Leaving the Palace

Buddha outdoors

During our current physical distancing and Covid-19 Stay Home rules, I recognize that “Leaving the Palace” may seem like an odd topic to be writing about. But bear with me. If we are seeking to invite mindfulness into our daily experience, then a bit of background on the origins of the practice is helpful. I […]

Devotion, Enabling, and How We Try to Relate to Substance Addiction

In a breath-taking document (*potential triggers*) detailing the experience of six attendants who spent, in some cases years, in personal service to Mipham J. Mukpo – son of Chogyam Trungpa, disgraced head of Shambhala, and my former teacher –  there is much to learn about how we might unwittingly witness and bystand harmful behaviors and […]

Mindfulness Teacher Certification Is Here

 A new organization has been created: the International Mindfulness Teachers Association. This is a timely addition to certifying bodies in the mind/body teaching/training/learning space. The organization will help to standardize mindfulness instruction and provide vetted trainings for new teachers. There are now countless websites, books, programs, and approaches to “mindfulness.” We have science, such as […]

“When the world seems filled with evil…”

dawn

Must be said: the world seems full of misery right now. Is this really the time to go practice yoga or sit quietly and follow your breath? Yes and no. Yes, because this helps us to be more peaceful and effective in whatever positive action we take in the world, to take a respite and […]

Friends & Enemies

Anyone who has looked into or practiced mindfulness meditation is probably familiar with the notion of “making friends with yourself,” sometimes also called loving kindness. This friend-making with the self is so fundamental to peace in life, that it seems like we shouldn’t have to even consider building this foundation in adult life. And yet, […]

The yoga of making friends

To make friends, we have to express interest and care in the person we would like to be friends with. Friendship involves a continuity of care and effort over time. There is an element of acceptance of the other person’s qualities. We don’t expect our friends – if we want them to become or stay […]

Non-violence & weapons

Out of this darkness a new world can arise, not to be constructed by our minds so much as to emerge from our dreams. Even though we cannot see clearly how it’s going to turn out, we are still called to let the future into our imagination. We will never be able to build what […]

Taking a Breath

Breathing Space studio invites explorations of yoga and body arts, mindfulness meditation, dialog, and community connection. Located in downtown Holyoke, a vibrant city in Western Massachusetts, the studio’s mission is to serve and support the community with the tools and practices to live a balanced, joyful, and compassionate life.   Our new studio information – […]

Comparisons are odious

This is one of the expressions I shared with my daughter when she was growing up. This saying was a touchstone for us for dealing with the very human emotions that arise when comparing our situation to others- jealousy, pride, anger, resentment, wistfulness – and at the extreme, hatred. The expression “comparisons are odious,” attributed […]

To study the way…

“To study the Way is to study the self. To study the self is to forget the self. To forget the self is to be enlightened by all things. To be enlightened by all things is to remove the barriers between one’s self and others.” — Dogen, Japanese Zen master (1200 – 1253)