Dear Willow Community

Hello again! We’ve been quiet in our online communications here at Willow, but a lot has been happening this spring and summer. As a quick summary:

  • Seishin spent 80 days in solitary retreat, training intensely under Soryu’s guidance. It was a beautiful and deep retreat, and she emerged deeply transformed and ready to serve her communities.
  • Colin completed 4 months of leadership training at MAPLE. He returned to Willow in August, and stepped into the role of Head Monk. Even more exciting, he took lay-ordination and was given the Dharma name Vīrabhadra (वीरभद्र — Auspicious Champion).
  • In partnership with Ryushin Daniel Thorson, we have developed a 3-month residential intensive. Five new residents (pictured below) arrived in August to train in the new “harmonization” model of adult development, built on a decade of learnings from the Monastic Academy. The coherence and growth of the individuals and the group has been profound and beautiful to witness, and we are excited to share our learnings with all of you.

From left: Jim Drinkle, Cheryl Hsu, Nathan Vanderpool, Ryushin Daniel Thorson, Seishin Jasna Todorovic, Vīrabhadra Colin Bested, Dana Lahey, Diane Clayton.

Upcoming Events

We are launching an exciting array of Fall events, workshops and courses to share the wisdom cultivated here with our beloved global community.

We’re kicking things off with a Willow x Stoa collaboration series with our friend Peter Limberg:

  • Harmonizing to Emerge: A New Ecology of Practices on October 8th at 2 p.m. ET: John Vervaeke, Daniel Thorson, and Seishin Todorović will discuss the intensive program exploring an ecology of practices that generate a profound experience of individual and collective harmony. RSVP here.
  • Join our Wake Up! 6-Day Chant and Meditation Challenge from October 12-17 at 5 a.m. ET: Those who have stayed at Willow will appreciate our 5 a.m. mornings where we begin vigorous chanting, and then sit for an hour together. We’re excited to invite the larger online community into this morning practice of to enter collective samadhi together and build energy for a day of training and work. RSVP here.
  • Harmonizing to Emerge: A Stoic at the Monastic Academy on October 17th at 6:00 p.m. ET. The steward of the Stoa, Peter Limberg, will be visiting Willow to enter monastic retreat and play with us for two days. Peter will be in conversation with Daniel Thorson and Seishin Todorović about his experiences. RSVP here.

Willow Courses

Intro to Harmonization: A New Ecology of Practices

October 19 – November 9 at 11:30 a.m. ET

Join Ryushin (Daniel Thorson), Seishin (Jasna Todorovic) and the intensive residents for a four-week online introduction to the Monastic Academy’s “harmonization model”. The curriculum features training in meditation, emotional healing, relational practice, ethics, and emptiness. The four-week workshop schedule will take place on Tuesdays [October 19, 26 and November 2 and 9] from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. ET.

Register here.

Jade Method Meditation Course

October 22 – November 12 at 6:00 p.m. ET

In this four-week course, Seishin will lead a deep-dive into The Jade Method, a standard meditation technique taught at the Monastic Academy. The Jade Method offers a robust framework for going into deeply transformative and healing meditation states.. The four-week workshop will take place on Fridays [October 22, 29 and November 5 and 12] from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. ET.

Register here.

Support Willow

We are dedicated to reducing financial barriers and making our teachings accessible to everyone. We rely on the generosity of our supporters to make this possible. If you would like to help us grow in this beautiful movement of neo-monastic institutions, we have a new Patreon page!

We are also happy to offer this guided contemplation to help you connect with your deepest values, to guide your sense-making around projects you may want to support.