Norman Fischer and Rachel Cowan: Training in Compassion - Cultivating a Tender Heart

A Garrison Institute Foundations of Contemplative Practice Retreat 

Open to the public

Recent research shows that meditative practices produce tangible benefits for personal and professional life, ranging from stress reduction to improved self-awareness, emotional connection and acceptance. Such practices also foster greater empathy, generosity and compassion. Within this context, this retreat will focus on lojong, a Tibetan Buddhist practice that involves generating compassion by working with short aphorisms (called slogans). This practice is popular because it is practical and fits very well into ordinary life.

Seen through the lens of their respective traditions, the teachers develop a highly accessible approach. Zen teacher Norman Fischer offers his commentary on the slogans and applies Zen wisdom to them, showing how well they fit in that tradition. He also sets the stage for considering the slogans in the context of resonant practices in a variety of spiritual contexts.  Rabbi Rachel Cowan brings insights into how the Jewish tradition utilizes its form of compassionate action to enrich our lives and the lives of the people around us. The program is open to all. Much of the retreat will be in silence.

About the teachers:

Norman FischerZoketsu Norman Fischer is a poet, priest, and a former abbot of San Francisco Zen Center. He is founder and teacher of the Everyday Zen Foundation dedicated to sharing Zen teaching and practice widely with the world. His latest book is Training in Compassion: Zen Teachings on the Practice of Lojong. He has also written Taking Our Places: The Buddhist Path to Growing Up and his latest volume of poetry is The Strugglers.





Rabbi Rachel CowanRabbi Rachel Cowan is former director of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, an organization that works with rabbis, cantors, educators and lay leaders to deepen the spiritual dimension of contemporary Judaism. Rabbi Cowan has been widely published in many books and publications including Growing Up Yanqui and Mixed Blessings (the latter with Paul Cowan).

June 27th, 2014 3:00 PM   through   June 29th, 2014 3:00 PM
Phone: 845-424-4800
Open to the public