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Anam Cara Meditation Foundation
         Nourishing meditators since 2001
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Lawrence teaching at the Garrison Institute

Ecstatic Union: The Way of Poet Saints & Mystics!


Meditation Retreat Led By Lawrence Edwards, PhD - October 11-13, 2019
Garrison Institute, Garrison, NY. 

Every spiritual tradition has its poet saints and mystics who express the ecstatic, love-drenched state of union in language and poetry that propels the mind back to its source. Dissolve the mind and its endless stream of chatter in the ocean of ecstatic Being through the inspired poetry of the great mystics of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism.  The state of rapturous union with the boundless One is the source of humanity's highest wisdom and purest love - the source that lies within you.
 
This weekend retreat will be a celebration of the living presence of the Divine within everyone, right here, right now. We’ll use the power of mantra and chanting, as well as the inspired words of great masters, to leave the ordinary mind behind and rest in the immeasurable joy, love, compassion, and equanimity of our true nature! Kundalini Shakti is the yogic term for the power of transformation and revelation that opens the door to the direct experience Divine.  As the feminine face of the Divine she appears in ecstatic poetry and tantra. 

Give yourself this wonderful fall weekend retreat on the majestic Hudson River to joyfully deepen your meditation practice and immersion in the One.

Program Fee: $230, plus Garrison Institute's accommodations fees. Visit the registration page for details.
Join us for a wonderful autumn weekend on the banks of the Hudson River!
Click here for more information and registration.

Dear Friends,

Our mission at Anam Cara is to make meditation training freely available to everyone and supporting people in their ongoing meditation practices. Given the state of turmoil in the world it is especially important that we have an inner state of calm centeredness that empowers us to bring wisdom, compassion and transformation to the world. 

We make meditation training available through free weekly programs, our website, retreats and courses, and this e-newsletter. Now we're looking forward to the next retreat, Ecstatic Union: The Way Of Poet Saints And Mystics, to be held on Columbus Day weekend in October.  I hope you can join us for this joyous meditation retreat and enjoy the beautiful fall foliage on the majestic Hudson River!

The weekly meditation program on Thursday evening July 4th will be cancelled.  We will resume our normal schedule on Thursday July 11th.  The free weekly Thursday evening meditation programs include: a dharma talk on the first Thursday of the month; readings and contemplations on the 2nd Thursday evening; kirtan chanting on the 3rd Thursday evening; Heart Sutra and Buddhist studies on the 4th Thursday evening; and on the occasional 5th Thursday evening - a surprise!

As a non-profit educational organization we are grateful for the support of participants and donors whose generosity makes all this possible. I deeply appreciate the many ways people help us to fulfill our mission, including sharing this newsletter with others and telling people about our programs.  It's a privilege for me to serve the Anam Cara community.  Please contact me, le@anamcara-ny.org, if you have anything you would like to share with me.


With love and respect for all,

Lawrence Edwards, PhD - Founder & Director
Anam Cara Meditation Foundation

Weekly Meditation Program
Thursday Evenings (except July 4th) 7:15-8:45pm 
Anam Cara Meditation Center
2 Byram Brook Pl., Armonk, NY 10504
Open to everyone.  The program includes meditation instruction, chanting and silent meditation. Click here for more information.
Sophia's Wisdom Gifts

Cooling Wisdom For Hot Times - Patanjali's Yoga Sutras

The great sage Patanjali, over 2000 years ago, wrote down what had been an oral wisdom tradition already ancient in his time.  In section one, the samadhi pada, sutras 33-39, Patanjali advises the seeker how, in practical terms, to calm the mind. These apply even while dealing with people in the world.  By employing these means and regaining the mind's equanimity, one can live skillfully and joyfully in the world while seeing through the mind's illusions to help reduce suffering - one's own and others.

He recommends cultivating an attitude of friendliness toward the happy, compassion towards the suffering, gladness towards the virtuous and indifference towards the wicked.  The indifference towards the wicked has with it the compassion for their suffering, but is freed of anger and reactivity which cloud the mind, thus making it less skillful in pursuing right action. 

To help the mind gain the calm state of equanimity to do these things, Patanjali recommends calming the breath with even inhalations and exhalations.  Now we have a tremendous body of research showing that by slowing and deepening the breath an entire cascade of neurophysiological processes ranging from stimulating the vagus nerve to regulating the amygdala - the primary brain center for strong disruptive emotions - are set in motion leading to a calmer body, brain and mind. I often use biofeedback training to help people develop the skills for calming their mind and body (www.optimalmind.net).

To further support regaining equanimity, Patanjali advises the seeker to focus on their higher senses that go beyond the fluctuations of the ordinary mind and allow one to perceive the living flame of Love in one's heart and the hearts of all.  In addition he suggests having the mind rest on one who is free - for example a sage, a saint, a Buddha, Christ, Kwan Yin... By taking refuge in such a one the mind is quieted and your true nature shines through, unrefracted by agitating thoughts.

Patanjali also says to remember the wholeness of who you are and what the mind is.  We take the waking state mind as our self.  Who is the self in the dream state and in the deep sleep state?  Who is the One who is awake and aware at all times regardless of the waking, dream or deep sleep states of mind? 

Patanjali acknowledges that there are many objects of concentration that will assist in calming the mind and the skillful seeker will employ them as needed.  These include visualizations, contemplations, sensations, sutras, mantras and many more that one learns from their selfless and wise teacher.

Thus by calming the mind we're empowered to move through the world gracefully and skillfully, dealing with what we encounter, including happy people, suffering people, virtuous people and wicked people.  In this way we're empowered to stand for dharma - what is right and true, which is especially important in this age when the cow of dharma is symbolically represented as standing on her last leg.  This means we must be her legs.  We must stand strong in a place of equanimity and compassion to skillfully deal with the rampant forces of greed and hunger for power which are inflicting such suffering globally. 

May all our practices truly benefit everyone and may all beings know complete freedom from suffering!

Namaste!
Lawrence



 
Meditation Resources:
  • Free written and guided meditation recordings from Anam Cara Meditation.  Click here.
  • Meditation, Mantra and Kundalini resources from Lawrence.  Click here.
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The Anam Cara Meditation Foundation · 2 Byram Brook Pl · Armonk, NY 10504-2317 · USA

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