Cosmic Lovefest

Jeff: Wow, lots of caveats around action this month, I guess we are a tender bunch – learning about self-care, about boundaries, about humility. But let’s not let our humanist realism trump our contemplative hearts, because, as everybody knows, love and service are still the only real games in town. Is there a place for this kind of idealism in our mangled modern world? What might it look like, and how can we help each other come to it in our own ways? The night before Halloween, we spook the hipsters with the only thing they truly fear: earnestness. Bring on the loving kindness!

The Great Unknown

Erin:  From the nightmare of colonialism to condescending “development” projects to every bad relationship you’ve ever had, so much damage in this world has been wrought by the mentality of “I know better, I can fix you.”. Cultivating the “don’t know mind” helps us listen more carefully and open to possibilities hanging out beyond the rigid assumptions of how we think things should be. Tonight we’ll meditate on all that we don’t know, try to ease into a warm bath (or cold shower!) of uncertainty. Then we’ll explore what it feels like to make a difference, and have a difference be made to us.

Being There for Others

DATE: October 16
TEACHER: Jeff Warren
THEME: Being There for Others
MEDITATION: This is Me with Good Boundaries
INTERACTIVE: This is Me Swamped and Bleeding Sideways Into Your Eyeball

Jeff: I know what being there for others means: it means secretly imagining I am personally responsible for the happiness of each person I meet and making sure to get helplessly entangled in their psychic dramas so I can get overwhelmed and leave them confused and worse off than they were before. Or at least, that’s how I used to do it, when I wasn’t drunk. Then I learned about b-o-u-n-d-a-r-i-e-s. Apparently they have these in some countries. This Monday, we practice healthy action in relationship – ie, how to NOT merge into a flabby sea of oneness.

The Story of Enlightenment

DATE: September 18
TEACHERAvi Craimer
THEME:  Enlightenment
MEDITATION: The Adept
INTERACTIVE: Stories of enlightenment

Avi: Stories of enlightened masters,  sages, saints, and adepts, can be a form of spiritual transmission. For some, these narratives are a barrier as well, raising skepticism or triggering a painful sense of never being good enough. In this meditation, we’ll explore how a story of enlightenment affects our experience of silent sitting. In the second half, we’ll engage with texts by contemporary meditation teachers about enlightenment and each of us will have the opportunity to write our own version of the story.

Bubbling Stream

DATE: July 31, 2017
TEACHER: Avi Craimer
THEME: Feet
MEDITATION: Bubbling Spring
INTERACTIVE:  Reflexology Foot Path
Avi: Tonight we’ll explore the wonderful world of feet. Human feet are marvels with huge numbers of nerve endings. This innate sensitivity is mostly deadened by our modern habit of walking in hard soled shoes.  In the meditation, we’ll focus our attention at the bubbling spring foot point, which the Taoists believe is the gate for Earth energy to enter the body. Then we’ll walk over the Dufferin Grove park to do a barefoot walking meditation on the fantastic new reflexology footpath (weather permitting).