I can remember my mother placing a cool compress on my head when I had a high fever. I can visualize the care. I can remember my grandmother's home made dumplings. I am sure that they had some magic love injected inside them. I can remember my grandfather's hugs and kisses; I can hug myself virtually in the same way to this day. Yes, I can even remember the family Dr. visiting my home and tending to my brother when he was ill with the mumps. Although I was glad when he left; I now understand that making this home visit was in large measure part of my brother's recovery. What do you remember? How do you care? What happens when compassionate caring is a collaborative effort? What happens to the caregiver in the process? Contemplative Care is an approach to caregiving that incorporates mindfulness practice, presence and awareness. In this series you will discover the resilient impact that compassionate action can have for both caregiver and for those who receive the benefit of that care. October 7 @ 9:30 AM - October 8 @ 3:00 PM. Email Joy at Inhabitretreats@gmail.com to register.
Seeing With Mindful Awareness
Peasant food that transforms us into kings and queens..............can you imagine dining on roasted squash, rutabaga and beets? All smothered in olive oil and garlic and stuffed with your favorite mixture of grains; berries and nuts! I can't wait until Thanksgiving.........that time of year when we all recognize and share in the equal bounty that we harvest from the earth........yes the dirt right under our feet can be taken for granted.........but not here, not now...........Inhabit Retreats will be taking to the outdoors to uncover the fruit of the earth in all it's light and colorful glory this Fall.
So stay tuned to our postings of the season. Be it greens, browns, ochres or reds, we will be there in the light of day; sharing it all with you. Send your favorite produce of the Fall season as an online photo submission, to firstname.lastname@example.org, (include your name and contact information) as well as a blurb about what giving thanks means to you; and you may appear on our next blog byte!
The Opportunity Out There; Lies Within
Summer journeys can be taken in my own backyard amongst the rhudbeckia hurta, the black-eyed-susan, the glorious asteracae dahlias or.........and as planning will have it, along the shores of the Pacific; and through the canyons of the Santa Monica Mountains. A journey embodying the contrast of finding shade under the branches of the olive trees and feeling the heat and dust of the dry brushless earth beneath my feet. The essence of life is all in the way one orchestrates the coordinates. Summer time is taking me from a day's work to a day's swim to the day's climb. But to connect all the dots and create unity and solace that is a precious life is the art of it all. This season, my sister invited me to the Hollywood Bowl...........a tradition of virtuosos and amazing sound. I invited her to a drive up the coast...........and back. We laughed and laughed and sped from sound to sight to smell to taste to touch and back home again. Now that I am back in my own backyard, I recognize the love, the care, the wonder of the country from coast to coast and how the ice age, the floods, the earthquakes and the space age shape the land that is yours and mine..............from sea to shining sea.Read More
Each year I eagerly take the drive to the most heavenly blueberry picking in the east. There in all its majesty are acres and acres of blueberry bushes (with what seems to be millions of blueberries) gracing the earth. It is the yearly moment when I am so grateful for this precious human life. The color of the immature berry begins as cerulean green and as time does not stand still for any man woman or child……….transforms into a kaleidoscope of hues that turn to lavender, purple, maroon, blue and deep navy blue. In the bright sunlight, a glistening mature berry can shine black……..I pick one and put it into my mouth and this my friends is sheer nirvana…………the taste of blue……….the blue sky that meets the earth, the bluebirds that sing along the path and the sky-blue wind that sings as it zips past my ears………..I have brought loved ones and friends to come pick blueberries with me………….from near and far they appear. We laugh, we sing we do somersaults down the blueberry lanes………but I do admit that the most content moments have come from the silent whispers of nature and the knowing of my own mind……..yup that’s it…………blueberry awareness…………..I wish you all of that…………
During the course of my day, I stop…..and ask ……..am I aware that I am eating, dreaming, walking, talking? If awareness seems to be escaping consciousness, then there is a short and effective way of balancing internal energy and cultivating a more consistent present moment awareness……it is the distribution of Qi.
Cultivating a peaceful mind and the regulation of the body is the goal of Qi Gong. Breath work is integrated as a strategy that alters the balance of yin and yang in the body. Inhalations and exhalations are equalized throughout the body while maintaining and rebuilding the wellness of the internal organs.
While you walk, or bake or paint or ice skate or run……….be aware………..take the momentary awareness and focus on the breath. Inhale and exhale in synchrony with the movement of the body……..there you will induce a harmonious bio magnetic outcome that will lead to an ultimate opening of the heart through this most natural course of Qi Gong.
We are so fortunate to have a Qi Gong master joining us this summer. Dave Nahon will bring us home………he will bring us to inhabit our bodies and elicit harmony through the teaching and practice of Qi Gong and show us the path of integrating the experience into our daily life.
When I first began practicing mindfulness, I noticed that colors seemed more vivid. I hadn’t changed the prescription of my eyeglasses, I hadn’t taken new vitamins. I thought I was imagining the experience. After eight weeks of daily mindfulness practice, I realized I wasn’t seeing anything differently. What was happening was a noticing, a clear noticing of color without confusion of object or idea. It was a pure sensory experience. We sometimes refer to all of mindfulness practice as the practice of seeing clearly.
I’m looking forward to seeing the world clearly through my camera lens, with beginner’s eyes and mind at this summer’s Immersion Retreat Workshop on Contemplative Photography led by Joy Baum.
“Contemplative photography trains you to see the world in fresh ways by distinguishing the sensory from the conceptual. It is a practice that brings out your natural ability to see clearly. It allows you to express what you see photographically.” Andy Karr
This summer’s contemplative photography workshops, will cultivate mindful awareness, stimulate the senses and open channels to seeing anew. There is not only one way of seeing, there are many. Find yours.
“No musical vibrations are ever lost, even though they are dispersed, they will go on vibrating through the cosmos for eternity, because the subtle effects of sound linger after the audible sound has died out, so that any results are long-lasting." The Healing Tones of Crystal Bowls, Renee Brodie
Join Michelle Clifton and her Sonic Bowls at the Opening of Inhabit Retreats' Summer Immersion Event!
Experience sculpting from the inside out with Zoe Dufour at the summer of 2017 Immersion Retreat. Zoe is a sculptor at Studio EIS in Brooklyn NY, a sculpture studio that specializes in figurative work, primarily for museums and monuments. One of their most notable projects that she has recently worked on has been for the Smithsonian African American History Museum in Washington D.C.. Zoe has taught sculpture for the last several years at Grand Central Atelier, an art school in Long Island City, founded to uphold traditional painting and sculpture techniques of old masters. Zoe embodies a contemplative nature, a contemporary sensibility, an empathic nature, and high level of skill.
Join in with your inherent nature and see beyond the superficial. Inhabit the contemplative mind. Experience art as insight and perspective.