Rest, and readiness

Is it as true for you as it is for me, that in these waning days of August, cues pop up every day, reminding us of the shift that leads us into the next season? The changing light… colors…. sounds…. silences…. breezes …. all seem to be coaxing us to let go of the exuberance of summer and settle into a different rhythm, refreshed perhaps, or ready for new routines that will guide our course through the next season. I do love summer, and still I am ready now for a return to my teaching and steady practice of mindfulness, which for me includes meditation, writing and daily tuning into the natural world.

I am delighted to offer a new menu of drop-in mindfulness meditations this fall, beginning on September 12. These practices are intended to build skills and allow time to anchor the attention internally, to listen deeply and to cultivate the ability to attend to the present moment without judgement. Mindfulness meditation, we’ve learned, builds resilience and helps ground us so that we can tend to our own truths and gather our energies for activities in the world, tender or fierce as they might need to be.

New this season, and I’m excited about this, is the opportunity to practice with folks from local circles and from across the planet. I have recently joined the teaching roster for the Palouse Mindfulness Community, where I took my first MBSR Mindfulness course in the winter of 2020. Through their hosting, I will facilitate practice sessions on Monday evenings and Thursday mornings. This past week, one of my practice sessions included the teacher zooming in from Brussels and students from the UK, Slovenia, Germany, and all corners of the US. I am so inspired to connect and practice together, across time zones, as we learn how to better care for ourselves and the planet which we all share.

Drop-in Mindfulness Meditation Schedule:

Beginning September 12, and continuing throughout the winter and spring. Come when you can. Each session will include some context, a guided mindfulness meditation and brief time for sharing. All of the sessions will be on Zoom and are open to beginners and more advanced practitioners — we support and learn from each other in practice. There is no cost to participate.

(all times listed are EST time)

Monday evenings 7-8pm. This session is one of an on-going weekly series of practice sessions hosted by the Palouse Mindfulness Community, an international community of mindfulness students and practitioners. They graciously invite others to join in, by invitation of the host teacher.

Wednesday midday, 12:15-12:45pm. This is a shorter session, perfect for a midday mindfulness break.

(NOTE: If the midday time works for you, my beautiful and talented sister Sue offers a midday mindfulness break on Mondays from 12:15-12:45. Let me know if you are interested and I will connect you via email.)

Thursday mornings, 8-9am. This session is also in the weekly series of practice sessions hosted by the Palouse Mindfulness Community, an international community of mindfulness students and practitioners.

Come when your schedule allows! Simply RSVP with me so that I can send you the details and links to participate. All meditations are offered at no-cost. It is my intention to expand access to this practice that, to me, is fundamental to strengthening our abilities to engage in the world with skillful courage and compassion. Donations are gratefully accepted through my Venmo account.

And keep an eye out for my “Nidra Nights” which I look forward to rolling out later in the fall!! Once or twice each month, this will be a chance to dive into a practice of deep relaxation with Yoga Nidra.

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This past year, I’ve been listening to, studying with, and quite inspired by author and poet David Whyte in his series of Sunday talks. His observations and interpretations of the world outside and in, are profound and grounding, especially in these turbulent times. In CONSOLATIONS, The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words, Whyte reflects on Rest, the balance between the inner and outer worlds, of being and doing, of giving and receiving:

Rest is the essence of giving and receiving; an act of remembering, imaginatively and intellectually but also physiologically and physically. To rest is to give up on the already exhausted will as the prime motivator of endeavor, with its endless outward need to reward itself through established goals. To rest is to give up on worrying and fretting and the sense that there is something wrong with the world unless we are there to put it right; to rest is to fall back literally or figuratively from outer targets and shift the goal not to an inner static bull’s eye, an imagined state of perfect stillness, but to an inner state of natural exchange.

Rested, we are ready for the world but not held hostage by it, rested we care again for the right things and the right people in the right way. In rest we reestablish the goals that make us more generous, more courageous, more of an invitation, someone we want to remember, and someone others would want to remember too.

Please join me and other practitioners this fall to cultivate your own practice of mindfulness meditation, of resting in and attending to presence, and in doing so, cultivating skills to care and act in the world in generous and courageous ways, together.

One Reply to “Rest, and readiness”

  1. HI Deb, I will try to participate in your Thursday 8 am program. I will not be present the first week however.

    Janice Cohen

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