Welcome to my "Kira's Blog"!
I thought that this would be an easy and helpful way of staying in more contact. I get so many emails I don't get to answer them all, or take so long in answering some people wonder if I am still getting their emails! So I thought I could share bits and pieces of interest here, post them as they come along into my life.
Satori 2017 Reminder
Hello dear Satori friends …
Satori time is coming closer once again ... December 10-16th once again at Sangsurya - in case you feel inspired to join or feel to encourage a friend to participate the details can be found on my webpage:
I have noticed for many people this year has been a powerful time upheavals and changes - Satori retreat can be a nourishing place to explore and integrate truth and understanding into your everyday life. Personally I find us coming together in "Satori space" is a time of diving deeply into clarity and opening into wisdom of who we really are as we share this communal time together. I find it accelerates our process when we come together to consciously experience truth and can support integration.
There has also been big changes at Sangsurya with Tony's death earlier this year - thankfully Tony's intention for Sangsurya to continue to be a place for people to gather and explore truth is unfolding under the guidance of Shirsha and the rest of the team who have supported Tony the past years. This upcoming weekend (Sept30th & Oct 1st) there is a Working Bee at Sansurya if anyone feels inspired to give their time and contribution to help this beautiful place continue being a gift to all of us. Details of the Working Bee can be found here: https://gallery.mailchimp.com/f5badc23470ef590c32713627/images/2c4efeec-fc3c-4178-bd68-db98cb4e7f0c.jpg
This year after Satori I will be once again facilitating a five day Intuition intensive, which is a nice compliment to the Satori retreat, and I am thankful that again this year the Sangsurya Team has allowed me to host the event at Sangsurya people can stay on after Satori for the Intuition group (which is a non-residential seminar) which can be a supportive integration post Satori, to continue to be together and exploring what arises:
I am almost on my way to beloved Nepal to once again immerse in rebuilding after the earthquake and time with the women and children I support. I am deeply touched by this experience and it most certainly gives me a lot to continue exploring of myself and others - if you would like to know a bit more please have a read here:
I hope to see some of you soon in Australia (either at Satori or after gatherings), if our paths do not physically cross, I wish you opening and grace as your path in life unfolds 💕
Warm hugs & heartfelt love, Kira
I leave you with a few favourite Zen stories:
A famous spiritual teacher came to the front door of the King's palace. None of the guards tried to stop him as he entered and made his way to where the
King himself was sitting on his throne.
"What do you want?" asked the King, immediately recognizing the visitor.
"I would like a place to sleep in this inn," replied the teacher.
"But this is not an inn," said the King, "It is my palace."
"May I ask who owned this palace before you?"
"My father. He is dead."
"And who owned it before him?"
"My grandfather. He too is dead."
"And this place where people live for a short time and then move on - did I hear you say that it is NOT an inn?"
A new student approached the Zen master and asked how he should prepare himself for his training. "Think of me a bell," the master explained. "Give me a soft tap, and you will get a tiny ping. Strike hard, and you'll receive a loud, resounding peal."
Yamaoka Tesshu, as a young student of Zen, visited one master after another. He called upon Dokuon of Shokoku. Desiring to show his attainment, he said: "The mind, Buddha, and sentient beings, after all, do not exist. The true nature of phenomena is emptiness. There is no realization, no delusion, no sage, no mediocrity. There is no giving and nothing to be received." Dokuon, who was smoking quietly, said nothing. Suddenly he whacked Yamaoka with his bamboo pipe. This made the youth quite angry. "If nothing exists," inquired Dokuon, "where did this anger come from?"
A Cup of Tea
Nan-in, a Japanese master during the Meiji era (1868-1912), received a university professor who came to inquire about Zen.
Nan-in served tea. He poured his visitor’s cup full, and then kept on pouring.
The professor watched the overflow until he no longer could restrain himself. "It is overfull. No more will go in!"
"Like this cup," Nan-in said, "you are full of your own opinions and speculations. How can I show you Zen unless you first empty your cup?"
21 years ago I fell in love
21 years ago I fell in love - with the country, people and culture of Nepal It continues to be an amazing, growing, deepening and empowering journey! The last two years have been especially an exponential experience of growth since enduring the massive earthquake alongside my Nepali friends and families. Please enjoy to read this news update I compiled where I share some of the complexities and achievements in the past two years. I am so appreciative of the many people who are part of my life & journey - love is indeed a shared experience! ♥
Laughter Medicine is good for Mind, Body & Soul!
Our ability to laugh, play and connect with each other and our surroundings is a natural gift that allows our bodies to be healthier, our mind to relax, our creative spirit to engage and our hearts to be happier There is immense value in literally laughing out loud till your belly hurts – the healthy endorphins released wonderfully naturally counter the daily stresses that we tend to accumulate and automatically hold onto. Even in difficult and imprisoned (physical and mentally) situations we can find freedom when we allow it ... this short video is a lovely reminder to play, enjoy and laugh...
Good Morning 2017!
Good morning 2017, I wonder what this year will be?
I was contemplating this question as I sat this New Years early morning in one of my most favourite places in the world, the Whian forest - a magical place - full of so much diversity. When I am in Nature it is always a reminder to me about the complexity of Life and the wholeness of Life. Sitting in amongst the decay, the broken branches and uprooted trees and yet all about me is new growth, new life coexisting with death. This could be a metaphor for 2017. Many people faced challenges and difficulties 2016 (and previous years!) so perhaps our outlook for 2017 can be one of inclusion. Including that there are challenges and difficulties - we can't deny them anyway! That would be like saying: “hey, that big uprooted tree is not there” when in fact it is! Sometimes we just need to make our way regardless, to find our own path realising that sometimes we may need to cut our path through the challenges, difficulties and obstacles that life presents us with. What has often been a support for me is to focus on where the new Life is. I have always had a curious nature and that has supported and helped me to look for what else is 'here' even when challenges and difficulties arise.
If you have trouble finding the new growth in your own life then perhaps take some time in Nature. Take some time to sit quietly; close your eyes take a few deep breaths before softly opening your eyes in a gently receptive way. Be open to see what you may not ordinarily let yourself see, allowing yourself to be surprised. Allowing ourselves to be surprised, giving space for what we really truly don't know; what may be unexpected in nice ways. And when something does cross our path to take that extra moment, even if your mind has decided it's not good or it is something unpleasant or a too hard – to gently remind yourself and say, “I don't know”. Maybe, just maybe, there is something more in this situation than I thought, maybe there's something that I can't see because I don't know just yet. Giving space for not knowing can open doorways into opportunities and certainly can help release tensions that we hold when we are invested and supporting our fear. If you look at a little child - say five or six years old - just playing, giving themselves permission to laugh and get it wrong - when they drop something, they simply pick it up again. That innocent twinkle in their eyes not judging that dropping the ball is wrong, it’s fun, it’s a game, drop it again and again!
How would it be if we were like that with ourselves, investing in that childlike innocence and sweetness? I think we can touch that innocence but we need to remember. Remembering to support ourselves and also to be supportive of each other. Sometimes we can get caught up in our daily life - it is very easy for our mind that is conditioned to look for problems to focus then on problems, fear and anxiety. Yet if we can remember to smile and chuckle to ourselves, to play a bit, then perhaps we might see more in that moment about the situation that can help us navigate with more ease, grace and with more space in our heart.
Coming back to 2017 as the year of inclusion - I don't know what that means! Perhaps I can tell you at the end of this year 😇 Each of us will have an individual journey and your message on this first day of 2017 will be uniquely yours. Perhaps we may have some resonances such as unexpected nice surprises or being delighted in many small ways throughout this year by the gifts that life will present to us on our path.
I look forward to crossing paths with some of you over the next year and for some of you who I may not physically get to see, please know that I often feel in touch with many of my friends and people who I have met in different contexts – I experience a sense of wider community and with all of us (who are to the best of our ability!) consciously exploring and looking for our own potential and that of humanity.
I end with a heartfelt wish on this New Year of 2017, a year that is exactly right for you 💕
Respond with kindness and care … not fear.
Thank you for those who reached out to ask if I was safe after the heartbreaking event in Berlin (Dec 19th) - I was not in Berlin at the time but in Australia far from the current event physically yet close in my heart to all these who maybe feeling distress, sadness and fear right now. I deeply feel for those who are directly affected and share my heartfelt love & care & simply holding "you"
I sincerely ask all of us right now to respond to each other with kindness and care ... and to not support fear. Events like this are perpetuated by those who are not in balance - they need our compassion, not fear & aggression. This does not negate grief or heart ache - it is truly human to feel for those who have lost their lives so suddenly and violently, and I especially feel for their families and beloveds who may struggle right now to understand what has happened. Yet I truly ask all my friends to reach inside to find a deeper capacity for truth and understanding right now. And to be particularly aware of what stories you share and post online. I suggest that you ask yourself if the communication you are intending on sharing is invoking compassion or fear? For another human to intentionally cause harm or death to another generally means they are not mentally stable/balanced - which can be for various reasons. Being angry "at" them does not help anyone. If anger or upset is arising then perhaps delve inside to find another level of truth for yourself and explore what that might mean for you.
And, I say again, I feel deeply for those who have personally been affected by this Berlin event either directly or indirectly ... as I feel with so many who are feeling the effects of man made &/or natural violent events unfolding around the world ... May we turn to each other in times of despair with kindness and care ❤️
Satori time in Byron Bay, Australia
Hello dear friends,
Satori time in Byron bay, Australia is coming closer once again, Dec 3-9th held at Sangsurya Retreat centre - in case you feel inspired to join or feel to encourage a friend to participate the details can be found at:
I have noticed for many people this year has been a powerful time of upheavals and changes - Satori retreat can be a nourishing place to explore and integrate truth and understanding into your everyday life. Personally I find us coming together in "Satori space" is a time of diving deeply into clarity and opening into the wisdom of who we really are as we share this communal time together. I find it accelerates our process when we come together to consciously experience truth.
This year after Satori I will be once again facilitating a five day Intuition intensive, Dec 12-16th, which is a nice compliment to the Satori retreat, and I am thankful that Tony from Sangsurya has allowed me to host the event at Sangsurya and he is open to people staying on after Satori for the Intuition group (which is a non-residential seminar) that can be a supportive integration post Satori, to continue to be together and exploring what arises:
I am right now in my beloved Nepal, involving myself deeply with the communities in rebuilding after the earthquake. I am deeply touched by this experience and it most certainly gives me a lot to continue exploring of myself and others - if you would like to know a bit more please have a read here:
Plus I am, along with Rafael Ebner, hosting a Meditation & Yoga retreat here in Nepal in November:
I hope to see some of you soon in Australia (either at Satori or after gatherings), if our paths do not physically cross, I wish you deepening and opening life experiences!
Warm hugs & heartfelt love, Kira
I leave you with a few favourite Zen stories:
After winning several archery contests, the young and rather boastful champion challenged a Zen master who was renowned for his skill as an archer. The young man demonstrated remarkable technical proficiency when he hit a distant bull's eye on his first try, and then split that arrow with his second shot. "There," he said to the old man, "see if you can match that!" Undisturbed, the master did not draw his bow, but rather motioned for the young archer to follow him up the mountain. Curious about the old fellow's intentions, the champion followed him high into the mountain until they reached a deep chasm spanned by a rather flimsy and shaky log. Calmly stepping out onto the middle of the unsteady and certainly perilous bridge, the old master picked a far away tree as a target, drew his bow, and fired a clean, direct hit. "Now it is your turn," he said as he gracefully stepped back onto the safe ground. Staring with terror into the seemingly bottomless and beckoning abyss, the young man could not force himself to step out onto the log, no less shoot at a target. "You have much skill with your bow," the master said, sensing his challenger's predicament, "but you have little skill with the mind that lets loose the shot."
Word spread across the countryside about the wise Holy Man who lived in a small house atop the mountain. A man from the village decided to make the long and difficult journey to visit him. When he arrived at the house, he saw an old servant inside who greeted him at the door. "I would like to see the wise Holy Man," he said to the servant. The servant smiled and led him inside. As they walked through the house, the man from the village looked eagerly around the house, anticipating his encounter with the Holy Man. Before he knew it, he had been led to the back door and escorted outside. He stopped and turned to the servant, "But I want to see the Holy Man!" "You already have," said the old man. "Everyone you may meet in life, even if they appear plain and insignificant... see each of them as a wise Holy Man.
If you do this, then whatever problem you brought here today will be solved."
The Moon Cannot Be Stolen
A Zen Master lived the simplest kind of life in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening, while he was away, a thief sneaked into the hut only to find there was nothing in it to steal. The Zen Master returned and found him. "You have come a long way to visit me," he told the prowler, "and you should not return empty handed. Please take my clothes as a gift." The thief was bewildered, but he took the clothes and ran away. The Master sat naked, watching the moon. "Poor fellow," he mused, " I wish I could give him this beautiful moon."
A Tibetan story tells of a meditation student who, while meditating in his room, believed he saw a spider descending in front of him. Each day the menacing creature returned, growing larger and larger each time. So frightened was the student, that he went to his teacher to report his dilemma. He said he planned to place a knife in his lap during meditation, so when the spider appeared he would kill it. The teacher advised him against this plan. Instead, he suggested, bring a piece of chalk to meditation, and when the spider appeared, mark an "X" on its belly. Then report back.
The student returned to his meditation. When the spider again appeared, he resisted the urge to attack it, and instead did just what the master suggested.
When he later reported back to the master, the teacher told him to lift up his shirt and look at his own belly. There was the "X".
The Mind and Life Dialogue "Power and Care"
Sept 10-12 in Brussels a wonderful collection of wise elders, visionaries, artists, scientists and the Dalai Lama came together to discuss the theme of "Power and Care" from various perspectives with the intention to bring these dialogues into our general awareness and discussions. The event was inspired by Dr Tania Singer, an inspiring and innovative scientist as well a heartful woman making a difference in the world – someone I am happy to call a friend! The discussions are in the format of a panel, each with a theme. It is quite some hours but worthwhile to truly receive the variety of insights and wise commentaries.
Session 1 of the Mind and Life Dialogue "Power and Care - Personal Commitment and Global Responsibility".
Session 2 of the Mind and Life Dialogue "Power and Care - Perspectives from Spiritual and Religious Traditions".
Session 3 of the Mind and Life Dialogue "Power and Care - Perspectives from Spiritual and Religious Traditions".
Session 4 of the Mind & Life Dialogue: "Power and Care - Perspectives from Economics and Society".
Session 5 of the Mind and Life Dialogue "Power and Care - Personal Commitment and Global Responsibility".
Some weekend contemplation
Alan Steinfeld interviewing Bruce Lipton, who shares some powerful insights/understandings that have the potential to be life changing. I resonate with much of Bruce Lipton's views and I love Alan's insightful questions. I do feel that having material like this can indeed help us all to think a bit outside our normal conditioned beliefs and that can be wholesomely healthier for all of us!