Spirit Rock Meditation Center is a nonprofit residential retreat in Woodacre, California, based on Insight Meditation. Sean Feit Oakes, the center’s community dharma leader, says prior to COVID, “thousands of people would come every year on retreats, from a few days to a few months, and live at the center. It’s a beautiful, comfortable place to do a retreat.”
But the center hasn’t been open since March 2020, instead switching entirely to online programs. “It’s different. ... It’s not the same. But [retreating at home] has this other powerful element that it’s being integrated to the rest of your life. You can have a strong spiritual practice in the midst of your life as long as you carve out some time.”
Oakes says online programs are providing a much-needed salve, and that the center plans to open in-person sometime in the fall of 2021. At that point, he predicts that “it will be an experiment in how the virtual and in-person will weave together. Like any organization we are evolving with the times.”
Sensei, a wellness program partnering with the Four Seasons Resort on the island of Lanai, Hawaii, has closed four times since opening on November 2019. Sensei’s president, Kevin Kelly, says, “The staff here has been quite seasoned for opening.”
This experience has taught the retreat to be flexible and to ride the wave of the unknown.
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Self-Care Tips from Slow Animals and Helpful Droids
Meditate with (rev) Sarah Bowen and her favorite creatures at sacredsendoffs.com/ meditations.
“Read. Just Read,” advises Billy Collins. “The best teachers are not lecturing behind some seminar table, but are instead sitting quietly on the bookshelves of your home.”
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Victor Parachin dives into the Buddha’s advice for being a better friend.
RESTORING RELATIONSHIPS to Ourselves, to One Another, and to the Earth
AN INTERVIEW WITH FARIHA RÓISÍN
READING AS A SPIRITUAL EXERCISE
GRACE JI-SUN KIM encourages us to see reading in a new light.
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The Summer 2002 issue of S&H included this still-timely article
LOGGING INTO Online Wellness
LEARNING CAN IMPROVE OUR QUALITY OF LIFE—AND THE EFFECT IS TWOFOLD FOR COURSES ON WELLNESS AND SELF-BETTERMENT.
HOW TO LAMENT
JENNIE MCLAURIN, MD, MPH, gives instructions to guide a rediscovery of this age-old tradition.
Seeing Is Empathy
Mixed-media artist Morgan Harper Nichols explores how art can lead to empathy.
5 Care Tips: Pineal Gland
The pineal gland, which is about the size of a grain of rice, is located in the center of the brain (although technically it is not part of the brain). Its main function is to receive signals from the environment about the amount and quality of light so that it knows how much melatonin to produce to help us wake up in the morning and go to sleep at night. Melatonin is involved in much more than sleep, however. It plays a role in sexual development and is a strong antioxidant, among other functions.
Chasing Joan Didion
I visited the writer's California homes, from Berkeley to Malibu. What was looking for?
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NEW FACTORY IN MOSES LAKE TO BRING HUNDREDS OF NEW JOBS
A battery materials company has purchased a 600,000-square foot facility in Moses Lake, Washington, to be used to manufacture lithium-ion anode battery materials for the automotive and cell phone industries.
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Student Loan Relief Changed Lives
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SureFire's Barry Dueck on Passion, Commitment, and Making Your Own Luck
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