Month: November 2016

by pASS

By Katharine  Kaufman By clearly seeing the extremes of experience, you learn to scout the middle way. ~Judith Lief Lion’s Roar Nov. 9, 2016   Flakes, thick and float. Giddy, I take pictures with my phone as I drive.                                                                   ~ Sally got loose but didn’t go far. Norman fought a tabby I’ve never seen. A car, traveling east, almost hit the calico from across street (last night I dreamt of the calico). I wrote poems and listened to poems read. Cashew cheese on crackers, hakurei turnip, celery, lemon ginger tea. Red chrysanthemum at the market, the color of blood as it leaves the body and mixes with air. Mark played and we danced slowly, sang halleluiah. At the end we attached safety pins to our t-shirts and blouses. Some cried, some angry and said so. Winter sun slants low through window over couch and to houseplants. They grow in directions I have never seen. Wednesday all day I lift out of my body then back in. Barbara, on the phone, reminds me of random acts …

Reclaiming Rest & Honoring Winter’s Wisdom

By Sara Avant Stover // In September 2001 I spent three weeks in Nepal. One misty morning after a hearty breakfast of tsampa (a traditional Tibetan porridge made from roasted barley flour) in the village inn, my guides, friend, and I continued our trek, which we were already a few days into, along the Annapurna Circuit. One of the guides had eaten breakfast in a separate room of the inn, listening to the radio. As we began our walk later that morning, packs on our backs, he reported, “A plane crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City and also into the Pentagon in Washington, DC.” My family lived in New York City. My friend’s family lived in Washington. Fear, anger, confusion, sadness, and grief washed through us both. There was no way for our families to get in touch with us, and the next village, Marpa, where we would spend that night — and where I hoped we could make a phone call home and catch the news — was still several hours …

The Meaning of Life

By Blake D. Bauer ~~~ As I watch my father dying, the meaning of life is very clear to me. Sadly, he will never enjoy his favorite meal again, drink fresh clean water, make love, create to his full capacity, walk freely, breathe fully, or experience many of the other gifts that come with being in a human body. I am personally trying not to take these miracles for granted each day, and I am very grateful for the blessing and lessons in this situation. The meaning of life is actually very simple. In my experience, we come here to enjoy life and love in a human body on this planet as fully as possible, while simultaneously bringing unconditional pure love into the world. We came here to master what it means to love ourselves unconditionally and thus be our true self fully in every situation and moment. The natural byproduct of this learning is that our words, thoughts, and actions become full of loving kindness, honesty and grace, which then becomes the energy with …

Women, Food, and Forgiveness Part 1: What is Forgiveness?

By Marcella Friel // Editor’s Note: This post is the first in a five-part series on Women, Food, and Forgiveness by mindful eating and body image coach Marcella Friel. Her retreat Women, Food, and Forgiveness opens April 19, 2017.   “It’s only when we alter our eating habits out of love and respect for ourselves that lasting change has any real chance to take root in our lives.” — Katherine Woodward Thomas What It Takes to Heal When I was a natural foods culinary instructor, one of my favorite classes to teach was called “Therapeutic Menu Planning” ~ how to prepare health-supportive menu plans for those who were suffering from cancer, diabetes, obesity, and other chronic health hindrances. I always began the class by asking students first to consider what it actually means to heal. Is healing a disease the same as curing it? Can someone be cured of a disease but not healed? Can someone be healed and not cured? If so, what’s the difference between healing and curing? As we batted around our ideas, words …

Now: Settle, and Connect — A Guided Meditation

Acharya Dan Hessey leads Winter Dathun at SMC, Dec. 10 Jan. 7 — click here to learn more   In this 15 minute video from our recent Science of Meditation event, Acharya Hessey guides us in settling our minds, and then relaxing further into a state of natural wakefulness. Meditate For A Week Or The Full Month of Dathun with Acharya Dan Hessey, Dec. 10 – Jan. 7 — click here to learn more

Simplifying Meditation: Why Practice? To Wake Up!

By Thomas Roberts // These days you hear a great deal about meditation. This kind of meditation, that kind of meditation; all sorts of books describing what it is and what it can do for you. Often meditation is associated with a particular religion or spiritual practice. Let’s clear something up right at the start. Meditation is not a religion. Meditative/contemplative practices have been part of numerous spiritual practices throughout history. No one owns it. Meditation is not Prozac. It does not cure or solve anything. Meditation does not make you a better parent, a better doctor, a better student, help you be less depressed or anxious. In fact meditation does no-thing at all!  Like everything else that gets exploited, meditation is now neatly packaged for your consumptive desires. Everybody is touting and selling meditation. Step right up and get yours. Okay let’s restore some sanity here. A meditation practice doesn’t help you overcome anything. It just helps you face your life with greater patience, openness and compassion. If you do meditation for some outcome …