As the dog days of summer surround us, Teacher Peter Van Buren's Bolton Hill class will be taking a vacation for August. The last session of the summer will be on Wednesday, August 1.
Peter will resume the popular weekly Sheng Zhen classes again after Labor Day, switching back to Thursday evenings starting September 6. The time will stay the same: every Thursday from 5:30-6:30 pm in the Upper Parish Hall of Memorial Church.
In addition, Peter will be adding a new weekly class at the No Boundaries Coalition office, 1808 Pennsylvania Avenue, every Wednesday from 5:30-6:30 pm.
Both classes will run for six weeks, from the first week in September through the second week in October. Plus, the same form will be taught at both venues, so now there are two chances to make a practice every week right here in the 21217 zip code.
During the 1-hour sessions, participants will learn a graceful and powerful form called Heaven Nature Contemplation (formerly known as Kuan Yin Standing, see this YouTube video), as well as some related standing and sitting forms.
The Heaven Nature standing form involves a series of eleven movements that are both easy to do and to learn. As the gentle movements stimulate qi to flow in the body, the practice calms the emotions, reduces stress, enlivens the spirit, and energizes the person.
Both classes are open to everyone; beginners and drop-ins are always welcome. Come give it a try. Please wear loose, comfortable clothing. Sheng Zhen can be practiced in shoes, socks or bare feet. No equipment is needed - just bring yourself and enjoy the practice of unconditional love.
The suggested donation is $10 per class or $50 for a 6-class package that can be used at either location. 100% of the class proceeds are donated to Memorial Church or No Boundaries Coalition as a creative fundraiser. Since classes started at the Memorial Church in 2017, they have already generated over $1,700 for the church’s building & grounds fund.
Peter also teaches weekly Sheng Zhen Gong classes in the same Parish Hall space for the Samaritan Community every Tuesday from 11 am–noon. These sessions are free to Samaritan Community members, but others are welcome to join the group anytime, with the same suggested donations as for Memorial Church. For these sessions, all donations will directly support the Samaritan Community.
In addition to these open classes, Peter teaches a weekly Sheng Zhen class at the MICA's Wellness Center for students, faculty and staff.
Sheng Zhen is Chinese for "unconditional love". Arising from the ancient practice of qigong and the principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Sheng Zhen Meditation is a comprehensive system of moving forms, meditations, philosophy, and contemplations that tap into the body’s natural ability to heal itself.