March 6-8, 2019
University of San Diego

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Contemplative Practice [clear filter]
Wednesday, March 6

2:15pm PST

Let's Talk About It: Building Community through Dialogue
Dialogue is a structured way to discuss sensitive topics that typically elicit divergent perspectives and opinions. While this approach is built on a tried and true practice, its application is innovative: UC San Diego has used it as a tool to teach students how to address controversial topics, as well as learn about and appreciate different beliefs and ways of being. As one student noted, “It’s rare to have moments like these where we set aside our busy schedules and actively talk about things challenging our society.” Through storytelling, participants build empathy, respect, and mutual understanding. This session will use storytelling in the form of dialogue circles as a tool to build community. This session will introduce and demonstrate ways to use dialogue circles to hear the stories that shape communities, understand community needs, and build inclusivity. Through participation in a community building dialogue on “Borders,” attendees will be immersed in the circle process; what drives this approach and the challenges that come with it. Participants will learn about the history of dialogue circles, its foundations in restorative justice and the structure of UCSD’s program. At the close, participants will reflect on and discuss the process, and brainstorm applications.


Katy Brecht

Communication & Leadership Program Coordinator, UC San Diego
avatar for Catherine Lettieri

Catherine Lettieri

Community Service Program Coordinator, UC San Diego

Wednesday March 6, 2019 2:15pm - 3:25pm PST
KIPJ 219
Thursday, March 7

11:30am PST

Cultivating Mindfulness: Engaging in Present Moment Awareness to Move Beyond Borders and Boundaries
Within the contexts of our universities and workplace settings, it is critical to implement ways of infusing diversity, equity, inclusion and justice as we interact with our colleagues in order to build more collegial and supportive communities. Ideally this can increase effectiveness, communication, and overall success. However, in reality it is often challenging and difficult to carry out. Conflict may arise due to differences in our diverse backgrounds, ethical/moral principles, cultural values, political affiliation, etc. Differences often get unintentionally exasperated, thus creating borders and boundaries that divide us. Minor disagreements between individuals and couples can escalate into physical altercations, verbal aggression, and psychological abuse. Tension and conflict between groups can lead to marginalization, oppression, and injustice. In this workshop participants will be faced with a challenging task. We will take time to reflect on feelings and emotions experienced during the exercise. After introducing participants to a brief history and background of mindfulness-based stress reduction techniques, we will lead the group in practicing several mindfulness techniques. We will then observe the impact of mindfulness in fostering shared understanding, perspective taking, and communication to move beyond the illusion of the borders and boundaries we create for ourselves.


Kasey Lennon

Psychology Alumni, CSU Channel Islands

Christy Teranishi Martinez

Professor of Psychology, CSU Channel Islands

Thursday March 7, 2019 11:30am - 12:40pm PST

4:00pm PST

A Contemplative Community Building Toolkit
In April 2016, the Center for Contemplative Mind (CMind) and the Fetzer Institute convened a gathering of higher education faculty and staff who had played a role in growing and sustaining campus groups that emphasized contemplative practices. Out of these discussions and a series of seed grants to support community-building initiatives, CMind developed a .pdf toolkit to support the building of contemplative communities in higher education contexts.

The toolkit is organized into six sections, reflecting common phases and challenges. During this community conversation session, we will have opportunities to share questions, experiences, and resources corresponding to these topics, which are: Intention (Laying the Groundwork); Invitation (Creating a Welcoming Community); Sustainability (Building a Sustainable Community); Meetings and Events; Conflict Transformation; Connecting the Dots (Being Part of a Larger Movement).

Copies of the toolkit will be available.

avatar for Carrie Bergman

Carrie Bergman

Associate Director, The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society
Carrie Bergman joined CMind in 2000 and, over the past 19 years, has helped to coordinate events, projects, and initiatives across all of the Center’s program areas. She now serves as Associate Director, supporting CMind’s programs, operations, website, and communications, including... Read More →
avatar for Maya Elinevsky

Maya Elinevsky

Events & Outreach Manager, The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society
Maya Elinevsky organizes the Center’s conferences, workshops, and retreats. She holds a BA in Communication from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and an Associate’s Degree in Fine Arts from Greenfield Community College. Her professional experience lies in event work and... Read More →

Thursday March 7, 2019 4:00pm - 5:10pm PST