Month: April 2014

Floral Notes and Bardo: As the World Becomes More Intense…

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. What are we doing?  Sunrise in slow-motion. Last night a small group of us re-watched the Sakyong’s recent address to the community. It was full of beauty-wisdom.  And, seeing him from the angle of the camera, and zoomed in close on his face, I appreciate his brutal depth and tenderness even more.  So raw.  Waves of intensity, his eyes gazing upwards, his jaw moving slightly — in a vast pause in-between statements.  And then gentle, ordinary words.  Mystical and ordinary. He said lots of things.  One thing: As the world becomes more intense, places like this are going to be more important.  And people like you who dedicate your lives to this.  Your work will become more meaningful. (paraphrase) ~~~ Travis Newbill is a curious dude on the path of artistry, meditation, and social engagement who …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Flowers and Sensei, Awake

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Speed like weeds.  Flowers like music.  Pulsating perfection, and busy bodies missing beats.  A million words, a million actions — exhausted bodies wanting to flop…  but far too busy.  A million deaths and missed opportunities, a smile, and one perfect ringing note — the bliss bell.  Soon-enough, tumbleweeds of thinking.  Busy bodies.  But, perhaps more and more often — bell. Breathe.  A weekend with Shenpen, Sensei — arranging flowers, slowing down, opening up.  Her being is her teaching.  It’s always that way.  More the wholeness than the spoken instructions. My emotional state — worked-with through arranging.  And then the arrangement as a mirror. Heaviness purified through art-form.  The energy, once challenging, now reflected, purified, no more grief about it, rather…  there it is. Flowers.  Resistance to knowing flowers, revealing ever-floral me — the fragility is too …

Empowering the Heart of Healthcare | Carole McKindley-Alvarez (full interview)

Carole McKindley–Alvarez discusses topics such as how mental and emotional wellness can enhance our efficacy and quality of life at work. Shambhala Mountain Center hosts Empowering the Heart of Healthcare: Embodied Presence with Acharya Melissa Moore, Dr. Aaron Snyder, Carole McKindley-Alvarez and Leslie Booker, June 23–30, 2017 — click here to learn more  

Floral Notes and Bardo: Some Hallucinations

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. What am I afraid of? Feeling overwhelmed forever, failing in my endeavors, losing people’s approval, not achieving what I wish to, not receiving the recognition that I crave, not being special at all, being a grain of sand, being fundamentally mistaken, being nothing but a brief-luminous-flare. I really feel the need to go on retreat.  I’m all wound up.  I’m feeling clouded. But… It’s difficult to find the time.  Some people seem to think that living here is like being on one big retreat.  In a sense, that’s true.  But…  I work a lot here.  Most everybody that lives here works a lot.  Between the day-jobs that we have — which keep the business running — and our community service, obligations, participation…  it’s a lot. And… I just realized a couple of days ago that …

Floral Notes and Bardo: Don’t Do That

By Travis Newbill Floral Notes and Bardo: The Creative Chronicles of a Shambhala Mountain Resident is a daily feature on the SMC blog in which a member of our staff/community shares his experience of existing as part of Shambhala Mountain Center. Growling in a cave, no one to hear, no one to blame, just the discomfort of… Or, alternatively, the bliss of no one to impress. But what if all this society stuff falls apart? What if no one shows up to ring the gong and lead chants? There have been times when I’ve been the only one in the shrine room for a session.  I ring the gong and chant solo.  It’s lonely, sad.  Something a bit pathetic about it.  DON’T WALLOW IN SELF PITTY And yet it feels tremendously powerful, brave, inspired.  That’s the flip.  DON’T TURN GODS INTO DEMONS If someone misses a dish washing shift here, it is plain to see that the dishes are dirty.  So, no one can get away with it.  If I don’t meditate, my mind is like …

Dakini Map: A Conversation with Cynthia Moku

By Travis Newbill Master artist Cynthia Moku has contributed to, and drawn much inspiration from various Buddhist Stupas. In her recent exhibit Pilgrimage: A Dakini Map (on display until April 25 at Naropa University’s Nalanda Gallery, 6287 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder, Colorado) she presents close to two decades worth of artwork reflecting her mystical experience and insights. Recently, she took some time to share a bit about this project and her journey.  Please enjoy our interview below. Also:  in May, Cynthia will be co-leading two programs at Shambhala Mountain Center along with Acharya Dale Asrael: Taming the Wild Horse: Riding the Energy of the Emotions, May 21-25 Touching the Moment: Indelible Presence, May 13-17

Empowering the Heart of Healthcare | Not Losing Heart

Acharya Melissa Moore, PhD talks about not losing heart in the face of stress and burnout within the healthcare profession. The week-long Empowering the Heart of Healthcare retreat runs June 23-30, 2017 at Shambhala Mountain Center in Colorado. Shambhala Mountain Center hosts Empowering the Heart of Healthcare: Embodied Presence with Acharya Melissa Moore, Dr. Aaron Snyder, Carole McKindley-Alvarez and Leslie Booker, June 23–30, 2017 — click here to learn more