Category Archives: Retreats

Disarming Our Hearts: Letting Go of Blame (retreat talk)



Anger, judgment and blame create separation—from our inner life and our world. Only by releasing chronic blame can we free our hearts to truly give and receive love. This talk looks at the difference between healthy anger and the trance of blame, and through a set of reflections, teachings and stories, guides us in healing and freeing our hearts.

(from the Spring 2018 IMCW 7-Day Silent Retreat – previously unpublished)


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Short Talk & Meditation: Tonglen – Radical Compassion (32:43 min)



We are conditioned to avoid suffering – our own and others. By pulling away, we also contract our heart and disconnect from our innate capacity for compassion. This short talk and meditation is a training in touching vulnerability, and discovering the boundless heartspace that can be a transformer of sorrows.

A special instruction and guided heart meditation from the 2017 IMCW Spring 7-day Silent Retreat – previously unpublished.

View transcript and/or download in PDF: Transcript: Short talk & Meditation – Radical Compassion


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Meditation: Spring Morning on Retreat (33:47 min.)



In this guided meditation, we include an overview of different components of mindfulness practice. The reflection includes a body scan, establishing a home base for attention, and care in how to arrive in full presence after being lost in thought. We then explore opening mindfully to different experiences and the simple and liberating practice of “being here,” letting life be just as it is.


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After the RAIN (retreat talk)



This talk offers an in-depth exploration of RAIN, applying the wings of mindfulness and compassion to painful domains of trance. We bring special attention to the fruit of RAIN, the realization of who we are beyond any limiting identity.

This talk was given at the 2018 IMCW Spring 7-day Retreat at the Pearlstone Center in Reisterstown, MD.

For more resources on RAIN: https://www.tarabrach.com/rain/.


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Trusting Who We Are (retreat talk)



The sign of spiritual freedom is a deep trust in our essential nature, and in the light of awareness that lives through all beings.  This talk explores the conditioning that entraps us in a trance of separation and believing in a limited self.  We then explore the evolutionary shift in identity that is possible as we deepen our attention and presence to the life that is here, and the loving awareness that is the source of existence.


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Meditation and Short Talk: Basic Elements of a Mindfulness Meditation Sitting (34:30 min.)



This short talk and guided meditation offers an overview of what many people find is a natural unfolding within a meditation sitting. It includes the process of arriving in an embodied presence, learning how to come back from thoughts, and then opening the attention mindfully to the changing flow of experience. The meditation provides generous space between prompts for practice.

Class was snowed out in Bethesda on March 20, so we offer this new recording from the morning instructions and sit at the 2017 IMCW New Year retreat.


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Remembering and Choosing Loving Presence (retreat talk)



We are conditioned to go into a limbic trance—an emotional reactivity to life within and around us—that keeps us identified with a limited, separate sense of self. This talk helps us to identify the flags of trance, and to bring a healing attention that frees us to live our moments with creativity, wisdom and love. Includes the RAIN of Self-Compassion. (from the 2017 IMCW New Year’s Retreat)


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Instruction & Meditation: A Forgiving Heart (36:04 min) (retreat)



A forgiving heart clears the way for giving and receiving love freely.  This talk and meditation explores where we have become habituated in blame towards ourselves and others, and a classic three part reflection that can loosen and release the armoring around our hearts. (a guided heart meditation from the 2017 IMCW Spring Retreat)

photo: Tookapic/pexels.com


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Radical Compassion – Part 1 (retreat talk)



Radical Compassion – Part 1 –

  CC   ~ Compassion is the medicine we most need as individuals and a species to heal suffering and free our spirits. The essence of compassion for ourselves and others – what I call Radical Compassion – has three key elements: it is an embodied experience (a felt sense of tenderness), it is inclusive all beings, and it naturally moves us to act from a caring heart. This two-part talk explores the alchemy of Radical Compassion and guides us in awakening this intrinsic expression of our evolutionary potential.

  • talk given on 4/30/2017 at the IMCW Spring Retreat

image: pexels.com


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Relaxing the Over Controller – Part 2 (retreat talk)



We all have conditioning to do what we can to protect and promote our wellbeing. Our suffering arises to the degree that our life and identity become organized around controlling our experience. These two talks look at the emergence of the fear based “over-controller,” and explore a wise way of witnessing the suffering that comes with over-controlling, and awareness practices that naturally relax and awaken us to our whole and natural Being.

Link to transcript in PDF here.

NOTE: Below is a closed captioned image video – there was not a live video recorded, since it was given on retreat.

image: unsplash.com


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