Sunday, May 17, 2020
Mindfulness in Paradise -- pre-apocalypse edition
Looking at entries to this blog this morning, I found one that was never completed -- a draft from an earlier era. It's amazing to think about our lives before the pandemic. Personally, even though I enjoy science fictions books, television shows and movies that are set after some sort of planetary apocalypse, my imagination never fully encompassed what it might be like to actually live through the events that have unfolded since the this photo was taken.
The group pictured here has gone on to have a regular Zoom meditation session, and of course we at Boundless Way Temple have also been carrying on our Temple practice daily. (You can find out more information about our Temple Zoom sessions here: www.worcesterzen.org.
This weekend over 40 of us have been doing an experimental Zoom sesshin, an intensive meditation retreat. Alas, Zoom appears to have crashed world-wide earlier this morning, so we are on hold until we can connect once again. And so this opportunity to complete this post from the dream-world of the past:
Back in early February, I spent a week teaching mindfulness with my good friend and colleague Florence Meleo-Meyer, in Costa Rica. We were at the Blue Spirit Resort on the Pacific Coast, founded by Stephan Rechtschaffen, who also founded the Omega Institute. Florence and I have been teaching a week of mindfulness-based stress reduction, mostly to North Americans and Europeans, in Costa Rica for the past 16 years. This year we had a particularly dedicated and wonderful group -- everyone was fully committed to attending the class, even though the beach, monkeys, surfing and massage therapists beckoned. Here is a photo taken by a friend from another group at Blue Spirit, picturing our amazing group. We shared deeply about our lives back home, and found ways to investigate all the ways we get caught in old stressful patterns. Knowing what is present allows us to find freedom in every moment. Even though we were in an unusually beautiful place, we all recognized that no matter where we go, here we are! (As Jon Kabat-Zinn and Buckaroo Banzai both said in slightly different language. )