Love in the Time of Chaos:
Full Heart, Open Mind
May 18 and 19, 2018 in Portland
Wisdom teachings and compassion practices
from Buddhism and the Bhakti path.
Mirabai Bush ~ Ram Dass by Skype ~ Rameshwar Das
An all-star night of kirtan with Jai Uttal & Friends
. . . and a Sunday Brunch Benefit on May 20 for Ram Dass!
Our Friday evening gathering will give a taste of the full program to come. Saturday morning meditation at 8:30 am is offered for early risers, then at 9:30, we’ll begin the full morning session of dharma talks and discussion, interactive exercises, meditations, and Q & A.
After a catered vegetarian lunch from Carioca Bowls, further practices and dialogue through the afternoon will deepen awareness, shift perspective, and inspire the creative, courageous actions so needed in this time. And Ram Dass will skype in for a full hour of live dialogue with us during the afternoon.
That night at 7:30 pm, Jai Uttal and Friends will offer a fantastic Evening of Ecstatic Chant. And Sunday morning brings the option of a beautiful informal brunch near Waterfront Park to support Ram Dass, gathering with faculty and friends to wrap up an amazing weekend.
Ram Dass is an American cultural pioneer whose journey through academia, psychedelia, and spiritual exploration has influenced western culture for more than 50 years.
In the early 1960s, Harvard psychology professor Dr. Richard Alpert was engaged in the study of consciousness through use of psychedelic substances. After being fired from Harvard with his fellow culture-jammer Timothy Leary, Dr. Alpert traveled to India, where he studied yoga, Hindu devotional practices, and Buddhism.
In 1967 he met the Indian saint Neem Karoli Baba, who gave him the name Ram Dass. Ram Dass’s 1971 book, “Be Here Now,” had a transformative impact on the boomer generation, and has sold more than 2 million copies. Ram Dass has authored a dozen books, and continues to teach and offer retreats where he lives now on Maui.
Mirabai Bush is co-author, with Ram Dass, of Compassion in Action: Setting Out on the Path of Service, and has written or contributed to a number of other books. Founder and Senior Fellow at the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society, in Boston, Mirabai spent 1970-72 in India with Neem Karoli Baba. Her spiritual training included extensive meditation training with Shri S. N. Goenka and Anagarika Munindra in Bodh Gaya, as well as studies with Sufi saint Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan, Tibetan lamas Kalu Rinpoche, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Kyabje Gehlek Rinpoche, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, and others.
As a founding board member and chair of Seva Foundation in the 1980s, Mirabai directed the Seva Guatemala Project, which supports sustainable agriculture and integrated community development. Also at Seva, she co-developed Sustaining Compassion, Sustaining the Earth, a series of retreats and events for grassroots environmental activists on the interconnection of spirit and action.
Rameshwar Das (with Ram Dass in photo above) is a founding director of Love Serve Remember Foundation and also the Anna Mirabai Lytton Foundation, supporting yoga and wellness programs in schools in New York; he also serves on the board of the Neem Karoli Baba Ashram and Hanuman Temple in Taos, New Mexico. Ramesh collaborated in the development of Ram Dass’s seminal book, Be Here Now, published in 1971, and is coauthor with Ram Dass of Polishing the Mirror and Be Love Now.
Ramesh studied vipassana with S. N. Goenka while in India for a two-year period of devotional practice with Neem Karoli Baba. A freelance photographer for the New York Times and other publications, Ramesh has also taught photojournalism and is engaged in environmental programs in New York.
Grammy-nominated artist, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Jai Uttal will offer a roof-raising kirtan Evening of Ecstatic Chant on Saturday night, joined by tabla artist Daniel Paul and Benjy and Heather Wertheimer of Portland’s stellar kirtan ensemble, Shantala!
Jai Uttal teaches and performs internationally and also takes the transformative magic of his kirtans into prisons. Steeped in a diverse range of musical traditions, Jai studied Indian classical music with Ali Akbar Khan and other influential teachers whose musical expressions circle the world from Mumbai to New York to Brazil and beyond.