Volume One, Issue
Home Descriptions of All Classes Quotations Becoming a Teacher What is CLF? Bulletin Board
|Welcome to the
second issue of Conscious Living, our newsletter designed to share our current activities and growth, along with
articles and information that we hope will be supportive and encouraging in your
efforts to live each moment with more joy and satisfaction.
The theme of this issue is an exploration of the power of thought..
To subscribe to this newsletter, please click Here and then "Send" the email. It is not necessary to include any message. Please be assured that your email address will not be sold, rented or given to any other organization or individual.
Continuing and More Beginning!
Several of our classes have begun are others are beginning at various locations around the Los Angeles area including South Pasadena, Glendale, Pasadena, Reseda, Studio City and West Los Angeles. For more information on the subject matter of a particular class, click on its Class Title. If you're interested in a class that has already begun, contact us by email at CLF@consciouslivingfoundation.org. Some of our classes are ongoing and are designed to accommodate new students joining after the start of the class. Others have a limited admittance once they have begun, but a new class series will be beginning soon.
|Fee Per Class|
|September 3, Tuesday, 7 to 9 p.m.||Changing Your Life Through Visualization and Affirmation||Enrollment||West Los Angeles||$25|
|September 6, Friday 6:30 to 8 pm||From Transition to Transformation: Making the Most of Life's Changes||Enrollment||Burbank||$25|
|September 6, Friday 8 to 10 p.m.||Beyond Improvisation||Enrollment||Burbank||$30|
|September 7, Saturday, 6 to 8 p.m.||Ending the Cycle of Violence||Enrollment||Studio City||$25|
|September 7, Saturday, 8 to 9:30 p.m.||Personal Story Telling||Enrollment||Studio City||$25|
|September 9, Monday, 6 to 8 p.m.||Recovering From Loss||Enrollment||South Pasadena||$25|
|September 9, Monday, 8 to 10 p.m.||Living in the Now||Enrollment||South Pasadena||$25|
|September 20, Friday 6:30 to 8 p.m.||More Yoga Than Yoga: Movement To Peace||Enrollment||Burbank||$25|
|September 21, Saturday, 8:30 to 10 a.m.||Exploratory Watercolors for Parent and Child||Enrollment||Pasadena||$25|
|September 21, Saturday, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.||Watercolor Play for Adults||Enrollment||Pasadena||$25|
|September 21, Saturday 1 to 3 p.m.||Yes, You CAN Draw||Enrollment||Pasadena||$25|
|September 21, Saturday 10 a.m. to Noon||Walking - The Complete Exercise||Enrollment||Burbank||$25|
|September 23, Monday, 7 to 9 p.m.||A Little Bit of Music||Enrollment||Glendale||$25|
|September 24, Tuesday 7 to 8:30 p.m.||Reclaiming Your Singing Voice||Enrollment||Reseda||$25|
|September 25, Wednesday, 7 to 9 p.m.||Developing a Spiritual Lifestyle: Fundamentals of Conscious Living||Enrollment||Glendale||$25|
|September 28, Saturday, 1 to 4 p.m.||Making Raw Food a Part of Your Diet||Enrollment||Pasadena||$30|
|October 5, Saturday, 10 am to Noon||Nonjudgment: The Power of Loving Acceptance and How it Can Change Your Life||Enrollment||Pasadena||$25|
|October 19 & 26, Saturday, 1 to 4 p.m.||Learner Centered Teaching: Designing Effective Workshops for Adults||Enrollment||Burbank||$30|
|November 2, Saturday 1 to 4 p.m.||Enrollment||Pasadena||$30|
|We encourage you to visit other pages of our web site to learn more about the Conscious Living Foundation and to peruse the wide variety of other classes that will be available soon.||CLF's Classes CLF's Discounts|
(Return to Top)
|Quotations: On The Power of Thought||.|
When you change your patterns of thinking, you change the way you feel about yourself, about others, and about the world. And changing the way you feel enables you to deal more productively with your problems and burdens and to take actions necessary to improve your life.
Dr. Arthur Freeman and Rose DeWolf
And do not be conformed to this world, ``but be transformed by the renewing
of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and
perfect will of God.
Man is made or unmade by himself. In the armory of thought he forges the weapons by which he destroys himself. He also fashions the tools with which he builds for himself heavenly mansions of joy and strength and peace.
I make no distinction between the mind and the spirit, and therefore no distinction between the process of achieving spiritual growth and achieving mental growth. They are one and the same.
M. Scott Peck
Thought is the blossom; language the bud; action the fruit behind it.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
To have ideas is to gather flowers; to think, is to weave them into garlands
Anne Sophie Swetchine
The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts: therefore, guard accordingly, and take care that you entertain no notions unsuitable to virtue and reasonable nature.
cannot be known by the senses,
We imagine that our mind is a mirror, that it is more or less accurately reflecting what is happening outside us. On the contrary, our mind itself is the principal element of creation. The world, while I am perceiving it, is being incessantly created for myself in time and space.
My mind withdrew its thoughts from experience, extracting itself from the contradictory throng of sensuous images, that it might find out what that light was wherein it was bathed....And thus, with the flash of one hurried glance, it attained to the vision of That Which Is.
Mind is the creator of everything. You should therefore guide it to create only good. If you cling to a certain thought with dynamic will power, it finally assumes a tangible outward form. When you are able to employ your will always for constructive purposes, you become the controller of your destiny.
...our emotions and our actions are not separate from our thoughts. They are all interrelated. Thinking is the gateway to our emotions--and our emotions are the gateway to our actions.
Dr. Arthur Freeman
(Return to Top)
|Another Poem: by Rabindranath
The time that my journey takes is long and the way of it long.
I came out on the chariot of the first gleam of light, and pursued my voyage through the wildernesses of worlds leaving my track on many a star and planet.
It is the most distant course that comes nearest to thyself, and that training is the most intricate which leads to the utter simplicity of a tune.
The traveler has to knock at every alien door to come to his own, and one has to wander through all the outer worlds to reach the innermost shrine at the end.
My eyes strayed far and wide before I shut them and said ďHere art thou!Ē
The question and the cry ďOh, where?Ē melt into tears of a thousand streams and deluge the world with the flood of the assurance ďI am!Ē
(Return to Top)
|Article: The Healing Power of the Precepts: Building Self-Esteem the Buddhist Way by Thanissaro Bhikkhu|
Throughout the history of Buddhism, the Buddha has been described as a doctor, treating spiritual ills. The path of practice he taught has likewise served as therapy for suffering hearts and minds. This understanding of the Buddha and his teachings dates back to the earliest texts, but its meaning for contemporary practitioners has become more relevant than ever.
Buddhist meditation is often touted as a form of healing, and many psychotherapists now recommend that their patients try meditation as part of their treatment. But the Buddha understood--and experience has shown--that meditation on its own canít provide a total therapy. It requires outside support. In many ways, modern meditators have been so destabilized by the stimuli of mass civilization that they often lack the resilience, persistence, and self-esteem needed to achieve concentration and cultivate insight. To provide a grounding in these qualities, and to foster a personal environment conducive to meditation, the Buddha prescribed a path made up not only of mindfulness, concentration, and insight practices, but also of virtue. And virtue begins with the Five Precepts, which are:
- to refrain from intentionally killing any animal, from insects on up the
These precepts constitute the first step on the path. There is a tendency to dismiss them as Sunday-school rules bound to old cultural norms that no longer apply to modern society, but this misses the role that the Buddha intended for them: to be part of a therapy for wounded minds. In particular, they are aimed at curing two ailments that underlie low self-esteem and block progress on the path--regret and denial.
When our actions donít measure up to certain standards of behavior, we either regret the actions or engage in one of two kinds of denial--denying that our actions did, in fact, happen, or denying that the standards of measurement are really valid. These responses are like wounds in the mind. Regret is an open wound, tender to the touch, while denial is like hardened scar tissue twisted around a tender spot. When the mind is wounded in these ways, it canít settle down comfortably in the present, for it finds itself resting on raw, exposed flesh or calcified knots.
This is where the Five Precepts come in. Healthy self-esteem comes from living up to a set of standards that is practical, clear-cut, humane, and worthy of respect. The precepts provide just such a set of standards.
The standards are simple. They may not always be easy or convenient, but they are always possible to live by. Some people translate the precepts into standards that sound more lofty or noble. To some, taking the second precept, for example, means not abusing the planetís resources. But that's an impossibly high standard.
The Buddha understood that if you give people standards that take a little effort and mindfulness but are still possible to meet, their self-esteem soars dramatically as they find themselves actually meeting those standards. They can then face more demanding tasks with confidence.
The precepts are formulated with no ifs, ands, or buts. This means that they provide very clear guidance. Thereís no room for waffling or less-than-honest rationalizations. An action either fits in with the precepts or it doesnít. Anyone who has raised children has found that while they may complain about hard and fast rules, they actually feel more secure with them than with rules that are vague and always open to negotiation.
Clear-cut rules donít allow for unspoken agendas to come sneaking in the back door of the mind. If, for example, the precept against killing allowed you to kill living beings when their presence is inconvenient--as in the case of mosquitos--that would place your convenience on a higher level than your compassion for life. Convenience would become your unspoken standard--and unspoken standards provide huge tracts of fertile ground for hypocrisy and denial to grow. If, however, you stick by the standards of the precepts, then you are providing unlimited safety for all. In terms of other precepts, you provide safety for their possessions and their sexuality, and truthfulness and mindfulness in your communication with them.
The precepts are humane both to the person who observes them and to the people affected by his or her actions. If you observe them, you are aligning yourself with the doctrine of karma, which teaches that the most important powers shaping your experience of the world are the intentional thoughts, words, and deeds you choose in the present moment. This means that you are not insignificant.
With every choice you make--at home, at work, at play--you are exercising your power in the ongoing shaping of the world. At the same time, this principle allows you to measure yourself in terms that are entirely under your control: your intentional actions in the present moment. In other words, they donít force you to measure yourself in terms of your looks, strength, brains, financial prowess, or any other criteria that depend less on your present karma than they do on karma from the past. Also, they donít play on feelings of guilt or force you to bemoan your past lapses. Instead, they focus your attention on the ever-present possibility of living up to your standards in the here and now.
When you adopt a set of standards, itís important to know whose standards they are and to see where those standards come from, for in effect you are joining their group, looking for their approval, and accepting their criteria for right and wrong. In this case, you couldnít ask for a better group to join: the Buddha and his noble disciples.
The Five Precepts, in the words of the Buddha, are "standards appealing to the noble ones." From what the texts tell us of the noble ones, they arenít people who accept standards simply on the basis of popularity. They have put their lives on the line to see what leads to true happiness and seen for themselves, for example, that all lying is pathological, and that any sex outside a stable, committed relationship is spiritually and emotionally, as well as physically, unsafe. Other people might not respect you for living by the Five Precepts, but noble ones do, and their respect is worth more than that of anyone else in the world. You can look at the standards by which you live and breathe comfortably as a full-fledged, responsible human being. For thatís what you are.
(Return to Top)
|A Thought: What is Success? by Ralph Waldo Emerson|
(Return to Top)
|Article: Happy and Healthy Thoughts by Anonymous|
can't have a feeling without first having a thought. Most of us have talked
to ourselves in such negative ways for years we actually start to believe we
are nothing. About a year and a half ago I started to really "listen" to how
I talked to myself. I was shocked. No wonder I was depressed and felt I
didn't deserve to live. It took great effort to overcome my negative thought
This list of Happy and Healthy Thoughts was my starting point. Reading this daily was like taking baby steps. However, as I practiced daily reading and reinforcing new thought patterns I began to feel better. I posted a copy on my refrigerator, in the bathroom and I still carry a copy in my Daytimer. Now, when I catch myself "dumping" on me, I try to correct those self-defeating thoughts.
Read this everyday. Post them where you can see them. Carry a copy in your organizer, purse or pocket. It will lift your spirits.
1. I am a unique and precious human being, always doing the best I can, always growing in wisdom and love.
2. I don't need to prove myself to anyone, not even to myself, for I know that I am perfectly fine as I am.
3. I make my own decisions and assume responsibility for any mistakes. However, I refuse to feel shame or guilt about them. I do the best I can, and this 100 percent is good enough.
4. I am not my actions, I am the actor. My actions may be good or bad. That does not make me good or bad.
5. Whenever I am tempted to punish myself, I remember to be kind and gentle instead. I know that in order to be the best I can be, I need forgiveness and understanding.
6. I know that it is okay to need. I try to keep in touch with my needs so that I can respond to them.
7. I know that others cannot be expected to read my mind or to guess my needs. In fairness to them and to me, I ask for what I need.
8. I deserve to be appreciated. When others show their appreciation, I embrace it with open arms. I never try to deny or diminish my value.
9. I live one day at a time and do first things first.
10. I take great pride in what I do, in what I value and in the way I live for I truly believe in myself.
11. My mistakes and nonsuccess do not make me a louse, a failure, or whatever. They only prove that I am imperfect, that is human. It is wonderful to be human.
12. I love myself, absolutely and unconditionally, for that is what I truly need and deserve.
(Return to Top)
|News: Additions To Our
We have made two important additions to our web site since our last newsletter:
(Return to Top)
|News: Sarah McGurn and Steve Hamlin Join our CLF Faculty|
The Conscious Living Foundation is proud to announce that Sarah McGurn and Steve Hamlin have joined our faculty.
Sarah's first class offering with CLF is entitled "More Yoga Than Yoga: Peace Through Movement". A complete description of that class is available by clicking the class title.
Sarah is a chiropractor and practitioner of Network Spinal Analysis, Somato Respiratory Integration, and numerous other body-mind systems drawn from her extensive healing arts background of nearly thirty years.
She has been a lifelong musician, specializing in Sacred and Classical music, and has maintained a study of music as a healing power.
For nearly thirty years, she was a professional teacher of a wide range of children, of every age, and from gifted to multi-handicapped. In addition, Sarah has been practicing yogic meditation for over 20 years.
Steve Hamlin has been in private practice as a Feldenkrais Practitioner for over 9 years and has worked at several Physical Therapy centers in Southern California. He has an outstanding record of success in relieving such common complaints as low back pain, carpal tunnel, neck pain, poor posture, knee pain, compromised balance and hip pain.
In addition to his professional career, he has been meditating for nearly 30 years and continues to deepen his own learning through teaching and serving others.
Steve's first class with CLF is entitled "Walking: The Complete Exercise". It begins on Saturday, September 21 from 10 a.m. till Noon in Burbank. For more information on the class, click the course title.
(Return to Top)
|News: Upcoming Unity Church Fund-Raiser & CLF Enrollment Drive, Sunday, October 20th, 12:30 p.m. till 3 p.m.|
As you know, the Conscious Living Foundation is offering classes in various locations throughout the Los Angeles area that are designed to increase your personal growth and knowledge while providing a new opportunity for inspiration, better health, a calmer mind and a chance to have fun in the process.
During our ďGrowing TogetherĒ event, being held at the Unity Church of Burbank, we will be offering short demonstrations (approximately 15 minutes each) of our current classes, at no charge.
In addition to a chance to socialize with interesting, creative people, this event will give you an opportunity to meet each teacher in the actual class setting, become aware of the subject matter of each class and get a personal sense of whether the class is right for you. Based on our prior experience, the atmosphere is relaxed, comfortable, informal and fun!
Please note that the date of the event is October 20, not October 13 as indicated in the email that was sent previously. Our apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused.
As always, healthy and tasty refreshments will be served (the oatmeal-chocolate chip cookies tend to disappear first).
In the event you decide to enroll for a class, Fifty Percent of your payment made during the event will go to Unity Church of Burbank. This is a great opportunity to start taking a class that will support your growth, while providing support to Unity Church at the same time.
Also, as a special discount for this event only, if you enroll during this event, you are entitled to a 50% discount on each class you attend in which you bring a friend to join you who pays the usual course fee.
A schedule of the demonstration workshops being offered and their meeting times will be added to the web site by October 1. Please check the site anytime after that date for final details.
For directions, please click here. We look forward to sharing the afternoon with you.
(Return to Top)
Copyright 2002 The Conscious Living Foundation (all rights reserved)