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MNDFL wants to create a new generation of meditation teachers


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Photo: Natalie Baxter

With the rise of meditation as a way we try to manage pain, deal with stress, and even socialize (sometimes in groups of, oh, 1,000 or so), we’re seeing a new wave of meditation teacher trainings as well in New York City. First The Path, which hosts group meditation classes all over the city, launched its program—and now, MNDFL, NYC’s first drop-in meditation studio, will soon begin training its first class of meditation graduates at its chic Greenwich Village location.

“I’ve been teaching meditation across the country for many years, and at some point my students have said to me, ‘I’d like to be able to do what you do someday,'” Lodro Rinzler, MNDFL’s chief spiritual officer, tells us. So Rinzler created a program that bestows guru hopefuls with the tools they need in order to teach.

MNDFL’s five-month training program (300 hours broken down into 20 weekday classes and 5 weekend retreats, at a cost of $3500) consists of one-on-one training with a mentor, guided practice sessions, lessons on teaching, and practice talks.

How will this program differ from other meditation courses? According to Rinzler and MNDFL’s co-founder Ellie Burrows, the nearly 30 experts who teach at MNDFL are on board to train you in the program. So students will get an education in the different traditions practiced by MNDFL’s teachers—including Zen Buddhism, Shambhala, Christian meditation, Hindu style meditation, and more—before diving deep into mindfulness- and compassion-based Buddhist practices.

“So in addition to being able to lead a meditation or instruct a class, you’ll be able to really speak to the craft and pull from a wide-ranging education on it,” Rinzler says. “I think it’s important to be very well trained if you’re going to teach meditation.”

Graduates of the MNDFL program will be certified by the studio so that they can start their own practice or possibly help support MNDFL with events outside their studio. “Our community wants an in-depth meditation experience, so we carefully developed this program,” says Rinzler. More expert meditators in the city that never sleeps? If this means Gotham gets just a bit more peaceful (and not just in its sensory deprivation tanks), we’re on board.

Read about how meditation has helped CEOs stay clearheaded in their busy lives. Speaking of oms, this 5-minute meditation is designed to stress-proof your mind

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