And by the way, don’t forget that Kazi’s Divine Light Sunday Morning 3-Part Series starts on March 14th at 9am EST and he’ll be going over some of his other advice on creating a sacred space and making good associations in the first session.
We appreciate the invitation from Redfin and their shining a little light on NCMC!
Teacher: Kazi | Dates: March 14, 21 & 28 | Time: 9am to 10am EST | Donation: $20 suggested for the series | Age: Adults (Youths welcome for free accompanied by adults) | Level: All welcome, no experience necessary | Platform: NCMC Zoom.
Learn to: –Weed your time mind to align with nature’s auspicious and propitious cycles. –Seed your intentions in the soul-soil of the season. –Feed your soul roots vital chi food trapped in body tension via Xtension. Bonus soul food vital break-fast recipe!
Bio-note: Ib’nallah S. Kazi is a New York-based spiritual wilderness guide, born in Panama and raised in New York. He graduated from Adelphi University, in 1981 with a BA in Psychology. Following careers in human services, public education and public health in the New York City area, he then placed an emphasis on wellness and spiritual cultivation through his own program, presently known as Our Shaman Song. As a spiritual wilderness guide, he gently awakens the inner guidance of wellness seekers through the process of integrating the medicinal forces inherent in our Heavenly (spiritual), Human (social) and Earthly (natural) environments. Along with his friend and hiking partner Sala Nolan, Kazi founded the Harriet Tubman Hiking Society in 1988 to expose the African-American community to the strengthening, healing and spiritually grounding benefits of immersion in nature. He is the Spiritual Director and Meditation Medicine teacher with NCMC.
A donation-based program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture, a New Jersey 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Your tax deductible donations make it possible for us to continue delivering life-changing programs to the Greater Newark community and beyond.
August is Wellness Month and we’ve put together an overview of the 7 Dimensions of Wellness.
Consider designing your own wellness program for August with good planning and a goal to sustain and build on it!
We’ve also provided a fillable Wellness Month Calendar that you can print out to use and we created a month of daily suggestions to inspire you. There’s other tools described available for your use that might help too.
What are a few of the dimensions below that you might like to work on? How can you apply changes successfully on a daily or weekly basis in order to make a habit of them?
1. PHYSICAL WELLNESS
Move more and eat better.
Tips and suggestions:
• Exercise daily.
• Control your meal portions.
• Eat healthy foods/avoid processed and junk foods.
• Get adequate rest.
• Protect yourself against injuries.
• Learn to recognize early signs of illness.
• Use alcohol in moderation or not at all.
• Stop smoking and protect yourself from second-hand smoke.
Without physical health, it is more difficult to be mentally and emotionally healthy, so the two key components are to exercise and eat well. Improving physical wellness involves personal responsibility and often leads to the psychological benefits of enhanced self-esteem, self-control, determination, and a sense of purpose.
Another important element — we think very important in your wellness practice — is to use mindfulness to manage your compulsions and obsessions that drive bad habits. In fact, if you can’t necessarily add good behaviors during Wellness Month, start by mindfully trying to remove bad behaviors.
2. EMOTIONAL WELLNESS
Develop mindfulness and optimism skills.
Tips and suggestions:
• Tune-in to your thoughts and feelings.
• Cultivate an optimistic attitude.
• Seek and provide support.
• Learn time management skills.
• Learn meditation and mindfulness techniques.
• Learn stress management techniques.
• Deal with anger constructively.
• Accept and forgive yourself.
Emotional wellness is by nature a dynamic state that fluctuates along with your other six dimensions of wellness. It is important to develop a positive outlook on life and surround ourselves with positive people. Uniquely, time management is an important factor of emotional wellness, allowing time for ourselves and minimizing stress-induced situations.
Practicing mindfulness helps to really be present in the moment so you don’t jump onto the wrong emotional train. Expressing your feelings of love, gratitude, and other positive feelings can help alleviate alienation. During Wellness Month you might pick just a few negative habits to weaken, using your own daily prayers to reinforce your efforts.
3. INTELLECTUAL WELLNESS
Stimulate and inspire your brain.
Tips and suggestions:
• Take a course or workshop.
• Teach others.
• Learn or perfect a foreign language.
• Seek out people who challenge you intellectually.
• Read books and watch more educational programs.
• Attend museums, exhibits, and theater.
• Travel and explore other cultures.
The intellectual dimension encourages learning, growth, and creativity. An active and open mind leads to a life filled with curiosity, passion, and purpose. Just as our bodies need motivation and exercise, so too our minds. If we are not intellectually stimulated, life can be mundane and this can lead to depression and resentment.
Tied to our emotional wellness, it is easy to compare and judge ourselves if we don’t feel intellectually competent or aren’t comfortable with and made peace with our own capacity. To ensure our personal maximum intellectual wellness we can take advantages of available resources to find new hobbies, read, take a course — simply keep learning!
4. SOCIAL WELLNESS
Cultivate friendships and contribute to community.
Tips and suggestions:
• Cultivate healthy relationships.
• Contact old friends and make new friends.
• Get involved.
• Contribute to your community.
• Share your talents and skills.
• Communicate your thoughts, feelings and ideas.
Personal connections contribute to a long and fulfilling life — whether they are family, friends, community groups, or even global connections. When you nurture relationships you create healthy support networks, contribute to the greater good, and builds a sense of belonging.
This means practicing good communication skills and developing intimacy with others. Social wellness also includes showing respect for others as well as yourself. An active social life can be incredibly stimulating and conducive to positive changes in all seven dimensions of wellness.
5. SPIRITUAL WELLNESS
Nourish your soul and open your heart.
Tips and suggestions:
• Explore your spiritual core.
• Spend time alone to reflect.
• Meditate regularly.
• Take pauses to pay attention to your breath.
• Be inquisitive and curious.
• Try to be fully present in all you do.
• Listen with your heart and live by your principles.
• Allow yourself and those around you the freedom to be who they are.
• See opportunities for growth in the challenges life brings you.
When we develop a set of guiding beliefs and principles it gives a sense of meaning and purpose to our life. Keeping an open mind in a spirit-centered life may bring up thoughts of despair, fear, and doubt as we grow, but out of it can come joy, happiness, and wisdom.
It is important to spend quiet time each day, reflecting or meditating, or simply pausing to take a few minutes to breathe properly. Spiritual wellness includes developing a deep appreciation for the depth and expanse of life and natural forces of the universe.
6. ENVIRONMENTAL WELLNESS
Love and care for the planet.
Tips and suggestions:
• Stop your junk mail.
• Conserve water and other resources.
• Minimize chemical use.
• Reduce, reuse, recycle.
• Rethink your living space.
To be environmentally well we need to be aware of the delicate state of the earth and the effects our daily habits have on the physical world. When we help to take responsibility for the health of the planet we can bring a sense of accomplishment and well-being into our own life.
It is also important to be aware of our home environment — how the materials and objects we choose to surround us have an effect on environmental wellness. The more we get out into nature mindfully the more we will understand this. We need to remember that we are an integral part of the environment and that caring for the environment is self-care.
7. VOCATIONAL WELLNESS
Use and give your skills.
Tips and suggestions:
• Explore a variety of vocation options.
• Create a vision for your future.
• Choose a career that suits your personality, interests and talents.
• Be open to change and learn new skills.
• Balance work with life.
• Learn to budget your lifestyle with your vocation compensation.
• Use unemployment or retirement to hone your skills or develop new ones.
• Volunteer your vocational skills if you aren’t fulfilled at work.
This dimension of wellness focuses on enriching your life and that of others by sharing your special gifts, skills, and talents. Our job may not fulfill us, we may be unemployed or retired, but there are always ways to use our skills, knowledge, and passion in other meaningful ways to serve our family and society, and to enhance our self-esteem.
Vocational wellness also involves preparing, planning, and creating a positive attitude to reshape your personal goals at work. Whether through work, parenting, or volunteering, you can make a strong impact and reap the health benefits of adding purpose to your life.
Are you inspired yet? Ready to fill out your Wellness Calendar? Let’s get started together!
If these tools, tips, and teachings we’ve compiled are helpful to you, would you consider making a small donation to Newark Center for Meditative Culture? We are a New Jersey 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Your tax-deductible donations make it possible for us to continue delivering life-changing programs to the Greater Newark community and beyond.
Guest Instructor Fadja Robert-Carr (See bio at registration site) Limited Seating Up to 12 students. Level Beginning to Intermediate Dates Mondays, April 20 to June 01 (No class on May 25.) Time 6:00pm to 7:15pm Course Fee $60 paid in advance online. (Refunds only until 4/2.) Location 2 Park Place, Newark, NJ
Description This course addresses the sensory human holistically. Foundational exercises give people an experience of clarity, lightness and connectedness. The exercises and asana sequences are interspersed with talks on accessing creative energy and developing an attitude of prosperity. The kriyas and exercises are selected to clear the aura and activate the energy field, with a focus on the pranic body and breathwork. We explore where in our energy systems we manifest creative energy and ways to align and activate those energies in our daily practices. The series draws on asana, breathwork, meditation and select kundalini kriyas.
Objective Yoga Exercises to Increase Physical Vitality, Mental Focus, and Concentration.
Week 1 Self-Awareness and Breath Week 2 The Sensory Human Week 3 Focus and Concentration Week 4 Flexibility and Alignment Week 5 Foundational Posture Week 6 Stress-Management
ON SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 23rd we held our first retreat in our first home at 2 Park Place. The topic was Community-Building with Clarity & Compassion. You can see from the faces of the students that it was a wonderful experience! It was fitting that Rebecca Li led the retreat as she has been supporting programs with NCMC since 2012.
We are grateful to her for dharma and meditation teachings as practiced by Dharma Drum, to Leslie of I’m So Yoga for her yoga session, and to Kathryn Davis of Heart of Mind Radio for her qigong session.
And what a great team of volunteers we had! Thank you to Ella and Ivette for their retreat day support, to Tenisha for social media promotions, and to her daughter Ariyan for the fantastic photos. We are grateful for the delicious vegan meal, a kind donation prepared by a veteran caterer, Vijaya Dharmapuri.
A special thanks to Jennifer, General Coordinator; Vijay, Food Coordinator; and Javier, Deputy Coordinator, as well as to Andrea, our Treasurer, for registration coordination.
The students were awesome, engaged, and attentive — comprehending with keen awareness the powerful yet invisible dynamics of community.
This weekend’s Women’s Retreat was a multi-generational gathering of nearly 50 women of diverse backgrounds and from all different walks of life. The retreat was mindfully and lovingly guided by five women who are leaders in their own fields. We kicked off the retreat with a moving spoken word opening by TaNisha Fordham who brought nine teen-aged students to the retreat. Jillian Faulks-Majuta lead a Kemetic Yoga session that physically grounded guests in the power of self-care. The day continued with passionate workshops about caring for mind, body and spirit.
Kamilah Crawley, who organized and emceed the event, offered sessions about the intersection of mindfulness and women’s self-care and lead discussion groups on the complex and nuanced notions of the modern Superwoman. Michelle Beadle Holder explored mindful eating and the frequent everyday choices we make about how we nourish our bodies and helped us become more mindful of the environments where we break our bread and buy our food. Her presentation was followed by a nutritious and soulful lunch provided by Arelis Hernandez and Rabbit Hole Farm.
Aleah Gathings presented on the power of words and affirmations and guided retreatants in a symbolic ceremony to release unconstructive thought patterns. Mandara Parashakti Akiwumi facilitated a process to help participants “Stop the Story”, release narratives that hold us back and re-narrate our current truth. We ended the retreat by writing self-care letters to our future selves — to be mailed and opened just when we most need the reminder.
Throughout the day retreatants were encouraged to hold a non-judgmental space for everyone’s opinions and experiences and to self-reflect through conversation and journaling. Participants readily shared their own resources and several lists were compiled with books, websites, and places of interest for people to visit to continue the deep work that was initiated at this retreat.
Sunday, May 5, 2019 | 1:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Index Art Center, 237 Washington Street, First Floor Gallery, Newark, NJ
Taught by Khalil Maasi assisted by Andrea Lee
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 firstname.lastname@example.org to apply as a volunteer before registering for this program.
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.
NCMC wishes you a day of abundance or simplicity — and thanksgiving — for clear water, good food, and Mother Earth to sit on!
WITH ONE MIND
Greetings to the Natural World!
The Earth Mother
We are all thankful to our Mother, the Earth, for she gives us all that we need for life. She supports our feet as we walk about upon her. It gives us joy that she continues to care for us as she has from the beginning of time. To our mother, we send greetings and thanks. Now our minds are one.
We give thanks to all the waters of the world for quenching our thirst and providing us with strength. Water is life. We know its power in many forms — waterfalls and rain, mists and streams, rivers and oceans. With one mind, we send greetings and thanks to the spirit of Water. Now our minds are one.
The Food Plants
With one mind, we turn to honor and thank all the Food Plants we harvest from the garden. Since the beginning of time, the grains, vegetables, beans and berries have helped the people survive. Many other living things draw strength from them too. We gather all the Plant Foods together as one and send them a greeting of thanks. Now our minds are one.
(Excerpted from a Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address)
The Three Sisters of Corn, Beans, and Squash
For many Indigenous People in the Americas, the triad of corn, beans, and squash is called the Three Sisters. Traditionally grown together, this crop trio are all interdependent on one another. Beans grow up the corn stalks and add the nutrients (nitrogen) to the soil that the others need to grow. Squash is planted in between them to keep the weeds out. These three staples remain the heart of most Indigenous diets and are often eaten in companion with each other.
PLANTING SEEDS OF DHAMMA Book-Signing • Meditation • Talk • Vendors Saturday Sep. 8 | 7:00pm to 9:00pm Fee: $15 Source of Knowledge Bookstore
RSVP | Details: Greg 973-388-4900 or Ayanna 862-944-8860
CULTIVATING WISDOM & COMPASSION TO HEAL THE COMMUNITY People of Color Full-Day Meditation Retreat Sunday Sep. 9 | 9:30am to 4:30pm Meditation • Talks • Movement • Art • Healing • Affinity Suggested Donation: $30 Atrium Room at the Early Learning Center
Register | Details: ncmc-poc-retreat.eventbrite.com