Focus and Release

TEACHER: Caitlin Colson and  Huy Lam
THEME: Focus and release
MEDITATION: Let’s get visual

Caitlin: Concentration and letting go practices are like bacon and eggs – they work well side by side. Concentration builds up our ability to develop and maintain a strong, meditative focus on a chosen point. Letting go enables us to loosen our grip on the reins of our minds, allowing them to roam free. In part 1, we’ll practice these opposing but complementary skills on the cushion. In part 2, guest artist Huy Lam will lead us through visual art practices that illustrate how to put these skills to paper.

Why am I alive?

TEACHER: Avi Craimer
THEME: What is this all about anyway?
MEDITATION: Why am I alive?
INTERACTIVE: Good life mandala

Avi: One of the fundamental questions of philosophy is “What is the good life?”. There’s not just one answer. For the Buddha it was the end of suffering, for Sade it was having sex all the time. If we don’t grapple with this question seriously, our meditation and even our lives risk being dominated by somebody else’s idea of what is truly important. In the second half, we’ll creatively map out our personal good life mandalas, seeking greater clarity and perspective to balance all our competing values.

What is stillness?

TEACHER:  Jeff Warren
THEME: Stillness as Inquiry
MEDITATION:  What is stillness?
INTERACTIVE:  Lake of Being


Jeff: We can hardly have a month of inquiry go by without checking in with our nondual friends, that ramshackle order of spiritual fast-trackers and Absolutists, many of whom are masters in the art of inquiry. As it happens, I had a long conversation just a few weeks ago with one such master, a wonderful lady named Mukti who is also the wife of Adyashanti, one of North America’s most popular nondual teachers. I can’t say enough good things about her – skilled and smart and generous and kind. She led me through two beautiful practices that I’ve been exploring ever since. This week I’ll share my version of these – one an exploration of rest, and then a framework for inquiry.

How does the body speak?

TEACHER: Jeff Warren
THEME: Exploring the Mind-Body Connection
MEDITATION: How does the body speak?
INTERACTIVE: Aligning mind, body and world

Jeff: The exact nature of the mind-body relationship is one of the oldest philosophical puzzles we have, made more puzzling, I’m convinced, by the fact that the very minds that spend so much time wondering about it are so over-developed that they often don’t even realize they have a body! In other words, forget the theory. What does your own living “folk” experience tell you about how these two domains interact? Then for part two we’ll explore one contemplative ideal: the idea that mind, body and world can all come into increasing harmony and alignment. Our concepts are less of a problem when we learn to live our philosophy!