Rhonda V. Magee|Carla Sherrell|Éliane Ubalijoro|Vijay Kanagala|Judith Simmer-Brown|Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu|Fania Davis|Oliver J. Hill: Radicalizing Contemplative Education: Compassion, Intersectionality, and Justice in Challenging Times at 1440 Multiversity

Join Martha Beck at Navigating the Storm, Feb 7–9.


Radicalizing Contemplative Education: Compassion, Intersectionality, and Justice in Challenging Times

9th Annual ACMHE Conference by the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society

October 26 - 29, 2017

Thursday - Sunday, 3 nights

All-inclusive program package to include:

<ul> <li>Tuition</li> <li>Three Meals in Kitchen Table (daily)</li> <li>Shared or Private Accommodations</li> <li>Signature classes and wellness offerings</li> </ul> <p>Please Note: All packages are priced per person. Should you elect a shared accommodation and community hall bath, 1440 will randomly pair you with a gender-specific roommate. Only private rooms have the option of a private bath.  1440 Multiversity is a smoke-free campus.</p>

Registration Closed

Program Description

Please note:  this is for guests who will be arriving on Thursday, October 26 (recommended).  If you are arriving on Friday, October 27 , visit our 2-night stay page.

Join us in the rich and revolutionary exploration of new visions for integrating contemplative practices and approaches to further compassion and justice in higher education and beyond. Seeking to recast the traditional foundations of education into a truly integrative, transformative, and communal enterprise, the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society (CMind) supports initiatives and hosts annual conferences for furthering a contemplative, socially just educational vision.

Celebrating its 20th anniversary, CMind welcomes teachers, scholars, administrators, practitioners, students, and community activists to this landmark event.

Through keynote presentations, interactive sessions, and workshops, participants will explore how contemplative pedagogies and practices can support transformation on multiple levels—self, classroom, organization, and community—and invite creative approaches to how we imagine and address the challenges of the 21st century.

We will explore:

  • How do contemplative practices deepen our capacities to bear witness to each other’s lived experiences and work together to build more compassionate and just communities?
  • How do contemplative approaches help us understand privilege and empower us to work to transform oppressive structures and processes of exclusion on campus and beyond?
  • How can a contemplative social justice pedagogy facilitate a deep unlearning of dehumanizing ideologies and a deeper ability to sit with the discomfort of that process in order to cultivate more liberatory ways of being with one another?

The setting for the conference—with uplifting gathering spaces and quiet spots for contemplation—provides an ideal context for engaging in dialogue about the challenges and opportunities of our time.

For more information about The Center for Contemplative Mind in Society CMIND

If you are a current ACMHE member, don’t forget about your $50 member discount. To receive the member discount code, please follow this link 

If you are interested in applying for an access grant, please apply here 


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  • Faculty Bio
    Rhonda V. Magee, MA, JD

    Leader in contemplative legal education

    Rhonda V. Magee is professor of law at the University of San Francisco, a teacher of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, and a student of Buddhism. She is a facilitator of mindful and compassionate communication. In April 2015, she was named a fellow of the Mind and Life Institute.

    Her teaching and writing is inspired by commitments to compassionate problem-solving and presence-based leadership in a diverse world, and to humanizing education. She sees mindfulness and compassion practices as keys to personal, interpersonal, and collective transformation, and is a nationally recognized thought and practice leader in the emerging fields of contemplative legal education and teaching mindfulness and compassion in higher education.

    Dr. Magee is the author of numerous articles on mindfulness in legal education, including Educating Lawyers to Meditate? and The Way of ColorInsight: Understanding Race and Law Effectively Using Mindfulness-Based ColorInsight Practices.



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    Carla Sherrell, EdD

    Professor and social justice consultant

    Carla Sherrell is an assistant professor in the Graduate School of Counseling and Psychology in the Somatic Counseling Department at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado. The focus of her work is the integration of the theory and practice of counselor, social justice, and contemplative education in service to personal, interpersonal, community, and institutional transformation in the 21st century. She is a member of Naropa’s Center for the Advancement of Contemplative Education (CACE) steering committee, and of the faculty Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group.

    In private practice, Carla is a social justice consultant, working regionally and nationally, supporting educational institutions, nonprofits, and businesses in becoming vibrant socially just communities.

    She has presented on social justice education at conferences sponsored by the Association for Contemplative Mind in Higher Education, International Symposium for Contemplative Studies, National Association for Multicultural Education, National Coalition for Equity in Education, Metropolitan Community Churches, University of Colorado, and the Colorado and Wyoming School-University Partnership for Educational Renewal.

    Carla is in discernment for ordination in the Metropolitan Community Churches.


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    Éliane Ubalijoro, PhD

    Global health and sustainable development advocate

    Éliane Ubalijoro is the founder and executive director of C.L.E.A.R. International Development Inc., and is a professor of practice for public and private sector partnerships at McGill University’s Institute for the Study of International Development. At McGill her research focuses on innovation and sustainable development.

    She is a member of Rwanda’s National Science and Technology Council, and has lead and been a co-investigator on grants funded by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Grand Challenge Explorations program.

    She also served as a scientific research and development director in a Montreal-based biotechnology company for five years. She is a member of the Presidential Advisory Council for Rwandan President Paul Kagame, a member of the board of the International Leadership Association, and a founding signatory of the Fuji Declaration ‎to ignite the divine spark for a thriving world.

    Dr. Ubalijoro has contributed to several recent books on transformational leadership, including The Transforming Leader: New Approaches to Leadership for the 21st Century, Becoming A Better Leader, and Leadership for a Healthy World: Creative Social Change.

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    Vijay Kanagala, PhD

    Professor and social justice advocate for students

    Vijay Kanagala is an assistant professor of higher education and student affairs administration at the University of Vermont. A former student affairs practitioner with extensive experience in multicultural student affairs, Dr. Kanagala’s research focuses on three interconnected topics: the college access, success, and completion of low-income, first-generation college students; intersectionality of education, immigration, and social identities such as race, class, gender, and religion; and contemplative pedagogy, education, healing, and empowerment.

    Employing contemplative pedagogy and practices in and out of the classroom, Dr. Kanagala engages with graduate students, student leaders, educators, and administrators.

    He works to develop and further their social justice and equity consciousness which fosters a relationship between the heart and the mind to guide a student affairs philosophy rooted in an ethic of care and compassion. In doing so, he attempts to disrupt the status quo, and furthers the discourse in addressing inequities and issues of social justice while having difficult dialogues.


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    Judith Simmer-Brown, PhD

    Professor and senior Tibetan Buddhist teacher

    Judith Simmer-Brown is Distinguished Professor of Contemplative and Religious Studies at Naropa University. She has practiced Tibetan Buddhism for 45 years and is an Acharya (senior dharma teacher) of the Shambhala Buddhist lineage of Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, and Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, Naropa’s founder.

    As a Naropa Institute founding faculty member in the late 1970s, she and her colleagues pioneered contemplative pedagogy and meditation in the college classroom, and they continue that work with Naropa’s Center for the Advancement of Contemplative Education (CACE), which she founded.

    Dr. Simmer-Brown lectures and writes on Tibetan Buddhism, American Buddhism, women and Buddhism, interreligious dialogue, and contemplative education. Her book Dakini’s Warm Breath: The Feminine Principle in Tibetan Buddhism models contemplative scholarship of an esoteric religious tradition, skillfully integrating first-person inquiry with respected third-person research.

    She has been active in interreligious dialogue internationally for decades, and as a board member of the Society for Buddhist-Christian Studies, she is a frequent contributor to their journal. With Fran Grace, she edited a groundbreaking collection of articles called Meditation and the Classroom.


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    Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu, PhD


    Stephen Murphy-Shigematsu balances Eastern and Western wisdom and science in Heartfulness—a way of living with mindfulness, compassion, and responsibility.
    His practice of designing healing communities in the United States, Japan, and other parts of Asia integrates his transcultural life experience and training in East Asian medicine in Japan and clinical psychology at Harvard University.

    He was a professor at and director of the International Center at the University of Tokyo, and at Stanford University he is cofounder of LifeWorks, where he teaches diverse Heartfulness courses in comparative studies in race and ethnicity and health and human performance. Author of books in Japanese and English, his latest is From Mindfulness to Heartfulness: Transforming Self and Society with Compassion (forthcoming: January 2018).

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    Fania Davis, Ph.D

    Social justice activist

    Fania Davis, cofounder and director of Restorative Justice for Oakland Youth (RJOY), is a national thought leader in her field. She is a long-time social justice activist, a restorative justice scholar and professor, and a civil rights attorney with a doctorate in indigenous knowledge. Coming of age in Birmingham, Alabama during the civil rights era, Dr. Davis developed a passionate commitment to social transformation upon the murder of two close childhood friends in the 1963 Sunday school bombing.

    For the following decades, she was active in the civil rights, Black liberation, women’s, prisoners’, peace, socialist, anti-imperialist, anti-racial violence, and anti-apartheid movements. After receiving her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley in 1979, Dr. Davis practiced for 27 years as a civil rights trial lawyer with a subspecialty in academic discrimination.

    During the late 1990s, she entered a doctoral program in indigenous studies at the California Institute of Integral Studies, and apprenticed with traditional healers around the globe, particularly in Africa. Dr. Davis has since taught restorative justice and indigenous peacemaking at graduate and undergraduate levels. She has also served as counsel to the International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers. Dr. Davis speaks and writes on the subjects of school-based restorative justice, race and restorative justice, the indigenous roots of restorative justice, social justice and restorative justice, truth and reconciliation, youth-based restorative justice, the school-to-prison pipeline, mass incarceration, and other topics.

    Numerous honors include the Ubuntu Service to Humanity Award, the Maloney Award recognizing exceptional contributions in youth-based restorative justice, World Trust’s Healing Justice Award, the Tikkun (Repair the World) Award, the Bioneers Changemaker Award, and the LaFarge Social Justice Award. She is also a Woodrow Wilson Fellow.  The Los Angeles Times named Dr. Davis a “New Civil Rights Leader of the 21st Century.” She is a mother, grandmother, dancer, and yoga and qigong practitioner.



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    Oliver J. Hill

    Dr. Hill is Professor of Psychology at Virginia State University.

    His primary research interest focuses onfactors that impede success in math and science for African American students, and interventions that can overcome these barriers. He is particularly interested in fostering the concept of quality education as a civil right for all students.

    Hill has taught meditation for over forty years, including working with incarcerated individuals through the Siddha Yoga Prison Project.

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  • Why Attend
    • Get involved in the conversations at the forefront of the movement to integrate contemplative practices in higher education and beyond.

    • Connect with others to explore ways in which students, educators, and administrators on today's college campuses engage with each other to ensure the holistic development of the mind, body, and spirit.

    • Be inspired to affect change in our education system and communities through actionable steps backed by research, shared knowledge, and experience.

    • Understand the forces that perpetuate failures in social justice, and find strength in community and contemplative approaches to be an agent of change.

    • <strong>Keynotes</strong><br /> <br /> <strong>Revolutionary Mindfulness</strong><br /> <br /> Rhonda V. Magee, professor at the University of San Francisco, identifies research and practices that support the communion of inner work, interpersonal work, and systemic change. She challenges contemplative educators, administrators, and leaders to make revolutionary mindfulness the foundation of our work.<br /> <br /> <strong>The Future of Contemplative Education: Transforming Spiritual Bypassing Culture?</strong><br /> <br /> Carla Sherrell and Judith Simmer-Brown of Naropa University celebrate the accomplishments of CMind while considering whether the contemplative education movement may be bypassing issues of social justice and racism in a form of institutional, structural spiritual bypassing.<br /> <br /> <strong>From Entitlement to Accountable Reciprocity: Transformative Leadership in the Global Context of Higher Education</strong><br /> <br /> Dr. Éliane Ubalijoro, from McGill University, shares what she has learned about border crossings and the possibilities opened through the contemplative practice of experiencing differences as gifts to share and enrich each other rather than sources of division, domination, or exclusion.<br /> <br />  

  • Things to Know/Schedule

    Program Schedule

    Thursday, October 26   Check in 4pm

    Friday, October 27

    8:30am-12:30pm            Conference Registration

    10:00am-12:00pm          Contemplative Practice

    Openings by ACMHE members

    12:00pm-1:00pm            Lunch

    1:00pm-2:00pm              Open Space

    2:00pm-2:30pm              Conference Opening

    2:30pm-5:00pm              Three Track Focused Panels

    5:00pm-6:00pm              Break

    6:00pm-7:00pm              Dinner

    7:30pm-9:00pm              Keynote Speaker – Rhonda Magee

    Saturday, October 28

    8:30-9:30am                  Contemplative Practice

    9:30am-11:00am            Master Workshops

    11:00am-11:15am          Break

    11:15am-12:00pm          Parallel Session I

    12:00pm-1:00pm            Lunch

    1:30pm-2:30pm              Parallel Session II

    2:30pm -3:00pm             Break

    3:00pm-4:00pm              Parallel Session III

    4:00pm-5:00pm              Poster Session

    5:00-5:30pm                  Evening Reception

    Snacks, beer and wine

    6:00pm-7:00pm              Dinner

    7:00pm-8:00pm              Arthur lecture series

    8:00pm-9:00pm              Open Mic

    Sunday, October 29

    8:30-9:30am                  Contemplative Practice

    9:30am-10:00am            Break

    10:00am-11:00am          Parallel Session IV

    11:15am-12:00pm          Parallel Session V

    12:30pm-1:30pm            Lunch





    None required.

    Experience Level

    None required.

    Special Interest To

    If you are a current ACMHE member, don’t forget about your $50 member discount. To receive the member discount code, please follow this link 

    If you are interested in applying for an access grant, please apply here 


    Special Details

    Please plan to arrive Thursday for check-in. The program will start Friday morning.


  • About 1440 Multiversity

    Beautifully nestled in the California redwoods near Santa Cruz, our 75-acre campus is within easy reach of San Francisco and Silicon Valley.

    1440 Multiversity is a place to spend time engaging some of life's most meaningful personal questions and to enjoy, restore, and reenergize yourself as you do it.

    You'll find new energy through immersion learning—setting aside daily urgencies and dedicating uninterrupted time to focus on important, but often elusive, priorities. Our unique collaboration with world-class faculty coupled with an original, inspirational curriculum and magnificent grounds make this a place like no other. Add in fresh, redwood-scented air, delicious and healthy food, deep reflection, fun exercise, and good sleep and you've pretty much captured what you'll experience here.

  • Accommodations

    At 1440 Multiversity, you’ll find a wide range of accommodations to meet your preferences and budget. All of our rooms have been thoughtfully designed to provide comfort, promote reflection, and foster connection with others.

    Accommodation rates include more than just the bed you sleep in.

    Per-person per-night rates include:

    • nourishing locally sourced, seasonal meals
    • daily meditation and yoga classes
    • non-ticketed evening events
    • use of all facilities, including the Fitness Center, steam rooms, and infinity-edge hot tub.

    Guests also enjoy access to woodland trails, cafés, and shops.


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