The kick-off to my two-year Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program (MMTCP) with Jack Kornfield & Tara Brach in Bethesda Washington DC was more than I could have hoped for!!
Meeting them both in person and receiving their insightful Mindfulness Meditation training first hand for the start of my course enabled me to quickly see how transformational it could be for our Australian community as I experienced first hand new personal observations and changes.
Workshopping in pairs my mental and emotional responses to questions was so valuable, as was hearing others and their replies. It was a safe, relaxed yet energetic (energy flowing easily) sharing.
It was a real open, and caring community of like-minded souls that gathered, even though we were many hundred in number, I felt a deep connection with all those I partnered with to share my observations and listen with kind attention. Both important skills that the program is enabling us all to embrace and become more skilful at.
I also had the opportunity to attend two Silent Meditation Retreats as well as many other spiritual talks including a Vedanta talk in Hollywood. My first Retreat was at Lake Shrine, LA, where the famous Autobiography of a Yoga – Paramhansa Yogananda lived. I always dreamed of going here, since being given a book written by Sri Sri Daya Mata from my Indian Mum, over ten years ago, back in 2007.
The second was an epic journey by bus (2 hours) with the local commuters, then Uber in the snow, at night to the Kadampa Retreat in upstate New York.
I had left Los Angeles at 8am and arrived at 4pm into New York.
As a first timer to New York, the icy conditions and crazy busy streets it certainly was daunting. Even more so when I asked for Upstate directions, many said they didn’t know and that the trip couldn’t be done ……. I obviously had some universal and divine energy with me that night. (I was quietly praying on the bus as I listened to the thick and colourful language around me!)
Both incredible spiritual and powerful places to meditate at and I really felt an uplifting in my Meditation journey at both temples. Much gratitude.xx
LA also gave me the opportunity to host my Canadian buddy Naomi as we re-united after seven years. We spent many hours chatting and I recall our time together fondly – her siting facing the sun in a t-shirt whilst I sat in my winter woollens! Naomi had escaped the MINUS 30 degrees temperature in her Canadian town – the aeroplane had to wait in line to be de-iced…… still can’t imagine it!!