Sacred Journey: Being Present with Aging, Illness and Dying
By Editor | Jan 5 2014
IMCW is pleased to announce Sacred Journey: Being Present with Aging, Illness and Dying, a deepening-practice program for dedicated practitioners. During the program, participants who are deeply curious about or have experience with issues related to aging, illness, or dying will come together to attend monthly retreats in the DC area from November 2014 to June 2015.
According to Tara Brach, “Sacred Journey is a rare opportunity to join with others in spiritual community, and dedicate yourself to exploring teachings and practices that can guide you to the loving presence that is your true home.” Tara will be a guest teacher during the program.
Spiritual traditions invite us to meet the “heavenly messengers” of aging, illness, and dying as gifts. When we meet these messengers with mindfulness and compassion, we can transform our experience of them. Ajaan Lee, a Buddhist monk in the Thai forest tradition, said, “Aging, illness and death are treasures for those who understand them. They’re Noble Truths, Noble Treasures. If they were people, I’d bow down to their feet every day.” It is the faith in our collective ability to discover the gifts of these messengers that is the backbone of the Sacred Journey program.
The unique mix of program teachers includes IMCW teachers and health practitioners: Susan Akers-Pinc, Mary Aubry, Alicia Bazan, Janet Booth, Lauren Cates, and Trish Magyari. The group includes a certified hospice and palliative care nurse, an integrative therapist, a long-time hospice volunteer, and an Insight meditation teacher who is a licensed therapist/caregiver specializing in chronic illness, chronic pain and grief counseling. It will provide a safe, intimate environment in which to explore the sacred journey of aging, illness, and dying in community with other like-minded people. The participants will be supported and nurtured as they traverse their own inner journey as well as being present to the journey of others with newfound equanimity, freedom, and compassion.
Over the course of our months together, we will attend 3 weekend, 2 one-day, and 3 half-day retreats. During the retreats, we will explore being in small and large groups, silence and laughter, movement and meditation and other practice-deepening endeavors that will help us discover what Tara Brach calls the “loving presence” that is our “true home.”
The application deadline is March 16, 2014.
Click here for a full program description and the application form.