October, 2010

Weekend with Ruben Habito just a few weeks away!

Our weekend with Ruben Habito is coming up  November 12 and 13 in the First Presbyterian Church fellowship hall.   Ruben will give a talk on Friday evening from 7 – 9 pm on “Zen as engaged spirituality:  toward healing a wounded world”.  Our Saturday time together will be from 9am to 4:00pm and will include sitting and walking meditation, talks, and discussion.  Lunch will be provided.  The suggested donation is $10 for Friday and $35 for Saturday.  All are welcome.

Please see the September post for our promotional fliers. Please share them with those that may be interested.  If you would like to join us, please E-mail and I will add your name to the registration.  It is OK to make your donation the day of the retreat.

Thursday evenings at 1st Presbyterian

We will meet for meditation on all Thursdays in October and November (except Thanksgiving day) from 7:00 – 9:00 pm. in the fellowship hall. Our format for the first hour is two 20-minute periods of sitting in silence with a 10 minute walking meditation in between.  For the second hour, we are practicing group contemplative listening.  We listen to a short reading from a contemplative author or poet, sit together for a period of silence, and share our reflections with the group.  This is a wonderful way to practice deep listening to each other.  All are welcome to join us at any time.

Tuesday evenings at Hei’s house

Hei has opened his house to those who would like to join him for meditation from 6:00pm – 6:30pm on Tuesdays.  It is one half hour of sitting meditation. Please email for directions and to let him know that you are coming.

Note that the group will not meet on October 26 or November 30.

Retreat Day    Saturday, October 23, 2010   9:00 am – 1:00 pm

The Enneagram as a tool on the spiritual journey

For this Saturday’s retreat day I will share my love of the Enneagram.   The Enneagram describes nine distinct ways, or patterns that the ego forms in human beings.  It is helpful to learn about our own Enneagram type as well as the eight others as the knowledge helps us to become more compassionate to ourselves as well as others.  Also, as those of us who practice meditation as part of our spiritual practice, the Enneagram can help us identify our ego more clearly so that we can create some distance and begin to let go of our habitual ways of being.

Helen Palmer, a well-known Enneagram author and teacher writes, “The ultimate vocation of the Enneagram is to awaken the ‘inner observer’ in service to psychological wholeness, authentic spirituality, and ultimately compassion for ourselves and each other”.   Join us for a time together when we can wake up our “inner observer” and see our egos a little more clearly.   All are welcome.  A freewill offering will be available.

Upcoming Events

Nov 12 and 13                                 MMG Retreat with Ruben Habito

No MMG retreat day in December

April 30 – May 5, 2011                     Sanbo Kyodan Sesshin in Toronto

Joseph Cotham, coordinator

Summary of September’s Retreat

The Neuroscience of Consciousness, Meditation and Healing

Joe Neary, a member of our group and a retired PhD neuroscientist from the University of Miami, presented a fascinating talk on “The neuroscience of consciousness, meditation and healing”.  We began with the neuroscience view of consciousness –-  how can something subjective arise from matter?  We then moved on to the vast realm of the unconscious.  Joe explained that when we think of doing a task, such as his favorite activity of playing golf, we use just 5% of total brain energy.  The rest is unconscious.

Another amazing fact – if we make a conscious decision to do something, our unconscious mind knew it first.  The next section of Joe’s talk looked at what neuroscience says about meditation.  The Dalai Lama, the Nobel Prize-winning spiritual leader and Tibet’s exiled head of state, has played an integral role in helping the west meet the east in the science of meditation.  He allowed his monks to be available for experiments to measure brain activity.  With the newly developed functional magnetic resonance imagery scanner, scientists were able to study the area of the brain that is active during focused attention.

And lastly, at the cellular level, neuroscience is looking at the level of DNA.  Experiments show that stress effects enzyme production, and enzyme production turns on and off switches on the cellular DNA that lead to better health and healing.

In Closing:

To see you more clearly.

To love you more dearly.

To follow you more nearly.

Day by Day.

Prayer of St. Richard of Chichester

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