Greetings from Jonathan Foust: The Key Elements to Practice, The Still, Small Voice Within... Fresh Photos and More



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  It's lush here in Northern Virginia. We had rain 20 out of the last 24 days. It's an interesting visual experience.   Given the incessant rainfall and cool weather, I've been exploring variations of grey, brown and green.   No matter what's out there, even if it looks a lot like the day before, I strive to stay alert to the details and to expect the unexpected. I've enjoyed some pleasant surprises.   Canada geese have for some reason this year decided to collectively raise their goslings, resulting in groups of twenty or so little puffballs.   Pulling up behind a rock with the river just at flood stage to catch my breath, I came within inches of the largest Copperhead I've ever seen.   The wood thrush are back and this morning about thirty cormorants flew upriver just a few feet above the surface - and me.   May you be surprised with unexpected pleasures.    

Upcoming Events

June 6:

Evening Class at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington Learn More

June 8:

YLM8 Evening Session Learn More

June 11:

YLM8 Half-Day Retreat Learn More

June 13:

Evening Class at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington Learn More

June 16:

Three-Day Meditation in the Netherlands Learn More

June 20:

Evening Class at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington Learn More

June 27:

Evening Class at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington Learn More    

The Key Elements to Practice

  I was immersed in yoga way before it hit the mainstream.   I once told someone I was really into yoga and he responded, "Huh? You mean yogurt?"   These days if you tell someone you like yoga, many folks will ask you what kind. The range of styles is quite staggering.   This morning at the post office I was chatting with someone who told me they did meditation.   "What kind?" I asked.   He looked at me a bit befuddled and said, "You know, meditation!"   Zen teachers have been known to use phrases like "Meditate like your hair is on fire!" and "Die on the cushion!"   Some Tibetan and non-dual teachers have been known to say, "Happiness is only available through deep relaxation and letting go. It's your search that's screwing things up. Let go and relax! It's already here!"   How do we integrate these views?   As Ram Das said, "All traditions are fingers pointing at the moon." Though unique, they point to the same goal.   I find meditation practice summed up nicely in three elements: Focus, Flow and Let Go. There are schools and traditions that cultivate each of these disciplines, but they work together.   * Focus: A willful practice of arriving again and again in the here and now.   * Flow: The arising of the witness - your capacity to observe without judgment.   * Let Go: Your capacity to simply rest in awareness itself.   In our recent Spring Retreat I offered a talk called "The Key Elements of Practice". It explores these factors as well as your capacity to investigate what is present in a way that can open you to new possibilities.   blog-image spacer-25    

Fresh Photos

  This was month of heavy rain, clouds and a river in flood stage. This was also month of babies and new life.   Geese on the move before another front moves in.   1a spacer-25 A rare sunset with color.   2a spacer-25 Socialized childcare.   3a spacer-25 Molting Copperhead. I didn't see it until I almost touched it.   4a spacer-25 Everyone needs a little yoga.   5a spacer-25 Conn's Meadow with a rainbow.   6a spacer-25    

Happy for No Reason: A Dog and Her Fish

  An eight second meditation on tuning into to joy. Featuring K.D. (which stands for Kute Dog.)      

The Still, Small Voice Within: Meditation, Focusing and Intuition Training

  August 7-12 (Five nights) Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health   Kripalu Center is a spectacular environment for immersing in natural beauty and health and wellness as well as being surrounded by like-minded people. If you are drawn to five days in August in the Berkshire Mountains to explore the relationship between mindfulness and intuition, this is one of my favorite retreats to lead.   You'll return home not only enlivened, but with a set of skills that can dramatically help you in your journey.   Click the Pic to Learn More.   still-small-voice spacer-25    

Spacious Awareness and the Immeasurable Heart

You might enjoy this meditation I led at the IMCW Spring Retreat. This practice is intended to help you sense the infinite space of awareness as well as the immeasurable qualities of the heart.   You'll be guided through an 'open focus' meditation, sensing space inside and outside your body.   You'll then contemplate four qualities of the heart that are beyond measure: Your capacity for kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity.   To listen:   Note: If you feel disoriented during this meditation, you might open your eyes or stop the meditation until you feel more grounded.    

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Greetings from Jonathan Foust: 500,000 downloads, The Still, Small Voice Within... Fresh Photos and More


Insight Timer

Insight Timer is a great little app that can not only help you time your sits, but also provides guided experiences and helps you network with other people around the planet by joining special interest groups.   One cool feature allows you to look at a map and see how many people around the planet are signed in and meditating with you.   Insight Timer now offers guided meditations. I've just uploaded a few and will be adding more soon.    

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