Contemplative Caregiver Courses 2015

Zen Approaches to Aging, Sickness & Dying

This course guides participants in the journey of acknowledgment, transformation and release that makes growth and freedom from the difficulties of change possible.   Topics include: curiosity and beginner’s mind, supporting friends and family in end-of-life decisions, contemplation of one’s own mortality, myths and realistic expectations in caregiving, and Zen rituals for transforming the pain of loss into growth, healing, and inspiration for the future.
–Friday, May 22: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, May 23: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, June 19: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, June 20: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, July 10: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, July 11: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, August 7: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, August 8: 9am to 6pm

Enrollment begins April 1. For Details, Fees & Application: Click here

Dynamics of Compassion Resilience

Enrollment begins August 1.
A compassionate attitude can greatly reduce the distress caregivers feel in difficult situations and can become a profound personal resource in times of stress. This course develops the qualities of compassion, empathy, and kindness for oneself and others.  Topics include: contemporary psychology and scientific research on compassion, sustainable responses to suffering, self-compassion, and the power of intentional caregiving.
–Friday, September 11: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, September 12: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, October 9: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday October 10: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, November 6: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, November 7: 9am to 6pm
–Friday, December 4: 4pm to 9pm & Saturday, December 5: 9am to 6pm

Enrollment begins April 1. For Details, Fees & Application: Click here

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As Buddhist teachings and meditation find an increasingly strong presence within various parts of American society, there is both an opportunity and a need to train people from all walks of life in the merging of contemplative practices with caring for those who are elderly, ill, or dying.  

Taught by San Francisco Zen Center teachers and professional caregivers, these courses engage individual, family and paid caregivers in contemplative practices and care methods.  People working in a wide range of professions and life contexts can benefit from each of the courses.  No previous Buddhist, meditation or caregiving experience is required, although willingness to practice daily meditation is a key component of each course.  All who attend  share an intention to develop greater skill and confidence in caring for people who are aging, sick and dying.

Each course can be taken separately, while in past years participants have greatly valued the depth and transformation generated by attending all 3 over the course of a year.  Upon completion of all 3 courses, participants receive a certificate as a Contemplative Caregiver.  Continuing education units are available.

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Video: Introduction  ↓

Read about one Contemplative Caregiver’s experience here.

Video: In the Words of Our Participants  ↓

The Contemplative Caregiver Courses are a collaboration between Jennifer Block, founder of Beyond Measure School for Contemplative Care and San Francisco Zen Center, with Susan O’Connell,  President as the primary vision holder.  This curriculum will inform the Zen-inspired senior living community currently being developed by San Francisco Zen Center.