Online: Unlocking The Trap of Pain – Exploring Gentle Practices to Live with Ease

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Online: Unlocking The Trap of Pain – Exploring Gentle Practices to Live with Ease

with Joan Griffiths Vega

Sunday, April 25th, Wednesday, April 28th, Sunday May 2nd, 2021 | 10:30am – 12:30pm ET each day

“All pain is real, no matter what is causing it.
But also, all pain is made by the brain
in response to the information available to it.”
-Lorimer Moseley, a clinical scientist and pain researcher at the University of South Australia.

Acute or chronic pain needs a multifaceted approach to minimize its domination. Ironically, reducing pain is counterintuitive. Instead of pushing it away, kindness and acceptance of the pain can lead us to freedom. Once pain is present, a choice opens—to live a life entirely confined by suffering, or to know that managed pain can be a small portion of our infinite self. In our time together we will explore the ways to turn towards the pain with kindness and curiosity to reduce the pain. When acceptance of pain is present, the exhausting war stops. New choices arise.

Mindfulness is the well-spring to living a more spacious, joyful life. Daily habits—meditation, sleep, eat, rest, exercise or being with friends (even over Zoom) or a comforting pet can manage the highs and lows of pain through the day, the week or year.

Three classes of two hours each gives us an opportunity to learn new approaches based on neuroscience and research, to give ourselves time to explore and become intimate with the practices, and to have reliable direct knowledge we can experience less pain.

We will cover:
-Mindfulness as the way of establishing a warm, more relaxed relationship to body.
-The current neuroscience of pain, what is pain? It is not all in your mind.
-Long and short meditations practices to soften pain and open the body to greater ease for optimal energy and joy.
-How to recognize the anxious thoughts and fearful emotions that directly contribute to feeling greater pain. Our attitudes can increase and decrease pain levels.
-Simple caring physical gestures, brief breathing exercises, and acupressure points to calm the autonomic nervous system to reduce pain that can be done anywhere, anytime.
-The importance of good sleep, eating, exercising, patience and gratitude. How to use a journal to keep our new habits in focus.
-A way to develop a daily schedule to minimized pain for greater freedom and energy for our well-being, work and family life.

“A good laugh and a long sleep are the best cures in the doctor’s book.”
~ Irish Proverb from Zen Moments


Please register at the highest level that your generosity offers.
Explanations of levels follow below.
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Registration Fees include Teacher Support

New York Insight Meditation Center has streamlined the registration fee levels. Members of our Circle of Friends are eligible to receive 20% off of the Sustaining Rate via a code provided in the email confirming membership, which you can enter after clicking the Sustaining Level registration.

*Benefactor Level: Supports NYI’s ability to offer the Subsidized Base.

**Sustaining Level: This level reflects the actual costs to support this program. Circle of Friends members eligible for 20% discount with code. Click here to join.

***Subsidized Base: Made possible by the generosity of Benefactor Level above and other donations to ensure participation by those requiring financial assistance.

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Joan Griffiths Vega, MFA, MA, Certified Open Focus Coach, Qualified MBSR Teacher

After her first Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course in 2003, Joan took her first steps on her path to becoming a facilitator. Nineteen years later, she has taught MBSR around the city at different venues, particularly at the Martha Stewart Center for Healthy Living, Mt. Sinai Hospital, for over the last 15 years.
She completed the Professional Training workshop led by Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD., and Saki Santorelli, Ed.D, Exec. Director of the UMass Center for Mindfulness (CFM) in Medicine, Health Care, and Society, as well as the MBSR practicum and Teacher Development Intensive at CFM in Worcester, MA. As a former family caregiver, she tailored the 8-week course to caregivers’ concerns. With Patricia Bloom,  MD, she developed a pain intervention model MBPR, Mindfulness-Based Pain Relief.
She deepens her practice and understanding through retreats, courses, studying online with Sharon Salzberg, Tara Brach, and Jack Kornfield, and at Zen Contemplative Care and New York Insight, as well as continuing extensive reading and ongoing personal supervision. She is a storyteller with a MA in cross-cultural mythology, Jungian and religious studies from Pacifica Graduate Institute, CA, and a MFA in film from School of the Arts at Columbia University. She is a certified Coach of Open Focus™ Attention, a dynamic pain management tool.
Over the last two years, she deeply trained in pain management as she healed from a sacrum fracture.

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