Each workshop begins with ancient arts, texts, and practice traditions, and focuses on how to translate them into life today. In working with current wellness practices, we hope to develop a sensibility for what wellness is, to skillfully troubleshoot areas that may be difficult, and to offer tools to heal, maintain balance, and revitalize lives.
Tuition for workshops varies on the length of each session and whether a meal will be included. Class materials are always included.
Tibetan Mandala Practice
Using the pattern of the five meditation Buddhas in the Tibetan mandala, we explore the dynamics of the five hindering emotions and their clearing away through visualization. This healing meditation makes use of Buddhist color imagery - blue for anger, yellow for pride, green for jealousy, red for desire, and white for confusion - as well as the mapping of the color mandala on the person's body.
Making Good Decisions
Gandhi on Being Human
An exploration of Gandhian principles as they apply to contemporary ethical issues. Drawing on older Indian traditions, we will look at understandings of what it means to be alive and what rights and responsibilities "being alive" brings. As we examine medical, social, and environmental issues - e.g., abortion, poverty, animal rights - our special focus will be on deciding what it means to
"do the least amount of harm."
Shamanic Healing Traditions
Shamanic healing is found in many world traditions as an old, universal part of human experience. Central is the journey of the shaman's spirit from his/her body to other spirit worlds in order to bring a suffering person back to wholeness. Because the journey is dangerous and difficult - filled with allies and enemies - the shaman must undergo long and tortuous training. This workshop focuses on shamanic traditions found in North America, Southeast Asia, and Japan.
This Buddhist practice focuses on the development of empathy, beginning with "love for self" through to it's culmination in "love for all others equally." We explore the difficulties and benefits of this four-part meditation, and apply it to contemporary settings (such as caring for the terminally ill) where it complements other meditation forms, such as the classic body scan.
An exploration of contemporary Buddhism, focusing on its message of transitoriness, suffering, and the human habit of desire. We will explore how Buddhism has become a world-wide tradition, and how its openness has made it a thoroughly modern practice today. Broad issues like Buddhism and violence, Buddhism and wealth, and the "American-ness" of the practice in this country will be raised, as well as more specific concerns like the future of the Dalai Lama, the role of Buddhism in times of sickness, and Buddhism and the environment.
The Dalai Lama
One of the most important religious leaders of today, the Dalai Lama is the 14th incarnation of the Buddhist spirit of compassion. Born in north-eastern Tibet in 1935, he was discovered to be the new Dalai Lama through a series of auspicious signs.
He fled to Dharamsala, India in 1959, after the Chinese presence in Tibet became oppressive. Today, he is the modern symbol of peaceful protest and non-violence, and works to use Buddhist compassion to heal the world.
He is now in his 80s. Who, if anyone, will succeed him? And will his teaching of non-violence survive in the Tibetan community?
An exploration of individual growth and transformation, as experienced by moving through the body, through the life cycle, through sickness to well-being, through artistically imagined spaces, and through the difficult geographies of our world. We will focus on areas like the Hindu chakras and body image, Erikson's eight stages of life, the shaman's healing journey, the labyrinth and Buddhist mandala, and finally, sacred pilgrimages to Jerusalem and Mecca.