Frequently Asked Questions
What in the world IS Lila?
When you give yourself permission to creatively play and explore the wonder of consciousness (alone or with others), spiritual practices become totally revitalized. You wake up excited and intrinsically motivated to connect to that which matters most to you and to stay connected throughout the day. And when you play with purpose and presence it allows a deeper part of yourself to awaken and invites an exploration of the edge where the Divine interacts with the human – a place where you can learn how to fly.
Every interpretation of what is “Divine”, how She/He/It is accessed, named and known (or unknown), as well as each perspective and paradigm is welcome and respected for the truth it contains and the value it gives you. The richness of differences helps shape the personal and collective experience which gives life and meaning to the exploration of how to play with purpose and honor the Mystery of the moment.
What if those unknown moments in life, sometimes scary, can actually become opportunities to connect with the Divine? What if those moments were actually your invitation to freely enter the Divine’s Playground, a portal to limitless possibilities?
How Might I Benefit from a LILA Event?
Lila invites you to greet your ‘Divine Edge’ with wings on!
The edge is the place where connection and expansion happens…the wings are the creative, enlivening, playful practices.
- Have one of the most unique and memorable experiences of your life.
- Learn playful practices for connecting to the divine that you can continue on your own or in community.
- Expand your vision for what’s possible and be more ‘game’ to say “Yes!” to the opportunities life brings your way.
- Increase the ease and flow of your confident, creative self-expression in the world.
- Transform fears of failure, rejection and the unknown into playful opportunities.
- Meet wonder-full new people and revitalize your connection to your amazing self.
What Challenges & Needs Will LILA Address?
Due to it’s emphasis on the improvisational arts and as well as relating to the Divine Mystery, just about anything can happen at a Lila retreat. That said, here are some typical struggles and challenges that are addressed:
- The disconnect between one’s heart and Divine Presence
- Dryness, boredom or the absence of a Spiritual practice
- Feeling creatively blocked or unfulfilled/unexpressed
- Unhelpful dualisms –Spirituality/Play; Work/Play; Loving Others/Self-Care; Etc.
- Missing, unclear or an uninspiring life purpose/mission
- Existential anxiety/nervousness -lacking a deep experience of unconditional love
Would I Be a Good Fit for a LILA Event?
You’re an ideal participant if you are:
- Wanting increased vitality, creativity & spiritual depth
- Spiritually curious & open-minded
- Open to experimenting with creative, playful methods
- 16-100 years old, male or female
- Hearing a little whisper inside for ‘something more’ from Life
We’d suggest you probably not come if:
- Looking and acting ‘cool’ is a high priority for you
- You want to stay 100% safe, comfortable and not stretch yourself to some degree
- You’re uninterested in personal or spiritual development (no matter how it’s described.)
- You plan to remain aloof, critical or uninvolved in the opportunities offered
What Tools & Practices Do You Use?
The Lila Retreat draws on a rich variety of creative approaches and invites each person to explore expressive possibilities to welcome and enter into the ‘Mystery of the Moment.’ The combination of our different approaches provide multiple entry points for connection and discovery – offering each person a way to find their own unique rhythm and style of “Divine Play”.
Almost all activities have one piece in common –they are almost always from the improvisational arts. Since the goal is authenticity and real connection moment by moment, there is less interest and emphasis in preparing and skillfully crafting our creativity.
To reach a variety of personality types, as well as to delight and stretch each person, we use a mix of practices that engage creative writing, vocal and musical, movement, dance, acting and visual arts. Sometimes they are in a context of game, sometimes ritual, sometimes simple experiment. A mix of solo, small group and large group experiences.
Each of the below approaches is a massive body of work and is taught separately in other settings; the LILA facilitators respectfully offer “golden nuggets” from some areas, while other areas have many years of skillful expertise.
Descriptions are in context to their application to the Lila Retreat.
- Applied Improvisation
- Authentic Movement & Movement Meditations
- Sound Healing
- Contact Improvisation
- Theater of the Oppressed
- Sensory Adventures
- Playback Theatre
- PsoloDrama & DramaTherapy
- Group Games & Interactivities
How Is an Event Structured? What Themes & Topics Are Addressed?
Every LILA event is totally, wonderfully and intentionally unique. The improvisational exploring the “miracle of the moment” is such a high priority… Lila is about discovering what is real, authentic & alive -I’m sure you’ve had enough of ‘programmed’ reality and experiences that can be ‘downloaded’ online. In addition, the environment, number of people, specific needs, group vibe, promptings of the Spirit, unexpected surprised and challenges, and even the mood of your facilitator(!) will ensure each event is it’s own creature.
Structure-wise, what is predictable? We will spend a good chunk of time in the beginning establishing safety through facilitating connection and group trust, learning basics and playfully melting the ice of our fears and egos. From there, anything can happen…
That said, there are a number of themes that are explored, and I understand the need for “L-brain” candy:
- CONNECTION TO: Self, Others, Spirit, Nature/Environment, Our Tools/Objects/Things
- STAGES: Arriving, Releasing/Clearing/Emptying, Grounding, Opening/Invoking, Aligning/Remembering, Connecting/Communion, Recharging/Inspiring, Discovering, Fear-Facing, Expressing/Creating, Celebrating/Worshipping
- CHALLENGES: Ego Needs, Distraction, Mentalism, Disembodiment, Attachment, Fear/Mistrust, Isolation, Forgetting, Ignorance, Integrity, Creative Constipation, Etc.
- GOALS: Vitality, Inspiration, Connection, Deep Purpose, Transformation, Fun/Joy, Freedom, Creative/Playful Flow, Self-Trust & Confidence, New Friends & Support for Continued Growth
Why/How Should I Trust You?
What, you don’t trust ME!? Just kidding, that’s a totally valid, and important, question. Investing your time, money and energy into an event –and then likely opening up the deepest parts of yourself to someone you don’t know, or know not very well, can be quite risky. I think it’s super important that you honor your intuition/gut and do whatever you need to feel “safe enough” to trust.
On that note, here are a few things that might help:
- I do everything I can do to make sure our ‘container’ is safe. You can opt out of or modify any activity, you can even make a suggestion or challenge me if it feels appropriate and not only self-serving.
- You can know that I’ve been facilitating groups for most of my adult life, around 25 years , and have had my events featured on national media (PBS, NBC Today Show, LA Times) as well as receiving plenty of praise.
- Speaking of praise -you can always read the testimonials from past participants on the main page on on the “past events” link. There’s also a good collection of even more verifiable testimonials, though more business focused, here on Biznik.com
- You can always send me an email via the contact form in the menu, or even call me directly 206-428-7626
- You can know that when I invite special guest teachers, they are always people whom I trust & respect deeply.
- You could invite me to give a lecture, sample workshop or even team training for your organization to get to know me.
- You can watch videos from me that will be growing here on this site, as well as on Vimeo or Youtube.
Apart from that, you’re going to have to listen to your heart and then stretch those trust muscles and learn from Life & Lila!