Many of my clients find that meditation can be a powerful ally in their therapeutic process, and meditation training can be part of your treatment plan if you choose. Some clients work with me exclusively for meditation training.
I started meditating in 2001, as a way to address my own suffering, beginning with a 10-day silent vipassana retreat. After this profound experience, and many stops and starts, I met my teacher Noah Levine and co-founded DIY Dharma with some friends in 2005, which has grown into a mutually supportive Buddhist community in Vancouver. My masters thesis was about people’s lived experience of using meditation as a therapeutic aid in overcoming substance use. I have been mentored in the past by psychologist and Buddhist teacher Tara Brach, and currently work with James Baraz, one of the founding teachers at Spirit Rock Meditation Centre.
Much of life escapes our attention – it’s as if we are asleep to our own experience. Meditation can help us to wake up to the mystery of life, and to greet it with understanding and empathy. We are freed from simply reacting, and instead slowing down and choosing how we want to respond, think, and act. By bringing greater awareness and acceptance to our inner experience, we can empower ourselves to create healing and liberation from within by becoming less reactive to habitual patterns, and more responsive and intentional in our actions towards ourselves and others.
I met and became friends with Noah Levine in 2005, and after doing a number of retreats with him, was trained by him in Los Angeles as a meditation facilitator. I went on to create a weekly meditation group for service providers in Vancouver’s downtown eastside, and provide meditation workshops for helping professionals, including half-day and full-day trainings, and residential retreats with teens via Inward Bound Mindfulness Education (iBme). I now host meditation retreats for the general public as well, and for organizations. I am one of the lead teachers for the Enso Society’s teen meditation program (see this video)