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Cara Lai's Dharma Talks
Cara Lai
Cara Lai spent most of her life trying to figure out how to be happy, or at least avoid total misery, so she sat still with her eyes closed for the majority of her adulthood. Throughout many consciousness adventures including a few mind-bendingly long meditation retreats, she has explored the wilderness of the mind, chronic illness, the importance of pleasure, and lots of other things that she might get in trouble for mentioning here. In the past, Cara has worked as an artist, wilderness guide, social worker and psychotherapist, but at this point she’s given up on being an adult in exchange for an all-out mindfulness rampage. Her teaching is relatable, authentic, funny and sometimes crass, and is accessible for many people. She teaches teens and adults at Inward Bound Mindfulness Education, Spirit Rock, Insight Meditation Society, and UCLA; ultimately hoping to bend spoons with her mind. And to help people be happier.
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2024-05-16 Closing Session (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 1:35:33
with Brian Lesage, Cara Lai, Matthew Brensilver
Spirit Rock Meditation Center Spring Insight: Understand the Mechanisms of the Salutary Effects of Mindfulness
2024-05-14 Leading with Love (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 45:42
How can I sit here when our house is burning down? How meditation, softening, and receptivity relates to activism and making real transformation in the world. The ways that hatred masquerades as fierce compassion, a deeper understanding of power and privilege, and how to lead with love.
Spirit Rock Meditation Center Spring Insight: Understand the Mechanisms of the Salutary Effects of Mindfulness
2024-03-04 Awakening is for everyone 40:46
How doubt can manifest as the belief that one is not fully on the path if they have chosen the life of the householder. Using nature as affirmation and support.
Insight Meditation Society - Retreat Center When Awareness Becomes Natural - An U Tejaniya-style Insight Meditation Retreat
2023-09-26 On Karuna (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 42:46
Some words on compassion; with a focus on ease, trust, letting go, being gentle on yourself and seeing how seeing our own pain can connect us to the whole world.
Spirit Rock Meditation Center Steadying the Heart: Refuge through the Four Sublime States
2023-08-02 The Four Noble Truths (Retreat at Spirit Rock) 50:05
The foundational teaching of Buddhism.
Spirit Rock Meditation Center Young Adult Insight Meditation Retreat
2023-05-15 When it hits the fan. 59:09
How to practice when things get out of control. This talk was given on a day six of a nine day retreat that got cut short unexpectedly.
Insight Meditation Society - Retreat Center The Path to Awakening
2023-05-13 Me, you, and everyone, we know (boundless metta) 46:15
A brief talk and guided practice of bringing loving kindness to ourselves and blurring the boundaries between this body and the rest of the world.
Insight Meditation Society - Retreat Center The Path to Awakening
2022-12-11 Practice for Average People 68:06
Spirit Rock Meditation Center BIPOC Voices - Series
2022-07-11 Monday Night Dharma Talk - Embracing Samsara 61:21
Spirit Rock Meditation Center
2022-06-29 Reclaiming Your Attention 44:57
How capitalism is trying to commodify your attention, and how recovering it is a reclamation of your power and purpose in this world.
Insight Meditation Society - Retreat Center Teen Retreat

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