Art Therapy & Mindfulness – Support Groups for Young Women
Support Groups with Facilitator Jennifer Trudeau-Brown, LMHC, ATR:
*** IMPORTANT UPDATES *** The Young Women’s group will meet on Wednesdays from 5-6:30-pm for 5 weeks ages 13-17, and a Women’s Group will meet that same day (Wednesdays) from 6:30-8pm for ages 25-50.
Art Therapy & Mindfulness for Young Women: In this group, attendees will support and help build each other’s confidence through art and meditation. We will focus on using art and meditation, as well as the concepts of self-love and compassion to learn better ways to manage anxiety. Group members will express their feelings through their art and share with group members, as well as connect with one another and provide support where needed.
Wednesdays, August 10th to September 7th from 5-6:30pm (Ages 13-17)
All sessions held at One Roof, 58 Henry Street, Saratoga Springs, NY
(Tuesdays, August 9th to August 29th from 4-5:30pm) SEE REVISED DAYS/TIMES ABOVE
All sessions held at One Roof, 58 Henry Street, Saratoga Springs, NY
Optimal Balance – By Pierre Zimmerman 8/1/22
From the Desk of Pierre Zimmerman: OPTIMAL BALANCE FOR HAPPINESS
The way to achieve genuine happiness is to apply effective means to balance the heart and mind in order to succeed in achieving a deep state of sanity and discovering a sense of inner wellbeing, which persists when alone or with others, active or at rest, and doesn’t require any external stimulation. Genuine contentment arises from the depths of a mind that is calm, clear, and open and being present in the world without being thrown into emotional disequilibrium. The route to wellbeing requires four kinds of mental balance: conative, attentional, cognitive and emotional. We will look at three kinds of imbalance in each domain: deficit, hyperactivity, and dysfunction.
Conation refers to the faculties of desire and volition, the mental process that activates and/or directs behavior and action. Imbalances in that domain are ways our desires and intentions lead us away from psychological flourishing and often into distress. A deficit occurs when we experience a loss of desire for happiness and its causes with a lack of imagination or stagnant complacency. Hyperactivity is present when we fixate on obsessive desires that obscure the reality of the present, being caught up in fantasies of the future, blind to the needs and desires of others. Dysfunction occurs when we desire things that are not conducive to others’ or our own wellbeing or genuine happiness. Daily meditation as a discipline requires motivation and continuous practice.
Attentional balance, including the development of sustained, voluntary attention, is a crucial feature of mental health and optimal performance in any kind of meaningful activity. Deficit in this domain is characterized by the inability to focus on a desired object, the mind becoming withdrawn and disengaged. Attentional hyperactivity occurs when the mind is excessively aroused, resulting in compulsive distraction and fragmentation. Attention becomes dysfunctional when we focus on things which are not conducive to our own or others’ wellbeing. Meditation quiescence has three qualities: relaxation, stability, and vividness for attentional training. The metaphor of trees with the roots of relaxation penetrating deep into fertile soil, the trunk of stability becoming thick and strong and the branches and foliage of vividness forming a lush, verdant canopy, support the three qualities.
Cognitive balance occurs when one views the world without the imbalances of conceptual projection, omission, or distortion. Deficit is characterized by the failure to perceive what is present in our five fields of sensory experience and in our minds, being out of touch with what is occurring around us and within us. Hyperactivity sets in when we conflate our conceptual projections with actual experience. We fail to distinguish between perceived realities and our superimposed assumptions and fantasies. Cognitive dysfunction occurs when we misapprehend reality in our ability to interpret what’s happening in the moment. The primary intervention or antidote is to cultivate mindfulness.
Emotional balance is a natural outcome of the first three balances. Emotional deficit has the symptom of emotional deadness and a sense of cold indifference towards others. Hyperactivity is characterized by excessive or obsessive experience of elation and depression, hope and fear, adulation and contempt, craving and hostility. Dysfunction occurs when our emotional responses are inappropriate to the circumstances, such as delighting in others’ misfortunes or resenting their successes. The meditative practices to cultivate the Four Immeasurables (qualities of loving kindness, compassion, empathetic joy and equanimity) support the heart/mind to remain calm and open for a vast potential of mental health flourishing.
Empathy and Compassion – By Pierre Zimmerman 7/1/22
FROM THE DESK OF PIERRE ZIMMERMAN: Empathy, Compassion and Altruism
The word empathy is a translation from the German word Einfuhlung, which refers to “the ability to feel the other from within.” Empathy can be set off by an affective perception of feeling for a person with whom we enter into resonance, or by cognitive imagination evoked by the other person’s experience. Emotional resonance usually precedes cognitive resonance and depends on the intensity of our emotions as to whether we can really respond – or become reactive instead.
True empathic concern consists of becoming aware of another’s needs and then feeling a sincere desire to come to his or her aid. It doesn’t involve pity, which is egocentric or condescending, or for that matter emotional contagion, which results in distress or empathy fatigue because we confuse our feelings with that of the other.
Compassion is the capacity to use our heart to relieve the suffering of another and all the possibilities to accomplish this. It includes the realization that ignorance is the fundamental cause of suffering and gives rise to an array of mental obscurations, lack of love, meaning, confidence and absence of a clear compass. Motivation for taking actions for release of suffering counts more than their outcome or results. Compassion doesn’t exclude anything possible to prevent the other from continuing to harm or break the circle of hatred.
Altruism is the motivational state that has the ultimate goal of increasing another’s welfare. It is a willingness to lead a life devoted to the well-being of others without the need of ulterior motive. Valuing others and being concerned about their situation are essential. Buddhism defines it as the wish that all beings find happiness and the causes of happiness. In this context, happiness is not just a temporary state of well-being, but a way of being that includes wisdom, inner freedom and strength, as well as an accurate view of reality.
Altruistic love and compassion add joy when perceiving the happiness and good qualities of others as well as impartiality. Rejoicing means that we don’t want others’ qualities and happiness to diminish, but instead to increase and persist. This serves as an antidote to competitiveness, jealousy and envy, and is a remedy for depression or despairing views. Impartiality or equanimity doesn’t depend either on our personal attachments or the way others behave towards us. Altruistic love requires courage; fear and insecurity are major obstacles to altruism. We need to develop an inner strength that makes us confident in our inner resources, which help us face the constantly changing circumstances of our lives.
Pepper Wolfe on Healing: Body, Mind and Spirit
Interconnectedness – By Pierre Zimmerman 6/1/22
From the Desk of Pierre Zimmerman: INTERCONNECTEDNESS
Interdependence is not the easiest idea to grasp, yet it allows us to develop a wider perspective and less attachment to destructive emotions. There is nothing wrong or unusual about anger, for instance, but it can become dangerous when we are consumed by it for hours, sometimes years. We always want to reduce it as best and quickly as we can. Interdependence is not just a concept. It can reduce suffering caused by destructive emotions, because it is an explanation of the law of nature — including ecology, for instance.
Our future depends on global well-being. Knowing this, we can reduce narrow-mindedness, which often breeds attachment and hatred. The whole world is heavily interconnected and interdependent today, partially through the digital world, enhancing accessibility. All things are dependent on one another, and with time, we can gradually kindle a fire that starts with a spark, which creates light, but can also turn into a wildfire!
Emptiness doesn’t mean nothingness. When we realize nothing is solid, edges soften because everything is intertwined and therefore there are fewer physical boundaries during times of spiritual lucidity. Reality is often a mere mental projection, whereas wisdom implies clear vision when we understand emptiness, which is to say that things are devoid of individual inherent existence. Nothing can exist independently on its own. Interdependence, rather than independence, defines our lives and everything around us. These linkages maybe difficult to see but they are real: people, animals, thoughts, emotions, and objects are empty. Anything and everything comes into existence because of a complex web of causes, conditions and relationships.
Any interest of yours or mine is inextricably connected and involves our well-being. Compassion becomes reinforced, because when something good happens to others, we will also benefit — if not immediately, then eventually. Anyone can achieve genuine happiness by focusing on the fundamental precepts of compassion and wisdom, which are often referred to as the two wings of a bird, allowing it to fly. A person with wisdom and no compassion is like a lonely hermit vegetating in the mountains or a cave, a compassionate person without wisdom is nothing more than a likable fool!
Embracing Our Identity and Uniqueness – with Lynne Davidson, LCSW
Embracing Our Identity and Uniqueness: Exploring LGBTQ Relevant Topics in Group Setting
- Challenges of developing greater appreciation of our uniqueness and beauty
- Releasing the negative impacts of homophobia
- Redefining ourselves as deserving and affirming the ability to thrive
- Connecting with positive and supportive others
$25 per individual 1 ½ hour session
$150 for full 7-week commitment
For more information, please contact Lynne Davidson, LCSW
Developing Resilience – By Pierre Zimmerman 5/1/22
How Do I Develop Resilience?
by Pierre Zimmerman, MS
Resilience is the ability to face life’s challenges, small or seemingly overwhelming, surprising or habitual. With it we can experience what we might label victories, and when we lack resilience, we might end up having setbacks. Some people recover quickly from adversity; others become crippled by it.
The capacities to bounce back, integrate our experiences and then move on are innate and possible, yet difficult. To be resilient requires qualities like awareness, reflection, flexibility, stability, and adaptability. We can use the five universal elements to illustrate these important themes:
The earth element of stability and firmness
The water element of fluidity
The fire element of adjustable temperatures
The air element of mobility
The space element of boundlessness
Impermanence is real and not just a thought. Everything is changing in our internal and external life constantly. Once we come to terms with it, our responses to change give us numerous probabilities of what can occur and unlimited opportunities to respond. We need to face whatever creates suffering and discomfort; this is called coping. Thoughts and feelings cannot destroy us. We need to pause and stay calm, letting what needs to emerge surface, which in turn will bring clarity as to the beneficial choices we can make.
One Roof Welcomes Pepper Wolfe, LMSW
Pepper Wolfe has been a licensed social worker for 15 years. Additionally she has 1000+ hours of training in yoga therapeutics. Over the past 13 years that she has been in private practice, she has integrated working with the body into the traditional mental health model. Incorporating breath work, meditation and asana (yoga poses) into her work, clients gain considerable traction in areas where they have felt previously stuck. In other words, we work with the body to work with the mind, mood and behavior.
Pepper specializes in working with parents with a trauma history who want to end the cycle of generational violence. Parents often strive to be peaceful, gentle and conscious with their children, but find in the moment they are triggered, it is difficult to access information they carry intellectually. Find her contact info & learn more about Pepper and her unique practice and contact her directly to schedule and appointment.
3/27/22, Climate Change/Local Action with Brenda Ekwurzel
Climate Change/Local Action with Brenda Ekwurzel
Sunday, March 27 at 7:00 pm Via ZOOM
Local Groups Bring in Internationally Renowned Climate Scientist for the Worldwide Climate Teach-in
Email for Inquiries
On Sunday, March 27 at 7:00 pm via Zoom, Temple Sinai is bringing world-renowned climate scientist Brenda Ekwurzel to talk about the latest information on Climate Change and to help the community find ways to make local changes. The event is presented in partnership with Skidmore College, Sustainable Saratoga, the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Saratoga Springs, and One Roof Saratoga and is part of the Worldwide Teach-in on Climate and Justice (more info below).
It is free and open to the public and will be available via Zoom. Registration is not required but there will be a waiting room. (Meeting ID: 957 3221 6053 and Passcode 715333).
More information on Brenda Ekwurzel and on the Worldwide Teach-In on Climate and Justice
Brenda Ekwurzel is a senior climate scientist and the director of climate science for the Climate & Energy Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS). In her role, she ensures that program analyses reflect robust and relevant climate science, and researches the influence of major carbon producers on rising global average temperatures and sea level. Dr. Ekwurzel is a co-author of the fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA4) Volume II. She presents frequently to a range of audiences on climate science, educating the public on practical, achievable solutions for climate change.
Prior to joining UCS, Dr. Ekwurzel was on the faculty of the University of Arizona in their department of hydrology and water resources, with a joint appointment in the geosciences department. She has studied climate variability in places as disparate as the Arctic—where her research brought her to the North Pole—and the desert Southwest. Earlier in her career, Dr. Ekwurzel was a hydrologist, working with communities to protect groundwater.
Dr. Ekwurzel earned a B.S. in geology from Smith College, and an M.S. in geoscience from Rutgers University. She holds a Ph.D. in isotope geochemistry from the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, and conducted post-doctoral research at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, in California.
A widely quoted expert on climate change, Dr. Ekwurzel co-authored the UCS guide Cooler Smarter: Practical Steps for Low-Carbon Living. In 2016, she was named a AAAS fellow, and cited for her “distinguished contributions to analysis and outreach aimed at strengthening support for sound U.S. climate policies, and making the science of climate change accessible to diverse audiences.” She has appeared on ABC News, CBS News, CNN, Good Morning America, NBC News, NPR, and The Colbert Report, and has been cited by Associated Press, New York Times, Reuters, USA Today and Washington Post.
The Worldwide Teach-in On Climate and Justice – The Week of March 30
Temple Sinai initiated the event and chose the date to coincide with the Worldwide Teach-in on Climate and Justice taking place the last week of March. As the negative impacts of the climate crisis accumulate, faith communities have a vital role to play in addressing climate change and creating just climate solutions and must act now to make a difference. The Teach-in aims to mobilize half a million educators, students and community members to participate in a historic global event.
As the negative impacts of the climate crisis accumulate, faith communities have a vital role to play in addressing climate change and creating just climate solutions. Churches, mosques, temples and synagogues must act now to make a difference. The Worldwide Teach-in on Climate and Justice aims to mobilize half a million educators, students and community members to participate in a historic global event on March 30, 2022.
“The climate crisis is about more than data and science. It is about perceptions, beliefs and values,” says Karenna Gore, executive director of the Center for Earth Ethics. “We are excited to help engage faith communities and institutions in the worldwide climate teach-in on March 30 because they have a vital role to play in facing up to the root causes of the climate crisis and creating positive change.”
The Center for Earth Ethics partnered with Bard College’s Graduate Programs in Sustainability to create a teach-in model for faith communities to assist churches, mosques, temples and synagogues around the world to participate in the global event on Wednesday, March 30.
“We are all experiencing the rising sense of climate despair,” says Dr. Eban Goodstein, director of Bard Graduate Programs in Sustainability and founder of the Worldwide Teach-in on Climate and Justice. “By mobilizing half a million faith leaders, seminarians, educators, students and people of faith around the world, we aim to replace that despair with a powerful sense of agency about the work we can do together—this year, next year and over the next decades—to change the future.” Gore and Goodstein noted that the teach-in model for faith communities is designed to be adapted by each community and its members according to their unique circumstances.
Temple Sinai is a vibrant and welcoming Reform synagogue located in historic downtown Saratoga Springs. For more information on this program please visit Temple Sinai’s website or the events calendar at www.Skidmore.edu.
Young Women’s Group – Peer to Peer Support with Heather Lofink, LMHC
and engaging in these transitions can feel lonely and confusing – pandemic or not!
Join other young women in this time of transition and change
to connect, process, and support one another
while gaining skills to manage anxiety and practice self-care.
$25 per 1 ½ hour virtual session.
OR insurance co-pay / co-ins/ deductible if using insurance.
Must be located in New York State.
With a 6-week commitment
Wednesdays 7:00pm – 8:30pm
Facilitator: Heather Lofink, LMHC
All potential participants will be required to complete intake paperwork and a 15-minute ZOOM session with group facilitator prior to admission to the group.