Power Down and Tune In to Solitude with Pema Chodron

In this clip, the American Buddhist nun and author Pema Chödrön talks to Bill Moyers about the value of not only powering down our electronic devices but also quieting the racing mind. “You quickly learn that distractions are not just phone calls and emails. Our own mind and our longings, our cravings and our fantasies are also […]


Exercise: Wake Up Moments

ALARM CLOCK EXERCISE Using a journal or in dialogue with a friend, talk about your own examples of “magic moments,” of shifting abruptly from a closed to an open mind.  Examples: • Being interrupted by the environment or a sense perception • Being awakened by a flash of empathy when you are angry • Discovering […]


Summer’s Tail

A sharpness is on the Summer’s tail, The healing breeze of Summer yields To the bitter wind of Wintertime. If this was a signal to you, bird, Then you would know the seasons not Themselves, but as a turning wheel*.   The night before last, getting off my bicycle after an evening ride around the […]


Self-Compassionate Conversations

I appreciate how the view of ‘we-first’ is streaming into our culture. For example, author, psychologist and researcher Dr. Kristen Neff focuses her work on self-compassion, which ( in the following excerpt from her website)  she describes as including the following three elements: Self-kindness. Self-compassion entails being warm and understanding toward ourselves when we suffer, […]


Letting Go

  ” To become awakened we must give up identifying with the melodramas that surround us.”  Swami Ajaya Whenever I hear teachings like this, part of me nods in agreement but another part mutters ‘easier said than done‘. So today I’m contemplating the word ‘identify‘. Practicing mindful communication is training to be more open and […]


Phantom Dragons

  Think back. What was going on in your life twelve years ago, in 2000? How about 1988? One way to structure a spiritual autobiography is to use the twelve year cycle of the Asian calendar as a way to reflect on our lives. This is the year of the Dragon. Rather than relying on […]


A conversation with begonias

  Yesterday I was sitting on my patio, listening to the sound track of Winged Migration and sipping a beer when the begonias caught my eye. They spoke to me in all the languages I know– it felt like I could hear, taste and touch at them all at once.  They filled me with such […]


Looking up through cherry blossoms

Spring in Vancouver means riding our bikes around the sea-wall, slipping into a colourful stream of cyclists and rollar bladers, babies in strollers and seniors in scooters.  Flying by hundreds of faces, people partnered and alone, some with children or dogs, our lives meeting in a snapshot of nowness, touching for a moment and then […]



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