"When all the ordinary divides and patterns are shattered, people step up to become their brothers’ keepers. And that purposefulness and connectedness bring joy even amidst death, chaos, fear, and loss." - Rebecca Solnit
Reviewing 2020, it’s understandable that you may feel trapped in a work of dystopian fiction. What else could happen is an oft-heard refrain — sadness, rage, hope, possibility — all swirl about within and around us daily. Meanwhile, the moment and the movement demand vision, creativity, clarity, and fortitude. Like most everything, we strengthen these through practice.
There’s good and essential work beckoning us.
What practices help buoy ourselves up amid continued suffering, outsized need, and needless violence and put our shoulders behind possibility, transformative movements, and new connection? What practices help us to experience tenderness and gratitude — even joy regularly? And how do we maintain steadiness and clear-sightedness about the steps toward a future worth living?
The answers to these questions are in meditation. Paradoxically, we gain buoyancy and steadiness by courageously sitting still, in community, and doing the sometimes tedious and humbling work of watching our minds. We meet this moment by fortifying our capacity to understand that everything is continuously shifting. Being human invites comfort with uncertainty and a tremendous ability to accept what is.
In this 8-part series, we will come together to practice the habits of mindfulness: patience, non-judgment, trust, acceptance, letting go, curiosity, and non-striving. We will increase our tolerance for sitting in uncertainty. We will do so to cultivate the type of presence and alignment to our values that will support us amid challenges and opportunities alike. We will practice stretching our hearts and freeing our minds to accommodate the incredible peaks and valleys of the human experience in 2020 and beyond.
Three of our sessions (Oct. 23, Nov. 13, and Dec. 4) will be interactive, with time for learning and exchange among participants. Both longer and brief sessions will include gentle yoga followed by a short guided meditation.
We hope you’ll join us!
Caitlin Brune, Senior Fellow, Northern California Grantmakers
Caitlin Brune is a philanthropic and nonprofit consultant with 25 years of nonprofit experience, including more than a decade of grantmaking experience in roles spanning finance, development, program planning and oversight, and executive management. Most recently, Ms. Brune served as CEO of the Pajaro Valley Community Health Trust, a 20-year-old nonprofit health foundation serving Pajaro Valley residents. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Georgetown University and a Master of Public Health degree from the University of California-Berkeley. An experiential learner with lifelong curiosity about the drivers of well-being for individuals and communities, Ms. Brune has previously trained and certified as a yoga teacher, massage therapist, meditation instructor, and beginning organic farmer. She volunteers as a meditation instructor at Soledad Correctional Training Facility and serves on the boards of the Santa Cruz County Integrated Health Center Commission, Santa Cruz Community Ventures, and Farm Discovery.
Learn more about the Friday Morning Refresh series experience from Caitlin Brune’s blog.
Salina Mae, Mindfulness Coach
Salina Mae (she/her/hers), is a Bay Area born and raised community leader with over 15 years of experience serving California schools both as a K-12 classroom teacher and as a mindfulness coach and consultant. With a focus on justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion, she received her Masters in Education and California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential at the Claremont Graduate University in 2006. She specializes in building creative, inspired, and socially awake training and curricula that lead to action in the areas of mindfulness, social justice, and systems change. Salina is a certified yoga teacher, a dedicated mentor, and an advocate for LGBTQI+ youth.
This program is open to everyone.