Chuck BeardsleyMeditation Teacher
What drew me to the practices of Innate Wisdom and Compassion is difficult to put into words, as many spiritual experiences are. When I was a member of the Dzogchen Sangha with Lama Surya Das, I went on a retreat where I attended teachings by Lama John and was introduced to these practices. The practices simply resonated with me in a way that the other practices didn't, and when I say resonate, I mean on a deep, spiritual, cellular level. I felt a connection to these practices that was instantaneous, and I also felt relief, the type of relief that comes with taking refuge. It's this feeling of refuge, protection, love and safety that these practices provide that drew me to them in the first place.
These practices inspire my work with my psychotherapy clients, and my parenting. By secretly sharing the practice I don't necessarily tell the clients, or my kids, "what I'm talking about now is innate wisdom and compassion practices." I work a lot in my private practice with and around the concept of compassion-what it means, how we embody it, how we know it when we see it, and how to cultivate it for ourselves and others. In couples work we talk a lot about what a compassionate stance would be. In individual work with family members of alcoholics, we talk about the compassion for the addict, and also the self compassion for the family member. I also try (though it's hard as any parent knows) to cultivate compassion with my kids, in those moments when we feel especially bankrupt of having compassion for them.