Over the past decade, I have attended annual and sometimes bi-annual retreats mainly at Gaia House but also in the US.
I am on the UK Register for Mindfulness Teachers and am also a Supervisor with the Mindfulness Network CIC. I deliver CMI Training which includes training our trainers. To give expression to CMI’s vision, I forge partnerships with organisations working at the frontline of underserved communities
My main work currently is training mindfulness teachers and trainers for CMI. Our approach is influenced by the Centre for Mindfulness Massachusetts where I’ve undertaken my training. I am also responsible for our partnership with Chrysalis Academy (CA), a South African organisation that works with marginalised young people. Together with CA, we are developing a Mindfulness Teacher Training programme that departs from the trend in the West, taking account of the wisdom traditions of SA, the years of experience community workers bring to the circle, and the delivery or mindfulness interventions fitting to a SAn context.
I also train yoga teachers and yoga therapists, and am an Ayurvedic practitioner (MSc, Ayurvedic Medicine). I am currently undertaking a PhD in Mindfulness at SOAS.
The cultivation of mindfulness along with equanimity, respect, non-greed and non-hatred seems an antidote to this time of advanced consumerism. In a world of dramatic climatic change alongside socio-political and economic injustices, mindfulness seems to offer a prospect of remembering our humanity, meeting adversity skilfully and possibly even flourishing. Mindfulness fosters a sense of community, agency and wholesomeness; it brings perspective to changing the things we must, with radical compassion and wisdom. Occupying the moment, acting with skill, and a clear mind/heart brings power.
The UK Network’s emphasis on rigourous training, ongoing practice and ethical foundations are significant at this time of popularisation of mindfulness. Building a community of practice based on the GPGs provides a common language and a shared vision. The value placed on mentoring and supervision promotes support for teachers and trainers and underlines safe teaching.