Big Sky, Big Mind: A Contemplative Astronomy Workshop with Andrea Schweitzer & Jim Tolstrup
October 15–17, 2010
Throughout history, human beings have looked to the skies to follow the rhythm of the seasons, to plan migrations and planting, and to ponder life’s mysteries. In this workshop participants will experience the movement of celestial bodies through interactive, kinesthetic astronomy. The weekend will include periods of contemplation, presentations of the astronomical lore from Celtic, Tibetan and Native American traditions, and a guided walk to observe the interplay of the sun and seasons with the land of Shambhala Mountain Center, all within a relaxed and rejuvenating atmosphere.
Come and enjoy the beautiful dark skies, begin or deepen your meditation practice, and take home a personal connection to the night sky. Become familiar with the constellations, and when watch for meteor showers (falling stars). A few minutes each evening (or early morning) spent stargazing, in awareness of the moon’s phase and the seasonal patterns of the stars, can be a wonderful addition to your contemplative practice!
No previous astronomy background is expected; you need only to appreciate looking up at the universe.
“Who has not felt a sense of awe while looking deep into the skies lit with countless stars on a clear night?” –His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Andrea Schweitzer is an astronomer with the Little Thompson Observatory in Berthoud, Colorado and is director of training programs. She was also the U.S. Project Manager for the International Year of Astronomy 2009. Andrea grew up in Colorado and received her Ph.D. in astronomy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She participated in the Voyager flyby of Neptune, helped test one of the cameras for the Hubble Space Telescope, and her research has been written up in publications ranging from the New York Times to Sky & Telescope magazine. Andrea works as a consultant for NASA and for astronomy education. Her clients have included NASA Headquarters, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, the American Astronomical Society, the Southwest Research Institute, Boeing, and the Space Science Institute.
Jim Tolstrup is a director of Shambhala Training and has been a practitioner of indigenous wisdom traditions since 1977. He is currently the President of Cankatola Ti Ospaye, a non-profit that supports native elders. At the urging of Lakota Elders, Jim reaches out to his own people to promote justice for Native Americans and peace with the earth. As the Executive Director of the High Plains Environmental Center in Loveland, Colorado, Jim works with developers to “restore nature where we live, work and play.”
Jim Tolstrup, a director of Shambhala Training, has been a practitioner of indigenous wisdom traditions since 1977. He is president of Cankatola Ti Ospaye, a non-profit that supports Native American elders. As the Executive Director of the High Plains Environmental Center in Loveland, Colorado, he works with land developers to “restore nature where we live, work and play.”’
Financial aid is available for this program.