Most of us probably think of the practice of compassion as synonymous with altruism. Giving. Helping. Being of service. Sunada flips that idea on its head — that it may be just as important to be vulnerable as it is to be strong, and to receive as it is to give.
We can get ourselves into a bit of trouble when we think of compassion only in terms of “giving.” It leaves a huge opening for our ego to step in. I don’t know about yours, but my ego is a sneaky little beast! It’s so easy to get duped by that guy.
… Read more »
We can get ourselves into a bit of trouble when we think
It happens so often among spiritually-minded people. We give our all to love and care for others, and yet when it comes to ourselves, we’re full of criticism and judgment. Sunada shares her experience of working with the practice of loving kindness, specifically learning to love herself.
if we can’t trust and open our hearts to ourselves – the one person on this earth that we know the best and are closest to – how could we possibly know how to do it for others?
It’s important to note that when the Buddha taught how to practice compassion, he always began with ourselves. This isn’t selfish. After all, if we can’t trust and open … Read more »
Climate change. The economic downturn. Terrorism. And now there’s Haiti. A client and I were conversing recently about the mess our world is in. She was feeling overwhelmed. How do we, as individuals, respond in the face of such huge problems? I won’t be so presumptuous as to claim to know the answers. But I thought you might be interested in hearing what she and I discussed.
When we look at the mess our world is in, it can seem hopeless.
But let’s think back for a moment to another era that also was pretty bleak. During the early 1900’s, there were tons of intractable problems, too. I’m no history expert, but a lot seemed … Read more »
Diagnosed with MS at age 32, Cami Walker thought her life was over. But when she took up a challenge to give 29 gifts in 29 days, her life started taking off in amazing directions. Sunada reviews 29 Gifts, the remarkable true story of how one woman rose above her debilitating illness — and started a worldwide movement that has inspired thousands to work toward reviving the spirit of giving in the world.
Cami Walker seemed to have everything going for her when a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis put a screeching stop to all her plans. Her condition had degenerated rapidly in just two years — she lost vision in one eye, and found it … Read more »
Sunada sometimes hears skepticism about the idea of being “in the moment.” Does it really mean we should cut ourselves off from our past and future? Are we to drop all our cherished memories? Should we naïvely stop planning for our future? No, she’s quite certain this isn’t what the Buddha had in mind when he taught about mindfulness. So let’s take a closer look at what it might really mean.
In the Buddhist scriptures, mindfulness is described as having several different aspects. One of them is sati, which is Pali for recollection, memory, or recalling to mind.
… Read more »
we can be aware of our past (a helpful thing to do) without being in or
Recharge your batteries with a weekend of calm and relaxation! Join retreat leaders Amala and Sunada on this residential retreat — where you can relax, be taken care of, and regain some perspective on your life. You’ll rejuvenate body and mind with wholesome vegetarian meals, meditation, yoga, and massage. You’ll also learn ‘take-home’ skills to help you manage stress and enhance self-care in your daily life at home.
The retreat is open to anyone who is suffering from burnout, stress, overwork or who feels disconnected from their ability to enjoy life.
Fearlessness isn’t the absence of fear, but the ability stay with one’s fear and use its energy wisely. Sunada explains how working with (as opposed to fighting against) our fears can point us toward our own place of freedom.
We tend to think of fear as a bad thing. Something that gets in our way. After all, one of the enlightened qualities of a Buddha is fearlessness. Doesn’t that mean we should work toward eliminating fear from our experience?
Not so fast!
Let’s think about what fear is. On one level, it’s the instinct that propels us to run when we’re in danger. Think caveman running away from tigers and bears. Heart-pounding adrenaline.
… Read more »