Write a summary for “Thich Nhat Hanh in conversation with David Suzuki”, at least 50 words.
Write a summary for “Love Letter to the Earth”, at least 50 words.
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According to ContemplativeMind.org.
Contemplative Practices cultivate a critical, first-person focus, sometimes with direct experience as the object, while at other times concentrating on complex ideas or situations. Incorporated into daily life, they act as a reminder to connect to what we find most meaningful.
Contemplative practices are practical, radical, and transformative, developing capacities for deep concentration and quieting the mind in the midst of the action and distraction that fills everyday life.
This state of calm centeredness is an aid to exploration of meaning, purpose and values. Contemplative practices can help develop greater empathy and communication skills, improve focus and attention, reduce stress and enhance creativity, supporting a loving and compassionate approach to life.
Contemplative practices are widely varied; for an illustration of just some of the many types of practices, see the “Tree of Contemplative Practices” on this website. They come in many forms, from traditions all over the world.
Examples of contemplative practices include various forms of meditation, focused thought, time in nature, writing, contemplative arts, and contemplative movement.
Some people find that active, physical practices, like yoga or tai chi, work best for them.
Others find nourishment in still and silent practices, like mindfulness meditation. Some people find that rituals rooted in a religious or cultural tradition soothe their soul. And not all practices are done in solitude–groups and communities can engage in practices that support reflection in a social context.
We encourage you to discover for yourself how contemplative practice, in whatever form is best for you, can enrich your life and work.
For this assignment:
Complete the first person experiential practice. Full guidelines here. (Links to an external site.)
1. Reflection on First Person Experience: Respond to the following in 250-500 words:
What activity did you choose? (please choose meditation if possible) How often did you practice?
Have you ever meditated before, practiced mindful awareness, or taken time for self-care or wellness?
What did you notice about your ability to sustain attention on one thing? Was this surprising to you? Explain.
Where did you notice your breath? Was it difficult or easy to keep your attention on the breath? Explain.
What was easy for you?
What was most challenging? What did you find yourself resisting?
Did the activity have any impact on the rest of your day or week? Did you notice anything different about your ability to focus?
Connection to Research
Watch this mini-lecture: Contemplative Environmentalism Part 1 (Nature-Based Mindfulness) (Links to an external site.):
3 new things you learned
3 questions you have, either for clarification or for your own further research.
You can, of course, add any additional thoughts or links to other resources that might be relevant to our course of study, but that is optional.
DeMotts writes, “As Thich Nhat Hanh reminds us, ‘When we offer peaceful energy to others, we’re nourished by the peaceful energy they reflect back.
The collective energy strengthens and nourishes us, helping us continue on our path of awareness.’
This may be even more true in an environmental context, than in a human one; what we offer to nature is always returned to us, often in ways we fail to notice” (31).
To what extent do you agree or disagree with DeMotts’s assessment?
In 250-300 words, make connections to today’s mini-lecture and/or 1-2 texts from previously assigned readings (you can agree, disagree, or qualify) via paraphrase, quotation, and interpretation.
How did your first-person experience coincide with the authors’ claims, suggestions, or critiques? How your experience disprove any claims?
Considerations for Further Research: Write 1-2 sentences.
What additional questions and/or concerns do you have?
What are you interested in learning more about?
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