Grace Fisher is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice in San Anselmo. She has practiced Insight Meditation for over fourteen years. She is a former lawyer who holds a Masters in Education from Stanford, a Masters in Counseling Psychology and is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFT) working with individuals, families, and young adults in Marin. At Spirit Rock, she was a member of the Teen Council for many years and co-led parenting and teen classes and assisted on the young adult, family, and women's retreats. She is part of the teaching team of the weekly Women's Class. As a mother of a young girl, she is especially interested in holding and supporting parenthood as a spiritual path.
Greg Scharf has practiced with Western and Asian teachers in the Theravada tradition since 1992, and has been teaching residential retreats since 2007. His teaching emphasizes the confluence of love and wisdom on the path to liberation. If you feel drawn to donate to Greg on this website, he says, "Please consider making a donation to Dharma Seed instead - Dharma Seed needs your support!"
Gulwinder “Gullu” Singh has enjoyed a successful 20+ year career as a commercial real estate attorney, living in a world of stressful environments and often insane mindsets. Thankfully, exposed to meditation as a child, he found his own practice in 1993. In 2006, Gullu began deepening his meditation practice in the Vipassana (Insight) tradition of mindfulness, concentration and heart practices which aim to incline the mind and heart to default states of joy, kindness, empathy and balance. Gullu has a deep inspiration to share meditation with all who are interested as an antidote to stress, a way to cope more effectively with the challenges and demands of life and discovering our own innate resources for learning, growing, healing, and thriving. Gullu teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and administrates Trudy Goodman's Deepening Your Practice program.
What has always engaged me is working with practitioners who are deepening their commitment to the Dharma and then seeing them take a quantum leap in their understanding. My contribution to this commitment is working towards conveying a Theravadan practice with a Mahayana spirit.
The Theravadan practice of vipassana provides simple, direct instructions that can be immediately understood and applied in daily life as well as retreat practice. The Mahayana spirit has the beautiful attitude that we practice not for ourselves alone, but for all sentient beings. Between the two, the unfolding of liberation for ourselves and others becomes a simple, down-to-earth practice that anyone can do.
It is fun for me to take the most difficult concepts and put them into accessible language, to unwrap the mystery. So I try to find ways to explore the breadth of concepts like "emptiness" -- to see how the entire path can be explained in terms of this synonym for nibbana. One of my aims is to bring the goal of freedom into the here and now. This way practitioners get a taste of freedom, so they know what they are heading toward on their journey to liberation.
The tools of mindfulness and lovingkindness can be picked up by anyone. They are easy to understand and they bring immediate benefit to our lives. The essence of vipassana is ideally suited to western society, especially to the resonance between our psychological turn of mind and our quest for spiritual understanding.
Heather Martin has been meditating since 1972, and practicing Vipassana since 1981. Beginning with S.N. Goenka, she has since been influenced by both Burmese and Thai streams of the Theravada tradition, and by Tibetan Dzogchen with Tsoknyi Rinpoche. Most recently she has been studying with Burmese Sayadaw U Tejaniya.
Her practical and wholehearted approach embodies ease and joy, while grounded in realism.
She has been leading retreats in Canada and the US since 2001. She worked for 20 years as a midwife, and lives on Salt Spring Island, off the south coast of B.C. For more information and Heather's teaching schedule, please visit: ssivipassana.org.
Heather Sundberg has taught insight meditation since 1999 and completed the Spirit Rock/IMS Teacher Training. Beginning her own meditation practice in her late teens, for the last 25 years, Heather has studied with senior teachers in the Insight Meditation (Vipassana) and Tibetan (Vajrayana) traditions and has sat 1-3 months of retreat a year for almost 20 years. She was the Spirit Rock Family & Teen Program Teacher & Manager for a decade. Between 2010- 2015 she spent a cumulative one-year in study, practice, and pilgrimage in Asia. Since 2011, she has been a Teacher at Mountain Stream Meditation Center and sister communities in the Sierra Foothills, and also teaches nationally, especially at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Her teaching emphasizes embodiment, compassion and practical wisdom.