Working with Golden and Dark Shadows

Shadow Retreat at Dharma Centre of Canada, Ontario

September 3 – September 9

Dharma Centre of Canada, 1886 Galway Road
Kinmount , ON K0M 2A0 Canada 
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Integrating our shadow may be the fastest way to unfold spiritually, and reduce our suffering. By its very nature, shadow work is not fun or pretty. It takes courage and fortitude. Once we decide to change, the shadow’s darkness moves towards greater and greater light in a process that is both beautiful and exciting.  Join Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat at the Dharma Centre of Canada in Ontario for this powerful five day shadow retreat.

REGISTER HERE

Integrating Our Challenging Shadow Aspects

Toronto meditation retreatMost people are drawn to meditation and mindfulness for the bliss experiences. These bliss experiences spur on beginning meditators to stay with the practice. But as the practice of meditation deepens, darker arisings can start to manifest. Rather than being discouraged by these experiences, it is helpful to see this as an opportunity to integrate these dark shadows into conscious awareness so that we may be free of their control.

If you’ve had these challenging arisings during your practice, you may have been tempted to quit meditating, or try a different method or a different teacher. This is understandable, as facing these dark shadows can be scary and unpleasant. However, if you can lean into these dark manifestations and hold the space openly around them, there can be great release and transformation.

Recognizing the contribution of the golden shadow – our ‘better angels’ – also helps ensure the practice stays joyful and doesn’t descend into nihilism.

The Teachers

Doug Duncan studied with the Ven. Namgyal Rinpoche from 1974 until the latter’s passing in 2003, received lay ordination from Namgyal Rinpoche in 1978 and is a lineage holder in that teaching. He also received teachings from the 16th Karmapa and other Tibetan Rinpoches, as well as from the Ven. Sayadaw U Thila Wunta.
  
Doug has been leading retreats, teaching and training in universal practices of spiritual unfoldment since 1985, helping thousands of students in numerous countries liberate themselves from suffering. His teaching also draws on contemporary psychology and science.

Catherine Pawasarat became a student of metaphysics, Western spiritual traditions, and the ayahuasca sacraments in the 1990s, and has trained daily with Acariya Doug Duncan since 1998 in an intensive spiritual apprenticeship that is rare in the modern West. She is a lineage holder of these teachings. She supports the spiritual underpinnings of social entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurship for spiritual practitioners with AkasaVision Consulting. With Doug she is co-founder of Clear Sky Retreat Center in the BC Rockies and runs their PlanetDharma website.

Shadow Work with Experienced Guides

Leaning into shadow work requires an experienced guide, someone who has navigated the path themselves and who can inspire confidence and offer support. Dharma teachers Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat have been offering this guidance to students for more than half a century between them. Integrating the shadow is one of the 4 pillars of their approach to spiritual awakening that informs their organization, Planet Dharma.

This retreat will utilize various shadow work techniques such as dream recall (including lessons in lucid dreaming) and working with masks to explore the topic and connect with transformative experience.

Vajrayana Empowerment Wongkur: Yamantaka

A Yamantaka Yab-Yum Wongur initiation ceremony will take place on Tuesday morning. The ceremony is only open to persons attending the retreat. (For more information about what a Wongkur is, click here.)

Yamantaka is considered to be the “tool man” of Vajrayana archetypes, because of his many hands and implements. Another name for Yamantaka is the “slayer of death”, as his yab-yum form is a wrathful and extremely energetic form that works well with the forces of both the Dark and Golden Shadows. Yamantaka is the energetic manifestation of Manjushri, the Buddha of Wisdom. Working with Yamataka helps to transform and is powerful enough to overcome and subdue even the most powerful negative emotions.

REGISTER HERE

Course Outcomes:

  • Learn about the unconscious aspects of consciousness and how they influence our behaviours, habits and life choices
  • Better understand how these aspects show up as both positive potential (golden shadows) and challenging forces (dark shadow)
  • Learn practices for integrating you golden and dark shadow aspects
  • Gain confidence in addressing challenging aspects of your life
  • Generate more calm, concentration and joyful energy

Find additional information about the retreat here:

dharmacentre.org

 

DREAM YOGA – 5 classes in studying dreams and improving dream recall


The first and last Thursday of each month. April. May. June. 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM

Place: Village Healing Centre, 240 Roncesvalles Avenue, Toronto M6R 1M3

Room: 2nd Floor

Dream Yoga begins with the realization that the illusions we face in our dreams are often the same ones we face in our waking life. Studying the symbols and themes that appear in our dreams can help unlock some of our shadows and help connect us to our unconscious. Instead of being disconnected from ourselves, in Dream Yoga we turn our mind into a laboratory. We learn to separate from phenomena in dream life so we can also separate from phenomena in waking life. Together we will share suggestions for improving dream recall and aim for greater transformation through our dream life.

These classes include basic mindfulness techniques, including noticing thoughts, feelings, and perception, but are “beyond mindfulness” in that they include challenges to some of the limiting observations. They are great for people who have tried a bit of mindfulness meditation but now would like a bit deeper dive. Each class includes a 30-minute silent meditation practice time. These meditations will support the exploration of one of the precepts and will include a variety of meditation techniques.
April 19
May 3
May 17
June 7
June 21

Cost: Dana – Practice generosity by paying what you value

BYOC: Bring Your Own Cushion (anything to sit on the floor with) or sit on one of our chairs

Teacher: Linda Hochstetler has been studying and practicing a variety of meditation practices (mindfulness, Zen, and Vajrayana Buddhism) for more than 30 years. She is a meditation teacher in the lineage of Namgyal Rinpoche (one of the first North American lineage holders) and considers Senseis Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat her primary gurus. She follows their tradition of encouraging exploration of everyday life beyond the spiritual realms, particularly while living in the city. She has completed many silent meditation retreats, including a 2-month silent retreat in 2009. She weaves together her personal meditation experiences, her professional background as a palliative care social worker, her years as a mother and step-mother, and her passion for awakening in this life into each of her classes, and invites you to join her in your own explorations.

Teacher

DEATH, DYING, & COMMUNITY

A personal exploration into end of life tasks

The last Thursday of each month.

Last Thursday of each month, 7pm to 8.30pm

Place: Village Healing Centre, 240 Roncesvalles Avenue, Toronto M6R 1M3

Room: 3rd Floor, Room #5 in corner; meet in the 3rd floor waiting room till 7:00
April 26
May 31
June 28

Have you spent much time thinking about your own mortality? Have you thought about how to prepare for the kind of death you’d like to have? Have you taken the practical steps to make sure your loved ones aren’t stuck wrapping up your affairs? As a Buddhist Lay Chaplain and Registered Social Worker, I would like to bring my personal interests and professional skills as a guide to these profound discussions. If you’d like to join of group of spiritually-minded persons to explore your options and help motivate yourself to prepare better, consider making a monthly commitment to joining us.

Possible topics to cover in 2017: Advanced Care planning, financial wills, prayers at time of death, physical signs of death approaching, sharing caregiving, fears at death, funeral options, and what ever else comes up in the group.

Dāna:

Awaken in Toronto classes are offered on the basis of dāna. The teacher offers classes without any expectation of compensation, as an act of trust of generosity. We encourage you to reciprocate and give generously to the teacher in return, whatever that looks like in your situation.

Teacher:

LindaThis class will be taught by Linda Hochstetler, a psychotherapist, mother, and Death Cafe host. She has also been a meditation student of Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat for more than 20 years, and is a Buddhist Lay Chaplain. She was a manager of a social enterprise for 13 years, and helped the Clear Sky Meditation and Study Centre generate a balanced budget for the first time for their Farm Social Enterprise.

Location: 

Classes are held at the Village Healing Centre (240 Roncesvalles Avenue) in the Middle Room on the Main Floor, opposite Yoga Village. Enter through the door to the church via the parking lot.

MEDITATION PRACTICE TIME – a group weekend meditation retreat

Friday, March 16, 2018 8 PM to Sunday, March 18, 2018, 3PM. 

Much of what we see and hear on the news and social media is all about doom and gloom. Does this feed your own experience of anxiety and fear on a daily basis, and do you desire a transformation away from these negative emotional states? Are you looking to rise above the mundane world to find meaning in today’s world? Are you struggling under your own inner fears and the limiting ideas that hold you back?

Register here:
https://www.dharmacentre.org/hope–fearlessness.html

Facing your fears head on is necessary to push through to see the spaciousness behind the anxiety and fear. One method to face fears and invite you into new territory is to develop the 4 enlightened activities in every day life. A second method is through systematically challenging the ego to take it outside of its normal comfort zone. Following the steps laid out by Sensei Doug Duncan in his book, Dharma If You Dare, these challenges help you transcend your ego’s need for security and comfort and open up new possibilities for you.

Persons attending this retreat will attend classes inviting them to explore these 2 methods, both on and off the cushion throughout the weekend. Through meditation practice and personalized activities, participants will explore where they get stuck in everyday life and how to apply an attitude of fearlessness to these struggles.


The first class will begin on Friday evening at 8:00pm, and the retreat will end at 3:00pm on Sunday. Silence will be maintained throughout the retreat, with plenty of opportunity for questions and discussions at the group sessions.

Registration:
https://www.dharmacentre.org/hope–fearlessness.html

DEATH, DYING, & COMMUNITY

A personal exploration into end of life tasks

The last Thursday of each month.

Thursday March 29th, 7pm to 8.30pm

Place: Village Healing Centre, 240 Roncesvalles Avenue, Toronto M6R 1M3

Room: 3rd Floor, Room #5 in corner; meet in the 3rd floor waiting room till 7:00

Have you spent much time thinking about your own mortality? Have you thought about how to prepare for the kind of death you’d like to have? Have you taken the practical steps to make sure your loved ones aren’t stuck wrapping up your affairs? As a Buddhist Lay Chaplain and Registered Social Worker, I would like to bring my personal interests and professional skills as a guide to these profound discussions. If you’d like to join of group of spiritually-minded persons to explore your options and help motivate yourself to prepare better, consider making a monthly commitment to joining us.

Possible topics to cover in 2017: Advanced Care planning, financial wills, prayers at time of death, physical signs of death approaching, sharing caregiving, fears at death, funeral options, and what ever else comes up in the group.

Dāna:

Awaken in Toronto classes are offered on the basis of dāna. The teacher offers classes without any expectation of compensation, as an act of trust of generosity. We encourage you to reciprocate and give generously to the teacher in return, whatever that looks like in your situation.

Teacher:

LindaThis class will be taught by Linda Hochstetler, a psychotherapist, mother, and Death Cafe host. She has also been a meditation student of Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat for more than 20 years, and is a Buddhist Lay Chaplain. She was a manager of a social enterprise for 13 years, and helped the Clear Sky Meditation and Study Centre generate a balanced budget for the first time for their Farm Social Enterprise.

Location: 

Classes are held at the Village Healing Centre (240 Roncesvalles Avenue) in the Middle Room on the Main Floor, opposite Yoga Village. Enter through the door to the church via the parking lot.

Inner Economics: Cultivating an Empowered Relationship with Money

Join Behavioral Money Coach, Karen McAllister, for a lunchtime conversation about money. Unravel the mystery of money and learn to understand why it has such a hold on us. Learn about the innovative, therapeutic and practical money coaching tools and support through an exploration of the eight Money Archetypes (Innocent, Victim, Warrior, Martyr, Fool, Creator/Artist, Tyrant and Magician). And explore simple mindfulness techniques to deepen your awareness about money.

As a result of attending this talk, you will be able to:

  • Understand how money and the brain relate to each other
  • Understand how well-being and income speak to each other
  • Understand that our economic reality is really an inside job
  • Understand the importance of making your unconscious money patterns conscious
  • Understand the origin of your money triggers
  • Learn some mindfulness techniques to help recognise and work with these triggers
  • Identify conflicting emotions around the topic of money
  • Identify the money archetypes working in your life right now.