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New Offerings and The Value of Retreat

June 8, 2013
Tara Statues (3 of 21) in the shrine at Tara Mandala in Colorado

Tara Statues (3 of 21) in the shrine at Tara Mandala in Colorado

Just a quick post to share some upcoming events and thoughts. First, I will be re-running the 4-week Energy Healing for Sexual Abuse and Trauma teleseminar in July. This course focuses on deep healing work related to the energetic wounds and blocks typically brought on by any kind of abuse or trauma, but particularly sexual. This offering differs from my free e-book, in that we can work on a deeper level,  connecting ‘live’ in this way, and the group sharings in the private Ning forum also deepen the work and sense of community (although forum participation is optional and/or anonymous.) Please note that if you have taken this course before and would like to strengthen the work you have already done, you may take this course again for half-price.

In the Fall I will be offering a Walking the Mystic’s Path course, in which we will focus on all of the many ways mystics across the  world’s spiritual traditions have experienced, celebrated, and communicated their own connections with the divine, and awaken your own modes for doing so. This course will be very high and fun, but also include regular practice and coursework to deepen your own journey. I look forward to walking this path with you! Here are the details for both teleseminars.

Also, the June edition of Meditate Like a Girl is up, and I have continued my chakra series with an article and guided meditation for the navel chakra: Own Your Power – Working with Your Third Chakra. One of the navel chakra imbalances I discuss in this article is hyper-self-sufficiency: becoming so focused on self-containment, independence, and/or manifesting personal power that we cut ourselves off from help, from flow, and from allowing power to come through us. This is common with abuse and trauma survivors because the first and second chakras are often disconnected, so there is no flow upward from these into the third chakra (this is one of the issues we work on in the teleseminar), but I find that many people have this tendency in contemporary Western society, because our culture emphasizes individual accomplishment to such a great degree. So check it out if this rings any bells for you, and be sure to check out the many other wonderful articles there too (and if you haven’t yet liked Meditate Like a Girl on Facebook yet, you can do so here.)

Finally, I wanted to talk a bit about the value of retreat, as I have just returned from one (at Tara Mandala, retreat center for Lama Tsultrim Allione.) We are heading into Solstice, and it’s a particularly good time to take some time for yourself. I don’t just mean getting away from your daily routine (although that’s certainly an important part of it). I really mean any practice or experience that takes you outside your habitual mind, and closer to the truth of your being.  The trance of our daily routine, the energies that build up in our home and workplace, the projections and expectations of everyone we interact with regularly, all combine to hold us in place, to create a web of perception that it is difficult for us to see beyond. The value of true retreat is that we move outside of this web, and are able to truly see, and feel, ourselves differently as a result.

TaraMandalaTemple

Tara Mandala temple

You don’t necessarily have to travel far or for a long time to experience retreat (although you know I’m a big believer in the power of certain places, and of sacred ‘containers’ for experience.) It’s possible to create little retreats for yourself – little private places you go to regroup and gain perspective. The important thing is that you make an effort to drop your usual mind and energies on the way. I remember going to the beach back in the days of ‘boomboxes’ (you know, those giant booming radios), and thinking ‘what’s the point?’ when I saw people bringing their boomboxes and blasting them the entire time, instead of enjoying the sounds of the surf and the waves. Don’t bring your boombox with you! This of course means don’t bring the modern equivalent (smart phone, iPad, etc.) but it also means don’t bring your usual thoughts and emotions. Give yourself some time away from yourself! This is easier said than done, as the roots of our mental and emotional patterns run deep, and sprout back up wherever we go. Just keep taking a deep breath and letting it all go. Mother Nature does wonders in this regard, so ask her for help, wherever you are. You never know what you may discover.

May you experience true retreat this Solstice, whether for an hour, a day, or more!

Namaste-

4 Comments leave one →
  1. June 9, 2013 1:22 pm

    I’m so glad you were able to get to Tara Mandala for a retreat. Isn’t it lovely!

  2. justyn permalink
    June 9, 2013 3:37 pm

    “…any practice or experience that takes you outside your habitual mind and closer to the truth of your being.”- yes, this is what I need. It’s not the same as a vacation. Don’t you think this is what meditation is too?

  3. June 11, 2013 4:12 pm

    Hi Deborah, yes it was beyond my expectations. I am pursuing Kapala certification, so will be back in September for Kapala II.

  4. June 11, 2013 4:15 pm

    Hi justyn, I do – or what meditation can be anyway. There are so many kinds of meditation. Some are more about developing new – hopefully healthier – habits, rather than seeing beyond all habits. For example, developing the habit of being in the moment. Seeing habitual mind itself, seeing the seer even, is about resting in awareness itself, this will bring us closer to the truth of our being.

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