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Sacred Earth Sangha Speaker Series: Thanissara – Being a Sacred Warrior: Lessons from Standing Rock – 12/14

The Sacred Earth Sangha at New York Insight Meditation Center is a community formed around deep practice and conscious engagement of the challenges of the climate crisis. Please join hosts Sebene Selassie, Lin Wang Gordon and Jon Aaron, as we invite monthly guest speakers and teachers to explore together what it means to meet our current reality with kindness and clarity, compassion and wisdom.

Registration through the event link.

Mon. Dec. 14, 2020, 7-8:30pm ESTAn Evening with Thanissara – Register
Being a Sacred Warrior: Lessons from Standing Rock
Mon. Jan. 11, 2021, 7-8:30pm ESTDekila Chungyalpa

Awake in the Wild: Daily Nature Meditation Series – 1/23/2021

Building Momentum through Daily Practice

An Online Practice Community

My teacher Mark Coleman and my colleagues who graduated from Mark’s Awake in the Wild Nature Meditation Teacher training are offering a daily nature meditation series. Mark will be teaching Mondays through Fridays, and my colleagues will be teaching on weekends.

Join our Awake in the Wild community to start your day with mindful awareness. These one-hour online daily meditations will be a support for all who like to be in nature and feel the support of meditation in community with the support of the natural world.

I will be teaching on Saturday, 1/23/2021 and Sunday, 4/11/2021 at 10:30am EST. Find out about the schedule and more.

Register through

Climate Resilience: Transforming Difficult Emotions into Compassion and Wisdom – Sat. 3/6/2021

Date: Saturday, March 6, 2021

Time: 10am – 1pm EST

“Action on behalf of life transforms. Because the relationship between self and the world is reciprocal, it is not a question of first getting enlightened or saved and then acting. As we work to heal the earth, the earth heals us.”

― Robin Wall Kimmerer, Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and the Teachings of Plants

Overwhelming by the devastation and destruction of life all around the globe and worry about what is yet to come? Do you feel guilt and shame that you’re not doing enough? Do you find yourself either want to move into actions with rage or do you feel grief and powerless and just want to give up on taking any actions?

Grief, anxiety, anger, despair are normal emotions as the impact of climate change become more evident and frequent in our life. How do we be with these difficult emotions and stay grounded while absorbing the implications of these events? How do we transform grief, anxiety, anger, despair into love, courage, compassion, and equanimity, so we can sustain our engagement without burning out or tuning out? How do we feel empowered in our response?

In this workshop, we will explore tools and resources that can help us stay with difficult emotions, and process them individually and collectively. This is not a workshop about what actions we need to take, but rather how we want to ground ourselves so that whatever actions we want to take, they will be rooted in compassion, wisdom and equanimity. We’ll find that personal transformation and collective transformation are intricately linked, and that when we work on one, it will inevitably impact the other.

7/30 – 8/22/2021: Inner and Outer Nature: Ecodharma Training Retreat

Date: Friday, July 30, 2021 – Sunday, August 22, 2021

Location: Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center, Jamestown, Colorado

Buddhist teachers David Loy and Johann Robbins will be leading this retreat and I will be assisting them.

This is an experiential immersion into ecodharma, specifically for dharma teachers, dharma leaders, and committed practitioners. Our sense of separation from nature is at the root of the ecological crises our civilization faces, and ecodharma is a path of deconstructing that separation, reuniting our inner nature with outer nature. Ecodharma practice is about healing our relationship with the rest of the natural world, so that an appropriate and authentic response can arise, which unifies our personal and spiritual transformation with social engagement. In this time of pandemic, and ecological and social crisis, the earth calls upon us to do what we can in response.

More details to come.

Sacred Earth Sangha: Meet Up in Central Park – Sun. 10/12/2020, 10am-1pm

Sacred Earth Sangha at New York Insight Meditation Center

For the October Sacred Earth Sangha meeting, join us in Central Park to immerse in nature practices to connect with the outdoor environment and your senses. From focusing on a single leaf to the expansive sky, our sense of separateness falls away when we turn our attention toward our experiences intimately.

We will practice from 10am-12pm, then share lunch together as a community.

For planning purposes, please register in advance so we know to expect you. The event will meet rain or shine. However, in case of cancellation due to particular weather conditions, we will send an email notification at least 24 hours in advance.

We look forward to exploring our inner and outer world together with you in nature.


Central Park (100th St. and Central Park West)
We will remain 6 feet apart in gathering and will wear masks. Please cancel and request a refund if you experience any symptoms listed by the CDC as Covid symptoms. You will be requested to sign a health declaration form and a waiver.

Maximum participants: 20 people

Please bring:
-Mask (Bandana and loose face coverings are ineffective in preventing in-person transmissions. Please wear a regular mask to care for the community).
-A brown bag lunch
-Sitting prop if needed (bench, yoga mat, etc.)

Fee by donation: Suggested starting donation is $15.

Register through NYIMC.

Sun. 9/27/2020: Fall Foliage Hike to Hook Mountain, Rockland Lake State Park (on the Long Path)

“In every walk in Nature, one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir, naturalist

Enjoy a fall day in the peaceful beauty of the Hudson Valley with a guided, meditative hike to connect with nature and ourselves. This hike takes the scenic route along the Long Path—into the Rockland Lake State Park and up Hook Mountain. Enjoy expansive vistas only 1.5 hours outside of the city, and an extraordinary space designated by the New York Audubon Society as an Important Bird Area.

Much of the hike will be observed in silence but we will integrate meditation practices throughout the day — allowing our senses to come alive and our sense of separateness fall away. Turning our attention inward allows us to become receptive to both of our outer and inner experiences. The dynamic outdoor conditions will be a perfect container for mindfulness practices.

The hike will be approximately from 10am – 3pm.

Who: Lin Gordon

When: 9:45am-3pm, Sunday, September 27, 2020

Where: Rockland Lake State Park, South Entrance on Route 9W and Lake Road, Valley Cottage, NY, 10989. (Use “753 Route 9W” for Rockland Roots GPS. The park entrance should be one block ahead). It’s parking field #4. There is a picnic table under a big tree near the toll booth of the parking lot. 

Length and Elevation: Approximately 5.8 miles, 698 ft elevation – Relatively moderate hike, but there are sections of ups and downs, pls bring hiking poles and wear proper hiking shoes.

Meeting Time: We’ll meet a picnic table right next to the park lot at 9:45am.  Restrooms will be available.

Drivers: Expect an $8 parking fee. Arrive by 9:45 a.m. and drive into the Rockland Lake State Park, South Entrance on Route 9W and Lake Road, Valley Cottage, NY. (299 Lake Rd. Valley Cottage, NY, 10989).  There is another parking lot about a mile further north on Route 9W (parking lot #2).  Please make sure you’re at parking lot #4.  South Entrance parking lot is an open space with a lots of picnic tables and a large building complex.

Carpool: We will send out a carpooling sign up sheet 7 days before the hike. Please register by 9/20 to be on the carpool list.

We aim to start the hike at 10am and will walk to the trailhead together from the parking lot.

COVID-19 Protocols: We will remain 6 feet apart when hiking. When we gather for discussion, we will wear a mask. Please cancel and request a refund if you have any symptoms listed by the CDC as Covid symptoms. You will be requested to sign a health declaration form and a waiver.

Maximum enrollment: 16 people

Registration Fee: Sliding scale from $30 – $80. Registration opens soon through New York Insight.

No prior meditation experience needed.



  • Sturdy hiking boots
  • Comfortable athletic clothing in layers so you can adjust accordingly – (cottons are discouraged)
  • Wool socks (if possible)
  • Hat
  • Jacket
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses

Mon. 9/14/2020, 7pm: Sacred Earth Sangha – Climate, A New Story – Featuring Charles Eisenstein

Sacred Earth Sangha at New York Insight Meditation Center

Meets 2nd Monday evening of every month

Join us for an online book club exploring the latest book by Charles Eisenstein, Climate: A New Story which you can read online for a donation here.

Charles Eisenstein will be joining us at this final meeting on the book “Climate, A New Story.” Please feel free to join us for practice and discussion even if you have not completed the reading.

We will still have time during our gathering for meditation, small group checkins and plenty of discussion. More info about the book below as well as Zoom Guidelines for our meetings.

We look forward to post quarantine where we will be gather outdoors for safe and profound practices in nature.

Climate — A New Story
Flipping the script on climate change, Eisenstein makes a case for a wholesale reimagining of the framing, tactics, and goals we employ in our journey to heal from ecological destruction
Read the book online for free here

Zoom Guidelines:
Please use your video and show your face. Using video allows us to connect fully.
Please join from a computer or tablet. Since we will be using video, it will be easier to participate form a computer rather than a phone.
Please come only if you can be fully present. Our practice is about intention and attention.

Teacher Schedule:
Monday, September 14th – Featuring Charles Eisenstein, moderated by Sebene Selassie, Lin Gordon, Jon Aaron

Available online by Zoom:

Or, dial by your location
+16465588656,,170106838# US (New York)

Meeting ID: 170 106 838
Find your local number:

Fee by donation: Suggested starting donation is $15.

Register through NYIMC.

Sacred Earth Sangha: Talks and Guided Meditation

Sacred Earth Sangha at New York Insight Meditation Center

Meets 2nd Monday evening of every month

Currently, our world is a hot mess both ecologically and politically. We can react to our planetary crisis with fear and aversion playing out the same old patterns of separation and domination (right and wrong, us vs them, rational solutions for unfathomably complex problems). Or we can respond with intimacy and imagination, exploring with compassion and wisdom new ways of being. Join New York Insight’s Sacred Earth Sangha (SES) in 2020 as we explore what it means to meet our current reality with kindness and clarity, compassion and wisdom. We will make space for individual and collective grief and joy — becoming intimate with our experiences. We will also explore the imaginal — looking at the innovative and beautiful responses of humans and non-humans to our global challenges.

Here are the recordings from the past meetings:

3/9/2020Eightfold Path: Wise Speech – Part I (coming soon)Lin Gordon, Jon Aaron
2/20/2020Eightfold Path: Wise Intention – Dharma TalkLin Gordon, Jon Aaron
1/13/2020Eightfold Path: Wise View – Dharma Talk

Eightfold Path: Wise View – Guided Meditation

Wise View – Group Reflection
Sebene Selassie, Lin Gordon
12/9/2019Four Elements: Air/Wind (Coming Soon)Lin Gordon, Jon Aaron
11/11/2019Four Elements: Fire – Dharma Talk

Guide Meditation: Fire Element
Sebene Selassie, Jon Aaron, and Lin Gordon
10/14/2019Four Elements: Water

Guided Meditation: Water Element
Sebene Selassie

Sun., 8/23/2020: Cultivating Wisdom and Resilience Through Nature-Based Mindfulness Practice (Online and Outdoors)

As we go through an intense year of pandemic and social transformation, how do we access our inner resources regardless of external circumstances? Whether it is through a tree or sky meditation, listening to sounds of the birds or walking on grass barefoot, we can learn from the intelligence and wisdom from our natural environment, and reconnect and renew our body and spirit.

Through this day you’ll be guided through nature meditation practices that connect to your senses and explore your internal and external experiences intimately. You can do these nature practices on your rooftop, porch, backyard, stupa, a neighborhood garden or park, anywhere that you can meditate outdoors. You don’t need to seek the most beautiful place to meditate – it is more important that it’s a place that you can easily access and that it can be in your routine so you can develop a regular nature-based practice on your own if you wish. We’ll also explore an indoor nature practice at the end of the day.

Date: Sunday, August 23, 2020

Time: 9:30am-4:45pm

Tentative Schedule:

  • 9:30am Zoom Video: Introduction to Nature Meditation and Group Meeting
  • 10:00am Walk or drive to your place in nature for the day
  • 10:30am Zoom Phone: Nature meditation instruction
  • 11:00am Break
  • 11:15am Zoom Phone: Nature meditation instruction
  • 12:00pm Sitting and walking in nature practice on your own, lunch, rest (Zoom off)
  • 1:30pm Zoom Phone: Nature meditation instructions
  • 2:00pm Break
  • 2:15pm Zoom Phone: Nature meditation instructions
  • 3:00pm Walk or drive home
  • 3:30pm Zoom Phone: Nature meditation instructions (Indoor)
  • 4:00pm Zoom Video: Small groups discussion and large group sharing
  • 4:45pm Program ends

What to wear and bring:

  • Wear a mask and maintain social distancing in public.
  • Lunch: Prepare a brown bag lunch to bring to your place of nature practice.
  • Bring rain gears (hat, rain jacket, umbrella, etc.)
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug repellent

Share your info with an emergency contact so someone knows where you would be and know how to look for you in case of emergency.

Voice from a Tree

March 14, 2020 – Stuyvesant Park, NYC

This was a freewriting exercise that came out of the Breathe.Read.Write workshop offered by Lisa Freedman. I gave an instruction of a 10-minutes tree meditation. After we meditated with a tree, Lisa read the poem “I Trust the Wind and Don’t Know Why” by Wyn Cooper, then she asked us to write from the voice of the tree that we just spent time with.

“I am not a sissie. I’ve been standing here in this noisy, bustling urban environment for a long time. Even though they’ve tried to contain me at roots, put hard concrete on top on my roots, I keep expanding. I go deeper, finding water and nutritions where human don’t reach and interrupt my natural freedom. I dig deeper into them and I bring them back through my body and reach upward.

Yes, it’s hard sometimes. The wind blows, and I don’t get support from my fellow tree family in a natural way, but I am growing and thriving. Even if it means I have to stretch sideways, and be twisted. Yes, I am growing and defying gravity, like a snake slithering in air. I branch out in the direction of the sun. I ask for help. And here I am, while humans are panicking over a new virus, I’ve stood here and watched many pandemic come and go. It shall pass too.

Ah spring, yet another winter survived. How nice to feel the birds singing again on the branches. I can’t wait for summer to come and flower. Oh sweet spring rain, help me grow stronger and taller…”