My love for literature, words, meditation, and the sacred feminine led me to the creation of these courses.
Explore writing and meditation practices as you work with published authors and overcome blocks to the creative process. In this eight-week course, you’ll work to create new pathways in your consciousness, open your creativity and eliminate feelings of limitation and inhibition. The course combines meditation, lectures, writing exercises and discussions with a community of like-minded writers. You’ll try journaling, sitting and walking meditation and writing exercises to help you tell your story, memoir, or poem. As insight develops, creativity and clarity arrive.
Do you wish to write a memoir, novel, or poem that is shaped by food? In this course we’ll read poems, cookbooks and stories from different parts of the world and invite you to consider your heritage, ethnicity and favorite foods and write your own stories. Through writing and mindfulness practices, learners will strengthen their creative spirit and meditative consciousness. We will discuss ways in which we can consider food, our lives, and our words as “naivedya”—an offering: as mindfulness in action.
Drawing from works of fiction, memoir and poetry, we will read of dakinis or sky-dancers; Padma Lhamo and Kali; Athena, Isis and Hathor; the blue-robed Virgin and the Black Madonna; Guan Yin, Green Tara and White Tara. Through careful reading, learn the toolbox of the writer’s craft: description, dialogue, rhythm and sound. Take your writing further by drawing on the processes of meditation, dream work, music, journaling and visualization.
Learn how writing practice and meditation support each other, and how to better integrate them, in this five-day workshop. Part of the U of T Summer Writing School, it’s a chance to explore your spirituality through writing, work with a published author and meet a community of like-minded writers. We will uncover our basic strengths, gentleness, wisdom and compassion through sitting and walking meditation, writing exercises, video, music and outdoor excursions. Open to writers of all levels and genres.
Thich Nhat Hanh reminds us that happiness and suffering inter-are: one cannot exist without another. Looking deeply, we listen to ourselves, our breath, taste tea, see the brightness of a rose petal, and find our stories. In this class, we will do long and short sessions of mindfulness practice and generate a first draft of something that may in time be the seed of a novel, a short story, a book of poems or photographs, canvas or calligraphy, or a memoir. We will practice ways to transform the mud of our suffering from which our awakened self can grow. We will learn strategies of journaling and notebook keeping, artist dates and morning pages, goal setting, discipline, fearlessness, and letting go, all part of our journey as writers, artists, and human beings. This class is open to novice, intermediate, and advanced writers, artists, and meditation practitioners from all genres and wisdom traditions.
In this two-day intensive course, the topic of discipline and productivity is approached from an inside-out perspective. Discipline is a path to walk on and a muscle to exercise and strengthen. Discipline is not repressive: it is true freedom. Through the practice of mindfulness and generative writing, journaling, dyads, wisdom circles and group discussions, participants will see themselves more clearly. Learners will identify the inner, outer and secret obstacles to their success and wellbeing and recognize the ways in which self-sabotage can occur. Through the practices of maitri, loving-kindness, learners will find ways to achieve greater stability and focus in our lives and work. Through this class, learners will appreciate that discipline is a key tool for living sane, useful and happy lives.
Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh writes that “Time is life.” Yet we hurry through our lives distracted and exhausted, forgetting to carve out a section of the day for the story or the book that we dream of writing. How do we organize a large project into manageable chunks and work with our feelings of discouragement? Study the examples of wisdom teachers and creative writers and practice writing and mindfulness exercises to live well and deeply. Find ways to make real progress on a writing project, recognize your heartfelt aspirations, and transform habit energy that pulls you away from what you wish to manifest in your life. Engage in a writing workshop and learn possible ways of structuring your story or your book. Learn to water the “good seeds” of patience, one-pointed attention, generosity and exertion, so that your discipline becomes the scaffold of a creative and happy life. Writers, artists and meditators at any level of experience are welcome.
Accomplish your creative and life goals through this twelve week journey of intensive writing and meditative practices. Unblock your creative energy by drawing on the wisdom practices of traditions such as Hinduism, Buddhism and Taoism. For this Master class, you will commit to a daily practice of writing and meditation. Each weekend retreat will include a blend of meditation, guided contemplation, writing workshop, generative writing, teachings and discussion. In the interim between retreats, you will experience the support of a community of peers and will delve deep into your creative soul through the power of wisdom literature, meditative and writing practices.