Workshop Number: 19
Leaders: Allison (Sunny) Davidson
Who May Register?: Open to All
Worship/Worship-Sharing: 10%
Lecture: 15%
Discussion: 15%
Experiential Activities: 60%

Who May Attend?
part-time attenders welcome (can come any session)
half gathering attenders welcome

Half-Gathering Attenders Welcome:
First half (Monday-Wednesday)
Second half (Wednesday/Thursday-Friday)

We’ll begin with centering and proceed into trying ZenPen, a simple pen technique. Each participant will complete a feather-inspired drawing to use as a meditation focus. We will also relax our hands with easy mudras( hand poses) and breathing techniques, then utilize fabric ‘quills’ for movement-prayers….questions/ discussion invited…

Workshop Description

The workshop will allow participants to learn new ways of meditation/ prayer in a context that is safe, non-threatening and supportive. All ages and abilities can join in. I can provide photographs of prior students’ ZenPen work, quilling, and mudra if this would prove helpful.

My objective is to expand participants’ prayer repertoire, help them grow in their knowledge that there are many ways to pray, and expand their awareness that multiple cultures and traditions can enrich the journey of faith…

I also want to allay fears and give courage and healing to those who have become convinced that they “can’t do anything artistic”, that they have “two left feet”, that they are “all thumbs”, etc. The concepts in this workshop are non-competitive, non-judgmental,  and for everyone. Prayer/ meditation in its many forms is not a contest or competition, it is a way of being.

Participants need only bring themselves, and an openness to participate.

Typically, we will begin each day with 20 minutes of worship based on expectant waiting. The remainder of our designated time together will include instruction in various artistic modalities that are gateways to prayer and meditation. These will begin on Day One with ZenPen, and the creation of a simple journal. As the week goes on we will include claywork, painting, and origami, with time to write in our journals, discuss and ask questions, and engage in some simple breathwork. By week’s end, we will also explore QuillDance, a creative movement-as-prayer modality involving fluid fabrics threaded onto flexible rods. As we leave, each participant will travel home with their journal, drawings, painting, claywork, and an enhanced array of modalities for prayer and meditation.

Leader Experience

Teaching Dance/ Movement as a form of prayer has taken me into many faith contexts as diverse as Methodist, Presbyterian, Episcopal, Pentecostal and Catholic. Several years ago, I began to teach ZenPen, a meditative form of pen and ink drawing that requires no prior drawing experience, both in religious education classes and secular classes. I also teach Interpretive movement in secular contexts with students of all ages and abilities, many of whom have had no formal dance training. I am currently an instructor with the Durham Arts Council and a teaching artist in the CAPS program( Creative Artists in Public and Private Schools)as well as an instructor at Soul River Spiritual Center.

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