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Joan writes and talks about being awake to the aliveness and inconceivability of Here-Now—being just this moment, exactly as it is. Joan invites people to question the sense of being a separate, independent, encapsulated, autonomous self; to question the stories, beliefs and misunderstandings that create so much of our human suffering, including our tendency to mistake conceptual maps for the living actuality. Joan's bare-bones approach is open, direct, down-to-earth, rooted in the ever-fresh aliveness of aware presence. Rather than relying on outside authorities, traditional ideas, acquired knowledge or beliefs, this is about direct, immediate seeing and being. Joan's main teacher was Toni Packer, a former Zen teacher who left that tradition behind to work in a simpler and more open way. Joan spent time with many other teachers as well, exploring Buddhism, Advaita and radical nonduality, but she does not identify with or represent any particular tradition. Joan is the author of Bare-Bones Meditation: Waking Up from the Story of My Life (1996), Awake in the Heartland: The Ecstasy of What Is (2003), Painting the Sidewalk with Water: Talks and Dialogs about Nonduality (2010), Nothing to Grasp (2012), and Death: The End of Self-Improvement (2019). Joan has lived in northern California, rural New York state, and Chicago, and currently resides in southern Oregon.


 

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