Awakin Calls » Loch Kelly
Loch Kelly: Meditation teacher, psychotherapist, author, and community builder
Dec 14, 2019: The Way of Effortless Mindfulness
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Nuggets From Loch Kelly's Call
"Effortless Mindfulness is letting go of present moments, thoughts, and attention to open to a naturally wise, compassionate awareness that is connected in the Now. " – Loch Kelly Loch Kelly, M.Div., LCSW, is an author, meditation teacher, licensed psychotherapist, and founder of Open-Hearted Awareness Institute, a nonprofit located in New York. Author of the best-selling and award-winning book The Way of Effortless Mindfulness, Loch is a recognized leader in the field of meditation, and offers tools for effortless mindfulness. He served on the New York Insight Teachers Council, studied extensively with Mingyur Rinpoche, and was invited to teach direct realization by Adyashanti, an American-born spiritual teacher who has been teaching for more than 20 years. See full.
"Effortless Mindfulness is letting go of present moments, thoughts, and attention to open to a naturally wise, compassionate awareness that is connected in the Now. " – Loch Kelly
Loch Kelly, M.Div., LCSW, is an author, meditation teacher, licensed psychotherapist, and founder of Open-Hearted Awareness Institute, a nonprofit located in New York. Author of the best-selling and award-winning book The Way of Effortless Mindfulness, Loch is a recognized leader in the field of meditation, and offers tools for effortless mindfulness. He served on the New York Insight Teachers Council, studied extensively with Mingyur Rinpoche, and was invited to teach direct realization by Adyashanti, an American-born spiritual teacher who has been teaching for more than 20 years.
“There is more to effortless mindfulness than meditation,” Loch says. “Effortless mindfulness is primarily an off-the-meditation-cushion way of weaving together contemplation and compassionate actions. Effortless mindfulness begins by opening to a natural spacious awareness in order to become more wise, embodied, and creative. A new ethical motivation springs from the realization of a loving interconnection with all of life."
Effortless awareness has been described in the traditional literature as being so close it cannot be seen, so subtle it cannot be understood, and so good it cannot be believed. Loch describes effortless mindfulness as the discovery of an optimal mind, or an open mind, that’s already aware which we can then be aware from. “From this spacious and pervasive awareness, we discover that we’re aware not only of the ability to focus on our breath, but we feel almost as if we’re being breathed, as if our breath is connected to the outer world, the inner world, and we feel as if we’re in this flow or what’s been called ‘in the zone.’”
Loch’s work is to help people access awakening as the next natural stage of human development. He has collaborated with neuroscientists at Yale, UPenn, and NYU in the study of how awareness training can enhance compassion and wellbeing. He offers in-person retreats, workshops, and online video and audio courses.
Loch has authored three books, including Shift into Freedom: The Science and Practice of Open-Hearted Awareness (2015); Effortless Mindfulness Now: Awakening Our Natural Capacity for Focus, Freedom, and Joy (2017); and The Way of Effortless Mindfulness: A Revolutionary Guide for Living an Awakened Life (2019). His latest book offers a practical guide to experiencing the next stage in the ongoing mindfulness revolution: effortless mindfulness. With guided experiential practices, he writes about how to live with an open heart and peaceful mind and uncover the wise and loving awareness that is within and all around us.
Loch graduated from Columbia University where he received a traveling fellowship to study forms of non-dual meditation in Sri Lanka, India and Nepal from 1981-1982, and has studied with teachers from around the world. As a meditation teacher, Loch teaches using an adult-education style based in the earliest non-dual wisdom traditions, modern science, and psychotherapy.
Loch has worked in community mental health, established homeless shelters and counseled family members of 9/11. He spent 10 years establishing homeless shelters and community lunch programs while working in a community mental health clinic in Brooklyn, New York. He also served as Coordinator of Counseling and Interspiritual Chaplain at Union Theological Seminary and worked extensively with families recovering from the trauma of 9/11. Loch currently lives in New York City with his wife Paige and their cat Duffy.
Join us in conversation with this gifted teacher!
Five Questions for Loch
What Makes You Come Alive?
What makes me come alive is shifting my awareness from my chattering mind to the already open hearted embodied awareness that is the source of my loving Self. From this ground of being I have a compassionate view and motivation to connect and help others.
Pivotal turning point in your life?
A pivotal turning point in my life was during my graduate school traveling fellowship I was studying meditation in Sri Lanka and did a series of long silent retreats of 5 days, 10 days and 21 days which I benefited from. I then went up to Nepal and met a Tibetan teacher who showed the group of us how to shift our awareness in a particular way and in 3 minutes I felt the same calm, clarity and compassion as at the end of the 21 day retreat. These are the glimpse practices that I teach today.
An Act of Kindness You'll Never Forget?
When I was first starting my meditation center, a friend and well known meditation teacher offered to come to NYC and donate his time, effort andthe proceeds to the new center as a gift.
One Thing On Your Bucket List?
To take my family to the elephant and wild life rescue preserve in Thailand.
One-line Message for the World?
Awakening is available within you already and is the next natural stage of human development.
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