Beyond Usefulness – A Journey Towards Meaning – Buddhism Course

A five-week course in going beyond self and other

Starts Tuesday 21st May 2024, 7pm – 9:15pm

In a world driven by utility, efficiency, and usefulness, finding meaning can seemingly evade us no matter what you do. But what if the gateway to a more fulfilling life lies not in productivity charts, checklists, or even material gain, but rather in the appreciation of what is truly beautiful?

Join us on a transformative journey where you will explore the profound impact of the Buddha’s teaching through the lens of aesthetic appreciation. On this five-week course you will delve into the realms of beauty, nature, meditation, and reflection, so that you can see the world as inherently meaningful and wonderful. Through thought-provoking discussions, immersive experiences, and reflection exercises, you will learn to infuse your everyday existence with moments of awe and inspiration.

Discover how the simple act but profound act of engaging with the world with less grasping and mindful observation can elevate your life through fostering deeper connections, sparking creativity, and even cultivate wisdom and compassion.

Whether you’re seeking a more meaningful existence or simply craving a fresh perspective, this course invites you to walk the path of beauty guided by the profound wisdom of Buddhism.

Participants will receive the print book and ebook The Greater Mandala as part of the course.

The course will include short talks, discussion, reflection, meditation, and home practice that should be completed between each week of the course. Each week there will be a particular theme explored as follows:

Week 1 – Moving from Words to the Wordless

We will be introducing the course and looking at what Wisdom is in the Buddhist tradition, the Prajnaparimita Sutras, and the idea of going beyond words.

Week 2 – Moving from Utility to Aesthetic Appreciation

Explores what it means to see the world through the lens of utility and in contrast to see it as purely aesthetic. We try to define what beauty is in relation to Buddhist ethics, meditation, and wisdom.

Week 3 – The Mandala of our Lives

A Buddhist mandala is a symbolic representation of the awakened mind, typically depicted as concentric circles around a core symbol of enlightenment. It serves as a spiritual tool for meditation and visualization but can also be used as a means of looking at our own lives.

Week 4 – The Greater Mandala of Uselessness

How would a Bodhisattva see and engage with the world around them? You will explore what a Bodhisattva is and how the Bodhisattva creates a mandala through their response to the world that is aesthetic and appreciative rather than utilitarian.

Week 5 – The Bi-tendential Value of Being

Walking the Buddhist path involves cultivating a deep sense of ease, relaxation, and contentment, but on the other hand, you must develop a profound love and compassion for other beings, in which you feel that their welfare is as important as your own. These two dimensions can seem to be irreconcilable opposites that put us in an uncomfortable dilemma – should you concentrate on your own spiritual development or spend your life helping others? Or should you try to strike a balance?

Note: While meditation will be part of this course, you will not be learning how to meditate. Please see our other events for an introduction to meditation course.

  • Knowledge of the Buddha’s teaching.
  • Deeper appreciation for the world around you.
  • Greater meaning and connection in your life.
  • Connection with deeper creative energies of the mind.
  • An insightful perspective on how to go beyond self and other.
  • A community of others on the path.

This course is for anyone who wants to engage with a deeper understanding and practice of Buddhism and aesthetic appreciation.

You don’t have to be a Buddhist to gain from this course; you don’t have to be particularly ‘spiritual’. All you need is curiosity, a desire to learn, and a willingness to put what you learn into practice.

This course will be led by Sadayasihi and Prasannadeva. Both teachers are members of the Triratna Buddhist Order and work for the Dublin Buddhist Centre.

Sadayasihi is current Chair of the charity that runs the DBC, as well as leading a study group and teaching classes.

Prasannadeva currently works as DBC manager and has a background in Fine Art.


Five-weeks starting Tuesday 21st May 2024 from 7pm – 9.15pm.


Dublin Buddhist Centre

Unit 5, Liberty Corner
James Joyce Street
Dublin, D01 N5H6


We do tiered pricing, depending on the circumstances.

€150 waged
€120 low waged
€90 unwaged
€75 for under-25s

Location: Dublin Buddhist Centre


Unit 5, Liberty Corner
James Joyce Street, Dublin D01 N5H6 Ireland

Web: | Email:
Unit 5 | Liberty Corner | James Joyce Street | Dublin D01 N5H6 | Ireland | tel. (01) 817 8933
Registered Charity Number 20030698 | CHY Number CHY11311