Since 2005, with the informal blessing of Adyashanti, I have been leading two Self-Inquiry groups that meet at my office in San Rafael, California on alternate Monday evenings from 7-9 p.m. They meet in quarterly cycles (except for summer) and anyone may attend. There is a suggested donation that varies based upon the number of meetings per cycle. The purpose and format of the groups are described more fully below.
The purpose of this group is to support “awakening” – the spontaneous recognition of one’s true nature as lucid emptiness that develops into the realization of non-separateness or oneness with the whole of life. Awakening, however, is not an end in itself; it catalyzes the full flowering of the individual human being so that we become conscious servants and embodiments of the Whole. Meditation – resting in Silence and allowing all experience to be as it is – and self-inquiry – the deep and passionate investigation into the truth of what we really are – can help to facilitate this self recognition. Awakening can also happen spontaneously without any prior practice, teacher or teaching.
These intimate groups of no more than nine members will experientially explore variations on essential questions such as “Who or what am I?”, “Is my belief true?”, and “What is my heart’s desire?” More importantly, members will clarify and deepen their own living questions with the help of meditation, body sensing, dialogue and discussion. We will hone the art of formulating and sitting with a vital question as well as identify and see through core limiting beliefs. We usually begin with a twenty-five minute silent meditation, a brief check-in, time for questions and reports, a short talk, dialogue and/or discussion. There are often group or dyadic inquiry exercises. We end with a ten minute meditation.
Optional Background Readings
The End of Your World, Emptiness Dancing by Adyashanti
I am That by Nisargadatta Maharaj
I am, The Ease of Being by Jean Klein
The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
Loving What Is by Byron Katie
Be As You Are: The Teachings of Sri Ramana Maharshi by David Godman
An Extraordinary Absence by Jeff Foster
Wake Up Now by Stephan Bodian
All books can be found at or ordered through the Open Secret Bookstore in San Rafael. Most are also available online.
To sign up for the group, contact: John@listeningfromsilence or call (415) 453-8832.