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Freeing the mind, softening the heart, and relating wisely.

Mindfulness meditation involves the practice of keeping the breath in mind, of remembering the present moment, as it’s happening. Training the mind in non-distraction can slow things down a bit, but calm and tranquility is not the end goal of meditation—it’s just the beginning of being able to see things clearly. As we practice seeing each moment as it is, we discover the relentless nature of the thinking mind, and the habitual reactions and impulses in the body. Mindfulness is a wise consideration of our conditioning to seek pleasure and avoid pain. Returning our awareness, again and again, a zillion times, to the experience of trying to just get comfortable, we re-discover something that was in us all along—the fearlessness of remaining in the uncertainty and groundlessness of each moment. To free the mind from the delusion that sensual craving or aversion will save us from illness, old age, and death, is to soften our hearts and relax into the present moment. Sometimes softening is just catching ourselves hardening into fear, anger, or resentment, without having to spiral into a fully contracted state. Everything is workable.


This class will feature a dharma talk, instruction on formal technique, and will include structured periods of sitting and walking meditation, with time for group discussion at the end.


All levels are welcome.


About the teacher:

August received his master’s degree in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology from Naropa- a Buddhist contemplative university in Boulder, Colorado. A veteran of the Iraq war, he has worked as a wilderness rites of passage guide, school counselor, and psychotherapist. August joined the Mt. Adams Zen Buddhist temple as a teacher and pastoral counselor in 2018.   He lives here in Trout Lake, WA with his wife Claire (who you may see around our office!) and their son, Asa. August will be heading up our Mental Health services at the Abbey, providing spiritual counseling and support. For those looking for one-on-one guidance in their meditation practice, or needing support with personal, marital, or family difficulties, August can offer a warm and caring presence. 


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