Bookends to death - building a bigger container of love by Gaynor Quilter 
 
I’ve been reflecting recently on how different my experience has been in sitting with how I feel over the loss of my younger brother in May this year. 
 
I came to meditation practice after the death of my Mum in 2005. I’d been on a Mindfulness and Compassion course in Brighton run by Suryacitta. The meditation and and Voice dialogue practice, allowed me to gain some relief and release from my early rage. 
Dear reader, this post is an very small extract taken from Suryacitta's latest book, The Happiness and Contentment Workbook - Embracing your Natural Joy. It is packed with short simple effective exercises such as the one below. The book is an actual workbook in which, you write your own responses to a series of questions and prompts, and it is also beautifully illustrated.  
 
(EXERCISE) The assertive self – PART 1 
 
You probably know already if your assertive self is present in your life, but we can explore the issue and become clearer and more honest about it. The assertive self is often banished when we are young as we don’t want to disappoint our parents and guardians, so we learn to please them so that we are accepted. 
When we don’t assert ourselves we tend not to get what is due to us and tend to feel bad about ourselves. We may go over a situation in our mind time and time again thinking, "Why didn't I say that?" or "If only I'd done this". This can lead to feelings of blame, depression and anxiety. 
Anxiety, is it true or false? 
 
We all get anxious, but very few of us know what it is and how to deal with it. I find that anxiety is one of the main reasons people come along and try meditation - and they hope it will just go away. However, anxiety has many causes, though the experience of anxiety itself is similar and recognisable irrespective of the cause. 
 
Anxiety has a bad press and I can see how and why that is. To simplify things here there are two types of anxiety, false anxiety and true anxiety. 
 
Fall Awake by Samantha Hall 
 
Experience it all in a lifetime 
It – who and what we truly are 
Infinite Treasures of love in all it’s expressions 
- compassion, gratitude, ease, joy, ecstasy, peace 
The highly sensitive person and meditation by Liz Sparkes 
 
So, you think you might be in Hufflepuff? Don’t worry, I’ll talk you through it. 
I remember breathing a sigh of relief 8 years ago when the counsellor I was seeing told me that the way I experienced the world was quite normal, and actually being highly sensitive was a personality trait. Dr Elaine Aron describes this trait as a variation in the nervous system and brain, that allows subtleties and details to be processed at a very deep level. This can often feel like quite a burden in the modern fast paced world. Highly sensitive people will often be the first to shed a tear and emotional experiences can completely overwhelm and hang around for days. 
Baked Celariac 
 
As many of you know by now on our silent meditation retreats Gaynor gets asked about time and again about a number of recipes so she is getting a book together. She is also sharing some here on our bloge page so f you have sampled Gaynor's cooking on one of our Mindfulness retreats then you can make you own via the recipe below.  
 
Nan’s Ginger Cake 
 
I loved my Nan’s ginger cake - she had a magical jar of stemmed ginger that made it taste exotic! Hard to get in the 1960’s. You can add crystallised ginger if that easier to find. 
 
The recipe is rich and light at the same time, unlike the shop bought ones that were always a-bit claggy! 
By Sangharakshita 
The world has been turned upside down and our assumptions about ouraelves and the world have beeen severly challenged. One of our assumptions on a global and personal level is that we are in charge. I run my life, we run the world. Well I am afraid the truth is some thing different, more scary and liberating at the same time.  
On our recent online meditation retreats and online mindfulness courses I have been reading out a poem by my teacher called Life is King. You can read it below and let me know your responses.  
 
by Suryacitta 
As time goes on and more and more of us embrace virtual learning we too are turning many of our courses to work online. We now have online mindfulness courses which people can join from anywhere in the world. These are live and interactive with myself and work very well. We also run online meditation retreats and these have been one of the big surprises as they are the most popular of all. These online Meditation retreats are run over a Saturday morning betweeen 10:00 - 13:00 and have a very simple format.  
By Gaynor 
The Second most popular recipe on our meditation retreats is Spicy Sweet Potato Soup. I love the coulor of this and with a little bread and cheese is just so yummy.  
 
Spicy Sweet Potato Soup 
 
Chop 2 onions and Heat a splash of olive oil. gentle cook for about 10 minutes or until the onions are beautifully golden. 
By Gaynor 
Over the many years of cooking for meditation retreats, people keep asking for my recipes. After 40 years of being a vegetarian most are adaptations of ones I have tried on my meat eating family and are now favourites with them. 
 
As an adult I know that the most important thing about food for me has always been the colour. 
So my working title is “The Colourful Retreat Cookbook” 
Panic Disorder and Mindfulness Meditation – A Story by Roger Woolman 
 
I have come to learn that everybody has a story and often a desire to tell it. I have always been reluctant to tell this part of my story. 
I started to suffer from panic attacks around 23 or 24 years ago. At that time, and for two or three years after they started, I didn't know what a panic attack was; I hadn't heard of nor come across them in my life. This may have allowed the problem to embed, to become the norm; either way, they were a significant problem for me by the end of the 1990s. 

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Community drop ins - last Friday of the month 

Building a Mindfulness Community of people who wish to practice together. 
 
IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL DROP INS 
Drop in's are the last Friday of the month. These meditation drop-ins are both in-person and broadcast online. We been running these since 2013.  
Dates for 2020:  
25 September, 30 October, 27th Novevember. No December drop in 
Click HERE for info and booking 
 
The usual structure for the evening is to begin with a meditation, followed by teaching and discussion, if you have questions from your own home practice please ask. We finish with a second meditation. 
 
The sessions run from 6.30-8.00. The cost is £5.00 
Click HERE to book or more info 
 
Please text Gaynor on 07837 866 619 or Suryacitta on 07908 957 100 
 
or email us at info@mindfulnesscic.co.uk. 
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