Letting the students speak:
Sometime what inspires a blog post is an experience I or a student has had about transforming our lives through Mindfulness and Compassion practice. Sometimes it is a teaching or story that inspires having a practice, leading to a fuller life. This month, I was blessed with these two articulate messages I received after teaching Mindful Self Compassion in the 8 week format, and in a silent MSC based retreat with my friend and colleague Steve Hickman. They are articulate, vivid, and funny. Just an FYI, the retreat was held at the beautiful Copper Beech Institute in Connecticut and not at the Grand Canyon- you’ll see what I mean in a minute.
“I want to thank you Steve and Beth. Your whole hearted faith in, dedication to, and joyful exploration of Mindful Self Compassion has inspired in me a renewed and deeper relationship with this beautiful and impactful gift. The one that has been right within me, all along. Even though I consciously discovered this retreat, chose it, and got myself here- despite a myriad of obstacles, it feels as though an angel tapped me on the shoulder, and gently led me to a train which brought me to the Grand Canyon, and with fresh eyes, got to step out and experience it in its many, many dimensions. Sometimes I only had the capacity to admire the rim of the canyon from a bit of a distance. Other times I gazed into it’s depths with curiosity and wonder, and even a bit of compassion. But I also get to be the conductor..smiling with Mudita (sympathetic Joy; taking Joy in the Joy of another) at the child in me who is in the midst of the full spectrum of emotion and awareness. From avoidance and fear (what the hell am I doing here?), to curiosity (wow …look at all that is here right now) , to disengagement (I’m sort of over this, it’s not as incredible as people think); to overwhelm (no one told me how vast it would be…it just keeps going). ; to joy and playfulness; and to awe and deep gratitude to this life giving gift . One that I believe will continue to give –to my children, and theirs, and the world around.” Belinda T..
“Something very important and special has awakened in me . I found the part of me that can take care of me, protect me, empathize with me, humor me and love me forever. I found me!
It is subtle yet powerful.
I felt joy for a moment that became an opening to what has awakened in me- a real lasting joy that is there for me even when things are tough or maybe I should say, especially when they are”. I’m there for me, compassion is there for me, joy is there for me.” Deep gratitude.