Greetings from Jonathan Foust: Forgiveness and Letting Go, Dancing with the Heavenly Messengers, Fresh Photos... and More



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  Robert Frost said, "In two words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life...It changes."

This winter here in the mid-Atlantic is so warm the trees never went dormant. The slightest warming results in fresh pollen. A few days ago the spring peepers at the pond were so loud I had to shout over them to be heard. The fox look surprisingly plump for mid-winter.

I’ve have been working on a talk about change recently and started paying particular attention to my reactions. Some changes I love and some freak me out.

Transcendent of the flux of change lies a capacity to observe without judgement and to react without fear.

May we all come to know that place more intimately.    

Summer Residential Programs

  If you’re looking for powerful retreats where you can get away and and take a deep dive, here are a few programs I’m offering at Kripalu Center:

The Energy Intensive: Meditation, Yoga and Breathwork (three days)
April 13-16

This is a "blow out the tubes" intensive where you’ll explore a range of practices and a powerful form of transformational breathwork, all in the context of social silence and a great community.

The Still, Small Voice Within: Meditation, Focusing and Intuition Training (five days)
July 2-7

What is the most reliable and direct way to tap into inner knowing? It has a lot to do with the kinesthetic intuition - how your body holds information. This five day immersion takes you through practices that help you calm and clear your mind, formulate the questions most important to you and powerfully develop your capacity to both listen and interpret what arises.

Guiding Meditation for Transformational Yoga Teaching (nine days)
July 21-30

For yoga teachers working toward their 500-hour professional training certification, this is an immersion into using meditative language in asana as well as an experiential training in simple and profound meditation techniques.

For more information and to register, click the banner to learn more:


Forgiveness and Letting Go

  Henry David Thoreau refused to pay poll taxes for six years because he objected to money going to the war and to support slavery.

For this he was jailed.

His good friend, writer and philosopher, Ralph Waldo Emerson allegedly came to visit him and asked: "David, what are you doing inside this jail?

Thoreau responded: "Ralph, what are you doing outside this jail?"

I’ve made some comments on politics in this newsletter and in some dharma talks, notably a talk called "How to Keep Your Heart Open During the Election".

I got some feedback. Some of it was trolling with a truly nasty edge, some was tinged with anger and exasperation, but a lot was thoughtful. I’ve done my best to understand the points of view from each person and I’m grateful for the opportunity to be in dialog.

There’s a story of someone asking a wise, non-dual teacher, "What do I do about others?"

The teacher responded, "There is no other."

I take that to mean that any perception we have of others is simply a reflection of ourselves.

It’s been hard sometimes to listen fully and ensure that I have heard what another has said and to contemplate their message fully without judgement. The result, though, is that I feel more enriched and full.

I despair at the escalating levels of anger, violence and intolerance in our culture.

The more reactive I get, the more I need to find a place of inner stillness and steadiness.

If I’ve offended you in any way with my unskillful rhetoric, I ask your forgiveness.

It’s my hope, even in these times of escalating discord, we can continue to let go, forgive and look for commonality.

I recently gave a talk entitled "Forgiveness and Letting Go as a Spiritual Practice."

It explores the ‘science’ behind forgiveness and a reflection you may find helpful.

Podcast link | Youtube link      

Fresh Photos From This Month

  A week on retreat. The Meditation Hall at the Forest Refuge.   spacer-25 Off for breakfast. The Eagles are now in active egg-tending mode.   spacer-25 Punked out Mergansers.   spacer-25 Gull invasion. This time of year they show up to eat the early hatching larvae.   spacer-25 Fat Feasting February Fox.   spacer-25 A shot of Wild Turkey at sunrise.   spacer-25 Morning shift change.   spacer-25    

Video: Observations from My Retreat at the Forest Refuge

This is short clip with images and impressions from my winter retreat.


Dancing with the Heavenly Messengers

  You’re gonna die.

And get sick. And probably get old.

A great yogi once said, "The greatest wonder in the world is that everyone dies. The second greatest wonder in the world is that no one thinks they will."

How do you want to live, knowing you will die?

That’s the meat of this talk. If you only have a few minutes, it starts off with a few short jokes if you’d like a little hit of humor in your day.

For the Website, follow this link for the podcast, and this link for youtube.      

Latest from the Blog

What Happens When You Do an Unstructured Retreat and Get Settled In

My Mind on a Meditation Retreat

Dancing with the Heavenly Messengers

Forgiveness and Letting Go as a Spiritual Practice

Four Things I Learned on My Winter Retreat


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      iTunes podcast here, online listening here, stitcher here, and Jonathan’s YouTube channel here.