Meditation and Dialogue in Challenging Times

Meditation and Dialogue in Challenging Times A non-credit J-Term forum hosted by Professors Bordone, Brewer, Emens, and Suk (particular hosts will vary by availability on each date) Time: Tuesdays (1/6; 1/13; 1/20) 12 pm – 1 pm Location: WCC 3015 (subject to change) In challenging times, we need tools for self-reflection and for engagement with others.

This forum will offer a set of techniques to cultivate and foster awareness, both inner and outer, and to form community through meditation and structured dialogue. The foundational technique will be mindfulness meditation, and each hour will begin with a guided meditation, appropriate for beginners (though experienced practitioners are also welcome). In the second half of each session, we will learn and use techniques that are designed to facilitate active listening and supportive, critical questioning among those who participate. Faculty hosts will explain the specifics of these methods and facilitate their application in each session.

The topics to which we apply the techniques will be left up to the participants. All topics are welcome, especially those related to recent events (local, national, or international). To some, meditation may sound quiescent or somehow removed from the real world and its many challenges. But we believe, and we hope these sessions will show, that meditation and related contemplative practices can support and empower serious engagement with ourselves and each other, as we decide how to act in response to the challenging issues in our lives and our world.

We will meet three times during the J-Term, each Tuesday at lunchtime, starting at 12 noon. The formal session will conclude at 1 pm, and participants are free to leave at that time; if anyone wishes to continue the discussion, we have reserved the room until 1:30. Students, faculty, and staff are welcome to participate in all three sessions or to drop in to any one session. There will be no required reading outside of our meetings. You are invited to bring your lunch to eat before or after the meditation. A limited number of snack/lunch bags may be available on a first come, first served basis. We look forward to seeing you. 

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