We believe the transformational learning occurs in the context of doing, reflecting, learning, and doing again. The MTTP is high experiential and also includes a required practicum project in which participants will create and deliver a one-day mindfulness workshop with support from the MTTP leaders on each step of that process.
Between the 3rd and 4th Study Weekend participants will work together or individually to create and deliver a one-day mindfulness workshop in their local community or workplace. This Practicum Project will integrate learning from the first 4 blocks and provide a rich learning opportunity.
Note that you may use video collected and materials created for the Practicum Project as part of your Certification Portfolio, or you may find it wiser to collect this material using teaching you organize after the close of the MTTP-MF program.
Mindfulness is deeply rooted in our personal experience, study and from-the-inside-out understanding of the practice. For this reason we're delighted to offer a full 7-day meditation retreat during which we'll explore some of the Buddhist roots of mindfulness.
We'll also have the opportunity to see a weekend mindfulness retreat for newer mindfulness students in action. In April we'll join with other mindfulness students in a weekend mindfulness retreat led by Tim and other Mindfulness Northwest faculty.
Embodiment of the practices and teaching from that direct, personal experience, is a core aspect of mindfulness teaching. The MTTP strongly supports daily practice, including a structured program of practice through each Learning Block, and include regular check-ins with faculty around personal experience of daily practice.
Much of the learning will happen during five 4 to 6 week long distance-based Learning Blocks, each of these Blocks is followed by a Study Weekend in person in Bellingham.
During the Learning Blocks we will be:
Approximate total time commitment during the learning blocks:
After each Learning Block we will gather in Bellingham for an in-person Study Weekend.
During the Study Weekend we will:
The Study Weekends are full, rich, and a lot of fun. Note that food and lodging in Bellingham is not included in the program fee. These are non-residential weekend retreats. (Room and board are included at the retreats in the program).
Arrive Friday dinner time in Bellingham and plan to spend Friday and Saturday nights in Bellingham, leaving lunch time on Sunday.
Study Weekends are held in Bellingham.
Friday 7pm-9pm, evening meeting
Saturday 6am-8:30am, optional Buddhist meditation
Saturday 10am - 1pm, morning session
Saturday 2pm - 5pm, afternoon session
Saturday 7pm - 9pm, evening session
Sunday 9:30am - 1pm, Sunday session
In this comprehensive mindfulness teacher training we will study:
The Buddhist roots of mindfulness: we will focus on all three major branches of Buddhism (Early/Theravada, Mahayana, Vajrayana) and consider both ancient texts and teachings and modern commentaries, applications, and even criticisms of the modern mindfulness movement.
The Scientific roots of mindfulness: here we'll learn about the physiology and psychology of stress response, consider the positive and destructive aspects of our relationship to stressors, and study positive psychology, the science of meditation, and cognitive neuroscience. As with Buddhism we'll read original "texts" (scientific papers) as well as commentary, essay, and critical thinking on the effects of evidence-based mindfulness-based interventions.
We'll practice deeply in all of the principal practices used in mindfulness training including the body scan, mindful yoga, sitting and walking meditation. Our teaching faculty's deep background in meditation training allows us to explore the three major areas of sitting meditation practice (body/movement practice, settling practice ("shamatha"), inquiry practice ("insight" or "vipassana"), and cultivation practices)with tie ins to both Buddhist roots and scientific research into each practice.
From the first we will start practicing the leadership skills needed to lead subtle, quiet, and powerful mindfulness and compassion practices. And the skills needed to organize and run a learning community oriented classroom. The best compliment we hope you will someday receive from a client or student is that you know how to show up, how to run the program, and how to get "out of the way" and allow participants to learn and develop in ways most appropriate for their own needs.
The MTTP process emphasizes transformational learning. We learn most deeply by doing, considering, study, conversation, and doing again. Accordingly the MTTP is highly experiential, emphasizing daily practice, retreat work, peer practice, reading and reflection, and the completion of a hands-on Practicum Project in which you'll design and deliver a mindfulness workshop in your community or workplace.
The MTTP is broadly about learning to teach mindfulness and create mindfulness programs in a flexible, creative way. We will consider the classic curriculum of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction but we'll also study adaptation and creation of new programs based on the proven success of the MBSR model. Lead instructor Tim Burnett has extensive experience creating new courses and workshops to suit a variety of situations in institutions and community settings.
Our goal is for MTTP participants to become both deeply grounded and highly flexible and adaptive. The MTTP is learning core components of mindfulness and ways of assembling those components into a course or training that matches the situation you find yourself in.