WORKSHOP – San Francisco
Saturday, October 9, 1:30-5pm
Zen Center, 300 Page St, San Francisco

"OTHER PEOPLE’S SUFFERING: Mindfulness in the Face of Despair"
A nurse once said to me, "My job is so terrible that if I were actually present during it, as you recommend, I would go insane. Why should I cultivate mindfulness in such a situation?" City dwellers often find themselves anesthetizing their senses to reduce their discomfort level as they walk the streets. Doesn't awareness only increase our immediate suffering? Yes, of course, it does, which is why developing the stability cultivated by formal meditation practice is very important to all of us. We need to be very grounded to allow the extreme suffering of other people to enter us, feel it, and then let it pass out, not sticking anywhere. What mindfulness does for us in these situations is widen our weave, makes the openings in our bodies large enough for enormous amounts of suffering to be registered and then pass through, leaving no trace. In this 2-afternoon workshop, we will sit, move and discuss living in the middle of so much misery.

(PLEASE NOTE: Tony Patchell, who spent 12 years as a "street Therapist" working with the homeless, will join us for the afternoon.)

Call 415-863-3136 for information and registration

THE BODHISATTVA PATH: Practicing with Emotions- Mountain View, CA

Saturday, February 5, 2005, 10am-5pm
Kannon Do, Mountain View, CA

5 CEUs for MFTs and LCSWs available.

In order to practice The Middle Way as Buddha presented it in his first dharma talk, The Sutra on Setting In Motion the Wheel of Dharma, we must deal with the emotions of desire/craving/lust and ill will in the form of resentment or anger. How does craving transform itself into universal love? How does anger become the raw energy that fuels creativity and social justice? The stability and vulnerability cultivated by a Bodhisattva in the heat of passion forge an equanimity as deeply imperturbable as the serenity of any
ascetic. In this class we will consider two very different Buddhist approaches to working with emotion: Abhidharmic and the Middle Way.

$35 for the day

Bring a bag lunch

Contact: Cornelia Skonkwiler at Kannon Do:

WORKSHOP - Green Gulch Farm, Sausalito
ENCOUNTERING THE ONE WHO IS NOT BUSY: A Radical Approach to Time and Work
Saturday, February 12, 9:30am-5pm
Green Gulch Farm, Sausalito, CA

6 CEUs for MFTs and LCSWs available.

Ever wish you could not only get things done, but also enjoy doing them? Learn to do so with this holistic approach to time management and the fundamental and specific skills necessary to make it happen. There is a part of us that is not involved in gaining or losing. but is boundless and infinite and appreciates all things for just what they are, The One Who Is Not Busy. Learning to be simultaneously "busy" and "not busy" by living the Zen principle of simultaneous inclusion allows us to experience work and the rest of our lives in a deeply meaningful way. In this workshop we will do sitting and moving meditations indoors and outside, as well as emphasize point of view in everyday activities such as eating, talking, and walking.

Call 415-383-3134 for more information

IN THE DRAGON’S MOUTH: Lay Practice in the Cold, Hard World
Half-Day Workshop - San Francisco
With Tony Patchell
Saturday, February 26, 1:30-5pm
$45 standard; $40 members

3 CEUs are available for MFTs and LCSWs

Particular topics surface in our daily lives as workers, consumers and members of this society, which are greatly illuminated by our meditation practice: Effort and relationships at work, stress issues, and whether we are able to live according to our values. In this workshop, we will use our personal experience to explore together how we might be both very effective in the world, yet cultivate our own availability and personal satisfaction. We will do still, moving and interactive meditations and discuss some useful forms for daily life.

Registration and Questions, call 415-863-3136

WORKSHOP - Walker Creek Ranch, Marin County
Sunday, April 10, 2005, 9am – 4:00pm
Walker Creek Ranch
(see photos at
$67 per person* (includes breakfast, lunch, tax and gratuity, facility fee, and fee for Ms. Cohen) for 20+ participants.
*Fee slightly higher if fewer participants.

Reservations: Mail check to Myrna Matthias, 17 Wilson Court, Alamo, Ca 94507 and indicate any special needs or dietary restrictions. No tickets will be issued, but names will be placed on reservation list.
Deadline to receive checks is MARCH 8, 2005
Call Myrna Matthias at 925-944-5670

A LIFE WORTH LIVING: Radically Enhancing our Day-to-Day Satisfaction
We will take this day to devote our whole being to looking with curiosity
at the sometimes-amusing phenomena of being middle-aged in a youth-oriented culture.  Since past models of aging are not inspiring to many of us, some ingenuity is required for us to formulate a vision for the second half of our life consistent with our deepest values. There is a part of us that is not involved in gaining or losing. but is boundless and infinite and appreciates all things for just what they are. In this day-long seminar, we'll do gentle movements to expand our physical/neurological repertoires and promote flexibility; do still and interactive meditations to cultivate the presence that keeps life and relationships vital; and create a vision consistent with our deepest values rather than according to the fears and expectations manufactured by our culture. Listening to one another and to our deepest self, we will explore the true basis of security, bring forth our inner wisdom, and enjoy this precious time together. A long lunchtime will enable us to explore the natural beauty of Walker Creek Ranch.

A ZEN/YOGA RETREAT DAY - Outside Healdsburg, CA
Sunday, July 31, 9:30am to 5:00pm
With Zen Priests Darlene Cohen & Tony Patchell
and Yoga Teacher Deborah Karish

Joy Spring Ranch outside Healdsburg in Geyserville

You are welcome to stay after and enjoy the beauty of the Ranch!
$50-80 Suggested Donation

Call Deborah at 707-431-0615 to REGISTER and get directions.

ZAZEN IN MOTION, A Stress Reduction Strategy

The most important step in breaking free of a life dominated by stress and anxiety is to learn how to sink into the present with all of our senses and feelings available to us; then all of our personal resources come into the present with us. We can break the habit of “showing up” only for the moments that we think are worthwhile and then going numb for all the rest. Just as a muscle gets weak from disuse, our ability to be present fades if we don’t practice awareness right in the midst of our goal-directed activity. During this afternoon of practice, we will use commonplace physical activities to develop meditative consciousness: gentle exercises that promote mental flexibility; talking meditation; eating meditation; and focusing the attention on a series of objects while walking.

AT HELL'S GATE, Peach Blossoms, Plum Blossoms:
A workshop for people with all kinds of pain

Many of us have terrible suffering: grief, anxiety, depression,
physical pain, or chronic illness. How do we deal with such difficult
states of mind and body? Meditation practice encourages us to live rich  and satisfying lives right in the middle of our misery. In this workshop  we will acknowledge our individual  suffering; examine how particular thoughts and feelings produce specific  types of stress and pain; do gentle comforting movements; learn to  recognize obstacles to concentration in our daily lives; and discuss the   importance of specific types of pleasure and comfort that are necessary to make our lives whole again.

 We will explore:

The skills needed to live successfully with chronic stress and pain;

The importance of comforting the body through gentle movement;

Traditional and innovative meditation practices for widening the
attention in a way that includes but does not isolate stress and pain;

The cultivation of pleasure and delight in lives made difficult with recurring pain.


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