written by Suryacitta and Gaynor 
Why we don’t teach Auto Pilot on our Mindfulness and Compassion Courses 
The design for the Mindfulness and Compassion – Vision and Transformation 8 session course we teach was created in 2004 whilst I was living at Vajraloka retreat centre. I started teaching the course at the Brighton Buddhist Centre from 2005. This has been shared by me and teachers trained by mindfulness cic with 1000 students since. 
On leaving Vajraloka I looked at MBSR structure and there was one theme that I felt uncomfortable about, which was the Auto Pilot session, 
written by Priscilla Bianchi - from Guatamala 
I am a teacher, quilt artist, and Industrial psychologist from Guatemala and for most of my adult life, I led a very hectic life. Always busy working long hours, teaching, studying, multitasking, experimenting with a diverse range of arts and crafts, jumping from one thing to another, always in a hurry, without pause. For 14 years, I 
written by Samantha Hall 
What’s at the end of the rainbow? by Sam Hall 
I have always loved reading but had never considered writing, so was as surprised as anyone to hear myself announcing, in late 2018, how I was going to write a children’s fantasy adventure story in which I could share my passion for mindfulness
written by Jayne Pigford 
Wow, I’ve just written a book! Well, I say ‘just’ but it took me nearly 20 years; about ten writing most of it then another ten editing and ‘finishing’ it; I was terrified of actually getting it out there as my inner critic was harsh…‘People will think you’re a narcissistic nut-case!’… ‘Who do you think you are?!’…Having grown up in a pretty traumatised family in 1970’s working-class Yorkshire, criticism was more common than praise and we didn’t write books in my neighbourhood! 
Being in nature - an antidote to suffering on all levels. By Gaynor Quilter 
When I decided on 18th December 2019 I was going to take a "being in nature" picture on my daily walks. I had absolutely no idea of what was going to unfold. Taking Jaya and Bankei (our 2 Border Collies) for their daily walk was non negotiable, so it was easy to say I am taking a mindful moment. So I set the intention, walked, stopped, paused, clicked and posted. That’s how my “being in nature” postings everyday for over a year began. 
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 blog page so for those who 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! 

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having fun in the kitchen over lockdown 
Suryacitta on Mindfulness Unleashed 24/7 
showing you how to stop disturbing yourself 
Try a Morning meditation 

Community drop ins - last Friday of the month 

Building a Mindfulness Community of people who wish to practice together. 
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 2021:  
27 August, 24 September, 29 October, 26th November  
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 7.50 
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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