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!
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.
Dates Mondays, August 10, 17, 24, 31 & September 14, 21
Time 6:00pm to 7:00pm
Platform: NCMC ZOOM
Fee Scale: $45 for 4, $50 for 5, $55 for 6
Supplies Needed Please use a yoga mat. Have water available. No need to wear yoga clothes if you don’t have. Instead wear loose or stretchy pants (not jeans).
Objective Talk about each chakra, meditate on it, and move through it.
Course Each session will open with an overview and discussion of the energy center of focus, followed by an active yoga flow specifically geared to asanas that will help to open these centers, and ending with a healing meditation using vibrational sound music specific to each chakra as well as a mantra used as the centering thought for the meditation.
Week 1 ROOT CHAKRA has a direct correlation to our adrenal glands. This chakra is all about our physical identity, safety and security and ability to ground.
Week 2 SACRAL CHAKRA is associated with orange and has a direct correlation to the gonads, testes and ovaries. It is all about creativity, how we navigate through our personal relationships and intimacy.
Week 3 SOLAR PLEXUS has a direct correlation to digestion, the pancreas and liver. It is about our personal power, will power, self-esteem, mental focus and sense of belonging and purpose.
Week 4 HEART CHAKRA is correlated to our immune system and systemic allergies. It is about our ability to trust, forgive, love, and patience and compassion for all living.
Week 5 THROAT CHAKRA is correlated to our thyroid, ears, sinus, allergies. It relates to self-expression, communication and ability to live and speak our truth.
Week6 THIRD EYE & CROWN CHAKRA Our Third Eye is about connection to our intuition and guidance to live in alignment with our higher self. The Crown Chakra is the absolute knowing, connection to spirituality, integration of oneness.
Teacher Bio-Note Ella Moncur is a Registered Nurse, Health and Fitness Coach, Personal Trainer, Yoga Instructor, and Holistic Practitioner. She is the owner and founder of Just Be Holistic Health & Wellness https://www.justbenlh.com/ and is a Guest Instructor with NCMC.
A fee-based program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture a New Jersey 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
WED. JUNE 3 • 7PM EST Part 1—Practicing in Uncertainty
Guided meditation and talk on how to use meditation practice to handle anxiety and frustration in the face of continued social injustice amidst the stress caused by the pandemic. It will be followed by a Q&A.
(LIVE guided meditation, talk, and Q&A with Rebecca.) WED. JUNE 10 • 7PM EST Part 2—Cultivating Clarity
Guided meditation followed by a talk on how meditation can help us cultivate clear awareness of our body, mind and environment and allow joy into our heart when we are in a stressful situation.
(Recorded talk and meditation by Rebecca; LIVE discussion with Kazi.) WED. JUNE 17 • 7PM EST Part 3—Cultivating Compassion
Guided meditation followed by a talk on how we can use meditation to be fully present with ourselves and to cultivate compassion to ourselves and people around us.
(Recorded talk and meditation by Rebecca; LIVE discussion with Marcie.)
ABOUT THE TEACHER Dr Rebecca Li a Dharma heir in the Dharma Drum lineage of Chan Master Sheng Yen, started practicing meditation in 1995. She began her teacher’s training with him in 1999 to become a Dharma and meditation instructor. Later on, she trained with John Crook and Simon Child to lead intensive retreats and received full Dharma transmission from Child in 2016. Currently, she leads Chan retreats, teaches meditation and Dharma classes, and gives public lectures in North America and the U.K. She is the founder and guiding teacher of Chan Dharma Community and a sociology professor at The College of New Jersey, where she also serves as faculty director of the Alan Dawley Center for the Study of Social Justice. You can find her talks and writings at www.rebeccali.org. Rebecca is a Visiting Teacher with NCMC.
A program of Newark Center for Meditative Culture. Sponsored by the Victoria Foundation.
Mondays, May 18, June 1, and June 8: Enroll in as many FREE Zoom sessions as you like. You must register to access Meeting ID and Password:
10:00 AM Sessions
ENROLL AT: https://bit.ly/3bf8MTp 5/11 Re-Connecting with the Natural World (Cornelia)
5/18 Taking a Pause for Deep Relaxation (Andrea)
6/1 Chair Yoga: You Are Creator of Your Experience 1 (Ella)
6/8 Light Yoga: You Are Creator of Your Experience 2 (Ella)
1:00 PM Sessions ENROLL AT: https://bit.ly/2WBvmQQ 5/11 Meditative Resurrection of the Daily Constitutional (Kazi)
5/18 Yoga: Relax & Renew — Making the Mind-Body Connection (Fadja)
6/1 Yoga: The Breath — Elevator and Regenerator (Fadja)
6/8 Re-Connecting with Our Inner Wellness (Cornelia)
7:00 PM Sessions ENROLL AT: https://tinyurl.com/y8dafpmx 5/11 Building a Mindful Community (Kamilah & Andrea)
5/18 Mindfully Managed Stress: Using Your Toolbox (Kamilah)
6/1 Mindful Household Budgeting Workshop (Andrew)
6/8 Plant Spirit Meditation Medicine: Stress Resilience (Kazi)
For Stress Resilience, Well-Being, and Practice Development (Includes a Spanish-Language Offering)
Stress Resilience Meditation Series Postings on Wednesdays 4/15, 4/22, 4/29, 5/6
A free series of four short talks with guided meditations (10 minutes each). Giving clear and concise advice, reflections, and effective simple-to-do meditations, teacher Kazi will emphasize the concerns of stress on health and how meditation and mindfulness can help you meet the challenges of your day with strength, patience, and wisdom. No registration required. Subscribe to our YouTube Channel to get video post notifications.
Mindfulness Meditation & Qigong for Well-Being Workshop Postings on 4/16 & 4/23
In this free two-part workshop (approx. 1/2 hour each), teacher Khalil Maasi will show you quick and simple methods that you can integrate into your daily regimen to boost your well-being. Simple REGISTRATION REQUIRED to get ACCESS LINK to premier video.
Mini-Meditaciones Guidas Básicas Postings on Martes y Jueves 4/14, 4/16, 4/21, 4/23, 4/28, 4/30, 5/5, 5/7.
Una serie gratis de ocho charlas cortas y meditaciones guiadas (15 minutos cada uno) en español para no meditadores y principiantes enseñado por J. Javier Cruz que presentarán prácticas básicas de meditación y atención plena. El contenido será apropiado para adolescentes a través de personas de la tercera edad para ayudar a traer tranquilidad, reducir el miedo, reducir el estrés y abrir el corazón. Mire en grupos o solo. Se pueden proporcionar folletos en español. No se requiere registro. Suscribirse a nuestro canal de YouTube para recibir notificaciones sobre publicaciones de video.
Muscle-Tendon Changing Qigong for Wellness Workshop Postings on Thursdays 4/30 & 5/7
In this free two-part workshop (1/2 hour each), teacher Shaka Georges will introduce you to Muscle-Tendon Changing Qigong through a series of exercises that coordinate with the breath. When practiced consistently they can enhance physical health and mental well-being dramatically. This form of exercise can be a key element to strengthen muscles and tendons and to promote strength and flexibility, energy and stamina, and balance and coordination of the body. Simple REGISTRATION REQUIRED to get ACCESS LINK to premier video.
Visiting Teacher Shaka Georges (See bio at registration site.) Limited Space Up to 12 students. Dates Wednesdays, March 25 to April 29 (3/25,4/1, 4/8, 4/15, 4/22, 4/29) Time 6:30pm to 7:45pm Level Beginning to Intermediate Course Fee $60 paid in advance online. (Refund up to 4/28) Location NCMC, 2 Park Place, Newark, NJ 07102
Description Tai Chi is known as “meditation in motion.” The practice of Tai Chi emphasizes the awareness of our body, mind, and the world around us, as well as the interaction of the three systems. Tai Chi teaches you to pay attention to your movements and the transition of your movements. This allows you to remain cognizant and engaged as you carry on your day to day activities. You are therefore more likely to avoid dysfunctional habits such as poor posture and movements that may lead to falls or painful muscles. Additionally, studies have shown that this focus improves your mental health. The thinking, mindfulness, or awareness required and bolstered by Tai Chi has been shown to improve your cognitive ability and actually make your brain grow!
Objective To help develop an active lifestyle in order to improve health and wellness.
Week 1Breath and Posture: Practice of deep breathing and walking meditation. Week 2Relaxation and Movement: Standing meditation and Wave Hands Like Cloud. Week 3Qigong Exercise: Practice of the 8 Pieces of Brocade and the Muscle/Tendon Changing. Week 4Opening of Tai Chi: Breakdown of the Tai Chi form into individual postures. Week 5Tai Chi Short Form: The practice of the 37-Movement Short Form. Week 6Putting It all Together:
In-depth performance of the Short Form.
Choose Full or Half Day Participation: Full-day: 10:00am-4:30pm Half-day: 10:00am-2:00pm -or- 12:30pm-4:30pm
A donation-based Program, suggested:
Adults $30 full / $20 half Students 18+ $20 full / $15 half Youths 7-17 Free accompanied by adult.
In this day-long retreat, the invisible yet powerful dynamics in community life are discussed, encouraging practitioners to cultivate a keen awareness of them to engage in community life with wisdom and compassion. Dharma and meditation teacher Rebecca Li will lead this retreat that will include guided meditation, mindful movement practice, dharma talk, and discussion. As well, Leslie will lead a gentle yoga session in the morning while Kathryn Davis will lead a flowing qigong session in the afternoon.
Appropriate for beginners and experienced participants. Youths aged 7-17 who can sit quietly are welcome to attend with adults for free. Vegetarian lunch included. Wheelchair access, ground floor.
On February 7, 2020 the co-founder and chair of Newark Center of Meditative Culture, Marcie Barth, was interviewed by Kathryn Davis, host of the Heart of Mind program on Free Speech Radio WBAI 99.5FM in New York. The interview gives in a nutshell the work of NCMC.