I was away at Samye Ling this weekend doing some filming for an online course that we are developing on Mindful Movement ( Make sure to keep an eye out for more information on this coming soon!). It was actually quite a relaxed weekend as I was not teaching, only sitting behind a video camera and having meetings with colleagues who I haven’t seen in awhile and chatting about projects that I am really excited about:
-The Screening of the award winning film Akong: A Remarkable Life at our 2017 Summer Conference: Mindfulness in Society – Changing the World One Mind at a Time (for more information: click here).
The film is based on Akong Tulku Rinpoche- one of the founders of Samye Ling where the conference will be held:
‘Akong – A Remarkable Life tells the story of Akong Tulku Rinpoche, Tibetan Buddhist master, compelled to flee his homeland at the height of Sino-Tibetan tensions and forced into exile into unknown lands. Later he would become, along with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, one of the key pioneers of Tibetan Buddhism in the West.’
It has achieved huge success and has been awarded many international film awards. Make sure to check it out (click here)!
And also, there have been recent developments on The MSc: Studies in Mindfulness that the Mindfulness Association delivers in conjunction with The University of Aberdeen. The Msc programme has always had a focus on a Mindfulness teaching pathway; however, the teaching skills are becoming more academically explicit. (For more information on the MSc program: click here)
However, one very exciting development for me as the manager of the MA Membership is that we have Rick Hanson, psychologist and neuroscientist, who wrote the books Buddha’s Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom and Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm, and Confidence , logging on to our online video platform Fuze this Thursday (March 30th at 7pm) for the Membership’s Live Monthly Teaching session. If you are not a member, you can sign up here. If you are a member, make sure not to miss this event!
Rick Hanson teaches a practice that we often use on our courses called ‘Taking in The Good’. He explains that through the cultivation of the ‘felt sense’ of contentment and the soothing sensations of ‘feel good’ moments or by simply noticing and enjoying these moments, we can go from recognizing to actually integrating and absorbing joyful experiences. This, in turn, has the potential to actually change the physiology of the brain from one that is programmed to hold on to negative experiences, to one that identifies and rests in positive ones, instead.
He approaches this process in a three-fold way : “(1) take some time to notice a positive experience; (2) enrich this experience by appreciating it, not just drifting off into thinking; (3) then actively absorb the experience. So, for example, notice the spring blossom, stop and appreciate it, and allow yourself to take in its fragrant and delicate beauty. In this way, practise focusing on what feels right and good on a moment-by-moment basis”.
Perhaps, we can set the intention to take some time to notice one positive experience a day and do this little practice this week as our challenge.
And also, let’s set the intention to log on and hear more from this leading mind in contemplative practice!
Let us know how you get on!
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