Why a secular, evidence-based mindfulness practice?
The Contemplative Humanism Group uses a series of mindfulness protocols, such as the ones developed by Jon Kabat-Zinn in his Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.
As such, it is recognized as an appropriate complementary treatment for a variety of challenges known to have emotionally-related components.
Because it is secularly-based, it can readily be adopted by all persons, regardless of belief system including those without a belief system.
As an evidence-based program, participants can be assured that the protocols engaged in have been scientifically validated and are known to reduce stress and increase vitality.
What we do
Practice is based on different forms of mindfulness including those involved in sitting and walking meditations as well as those embodied in Hatha Yoga.
Meetings always begin with a lightly guided meditation, suitable for those who have never meditated before and those who have developed their own practices.
We then transition to very basic, beginner level Hatha Yoga. Our goal is to use the positions as an additional form of body awareness, which is especially useful for persons who have difficulty using seated meditation as their sole form of practice.
On a rotating basis, we engage in a variety of other practices including compassion developing exercises in mindful living as well as our signature contemplative exercises.
The center of our community comes from our mindful contemplation and discussion of the ideas of those who have trodden the path of life before us or are fellow travelers with us in the present.
By sharing member-selected quotations from a wide variety of Humanistic, Western, and Buddhist traditions prior to meetings, an opportunity is created for attendees to share their thoughts, feelings, and concerns about the contemplation in a supportive environment during the group.
In addition, time is always reserved for mindful dialog between attendees regarding issues related to difficulties in establishing and maintaining their own mindfulness practices.
What do I need to bring for my first meeting?
- Yourself, wearing comfortable clothing.
- A yoga mat if you have one, but no worries—we have plenty of them.
- The ability to sit in a chair or in a wheelchair. While several group exercises involve standing, walking, beginning level yoga poses, or sitting on a cushion, everyone is encouraged to enter practice at their own level of ability and that level of ability is honored and respected.
We meet on the first, third, fifth Wednesdays of each month from 7:30 – 9:00 PM for practice. We end each practice with time to socialize over light refreshments.
Our group meets in the main meeting room of the Ethical Culture Society of Bergen County.
To defray costs there is a suggested contribution of $5 for participants.
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