Being Human Takes Practice

The Consciousness Explorers Club is reinventing the community meditation experience. We explore together every Monday night, share audio of our meditations and our thoughts about practice, and support CEC-inspired local groups around the world.

A wise teacher, and a wise centre, needs to offer a whole range of skillful practices, because people come along at different stages of their inner development, with different temperaments, and with different sets of problems.” -Jack Kornfield

Featured Articles

Relax. Nothing is Under Control.

I’ve been practicing mindfulness for over 20 years. Some things have changed and some things haven’t. The key thing I’ve learned is I don’t have to change who I am to be happy. All I need to do is accept the moment. I’ve learned that I’m not in control of most things, and that trying to control everything is not only pointless, it’s the source of most of my suffering. As one of my teachers posted on the door to the meditation hall – “Relax. Nothing is under control.”

Ceremonies for Life 

Ceremonies and rituals can be as unique as those who practice them, deriving their meanings from the intentions behind them and the presence within them. Mindfulness and presence breathe life into ceremonies, they help us attune and attend to the subtle yet powerful energies that we invoke when we open ceremonial spaces.

Beyond the Limits of Reality

In my experience, a true paradox is a catalyst to unimaginable growth. When I say “unimaginable” I mean it in a literal sense. Standing bravely in the existential grip of a paradox, we may grow in ways we can’t imagine. 

Powering Up 

I learned it wasn’t actually possible or desirable to fix another’s life, that it was in fact at odds with true empowerment and liberation. Both theirs and mine. ‘Cause of course they’re connected. So my perspective shifted from trying to fix everyone’s everything to trying to create the conditions for empowerment.

Community Practice Activation Kit

We just finished version 2.0 of our CEC Community Practice Activation Kit available for free here. The idea of this kit is to inspire people around the world to start up their own community practice groups, in a way that’s unique to them and uniquely responsive to their local needs and context.

What is "Practice," Anyway?

Suddenly, we exist. Existing is complicated. We turn to practice. As we love to say at the CEC, being human takes practice. But what is a practice? The simplest definition of practice is some action – mental, emotional, physical, social – that you choose and repeat, so that it can become a habit. It is the deliberate cultivation of habits. Contemplative practices are practices that rehearse how you want to exist and relate to yourself and others.

Spiritual Terrains and Challenges

This primer is about the broadest possible classes of meditation and spiritual experience. It’s a work-in-progress. Every time I come back, I find myself cutting more details, for they seem like technique-specific effects, and not the human universals I once imagined. So it goes. In a couple years there may be nothing here at all.

Pluralism as Path

Almost any domain or activity in life can be approached as an intentional practice, and the people who specialize in these domains have learned important things about being human. How can we draw this wisdom out? Introducing the Consciousness Explorers Club's new pluralistic practice paradigm :)

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