With 22 weeks behind us and 9 weeks ahead, we begin to hold in equal measure and awareness that the CDP, in this current form, will end. Still, we have two rich months together! How can we approach this ending PROCESS with intention? How can we care for ourselves gently and one another as we begin to release the course and invite in the next phase of our lives? Our next adventures? Is it possible to remain even MORE freshly engaged with the material to come, knowing that our remaining time together is relatively short? This is our invitation!
This is the number of minutes in a day. How about trying to practice for 20-30 of those minutes each day in the name of self-kindness? Re-committing. Turning back inward and hearing what the silence and your own wisdom have to offer…
- Creative Invitation: Holding near at heart the response to our discussion this week, we encourage you to revisit, hone, and revise your intentions for the remainder of the course. Please do this in any way that you wish. If you’re somebody who wishes for more structure, you may craft your intentions in the form of a self-compassionate letter similar to the one you wrote to yourself in Month 1 as you began your journey. You may wish to address some of the specific questions that came up in class:
- What is something of yourself that you wish to bring or offer to the community during the next 9 weeks of class? Deep listening? Genuine sharing? A lively presence? A suspension of judgment? A request for support?
- Today, how are you relating with the ending of the CDP? (Embracing? Resisting? Indifference? Something else?)
- What new beginnings/silver linings come up for you in regards to the end of the CDP?
- What are your intentions going forward, for these remaining 9 weeks? Remembering that each breath of each day is an opportunity to try something new or begin again.
- Still much to come! Incredibly rich next couple of months.
- I (Aimee) will be out next week (week 23) at a retreat with Frank Ostaseski. David will lead the group through the first session of our monthlong study on Exploring Challenging Relationships.
- Nine more weeks are yet to come! Here are some of the highlights of what’s ahead…
- Michelle Becker is with us July 25. In preparation for her offering, please familiarize yourself with Paul Gilbert’s Three Circles model of emotional regulation. You can read about it directly in Mindful Compassion (Chapter 3), and if you don’t have a hard copy, you can read the chapter online here.
- Natalie Bell joins us for Caregiver Fatigue on August 1.
- Christine Braehler joins us Sept. 12.
- Our final day of class is Sept. 17. That day, we’ll leave space for any creative offerings your time in the CDP has inspired you to share with the group; spoken-word poetry (your own or others’), a song you might like to sing … even a hand-dance! Fear not: this is entirely optional and simply a way to allow a safe and welcoming space for different modes of expression as sometimes, synergistically, magically, occur at the end of MSC intensives.
- If you are considering re-joining the CDP anew in January, or you know someone in your life who would benefit from a community like ours, we welcome you!
- This week’s video recording and password is “Thr33Quarters”
- Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words, by David Whyte
- The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path to Healing Ourselves and Our World, by Desmond and Mpho Tutu
- Article: Living Through Death: Love at the End of Marriage, OnBeing. They write: “We are all in some way preparing for endings. Some day the music will stop next door, and everything will change. But for now, the music keeps playing. Life is being lived, completely and honestly. I will keep listening. I will keep remembering that the most extraordinary lives are often the ones lived most quietly, most remarkably, by one’s neighbors and loved ones, if we just pay attention. If you just listen, everyone has a song.”
- The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully, by Frank Ostaseski
. (Beautiful trailer of the book, below)
Five Things to Do Everyday
as discovered by Janet Willoner (Thank you, Janet!):
Watch the breath.
Send everyone blessings.
Look for little slices of joy.
May your practice and commitment serve to enliven, strengthen, and deepen your experience of this one precious life.