Wellbeing ~ Self Awareness ~ Transformation ~ Community
We gather because we believe that by weaving the threads of our lives together, in reverence for the sacredness of all of life, we can heal the wounds and divides within ourselves and our culture. Through conscious relating, social change, embodiment, and bearing witness, we intend to consciously awaken, peacefully create change, and to not just survive but thrive. All people are welcome to experience the teaching, scriptures and poetry, movement and breath, meditation, and the experience of ending in small sacred circles to share our stories, traditions, and acceptance. We draw from the wisdom practices and teachings of Zen, Buddhism, Classical Yoga, Christianity, and Bhakti. We share stories, ceremonies, and traditions to honor life and each other.
What good is living if we cannot experience unconditional positive regard for our true selves and share it with each other? We do this by seeing and hearing one another as whole beings, practicing active listening and accepting and supporting each other exactly as they are, without judgment. We encourage authentic relating about what is real. It’s about what you are feeling and experiencing in the bodily felt sense. It’s about your actual thoughts and emotions in the moment. It’s about the nature of connectedness when you look into the eyes of another being and remain deeply aware of your own center.
We cultivate a greater relationship with the temple of our being — the body. This may be through song, dance, movement, chanting, or breathwork. Awakening to our embodiment in these ways, we start to learn how to make conscious choices based on the wisdom of our body.
Becoming a Witness
We practice letting go of fixed ideas of ourselves, others, and the world. We continually enter into the mystery of “not knowing”, setting aside fixed points of view. We honor this through awareness of our inner world. It is where we can find security in our sense of self, the inherent interconnection of all living beings, and the place of the deepest rest where self-interest has not yet entered. The flow over stagnation of not favoring any one thing over another allows you to be within a boundless web of interconnection and to expand your circle of caring.
With education, community, and accountability, we can engage in difficult conversations and take action that can lead to social change. It has been done before, and it will happen again. It’s how society has changed not only laws, but cultural norms and expectations, leading to more acceptance and tolerance. This includes but not limited to, environmental change, racial justice, economic justice, and cultivating inclusivity to marginalized identities.
We have a (current max of 15 adults and 5 youth) and unlimited live stream. Any questions please call the institute direct at 616-719-2899. We follow all the current safety guidelines and will communicate when more in-person availability opens up.
We are a 501 (3) ©, we are supported by donations and our generous donors. There is no cost to attend. Children welcome.
Kara McNabb | April 18th, 2021 | Embodied Dance
Kara McNabb is a traditional naturopath with a focus on somatic therapies. She helps people find freedom through the exploration of unconscious limiting beliefs and with partnership from earth’s abundant medicine to find healing in our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual selves.
In this week’s Sacred Sunday, we’ll explore our own expressions of movement. We’ll move through a variety of dance experiments, some that will be silly and others that will be self-focused.
One of my greatest teachers in embodiment was and is dance. To move my body in dance was a measure of myself. It wasn’t a measure of achievement or mastery, nor failure or worth. It was a gauge of my own personal definition of freedom.
Freedom can take on myriad forms. Do I feel free to move comfortably right now? Do I feel free to fully explore this emotion right now? Do I feel free to move in this particular way right now? And so on.
Yes or no, the felt sense moves me toward insight, about myself and about my relationship to my environment, and ultimately into presence. Sometimes the dance itself becomes the facilitator of freedom.
Dance and movement can spark deep discomfort in many, and I can assure you, this will be a lovely space to start your own experiment with dancing. No skill is required. Your dance may be to sit in still self-observation. There is no prescription for what dance must look like or feel like.
Raechel Morrow | April 25th, 2021 | Not Belonging Hurts: The Power of Connection
Explore your human need to belong and how you belong to your unique self. Brené Brown offers insight into two aspects of true belonging; one being that you can share your most authentic self and to be who you are. Connection and belonging runs deep within human nature and at the heart of our time together will be curiosity. The more curious you can be with yourself, the more curious you can be with others. Once we understand and accept ourselves, we can share our most authentic self with the world. We will practice individually and collectively acceptance and openness to whatever shows up.
Ally | May 2nd, 2021 | TBD
Andrea Sulak | May 16th, 2021 | Chakras and Your Mental Health
The chakra system governs your subtle body energy which regulates how you interact and flow through life. If your chakras are blocked or moving slowly day to day living can be a real struggle. Many mental health issues can be explained by excessive or deficient energy flowing through your chakras. Join Andrea Sulak as she discusses the relationship between the chakras and mental health