Move That Chi on May 5th!

Spend the Cinco de Mayo afternoon doing a little African-Asian-American mindfulness!

HALF DAY WORKSHOP
Mindfulness, Meditation, & Martial Movement

Taught by Khalil Maasi with assistance by Andrea Lee

Sunday, May 5th, 2019  |  1:00pm to 5:00pm
Index Art Center, 237 Washington St., First Floor, Newark, NJ

This donation-based workshop is appropriate for all people and of any discipline — beginners through advanced students. Teacher Khalil will be using internal martial arts exercises, though this is not a fighting workshop. It is rather a means of using these disciplines for healing (energy work), mindfulness, and achieving a state of “no mind.” Guidance from Andrea will include a sitting meditation and sound healing meditation. Suggested donation of $25 adults/$15 students 18 or older. Youths 12-17 come free.

To attend go to: ncmc-spring-workshop.eventbrite.com.

A program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture.


You are invited to attend: MINDFULNESS, MEDITATION & MARTIAL MOVEMENT thru African-Asian-American Fusion HALF-DAY WORKSHOP

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Sunday, May 5, 2019  |  1:00 PM5:00 PM
Index Art Center, 237 Washington Street, First Floor Gallery, Newark, NJ

Taught by Khalil Maasi assisted by Andrea Lee

LIMITED SPACE!

Suggested donation of $25 adults/$15 students 18 or older. Youths 12-17 come free.

This workshop is appropriate for all people and of any discipline — beginners through advanced students.

Teacher Khalil will be using internal martial arts exercises, though this is not a fighting workshop. It is rather, a means of using these disciplines for healing, mindfulness, and achieving a state of “no mind”. Briefly, the disciplines we will be working on are:

1. Standing Meditation: Zhan Zhuang, Standing Like a Tree, a standing meditation that’s initial goal is to relax and release all the tension in your body. This method cultivates the body’s natural energy called chi — a simple practice with extraordinary mental and physical benefits.
2. Healing Science: Chi Gung (qigong) is a holistic system of coordinated body posture and movement, breathing, and meditation used for the purposes of health, spirituality, and martial arts training.
3. No Mind: This is a mental state called mushin in Japanese and wuxin in Chinese. Zen and Daoist meditators are said to reach this state, along with disciplined artisans and trained martial artists. They practice this mental state of emptiness, free from attachment, during everyday activities.

There will be sessions with Andrea who will offer a Sound Healing Meditation using Tibetan bowls and a Guided Sitting Meditation.

Besides sharing these mental, spiritual, and physical refreshments we will also provide a fusion of snack and beverage refreshments during break.

*VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: We need a few volunteers to help us with set-up and break-down, check-in desk, refreshment service/clean-up, etc. Contact the volunteer coordinator for the program, Jennifer Becher at jennifer@newarkmeditation.org to apply as a volunteer before registering for this program.

ATTEND EVENT


Presenter Bio-notes
Khalil Maasi is a lifelong student and practitioner of meditation, mindfulness, martial science and it’s related integrated systems of knowledge. To understand the fruit, you must understand the root. And the root in this paradigm is Khalil’s father, well-renowned meditation and martial arts Grandmaster Shaha Mfundishi Maasi. He teaches under Shaha Maasi’s tutelage their family system known as Moyo Kazi (Energy Work) through their organization The School of Heaven and Earth which is based in Baltimore, Maryland. Moyo Kazi is a system of Chi Gung (internal martial healing science) developed and based on the study of internal healing martial traditions from around the world. Khalil is also a initiated Yoruba Priest (Minister) in the traditional African/Nigerian spiritual system of Ifa (Isese) and is an associate Minister at The Ifa Temple Of Light in East Orange, NJ. Khalil often teaches the African connection to these practices during his classes and workshops. As well, Khalil is a certified child assault prevention counselor in the state of New Jersey working primarily in the Newark and Essex County school system.
Andrea Lee is a Preschool Assistant Teacher at Montclair Cooperative School in her hometown of Montclair, NJ. She is an intern organic farmer at Rabbit Hole Farm in Newark where she resides. She is a senior disciple of Reverend Jaganath Carrera, Spiritual Head and Founder of Yoga Life Society. She recently completed seminary training and was ordained a Yoga Life Minister. She is a certified Yoga instructor and performs Kirtan with Mirabai Catherine Moon. Andrea is founding Treasurer of NCMC where she also instructs in meditation and mindfulness and provides yoga and chanting sessions. Newark Center for Meditative Culture is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

ATTEND EVENT

A program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture.

 


CULTIVATING INSIGHT & INSTINCT: A Daylong Retreat

OPTIONAL DAY-LONG OR PART-DAY PARTICIPATION (morning or afternoon session)

Sunday, May 20, 2018
10:00am to 4:00pm
Early Learning Center, 1 New York Ave.
(absolutely no walk-ins/no calls please)

Meditation teachers Ib’nallah S. Kazi and Cornelia Santschi will lead this donation-based NCMC program.  (Bios on Leadership Page of website.)

This retreat will help the community to understand the need to cultivate the insight, instincts, and focus needed to navigate the growing uncertainty and instability manifesting in our world. You will take home meditation tools that will help you to reconnect to the inner guidance previously lost in the incessant noise of modern society.

Included will be guided meditations, qigong and yoga movement, an art as meditation session, a visual presentation, and discussion. NCMC instructors J. Javier Cruz and Jennifer Becher will provide assistance. The program is intended to be appropriate for beginners through experienced meditators. A seasonal vegan Medicine Meal will be prepared by Arelis Hernandez, a Newark urban farmer-meditator.

If the weather is nice we plan to spend much of the day in the spring breeze of the adjoining outdoor courtyard! It will be a unique opportunity to experience the setting of a state-of-the-art LEED-certified green building. The venue is an easy and direct .6 mile/11 minute walk from Newark Penn Station. Wheel-chair access.

Please, absolutely no Walk-Ins and no Phone Calls to the Early Learning Center. Call NCMC at 862-227-3288 with inquiries or by email at info@newarkmeditation.org. For more information about Newark Center for Meditative Culture go to the website at www.newarkmeditation.org.

Registration Required on Eventbrite at:
https://ncmc-there-is-a-season-retreat.eventbrite.com
Suggested donation is $20 by PayPal/Credit Card when you register or Cash or PayPal/Credit Card at Door.

A donation-based program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture.


 


Relaxing into Clarity: A Daylong Meditation & Mindfulness Retreat on February 25th

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Optional Part-Day Participation

Sunday, February 25, 2018
10:00am to 4:00pm
Venue: Index Art Center, 237 Washington St., Newark, NJ 07102

ALL MUST REGISTER! Go to registration form.

Spend the day with Newark Center for Meditative Culture relaxing into your body and mind to cultivate clarity, taught by guest meditation and dharma teachers Rebecca Li and Shaka Georges. Optional part-day participation (morning or afternoon session). Retreatants will receive guidance in sitting, walking, and moving meditation. The afternoon session will also include art/written word workshop on the Art of Seeing. This donation-based day retreat is appropriate for beginners to advanced meditators, aged 18 and older*. Vegetarian lunch included.

PROGRAM SCHEDULE
• MORNING (9:30-9:45 Arrival/Check-in)
10:00-12:25 Morning Workshop
• LUNCH (12:10 Arrival/Check-in)
12:25-1:25
• AFTERNOON (1:10 Arrival/Check-in)
1:30-4:00 Afternoon Workshop

SUGGESTED DONATION
$20 Adult/$10 Student, but donate what fits into your budget.
Tax-deductible donations through PayPal/Credit Card when you register or Cash-at-Door. Donations go to gift teachers and to help cover rent and other expenses for this event. Donations are much needed and appreciated. Consider donating even if you can’t attend!

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
Consider volunteering as your donation to attend OR volunteer AND attend! Or you can just volunteer and not attend! We need help with class set-up, buffet set-up, check-in desk, lunch service/clean-up, time-keeping and announcing, break-down, and vegetarian food donations. Please let us know when you fill out the registration form if you would like to volunteer in any of these ways and we’ll get back to you!

SUPPORT THE EVENT
Can’t attend but would like to help support this event? We always need help gifting the teachers and for venue rental and other event expenses.
Make tax-deductible donations through PayPal/Credit Card: paypal.me/NCMCevents
We also greatly appreciate NCMC friends who want to volunteer at the retreat, but not attend. Contact us at info@newarkmeditation.org.

*If you feel that it’s important or necessary that your child/youth attend with you and you are able to mind and be responsible for your child/youth (aged 8 -17) during the retreat, you are welcome to submit one child when you register. They should be able to sit still and silent for extended periods.


ABOUT THE TEACHERS:

Rebecca Li, a Dharma heir in the lineage of the Chan Master Sheng Yen, started practicing meditation in 1995. She began her teacher’s training with Master Sheng Yen in 1999 to become a Dharma and meditation instructor. Later on, she trained with Simon Child to lead intensive retreats and received full Dharma transmission in 2016. Currently, she teaches meditation and Dharma classes, gives public lectures and leads retreats at Dharma Drum centers, university meditation groups and Dharma practice groups in the northeast. Her talks and writings can be found at www.rebeccali.org. Rebecca Li is also a professor of sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at The College of New Jersey.

Shaka Georges began his martial arts practice at the age of 9 years old. He immigrated to the U.S. from Haiti in 1975, and ever since then has studied various forms of martial arts including Wing Chun, White Crane Kung Fu Capoeira, and Tai Chi Long and Short Forms. He is a Tibetan Buddhist practitioner from the Mahamudra Lineage and has been meditating for over 10 years. He has also been a fitness coach and instructor in Newark. Shaka is a certified tai chi and qi gong teacher practicing in Montclair and Harrison NJ (see Discovering The Healer Within Facebook page) and is a mathematics high school teacher in West Orange.


ALL MUST REGISTER! Go to registration form.

 


A Beautiful Wintry Mix is Forecast!

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1. THE REMIX

Changes to Board of Directors

Over the first several years of our existence as an informal initiative, Arelís Hernandez and Keven Porter have quietly and consistently supported our mission. Arelís supported us with with her abundant energy and clear decision-making, knowledge of community organizing, skills with youth, and of course, her delicious cooking. Keven has been instrumental in introducing us throughout the community, promoting us, and as he puts it “sits for us”!
At the end of this year they will be leaving us as founding members of our formal non-profit that was established earlier this year. They plan to commit their energy further to Rabbit Hole Farm. We will miss them dearly, but they will always be with us in spirit and we hope to still collaborate at times. We are excited to have two new in-coming board members starting in 2018, J. Javier Cruz and Jennifer Becher. We welcome them into our “mix”!

2. LINGUAL MIX

English-Spanish Beginner’s Meditation and Mindfulness Series to Begin in the Ironbound!

Starting in late January NCMC will begin the winter 3-month series of beginner’s meditation classes for spanish and english speaking* people living in Newark and Newark area. It will be taught by J. Javier Cruz with other NCMC instructors. This series will be sponsored by Ironbound Community Corporation. It is planned for Wednesday evenings from 6:00 to 8:30pm and will be appropriate for adults ages 18 and older. *Though classes can’t be translated in portuguese, we will provide trilingual handouts.
This series of classes is intended to provide a safe space to learn and practice meditation and mindfulness that can increase happiness and decrease stress. In doing so, a like-minded bi- or tri- lingual group can develop to support each other’s practice. All are welcome, though as it is intended for the latino/hispanic community in Newark, we will need to reserve the majority of spaces for this community. Registration details forthcoming. Free to public, donations welcome.
Please note, as this is late-breaking news, we apologize not to have provided this article in spanish translation! We intend to do so in the future.

3. MIND-MATTER MIX

Save the Date for the Full-Day Retreat taught by Rebecca Li with Shaka Georges

On February 25th at Index Art Center, NCMC will hold it’s yearly winter full-day retreat (optional part-day). We anticipate a cooperative, creative fusion of mind(s) and matter(s). There will be sessions of meditation, movement meditation, art, teacher talks, and Q&A. This donation-based day retreat is appropriate for beginners to advanced meditators, aged 18 and older. Registration required. Details will be forthcoming.


Review: A Sunday Full of Truth and Healing

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Meditation IS Medicine
On Sunday, November 12th, Teacher Kazi opened the People of Color Retreat with a presentation on the meaning and background of Ancestral Meditation Medicine and what it means for us culturally and connectively today. Throughout the day he gently and masterfully guided us in meditation medicine through modes of sitting, standing, walking, and qigong.

That Darn Dukkha!
Andrea Lee and J. Javier Cruz both gave Dharma (truth) talks that clearly explained the meaning of the Sanskrit/Pali word dukkha, an ancient spiritual word that is hard to define. It can mean both mental and physical suffering, stress, and agitation — subtle and extreme — that we cause ourselves and others. They then used their personal disciplines to help us find the ability to let go and open our hearts and minds (note that a single Chinese character means both heart and mind). Javier taught the method of metta (loving-kindness) meditation, while Andrea used yoga discipline to allow us to radiate love out.

Art Forms as Meditation
We all seem to have joy and/or self-discovery in this session whenever we do it — expressing ourselves through drawing or written word — then explaining to our soul group (sangha for the day) how the art manifested and reflecting on its meaning.

Prosody and Performance
Presenters Mesha Allen and Muta Morton both expressed beautifully. Mesha read a powerful original essay in a voice like a hug and Muta instructed in a unique blend of modulating verbal performance and khemetic yoga postures. He chose those that he finds especially healing and we did too!

Cha-cha-cha-chant
To end the program, Kazi led us in his own variation of a chant that he heard in the film Baraka. It was first a slow “Cha. Cha. Cha. Cha.,” then a very quick-paced “chachachachachachachachacha,” going back and forth between the slow and fast. In a sense, he was using the chant as a healing form somewhat like hormesis activity. Kazi also suggested that we also try his Vowel Chant using the ancient aspiration sounds of the vowels a-e-i-o-u. It can be found on the free www.insighttimer.com App under “Meditation Medicine Chant 1”.

Divine Dishing and Doling
We had a delicious vegan meal provided by Arelis Hernandez and Keven Porter of Rabbit Hole Farm. Mary Arthars assisted with lovely side dishes and logistical support. Thank you to Jennifer Becher and Bruno Mendoza for volunteering with registration and venue set-up. We were also pleased to have a 10-year-old who came with his mother who minded him thoughtfully through the day. He joined in on most everything and seemed to learn quickly. We’re grateful to Index Art Center for the venue and director Lowell Craig for his patience and time.

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Choosing to Nurture or Neglect Our Minds

We have a choice to neglect or nurture our minds. To nurture our minds takes a little discipline — the practice of meditation and mindfulness can help to etch good qualities and impartiality into our minds through positive reinforcement and developing intimacy with ourselves. We begin to see the connections between our brain, mind, heart, body, and spirit.

The hard fact is, that to neglect our minds means that we might also be neglecting or even harming others. How often do we see the domino effect that our negative habits and actions can have on those close to us and our community, let alone those of other cultures? This certainly doesn’t mean that we can’t also play with abandonment, but we also then can use our mind skills to get back on track!

Once we’ve established a nurturing mtryptic-01.pngind for ourselves, we might even then extend our efforts to nurture the minds and help heal others. This is where compassion begins and becomes action. Putting ourselves in others shoes we can acknowledge and identify with their pain, unhappiness, and injustices and take good radical action.

Newark Center for Meditative Culture (NCMC) is currently offering three gems of opportunities to plant seeds of positive power and nurture our minds.

On Wednesday, October 25th, by special invitation, Bhante Buddharakkhita of Uganda will give a presentation, dhamma talk, and guided meditation, Planting Dhamma Seeds in Uganda and Nurturing Our Minds from 6:30pm to 9:00pm at City Without Walls. Concurrently, Ib’nallah S. Kazi will lead a Facebook Live meditation, Self-Healing Medicine, the last in a series of four starting at 7:00pm. Kazi’s meditation will also be broadcast at City Without Walls Gallery at 6 Crawford Street in Newark NJ for all attending there. Portions of Bhante Buddharakkhita’s program will be on Facebook Live starting at 7:30 pm.

Then on Sunday, November 12th we will be holding a full-day retreat, People of Color & Allies Full-Day Retreat: Our Return to Ancestral Meditation Medicine, taught by Kazi with assistance by J. Javier Cruz and Andrea Lee. The retreat will be held at Index Art Center at 237 Washington Street in Newark NJ and will run from 10:00am to 5pm. Participants can choose whether they attend full-day or part-day (morning or afternoon session).

These programs are donation-based so that NCMC can generously gift the teachers to support their work. Please contact us by email with any questions at info@newarkmeditation.org.


Breathing In and Breathing Out in Brick City

It’s a simple task to breath in and out but to be mindful and present with it takes practice. And this practice can help make positive, effective, and even transformative changes to our lives. Breath is just one form of meditation that can make an impact — there are many objects of meditation — but the breath is a good place to start as it’s available at any given moment wherever you are in Brick City.

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A butterfly stops to mindfully breath on one of our meditation cushions at the start of one of NCMC’s summer meditation classes held in Military Park through August, each Wednesday evening at 7pm weather providing.


To help to understand just what mindfulness of breathing can do, here’s a clear description about mindfulness of breathing to contemplate. It’s from a book of essays titled The Issue at Hand by meditation teacher Gil Fronsdal:

Mindfulness of breathing can be a powerful ally in our lives. With steady awareness of our inhalations and exhalations, the breath can become an equanimous constant through the ups and downs of our daily life. By resting with and perhaps even enjoying the cycles of breathing, we are less likely to be caught up in the emotional and mental events that pass through us. Repeatedly returning to the breath can be a highly effective training in letting go of patterns of identification and holding that freeze the mind and heart.”

NCMC teacher Kazi, of The Spirit-Centered Life, notes that an important component of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness is breathing, and he advises people to pay attention to it. “Your breathing will often let you know what’s going on with your emotions.” he has stated. *


NCMC Evening Farm Retreat: Insight Meditation with Light Yoga, Art as Meditation, and Agnihotra Sunset Air Purification to be held on July 22nd

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Register now on Eventbrite for NCMC’s unique outdoor farm retreat with program partner, Rabbit Hole Farm! There is limited participation of 20 for this so please do REGISTER only if you know you will attend. We don’t want to turn down anyone because of someone who doesn’t show. Thank you kindly.

Date: Saturday, July 22nd (Rain date: July 29th)
Time: 5:00 to 9:00pm
Venue: Rabbit Hole Farm, 34 Rose Terrace, Newark, NJ

To ease the students into the environment, there will first be a thoughtful Garden Tour of this urban farm that is abundant with vegetables, herbs, and art. This will be followed by a light Yoga session with Pamela Flagg to get the students’ energy flowing and harmonized. There’s no need to don yoga clothes or be experienced for this — you can simply wear loose pants if you prefer. A Vegan Medicine Meal will then be offered by Rabbit Hole founder/farmer Arelís Hernandez using food straight from the garden. A medicine meal is a light balanced supper meant to be eaten simply for sustenance and with care and appreciation. It is important to eat lightly at a meditation retreat.

A plein air Art as Meditation session with artist Malik Whitaker will continue the process of opening our minds, heightening our sensitivity, and developing calm. This will get the students prepared for the Insight Meditation period led by meditation teacher Cornelia Santschi. You need not have meditation experience as it will be appropriate for beginners to advanced. Insight Meditation is based on the ancient meditation practice of Vipassana, yet it is a practical and vital contemporary method of mindfulness of breath/body, feelings, thoughts, and phenomena that with development can bring more mental clarity, stability, and happiness. An urban outdoor farm will make for an interesting setting to explore our minds.

Then, Dr. Sankar Sastri of Lakshmi Cow Sanctuary will explain and perform a Sunset Air Purification called Agnihotra in Sanskrit. Agnihotra is a healing fire from the ancient science of Ayurveda that is done in combination with vibrational sounds and materials of specific qualities that is performed at sunrise or sunset. It is a process that is said to not only benefit the mind and body and a home, but to purify the outside atmosphere as well. The process is also used to nourish plant life by changing the cellular structure, thus enabling more nutrients to flow through fruits and vegetables. This is a very cool opportunity to learn a new-old technique!

To close the program, yogi Keven Porter, who is also the director of the Farm, will lead a Moon Salutation Yoga session and Metta Meditation (lovingkindness).

Register on Eventbrite at https://ncmc_eve_farm_retreat.eventbrite.com

Donation-based, suggested $10 cash-at-door or by credit card on Eventbrite.

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