Miksang Training Course Descriptions


 Making Contact: Relaxing This, Discovering THAT

Three – FiveDay Workshop
Pre-Requisites: None

Making Contact is where “the rubber hits the road” in Miksang. In this workshop we prepare ourselves to see, recognize when we have a fresh perception, understand it, and express it with our camera. We learn to develop a sense of equanimity about what we see. In Making Contact, we work with our resistance to seeing without an agenda, and our struggle to make our world conform to what we want to see. We discover that real seeing takes place on the other side of boredom. As we cross this boundary we discover a world of floating wonder for us to play in.

In the Making Contact Workshop, we are introduced to the four main practices of Miksang: Recognizing Freshness, Seeing the One Thing, Deep Noticing and the Miksang Core Practice.

Mom's Hair

The Heart of Perception: Feeling the Moment

Three-Four Day Workshop
Making Contact: Relaxing This, Discovering THAT

In The Heart of Perception we experience new depth of visual experience. As we free ourselves from the limitations of what we want to see, we enter into a more spacious and intimate relationship with our visual world. As our openness and receptivity continue to expand, we can feel the heartbeat and breath of our perceptions. The texture of our experience becomes delicate, transitory, ephemeral. Because we have developed the ability to be still without bias or judgment, we can express the subtlety of this experience with our camera.

NYC Gas Cap Haiku

Form, Space and Moments: Further Dimensions of Perception

Three-Four Day Workshop
Making Contact: Relaxing This, Discovering THAT
The Heart of Perception: Feeling the Moment

In order to further refine our relationship with our visual world, it is very helpful to clarify and deepen our awareness of the aspect of perception which we call space. As part of our conventional way of looking at the world, there is a tendency to look at objects, which we usually fix into place through thinking, labeling and associating. We tend to move from one object to the next as we navigate our experience. Seldom do we notice the visual space in which objects appear—the space around or between things. This workshop introduces methods of relaxing our gaze and our fixation on things so that we can actually experience, notice and express the qualities of space in our world. Through exercises and assignments, our images begin to express our experience of visual dimensionality rather than our customary emphasis on form and its qualities.

Space 2

Cutting Loose / Floating Free

Four-Five Day Workshop:
Making Contact: Relaxing This, Discovering THAT
The Heart of Perception: Feeling the Moment
Space: Further Dimensions of Perception

When the form becomes one with the mind and the discipline is transparent we can let the arrow fly. We feel the target instinctively and through a subtle realignment we launch on contact. There is no need to reexamine or contemplate. Our experience of seeing and its expression become a seamless stream, effortless.

To help stabilize our experience of the first instant of  perception, we need to collapse our experience of seeing, understanding and expressing into a single moment, free of hesitation. And that single moment rests on two qualities—confidence and genuineness.

The assignments in this course allow us to further let go of our habits and patterns involved in seeing—even those associated with our previous Miksang training. We can cut loose even from our Miksang database and see without memory.

Loose 1

Master Class: The Five Styles of Creative Expression

Five Day Workshop
Pre-Requisite: All previous Miksang classes

As we become free of concept in our visual experience and we can spontaneously form the equivalent of our perception, the whole world is our playground. The world presents itself to us in its own unique way, and we choose to resonate or not, depending on our unique predilections which are basic to our makeup, our basic style.  This style becomes manifest when our relative filters and cultural bias become transparent.

The five styles of creative expression presents the view of the unconditional energy of reality manifesting as five distinct yet perceivable styles. We explore how these styles express themselves in our being and in our experience of the perceptual world.

In his book, Dharma Art, Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche provides this introduction:

We are trying to get at some basic understanding of seeing things in their absolute essence, their own innate nature. We can use this knowledge in regard to painting or poetry or arranging flowers or making films or composing music. It is also connected with the relationships between people. These five Buddha principles seem to cover a whole area of new dimensions of perception. They are very important at all levels and in all creative situations.”

In the past this course has been quite interesting—using photography as our base medium, we will expand our study of the five families into other areas of expression such as music, dress, food, objects, etc.

To find out how to become a Miksang Instructor click here

The Miksang Institute has no relationship to nor any affiliation with any other contemplative photography organizations or teachers, and only workshops taken with Miksang Institute Teachers are counted as pre-requisites for any Institute programs.