Home

Rob BurbeaWelcome 🙂

This website has been created on behalf of Rob Burbea. There are so many of us around the world who care deeply for Rob and we offer this page as a way to connect with each other and stay updated as his health situation unfolds. We’d really welcome your input, so please do see this as a place to share your thoughts and inspirations.

If you have any questions or suggestions please email mark@robburbea.com

For details on giving dana to Rob please head to the Donating page.
For details on the daily/weekly sit see the post from 23rd August.
For teaching news and updates go to the Teachings page.
And for those of you who asked or for anyone who might be interested, here’s a selection of Rob’s music.

30th November 2017

Medical update from Mark     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just to update you on a few things.. 

We went up to London on Tuesday for a couple of scans and the first thing to say is that – amazingly – there continues to be no sign of cancer in Rob’s body. No one can be sure why that’s the case or what exactly is working its magic, but his oncologist said that with the particular pancreatic cancer diagnosis that Rob had it’s almost unheard of to have gone so long without relapse. So this is really wonderful, very good news. Given the aggressive nature of this type of cancer, though, it is certainly too early to consider him cured, so he will continue on the chemotherapy and other medicines for now.

The other scan was for Rob’s foot, and it confirmed that unfortunately he has a broken heel. He was diagnosed with very severe osteoporosis a couple weeks ago and this means that the bones are extremely fragile and can be broken very easily. He’ll be given another drug to help treat the osteoporosis, though the prognosis isn’t exactly clear with that, and he’s waiting now also to see what can be done with his heel.

Sadly, on the drive up to London we were involved in a car crash. Rob’s car was written off but we are both ok, as are the others who were involved (as far as we’re aware). Rob suspects he has broken a few ribs, and we’re both aching, but thankfully nothing more serious than that. He just needs to get a new car (so is eyeing up a hybrid).

Hope you don’t mind that it’s me writing this update. Aside from trying to navigate through a jungle of medical appointments Rob is unsurprisingly feeling a little battered. But he wanted to let you know of these various things that have happened.

Wishing you all much love wherever you are –
Mark

29th October 2017

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just a brief update for now: My original oncologist is thankfully now able to work again so, after a rest of about 3 months (which felt great!), I was able to get a new prescription for chemotherapy, and started that about a week ago. I dropped a few of the drugs I had been taking before but added a few new ones too, so am still on a combination of many medicines (both mainstream and alternative) and many of them are ‘experimental’. Physically I am feeling quite well at the moment, but because the side-effects of the chemo tend to accumulate over time – and in fact I am already noticing marked effects on my digestion and on energy levels – I thought it wiser not to try to teach the November Solitary month-long retreat at Gaia House this year. A CT scan has been scheduled in a few weeks’ time, and also a different kind of scan at some point soon to check that my bones are okay.

Recently several people have asked me why I need more chemo if I am currently “cancer-free”. The answer is that although the last scan showed no signs of tumours, it is very possible, especially with pancreatic cancer, where the probability of relapse is notoriously high, that the cancer is still there at a cellular level, invisible even to a high-resolution scan yet waiting to grow and form tumours and metastases. Despite the risks of the treatments, then, continuing chemotherapy for a while longer, if possible, seems to me a good idea, given the severity of my original illness and prognosis; I also feel that my body is tolerating the chemotherapy relatively well. Long haul, yes … and the challenges – around time, energy, and limitations on work and mobility – which I mentioned when I wrote last time still remain for me, but mostly I feel really okay about it all for now: I am so thankful for all the breadth and depth of the resources, the beauty, and the stamina that are the fruits of practice, past and present. But I am so touched by and so profoundly grateful to you too. For I know that these gifts are as well the blessings of all your kindness, generosity, and support, and of all your metta and your prayers, which also sustain and nourish me and (I am sure) work their penetrating, healing magic somehow. I feel quietly awestruck, baffled even, by all that is given to me, inexplicably, undeservedly, in the mystery of grace.

With much love, appreciation, and gratitude to each and every one of you,
Rob

14th October 2017

Soulmaking Sangha Gathering     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to let you know about a possible soulmaking sangha gathering with Rob and Catherine in February 2018. If you’d be interested in coming you can find more info on the Teachings page.

Lots of love,
Mark

6th September 2017

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

I just got back from a few days’ medical trip in London, where I had PET and CT scans, and met with a doctor. Very happily the scans, two years to the day after the operation that removed the tumour, showed no signs of any active cancer.

That is, I think, extremely good news 🙂
However, this kind of cancer has a strong tendency to resurface, so one is not out of the woods until at least five years have gone by disease-free. Also, there is still some confusion around my healthcare. It’s been going on for the last few months, in fact, and is the reason I haven’t posted an update in a while. Unfortunately, because of his willingness to try experimental treatment protocols – the very reason, given my prognosis, that I chose him as my doctor – my regular oncologist is under investigation by the GMC, and so not able to work at present. This has meant that my scans were postponed a couple of times, and getting treatment for the last little while has been quite difficult. I was unable to receive any chemotherapy last month, and the oncologist I met with yesterday, a very nice man I had not met before, did not want to give me any more. He didn’t comment much on the scan result, but said that prolonging the chemotherapy and the daily injections would cause long-term damage to my bone marrow and intestines, and that this would potentially compromise the possibility of future treatments, should I need them. I am unsure when, or even if, my original oncologist will be resuming work – I really hope, for his sake, for mine, and for all his patients, that he is reinstated – but it seems that again I am encountering a significant divergence of medical opinions, in a territory where sure information and conclusions are not at all established. As soon as possible I will try, though, to get the advice of my former oncologist and a sense of my medical options.

In the meantime I have a little break from chemotherapy, which is probably not a bad idea. Although I don’t feel too bad at all right now – ongoing fatigue and diarrhoea notwithstanding – my recent blood results do show some deficiencies in the blood and my bones seem to have become a little fragile.

So, the scan result is good, and at the same time there is some confusing complexity and uncertainty around my medical care.

With all this it’s strange not feeling able to make plans or commit, with anywhere near the normal degree of un/certainty, to anything further in the future than the next scan, scheduled now for every six months. And it’s strange, too, not knowing which or what combination of all the medicines and treatments that I’m on, mainstream and alternative, are actually helping. But right from the beginning, my illness seems to me to have been characterized (perhaps even more than might normally be the case) by a large dose of uncertainty, of factors and conditions unknown. That is a significant aspect of what I have been given to relate to; and that continues. I suppose as well, although I’ve been managing in the last few months to go into Gaia House once a week to do a few interviews, and have also been able to work a little at home, I’ve grown accustomed to having much less energy and stamina than I used to have, and accustomed too to the time and attention that are taken up by being ill and all that that involves. But I feel such a steady flow of love and help coming my way; it continues to amaze, nourish, and touch me to the core of my being – a waterfall of blessings for which I am so deeply grateful. I want to thank you all so very very much for all your support, your kindness, and your generosity.

… A little more time, then, for this life, all this mystery and this beauty. A door opening, a realm of heart opportunities – for endless exploration, for all these gifts and this giving – the play (and work) of creation and discovery.

With love and gratitude to each and everyone of you,
Rob

5th July 2017

Post from Mark about an upcoming retreat with Rob and Catherine     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just wanted to let you know about a retreat that Rob and Catherine are leading with Freely Given Retreats in February 2018. I won’t put all the blurb here, but I’ve just put the information on the FGR site, and made the application form live. You can find all the details here: www.freelygivenretreats.org/retreats/

I’ll soon be creating a separate website for updates on teachings and other non-medical matters (which you can then sign up for separately if you’re interested) so please excuse for now this sort of information still coming via the ‘medical’ page.

Lots of love,
Mark

10th May 2017

Teachings update from Mark     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just to let you know that a series of talks Rob recorded earlier in the year is now available on Dharmaseed. If this sounds of interest to you, please first take a look at the Teachings page for important information about how they fit into a larger body of material.

Lots of love,
Mark

18th March 2017

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Before the whirlwind of the upcoming retreat, I wanted to at least briefly share with you my gratitude and some of the medical news following yesterday’s long medical trip to London. I had PET and CT scans there, and thankfully they showed no signs of active cancer at present. My oncologist was really delighted; he was pretty surprised in fact, for apparently this is quite unusual at this stage. He admitted that he had been worried and assumed that the scans would show that tumours had returned, and so prior to the appointment he had already gone ahead and placed me on a research trial treatment for metastatic disease. Instead now, because of the health risks and side-effects it brings, he has taken me off one of the chemotherapy agents I have been on for many months. Hopefully that will prove a little easier on my body. I’m still on the other chemotherapy drug – the one that’s allegedly the more toxic of the two, but that is easier for me to take, since it’s just pills – as well as a whole host of other medicines, both ‘mainstream’ and ‘alternative’, so he will continue to monitor me closely.

It’s hard, I guess, to know exactly which medicine or what combination is having such a helpful effect – we are clearly in the territory of experimental treatment already – and it’s hard for the doctor or any of us to make choices here that are not based at least partly on hunches. I am keenly aware too that there is a long way to go; generally cancer patients are not declared ‘cured’ until they have survived 5 years from the time of their operation. But I have a feeling that all your well-wishing and prayers have been exerting their magical and wonderful influence, and I am so very grateful for, so deeply touched and humbled by, your love, your care, your support and kindness.

With blessings and a heart full of huge gratitude for all of you,
Rob

ps Here are a couple of photos: one is from last week (in case you’re alarmed and wondering, that’s not really what I look like these days – while I was resting, some of my lovely helping friends took it as an opportunity to refashion my style…); I look more like the other one, taken a few weeks ago with my friend, Archie.

 

14th February 2017

Brief (non-)update from Mark     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Not much new news at present – which is good news in a way – but just wanted to let you know that things are quite fine with Rob. He’s relatively well given the chemo regimen; physically and in terms of side-effects it’s up and down, as usual, but he’s generally ok and able to do some work. He had the standard weekly pre-chemo blood tests this morning and all being well he’ll start month 14 of chemotherapy tomorrow…. Long haul!

For those of you signed up for his retreat with Catherine next month he’s still very much hoping and planning to be there 🙂

Thank you all for your ongoing support, in all the beautiful forms that comes in –

With love,
Mark

20th December 2016

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Just a very brief medical update right now as there is thankfully not much to report. My oncologist is in general pleased with how I am faring. When I saw him last week, though, he told me that a certain marker in my blood had just suddenly shot up and that that might mean that tumours had returned. They did another blood test right there and then to check again, and I have just found out that those readings are normal. So it was a false alarm, and apparently I don’t need anther scan at present, which is good.

Otherwise, I am settling into the rhythm of this new chemotherapy regimen. There are definitely side-effects, but because I am on a lower dose than I was on before, these so far seem easier for my body to handle. And I am still for the most part feeling very well in spirit.

I want to say again to each of you a huge thank you for all your amazing care, kindness, and generosity, in word and in deed. It continues to touch me to the marrow of my being.

Wishing all of you very well over the holiday season.
With so much gratitude and love,
Rob

18th November 2016

Post from Mark about the Alchemy of Desire retreat     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Please check the teachings page (if you’re interested) for a brief post about the upcoming Gaia House retreat “Of Hermits and Lovers: The Alchemy of Desire”, with Rob and Catherine McGee.

Lots of love,
Mark

20th October 2016

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Dear everyone,

Sorry for the long hiatus since my last medical report. Over the last couple of months there have been a lot of tests, meetings, and decisions to make, most of which have only just now been resolved.

Briefly then: I had a PET scan a few weeks ago which showed “no signs of active disease” at present. As seems to be so much the case with the particular cancer I have, there are differences of opinion among the doctors as to the significance of the result. Clearly though, it’s not bad news, at least, and some of the doctors were very encouraged, albeit aware that cancer cells may well still be hiding or temporarily suppressed by the chemotherapy.

Also a few weeks ago I transferred my medical care to another oncologist, who, unlike the first, has said that despite knowing it’s “a tall order” he is actually aiming to cure me. What that means, though, is that he is willing to experiment at the edges of conventional treatments, and to prescribe a continuing use of two chemotherapy agents rather than one, even if there is some risk and uncertainty in doing so. So, after a break of three and a half months – a pause which made my new doctor a bit anxious – I have just completed the first cycle of the new chemo regime under his supervision and care. I am on a reduced dose of both drugs and hopefully my body can tolerate that better. (So far, not too bad, it seems, although I know the side-effects build up and take their toll over time.) It’s unclear to me how long I may have to be on chemotherapy, or even how we will ascertain at any point that it is safe to come off the drugs, if that is ever the case. However, it feels like the right decision for now. Not only do I resonate with his inclination to research and experimentation, it feels much better to me to be working with a doctor who is at least trying to cure me. My first oncologist would not prescribe the two chemo agents any more, nor was he so willing to experiment with treatments. I think I understand and empathize with his worries, but at the same time I don’t think he considered it a possibility that further treatment might cure me, and so was not aiming at that.

I’ve also had a Crohn’s disease flare-up in the last few months. It’s not too bad, but it clearly needs addressing, so I have ongoing tests coming up for that too.

Because of all this I decided reluctantly to pull out of teaching this year’s November month-long retreat at Gaia House. It made me sad not to be able to teach it, but given the unknown impacts of the chemotherapy and how it affects my already very weakened intestines as well as my energy, it seemed the wiser option. I am still trying to write as much as I can, although in truth that seems to me to be not nearly as much as I would like. Strange being so ill: as well as from the actual effects of the illness and the side-effects of the medications – principally diarrhoea, meaning a lot of time on the toilet(!) – the days are often full just from trying to meet all the different medical needs that are involved.

And yet my spirits are mostly good. I am the recipient of so much kindness and goodwill and I have such a generous and wonderful team of helpers here. (Alas, one of them, Nandiya, had to leave last week as her visa expired; I will certainly miss her amazing cooking 🙂 and her multi-faceted support.) Sometimes I can hardly believe it all. I feel so blessed, and in so many ways.

And I am also, beyond measure, grateful for the fruits of practice. I do want to live and yet I know I may well die quite soon. Still, whatever happens, there is for the most part a profound sense of peace, and even of joy, with all of it. Hard perhaps to fathom why. But I want to say: practice works! (if we go about it in ways that work.) Through practice I came to see the emptiness of time – past, future, and present – of consciousness, and of all things, and that seems to me to be what makes such a huge difference. Seeing this emptiness is not a deflationary seeing; it does not denigrate or dampen soulfulness nor does it drain the mystical wonder out of things. Quite the opposite: it reveals and opens their beauty, depth, mystery, reveals to me the transcendent and immanent fullness and joy of my participation in the cosmos, allows me to realize the fecundity and meaningfulness of the particulars of things and of persons. I am grateful, humbled and awestruck: exploration and practice keep opening out. It’s not, of course, that it’s constant or never interrupted, but something deep in me keeps bowing, over and over again, to the gifts of existence, of this world and others, of this mind and heart, these particulars and persons, this beauty, these openings.

And I find myself again and again wanting to thank all of you for your wishes, prayers, words and letters of care and support, for your kindness and generosity. It all continues to touch me so much.

With great love, gratitude, and appreciation to each one of you,
Rob

2nd October 2016

Teaching update: New recordings available     show/hide content

For those of you who are interested the teachings from the recent retreat that Rob led with Catherine McGee at Gaia House are now available for free download. Check the teachings page for more info.

17th August 2016

Update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

just a brief update, as things are not entirely clear medically right now. I hope to post a more definite update when I have a better picture of the situation and the plans.

Peacock RobThe pause in my chemotherapy has been extended – it seems until early September at least – because my intestines were in pretty poor shape as a result of the treatment. I had a C. Difficile infection apparently, and needed an extended period of antibiotics to fully treat that after coming out of hospital. Also, despite years without any incidence of Crohn’s disease, it looks like the chemotherapy may have triggered a flare-up, as well as other gut problems. I am now taking medication for that, and awaiting the results of various tests so the doctors can get a sense of when it might be safe to resume chemotherapy.

Some weeks after stopping the chemo – the drugs take 6 weeks or so to clear from the blood stream – I really began to feel physically better, to feel, after almost a year, some vitality in my limbs once again. How wonderful! I am continuing to very much enjoy this gift of energy, and even despite the intestinal situation have been able to exercise more and also to put on some weight (after losing so much, this is a task to which I have applied myself with the utmost diligence 🙂 , as I’m supposing I will lose quite a bit again when or if I go back on chemo).

Very fortuitously then, the retreat week I taught with Catherine at Gaia House a couple of weeks ago fell at just the right time: I was over the worst of the infection, and had been off chemotherapy for just long enough to feel this greater physical well-being. We had to make a few modifications in the form to accommodate my illness and energy levels, but it was a beautiful week and such a privilege to teach. And it was lovely, profoundly and unexpectedly touching, to be back at GH that way. A deep bow and thank you to all the retreatants, to Catherine and Mark, to Jane and Nandiya (who cooked and helped with my complex dietary needs), and to all the GH coordinators and staff who made it possible.

And so much love and gratitude to all of you too for your continued support, your care, and your kind words,
Rob

ps here is a fun, fuzzy photo, with feathers…

29th June 2016

Medical update from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

I just wanted to give you a quick medical update, since many people have been contacting me and I am not quite able to respond adequately right now.

I spent last week in hospital. Though I was definitely experiencing, together with other symptoms, a marked increase in the intensity and constancy of tummy pain in the days beforehand, I did not realize until I actually measured my temperature that I had a fever. Instructions were to go straight to A&E. I had a week on intravenous antibiotics, and lots of morphine. Though they were unsure of the original location of the infection, a CT scan showed that my intestines were swollen and inflamed as a result of the chemotherapy, so I have been told to stop chemo until they recover.

One oncologist is worried that the chemo itself might kill me (“You were proper ill,” he told me in hospital) and so is reluctant to prescribe it again. Another oncologist has told me that the chemo is what is keeping me alive, and that I should go back on it, perhaps at a reduced dosage, as soon as my gut heals. Conflicting opinions; tricky decisions.

They also finally found a thrombosis in my thigh – I don’t know whether it is the one from before that has at last become detectable or if it is a new one, but anyway I am now on a 6-month treatment of daily injections for that. My leg is still swollen but not nearly so painful. Apparently blood clots above the knee tend to cause less pain, but they are more likely to be dangerous if a bit of the clot breaks off and travels to the lungs etc. It sounds like the treatment should minimize the risk of that, though, so no need for concern. It could be the cancer causing the thrombosis or it could be the chemo – impossible to tell.

And as I had become pretty anaemic again, they also filled me up again with some kind and anonymous donors’ lovely dark red blood. Here too there is some uncertainty: it’s not clear if the anaemia was a result of the infection or just of the ongoing chemo, or the combination.

So now I am back home on Dartmoor and feeling relatively fine – tired but generally recovering. Hopefully my gut is slowly recovering too – they say it takes some weeks to do so.

And for now I am off chemo, body and soul in part greatly relieved at that. Fairly soon however, I imagine I will have to make a decision whether to resume it or not. I was hoping to be able to teach the upcoming retreat during a week or two off from chemo, but may have to settle for teaching it while on chemo. If so, I hope that is manageable; we may have to be more flexible and responsive with the scheduling of the retreat.

I don’t know: perhaps all this sounds worse than it is (or at least worse than I feel that it is)? Physically it was hard at times, sure, but not really so terrible. And though fatigued, I am feeling definitely quite a bit better now. I even managed to go to Gaia House yesterday and offer a few interviews, which was lovely.

In my heart and spirit I am still feeling mostly very well. Lots of creativity – deep and seemingly necessary life-blood for my soul – continues to flood through in many different ways, which I love and am so thankful for. Sometimes, though, it can be a bit overwhelming, as I often feel I have so little time to make it manifest, to write or record, communicate or share it – not only because of the suggested prognosis of the cancer long-term, but also day to day: the days easily fill with medical stuff, and the basics of life are now so much more time-consuming. Still, practice is creative, new insights and openings come, graces and blessings pour through, there is so much beauty, and I feel so grateful.

And I am so grateful too to all of you, for your great generosity but also for your amazing, sweet, and steadfast love, your kindness and care that seems so palpable to me, even in the absence of more concrete communication. Despite everything, I honestly feel so lucky, so blessed, so profoundly held. I am receiving so much from you in that way, opening myself to it and taking it in body and soul; I am drinking it in and being nourished.

With love and boundless gratitude,
Rob

21st May 2016

Post from Mark about the Re-enchanting the Cosmos retreat     show/hide content

Hi everyone,

Please check the teachings page (if you’re interested) for a brief post about the upcoming Re-enchanting the Cosmos retreat at Gaia House with Rob and Catherine.

Lots of love,
Mark

5th May 2016

Update from Rob     show/hide content

The last few weeks have been quite challenging physically. I had a nasty bout of intestinal upset – diarrhoea and pain that lasted for a while, and then just as that was beginning to clear up I developed a thrombosis (a blood clot) in my leg (ouch!), so my mobility is pretty restricted right now. They scanned my leg but couldn’t actually find the clot, so I will go for another scan next week. In the meantime I am on blood-thinning injections and morphine (which is ‘interesting’ but not always pleasant; unfortunately I had a pretty severe reaction to another pain medication I tried before the morphine.) The tummy upset is, I think, just a common side-effect of the particular chemotherapy drugs I am on. I am still not sure if the thrombosis is caused by the chemotherapy or the cancer itself. As I understand it, if it is caused by the cancer it doesn’t necessarily mean that new tumours have formed, as apparently there can be a delayed effect from having malignant tumours months ago.

In fact, a few weeks ago I had a CT scan to check whether there are any metastases. Happily, the scan was clean – there are no visible metastases (i.e., new tumours) at this point.

I met then with an oncologist in London, Professor Stebbing, and discussed a few things. The results from the genome sequencing of the original tumour showed that the combination of chemotherapy that I am currently on is the most helpful thing that can be offered right now. Several oncologists strongly advised me that it is crucial that I continue with chemotherapy beyond the 6 months recommended by the NHS. Prof Stebbing told me flatly that it is keeping me alive. So the chemo regimen I am now on is open ended, theoretically at least: we’ll have to see just how much my body can handle; and there are all kinds of implications regarding limitations on life-style, food/nutritional uptake, and work capacity etc. should I survive the next couple of years. I guess even though I now have just over 6 months experience of the chemo already, I can’t fully anticipate the implications for the longer term. More immediately I have to admit that chemotherapy is not pleasant; at the mere thought of those infusions my body spontaneously reacts with a subtle visceral convulsion. The prospect of staying on chemo indefinitely is not easily or simply borne.

While Prof Stebbing said that with this cancer “probabilities are poor”, he also didn’t want to talk about probabilities – wisely I think – and added that anything could happen; so much is unknown about why cancer recurs (or, as he also pointed out, sometimes disappears). He also unequivocally supported the experimental drugs that I’m on, as they are likely to potentiate the chemo.

One thing that is strange for me about the whole situation is that, while I can have periodic CT scans to check for new tumours – Dr Stebbing suggested every 2 or 3 months – there are no really reliable blood markers to indicate where the cancer is at at the molecular and stem cell level. One blood marker (called Ca 19-9) showed reductions after the operation, and again with the chemo, so that they are now within the normal/healthy person’s range, which is surely a good sign, but Ca 19-9 is not an unambiguous marker. The upshot then is that I will be continuing, potentially indefinitely, on the chemo treatment, with all its side-effects etc., without ever knowing if it is even necessary anymore. For it may be at some point that the combination of the chemo and the other experimental medicines I am on wipe out the cancer completely at the stem cell level, and yet I would not know that I could stop the chemo. A lot of unknowns with this whole thing!

Still my spirits are mostly good. It is a beautiful spring day here on the Moor, and though I can’t walk much at all right now, I rejoice in the beauty and the grace that are everywhere. And I am very thankful for the little bits of work I am still able to do. I have now been to Gaia House twice recently to offer just a few interviews for the personal and work retreatants, and it was lovely to be back there meeting with yogis. As much as I am able, given the various time demands that come with illness, I am writing a little bit too, which mostly feels wonderful.

I also want to say what a delight it has been for me to receive so many letters and emails from so many of you telling me about your recent practice and discoveries. I only wish that I could respond to each and every one but that is not really possible, alas. I do read them all, however, and they touch my heart and my mind deeply, and fill me with appreciation.

And I am still so moved, awed and somehow humbled, by the flow of love and support that seems, like an unearned and undeserved grace, to pour into me from so many. I open myself to it every day, and my whole being bows in gratitude. Blessing, infinite in its modes and colours, often seems to me to be the very nature of all things, of all existence.

With so much gratitude and love,
Rob

1st April 2016

Fundraising update and thanks from Rob     show/hide content

Dear all,

I can hardly find words to say how so deeply moved I am, touched to the core, by your generosity and your kindness. The response to the fundraising appeal which Mark, Bergljot, and others set up has seemed, to me, overwhelming; the fund has received or been promised more than enough to cover my medical and living expenses for the year ahead, enabling me now to meet the costs of the more experimental and promising treatments I am trying. I cannot thank you enough, each and every one of you, for this support and for your beautiful love and well-wishing. It all feels like such a grace.

With immeasurable gratitude and love,
Rob

ps I have some medical assessments coming up in the next week or two, so I hope to be able to post a ‘how I’m doing medically’ update very soon after that.

12th March 2016

Donating to Rob – A Callout to Sangha     show/hide content

Dear Friends,

We would like to let you know that as Rob’s situation unfolds it has become clear that further treatment is needed, beyond what the NHS can offer. These treatments are hugely expensive and vastly exceed Rob’s financial capacity. We are therefore reaching out to everyone in this community in an attempt to raise the necessary funds. Please visit the new Donating page where we’ve laid out these changing circumstances in full and explained the various ways in which you can donate. Thank you so much 🙂

With ongoing love,
Mark

12th February 2016

Teachings update from Mark     show/hide content

Just to let you know we’ve created a new page just for teaching updates and news. You can find it here, or by following the link in the box above, with the yellow arrow. There are already a few things on there if you’d like to check it out 🙂
Lots of love,
Mark

25th January 2016

Update from Rob     show/hide content

In a way it does not feel there is much new to report as I go through the months of chemotherapy. At times some of the side effects are quite challenging physically for me but, as I reported last month, these symptoms come and go even over the course of a day, and I am still doing mostly okay with everything. Often I don’t have much energy. And I have lost weight; it seems to me that I am really quite thin and bony now. This is actually a little bit of a concern as the oncologist said that if I lose too much weight he will have to reduce or stop the chemotherapy treatment. Hopefully that won’t be necessary, as I am trying different things now to stabilize my body mass. One bit of medical news is that I have just started on a specially prepared turmeric compound, which aims at disempowering cancer stem cells, together with some Traditional Chinese Medicine, intended to help with everything – the recovery from the op, the chemo side-effects, and the cancer. I’ll probably be adding some other alternative treatments to the mix soon too.

Maybe, though, there’s other stuff to share. Kirsten told me the other day that someone asked her about me. “I read the official version,” she said, “but what’s the unofficial version? How is he really?” “There is no unofficial version,” Kirsten told her. “He really is how he says he is.”
Now I wonder about this. I really don’t know and I certainly wouldn’t want to presume in any way what was behind this particular person’s questions. But here or in other similar sorts of instances there may be in the background an important issue at stake. Generally we tend to see everything through the lenses of our assumptions; and assumptions about practice and possibility will inevitably have significant consequences – for our practices, obviously, but also for the ways we live and envisage the trajectories of our lives, and even for our basic senses of and feelings about the whole of existence. Of course these assumptions are various – nowadays, perhaps, more than ever – and their consequences can unfold in various directions. Listening to so many practitioners in different teaching situations, however, I often find myself wondering in particular if many people have, for a number of reasons, already set up in advance absolute and immovable limits on what they might admit is possible through practice, not just for themselves, but for everyone. To me, that’s sad, if it is the case. And it makes me want somehow to persuade and encourage people out of and beyond their limited sense of what’s possible, wherever they have absorbed that sense of limitation from. I am generally a quite private person, though, and perhaps even more so in regards to my practice, so I don’t often share much about my practice and what happens there. But I wonder now (still with some hesitation) if it would not be more helpful to do so sometimes. I truly believe that far more is possible, for everyone, than most people think.

There are so many examples one could give – and in a way that is the main point – but here is a brief account of a very particular opening that has happened quite a few times now, most recently some nights ago:

Tonight again I cannot sleep. It’s not that the pain is so constantly intense; it’s more the discomfort of a digestion that just will not settle, and that’s enough to keep me awake. Having lain there in vain for a few hours, I haul myself up in the bed and cross my legs in the darkness. How to practise now? How to look?

Well, I could ‘be with’ the sensations, the vedana, but that doesn’t really call me at present. Instead I include the sensations in a wider awareness that encompasses the whole body and the room, and tune in to that sense of awareness. Lightly reminding myself now of its thorough emptiness and of the emptiness of time – of past, of future, and of the present too – a sense of exquisite beauty and of freedom suddenly blossom there and fill the space. And there is too a sense of the inseparability of this awareness and its objects – the room and the world around me. I ‘lean further in’ to the timelessness, and perceive the whole of my life – this moment and all the events, all the experiences – as having in some inexpressible way both a timeless as well as a temporal dimension to their existence.

The taste is so subtle and so sweet that I could stop here or just allow the self to dissolve in that emptiness, that totality. But rather than that more familiar track, I veer toward sensing that all of it is ‘me’; I see and feel it now that way: a ‘me’ that is not separate from the timeless, that is immanent and transcendent both; ‘my soul’ rooted in, and not separate from, ‘God’, or ‘Buddha Nature’, or whatever we might want to call it. This soul, however, is thoroughly empty, I know – it has no inherent existence, no existence independent of the way of looking – and there is no need to claim it as an ultimate truth or as anything more than a skilful perception, an insightful way of looking. But this knowing of its complete emptiness takes nothing away from the beauty and power of the perception.
Now I linger there and sense something further: that this soul includes also both the universal and the intimately personal dimension of being – me and my unique personality and expression, all that comes through me and all that I have shaped and that has shaped me. None of that is separate from God, from this Buddha Nature, this timeless dimension that is both transcendent and immanent.

And it includes too my death, and the duration of my life; the timespan of my life, whether that turns out to be ‘long’ or ‘short’, is itself an aspect of my soul. It is not other than my soul, which is not separate and not wholly other than the depths and the timeless heart of the divine. I would love to live; I want to keep playing, experimenting, creating, discovering; to keep giving, receiving, loving, and praising. And at the same time I see, in a way which does not involve thought, that the timing of life and death is perfect, is ‘me’, is my soul, is divine. Peace and awe and a deep bowing of my being as I remain with this tuning of the perception. I suppose I could stay awake here; there is plenty of energy and brightness now, and it is very lovely. But the body needs to rest, so at last I lie down again, in this peace and awe and bowing, and after a while give myself, successfully and gratefully, to sleep.
I reflect on all this later. The more deeply and palpably we understand for ourselves through our own experience the emptiness of all things, the more possibilities open up for the perception; our range increases; we are freer to engage different ways of looking, and so to experience self, other, world, and existence in manifold ways. Though emptiness in its depths is always the same, there is not one experience of ‘Freedom’, one taste of ‘Awakening’; it is actually multiple, varied, infinite even. And it will keep growing, if we let it.

Regarding the particular perception I describe above, there are many ways in to it. And there are many ways out of the confines and assumptions of normal perception. Emptiness forms part of a way, if it reaches deeply enough – to see that time and the present, space, and awareness, as well as self and other, are utterly empty. Love too forms part of a way, if I let it open my eyes, open my sense of the beloved, whoever or whatever that is for me in that moment.

This example I share forms part of the reason why I feel deeply okay most of the time with what is happening. And it has very little to do with ‘belief’ or conjecture about what does or doesn’t happen after death. It is a perception, not even clung to as a ‘truth’, but with a power that is all the greater, more profound and more beautiful, because of that.

To me it’s interesting to ponder why someone might cling to a limited sense of possibility, but the likely reasons are many and complex, and here is not the place to expand on this. Perhaps here we may just point out that the conditions which support a clinging to certain views of limitation are not only personal; without a doubt they are also, in many ways, culturally construed and absorbed. And to me it seems crucial to be aware of and interested in this. But I’ll leave all of that for another time and place…

Right now I don’t know of course if reading and reflecting on what I’ve written here will make any difference to anyone locked in or clinging to certain views that limit the sense of what is possible through practice. Or if it will even make any difference to anyone at all. I hope sincerely that it does, though, that it might contribute, even if only in a very small way, to some questioning, experimenting, and opening in this area, for us all.

On another note, please know I still very much appreciate receiving your news, and love to hear your reports about your practice. I am just sorry that I don’t have the capacity right now to respond to most of the personal letters and emails I receive. If you have sent me something or sent it through Mark, I trust you will understand if you don’t get a reply from me. And please don’t refrain from sending, or posting on this website, on the assumption that I am not interested or will not read; I am very interested and I do read. I hope too, more generally, that you all know how deeply touched and supported I feel by your beautiful messages of care and kindness.

With love and appreciation and great gratitude to every one of you,
Rob

22nd December 2015

Update from Rob     show/hide content

robdec1-250I am now into the second cycle of the chemo regimen and kind of settling into the routine involved. Physically it is quite up and down. I have lost even more weight in the last few weeks and my digestion is further challenged by the chemo. Sometimes there is pain and there are other difficult side effects, but it changes even in a day; it’s not predictable and often it’s really relatively fine. In many ways my body is also still recovering from the op, and learning a new way of digesting food; it feels quite different, so that I have to gradually get to know it and decipher its new signals.

Right from the beginning of my illness it seems there have been so many unknowns, and that aspect of it all continues. Even within the NHS there are different opinions about treatment and also to an extent about my prognosis. I have now been advised not to undergo radiotherapy but to stay instead on the double chemo regimen for 6 months (and possibly on chemo indefinitely, but will have to decide about that).

rob3-250A big thank you to those who sent in suggestions and leads for other complementary treatments. I quickly found that I got overwhelmed and exhausted trying to research these different options, medical papers and data myself, so I asked Bergljot and Nandiya to be my ‘medical research team’. They kindly agreed and have already done an incredible amount of work on this on my behalf. Thank you so much, guys! For those of you interested in knowing this sort of thing, I’ll very soon be adding a few complementary treatments, including a curcumin preparation, a mixture of certain medicinal mushrooms, and possibly Alpha-Lipoic Acid.

Though I have much less energy than I did before, my spirit remains mostly well – quiet joy and a sense of deep beauty and grace are still very frequent visitors. One doctor not only said it was okay but even advised me to start working a little again, which I have now, and as time goes by I’ll see what and how much is possible in this regard.

I continue to feel so very touched and blessed by all your messages of care and well-wishing. It feels like they really enter, permeate, and hold me, body and soul, and I am profoundly grateful.

With much love to all,
Rob
(ps here are a couple of photos from today)

25th November 2015

News from Mark about recent teachings from Rob     show/hide content

Hi everyone. For those of you who are interested in Rob’s exploration and teachings around imaginal practice you’ll be delighted (and amazed?!) to hear that a whole new set of talks have just been uploaded to Dharmaseed – 24 hours worth! Most of these were recorded shortly before Rob’s operation, with the final few completed in three or four days of greater energy and wellbeing just before his chemotherapy began. The territory for practice that Rob opens up with these is breathtakingly vast. Have a listen 🙂
http://dharmaseed.org/retreats/2678

With love,
Mark

10th November 2015

Update from Rob     show/hide content

I am definitely feeling much better than I was a while ago. I’m nowhere near what was normally healthy for me before I got ill, but I have more energy than a few weeks ago, am able to eat more and a somewhat wider range of foods, get a little exercise, and even do a little bit of work 😉

I’m gonna be starting chemotherapy on Wednesday. It’s supposedly quite a tough course, and I am very aware that there is only really a small chance of cure, so it’s a bit of an experiment, but I’m inclined to give it a try. If I am able to tolerate the regimen and all goes well, they will add some radiotherapy to the mix in a few months’ time.

I am certainly very open to the possibility of other treatments options, more experimental or whatever, so if anyone does have info or leads to share please feel very free to forward them to Mark at mark@robburbea.com.

Thank you again so much for all your beautiful and touching expressions of kindness and support.

With love and blessings to all,
Rob

26th October 2015

Update from Mark     show/hide content

Hi everyone. There isn’t really much to report on at the moment but I thought you’d appreciate some non-news over no news at all..

There’s definitely been an upward trajectory to Rob’s energy over the last few weeks as we’ve been able to serve bigger and more varied meals, which is wonderful to see. Day to day he is still physically quite up and down though so progress is neither linear nor predictable. At least he’s exercising a few more taste buds now so eating is slightly less of a chore 🙂

Thank you all for your ongoing words and offerings, so much warmth on this page!

Lots of love,
Mark

1st October 2015

Update from Rob     show/hide content

The weeks since being discharged from the hospital have been pretty challenging physically in ways that I hadn’t anticipated. It seems that the post-operative recovery of the digestive capacities when there is a history of Crohn’s disease is trickier and takes longer than it otherwise might. It has been difficult finding foods that stay down or in for long. I have lost quite a bit of weight but I am also told this is normal and should hopefully stabilise about six weeks after surgery. The last couple of days, though, have been more promising and I have been able to eat a little more and have more energy, so perhaps a corner is being turned?

I am being wonderfully looked after by a small team of friends and Sangha folk, and am also receiving very generous long distance advice from a Gaia House yogi in Buenos Aires – a medical researcher/nutritionist with experience working with post-Whipple patients whose digestive systems are struggling (Thank you, Cris! 🙂 ).

This morning I spoke with the Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist from the hospital and she explained to me the histopathology findings after the operation. Unfortunately it seems that the cancer is at quite an advanced stage and has invaded the lympho-vascular system and the area around the pancreas. They also found a second type of cancer nearby, in the pancreas, that is probably less malignant. While all that is not very encouraging, they did not find any indications of cancer at the edges of the tissues taken out, so there is still the possibility that the operation succeeded in removing all the cancer. At the doctors’ suggestion, I will probably start a six-month course of chemotherapy sometime between six and twelve weeks after the operation.

I know some of you are wondering how I am doing and how practice might be helping. Well, briefly: so far, so good. I feel in my spirit deeply at peace with the possibility that I may die in the not too distant future. I hope it won’t be for quite a while. I definitely don’t want to die, but I still sense and have access to a perception of a timeless dimension to everything – the fruits of practice, I’m sure – and that makes a huge difference. I feel too, on reflection, that I have lived my life and made choices as fully as I could from my heart’s truths and deepest longings, allowing and encouraging what has wanted to come through, so I have no regrets. I feel also very strongly that I have received so many blessings, so many graces, in this life and even now through these challenges. Something in my heart just keeps bowing to it all.

A few days ago I moved into a small cottage in a beautiful area of Dartmoor. Thank you so much to everyone whose generosity and kindness has made this possible. And thank you to all of you for your love, prayers and beautiful words. I feel held by and woven into something vast, wonderful, luminous.

With love and blessings,
Rob

15th September 2015

Update from Catherine     show/hide content

Rob came out of hospital last week and is staying with me for a few days before moving to a place he will be renting for his recovery.

We are recognising very quickly that recovery from this operation is not a linear process. Dear Rob is learning how to read and manage many different factors with his new digestive system, and it has not been easy in the time since that beautiful photo of him in hospital. Finding ways to be comfortable (for a while), handling the exhaustion, the right medication to manage pain that he doesn’t react to, and the if/how/what/when of eating is extremely delicate. Those of us taking care of him are fast becoming more knowledgeable about the bio-chemistry of this new anatomy. Recovery in terms of nutrition is a long road for most people after a Whipple anyway, but as many of you know Rob already had a sensitive gut, so it is quite expected that it will take a while to learn what works.

The doctor yesterday said that this was now a time of experimenting, and I said to Rob that that should be ‘right up his street’ knowing how much he can love and apply himself to experimenting! He smiled wryly. I don’t imagine it looks quite like a great adventure when one is weak and uncomfortable, but experimenting we have to do nonetheless.

So far there have been no major complications. Long may it continue.

Please keep your love and prayers coming his way. There has been much blessing and love in amongst this difficulty too, from the knowledge of this large circle of dear beings who care deeply, to being able to call upon dharma friends and loved ones for particular skills or knowledge they have day by day and in the generous offerings you have made to support Rob.

I resonated with Mark’s comment ‘so appreciative of our shared practice’ that he wrote after sitting in meditation with all of us in his heart the other day. That is what I am with right now, that this is a shared practice, wherever we happen to be on the planet, near or far from this particular location. I feel very touched to consider it in this way right now – my body breathes out deeply and my heart relaxes.

9am. I just went upstairs to check on Rob. He is asleep. Alleluia! I wish him a deeply restorative sleep.

Much love,
Catherine McGee

9th September 2015

Health update from Rob #2     show/hide content

rob-hospital-hatDear everyone, wanted to let you know that today the last of the tubes, iv’s, catheters, drains, drips, and lines has been removed.

I have begun eating with my new digestive system, but have to take it very slowly and gently. Hopefully my digestion will gradually gain a little more capacity, but it may be something I just have to get used to. Blood tests and observations look like they are on their way to returning to normal.

Until now your messages have had to be relayed to me, but tonight I was able to look at quite a few myself for the first time. I feel so deeply moved by all the beauty and love in the Sangha, and I really feel it pouring in to my body and being. While I am still physically low energy I am sure that it is through the Sangha’s heart of love that I feel such a great sense of blessedness right now. I am truly truly grateful.

Energy levels are very up and down at present, but here is a photo from a light moment in hospital earlier today.

Love, Rob

7th September 2015

Visiting Rob     show/hide content

A few people have naturally inquired about visiting Rob this week whilst he’s in hospital so we thought it might be good just to say something about that on here. While the operation itself was a success, a Whipple procedure involves a critical period after the surgery where the patient is closely monitored due to the risk of complications. At present Rob is navigating that terrain and therefore isn’t yet ready for visitors. Right now he just needs as much rest as he can get. He is receiving your messages and well-wishes and said last night how deeply touched and grateful he was for all the kindness, love, generosity and words of support shown by everyone on the website.

So thank you for your understanding in this 🙂

6th September 2015

Beginning the recovery     show/hide content

Thank you to everyone for all your messages of support and your birthday wishes. As would be expected Rob was very weak and tired yesterday (though I think he was still a little miffed at this!) but was given a sense of all the love and care that was being expressed on the website and was really very touched. He’s now just quietly being allowed to regain his energy.

Nothing more is known at this stage about the nature of the cancer, we’ll have to wait for test results on the removed tumour before any news on that. But in terms of how he is physically and how he’s feeling, it’s all as it should be, no complications or surprises. He is also being quite fastidious with the exercises the doctors have given him – so much so it appears the rest of the ward are being inspired to do theirs too!

We’ll keep you updated as anything more reveals itself.
Lots of love 🙂

5th September 2015

Happy Birthday Rob!     show/hide content

happybirthdayrob

… and it just happens to be Rob’s 50th today! Thank you to Susy for this wonderful depiction of a rather interesting imaginal party 🙂 Get well soon Rob…

4th September 2015 (2)

Success!     show/hide content

Just a quick note to say the operation went very smoothly and took the normal time. No complications. Great news! Thank you to everyone for holding Rob in their hearts today. We’ll post more soon.

4th September 2015

Rob is in theatre     show/hide content

11.30am: I am writing to let you know that Rob is now in theatre undergoing his surgery with Mr Aroori (the surgeon) and a team of about 7 skilled and kind people (we met 4 of them!). He was not expecting to get a date so soon.

Quite unexpectedly Rob was called last night to be on standby for surgery this morning. This is because Mr Aroori likes to have a backup patient ready in case the patient booked can’t go ahead for some reason. And about 30 minutes ago Rob was given his gown and surgery socks and I wished him well as he was taken in for the anaesthetic.

He was in good spirits and had had the chance to contemplate this possible sudden change in events this morning when he came in for 7am.

So let’s beam all our love to Mr Aroori (Rob really enjoyed meeting him this morning) and his team, and to dear Rob. The anaesthetist told him, “You will never have been so cared for in your life! We will follow every breath and every heartbeat for the six or so hours of the surgery!” Bless these dear souls for what they do – may their hands be guided, their hearts be steady and may their goodness and skill be of great benefit to our dear friend and teacher. I will go to the chapel now and sit for some time. Do join any of us during these next hours and the coming days holding Rob in our collective hearts. (I’m going dancing all day.. generate that love in whichever way you please! 🙂 – Mark)

Mark and I will try to give an update if we can tonight.

Much love,
Catherine McGee

30th August 2015 

Giving dana to Rob     show/hide content

** 12th March 2016: There is now a separate Donations page on the website, with up-to-date information.

Some people have expressed a wish to offer financial support to Rob, which is very much appreciated. A fund has now been set up to receive donations and this money will be used to cover any costs Rob incurs as a result of his illness.

  • If you wish to make a bank transfer yourself, the details for the account are as follows:
Bank Name: The Co-operative Bank Account holder: R J BURBEA
Sort Code: 08-93-00 Account holder address: Gaia House
Account Number: 89496800   West Ogwell
IBAN: GB91 CPBK 0893 0089 4968 00   Newton Abbot
BIC / SWIFT: CPBK GB 22   TQ12 6EW
  • If you have a PayPal account you can direct money as ‘friends/family’ to donations@robburbea.com. As long as the funds come straight from your account, or the bank account linked to it, this will not encounter any charges if sent from within the UK. From outside the UK the charge is minimal.
     
  • The PayPal button below will also allow payments via your PayPal account and also credit/debit cards, but a charge of up to 5% will be taken from the amount donated.
     
  • Alternatively if you’re outside the UK it seems xe.com is a very good way to transfer funds. It requires a little more time to set up than PayPal but doesn’t charge fees either for the transfer or the currency exchange.

Thank you all!

3rd August 2015 

Meditating together for Rob     show/hide content

Some of us have been sitting with the Gaia House sangha at 8:45 each night (UK time, so 19.45 UTC) to bring Rob into our thoughts and prayers, and to feel connected with the wider weave of support that we give to each other in a way which goes beyond words. Do join us each night if you wish, in the knowledge that there are many dear hearts, dear beings, sitting with you at the same time who are wishing well for Rob.

Each Sunday at the same time, (or Monday morning in Australasia! Sunday lunchtime California etc), either on your own, with your sangha, or as groups wherever you are on this earth, let’s do the same. But when you have finished sitting or offering prayers on the Sunday, do post below any reflections from the shared practice as an additional weekly way of connecting with each other.

Writing this I have an immediate sense of the immense amount of love and kindness and beautiful intention in this shared field for Rob. Let’s rest in this, cultivate this and offer it for his well-being, his healing and that he may receive everything that he needs.

With love,
Catherine McGee (from Gaia House)

20th August 2015

Health update from Rob     show/hide content

Met with one of the HPB surgical team and with the clinical nurse specialist at Derriford Hospital. In a way, don’t know much more now than we did before the meeting. The tumour, which is in the ampulla, is very probably malignant but there is at present no evidence that it has spread. The doctors won’t know the stage and extent of the cancer until they have taken all the tissue out and examined it after the operation. I may or may not have chemotherapy after the op.

I don’t yet have a date for the operation. It may be that I have to wait up to 31 days, due to NHS bed shortages, but I may know the operation date by the end of next week.

The op is called a Whipple, and it is long and complicated (like my Dharma talks 😉 ). And it will apparently take quite some months to recover from the op, even if all goes well.

Thank you for all your beautiful and touching well-wishes.
Love,
Rob

  • Mark Ovland

    Hi everyone. Please feel free to post your reflections here, or anything else you might feel drawn to share. If you sign in using a social media account or register with Disqus (which just means choosing a password – it takes 2 seconds!) it allows you to add a photo to your profile, as well as edit or delete your comments and receive notifications when others have replied. Or if that all seems too complicated just select “I’d rather post as a guest” (note that your email address will not be displayed to anyone in either case). If you’d like to add an image to your post just click on the little picture icon on the bottom left.
    Lots of love x

    • penny g

      Bless you Mark, for setting this up.

    • Mina K

      Yes thank you so much Mark.

    • Jenni Reid

      Mark, you’re a star for setting this up. Thank you x

    • Matt

      Nice one Mark x

    • Lynda Benham

      Thank you so much for setting this up. I only knew Rob was ill when was notified that he would not be teaching on the Action from Depth retreat and have been wondering how I could find out how he was progressing. X

    • Anne F

      Yes, thank you Mark for setting this up. Really appreciate being able to stay up-to-date and connect in this way. X

  • Lynne Holmes

    Dear Rob, Was very sorry to hear you’ve been taken ill, and after leading such a healthy lifestyle. I remember the Whipples procedure from my nursey days as an amazing plumbing job – so wishing you well. Warm and heartfelt wishes from Lynne

  • Jaqs C

    Thanks for setting this up as i live in New Zealand and appreciate being in the loop. So much gratitude for my exposure to Rob’s wisdom, integrity and generosity, Immersing myself in his teachings has been of incredible value in my life. Sending love and best wishes, Jaqs C

  • Jacqui McCarney

    I’m in Norwich,a bit closer than New Zealand,but it still feels a long way from Gaia House at the moment! So thank you for setting up this page and keeping us updated on Rob’s progress. It’s seems to be particularly crucial, for this op, that the surgeon is very experienced – I trust that he/she is! Sending you lots of good wishes and love, Jacqui. PS. Rob, you got me to join the 21 century after all!!

  • Maite Alonso

    I just wanted to let Rob know that our Sunday sitting group in Totnes will be sending Metta. May you stay strong, steady and in high spirit. We are by your side. Lots of love. Maite
    Ooops! I posted my pic in the wrong place!

  • Gareth Fysh-Foskett

    Thanks Mark for setting up this forum. Was quite shocked and upset to hear the news, and wanted to share heartfelt concern and good wishes for Rob and all of his many friends and family. It has brought home for me, and other mutual friends, the deep and profound influence Rob’s teachings and exploration have had in the dharma world and beyond, in my own personal life and many others, even from a distance. The gift of dharma is the greatest gift! A good opportunity for us to give thanks for such a fine heart and mind, and beautiful presence in the world. May the power and resonance of our collective well-wishing bring healing for our dear brother Rob.

    • Mina K

      Thank you Gareth, you speak very much for me too.

  • Nicole Stern

    Hi Rob, we’ve met at the Yatra some years ago and I just spoke with Christopher on the phone.
    I just wanted sharing with you a small story which might give you a bit courage for the next steps.
    My colleague at work, 52 years of age, was also diagnosed with a similar tumor beginning of this year. The doctors also couldn’t say so much about the state of the cancer, if it already spread or if it malignant or not. They advised the Whipple operation. First he was shocked about the dimension of that operation and had fear. But he did it. Everything went well, it was early enough. He enjoys holiday in Italy right now. A big check just a few weeks ago showed everything is well. And he will slowly return to his work.
    What ever will happen for you, dear Rob, I will light a candle for you during the operation.
    By the way, your book is a big gift.
    I wish you all the best.
    Love, Nicole

  • Domenica

    So want to echo the words below, thank you Gareth, for articulating many of the thoughts, feelings and wishes that are deeply felt .The resonance of Robs teaching, generosity and wisdom , go deep and wide , personally and collectively. A further generosity in sharing your updates and in enabling us to, (all be it from a very different place), journey along side. You are held steadily and tenderly in heart and mind Rob with much well wishing.

  • Sari Markkanen

    Thank you warmly Mark for offering us this opportunity to stay connected and be part of Rob’s sangha and follow our teacher we so much love and appreciate through the times of difficulty. I feel deeply touched by the news and wish to share my heartfelt wishes. I feel very grateful and privileged for having been able to enjoy Rob’s heartful wisdom. Rob’s teachings have been life transforming – a most beautiful gift one can get!! Dearest Rob, may the operation go well and may you receive loving care. You are very much in my thoughts. Thinking of you, I also remember your warm spirit and joyful laughter, a memory that makes my heart smile! Sending you much metta, blessings and love, Sari

  • penny g

    Thanks for the update Rob.. please know that you’re in my thoughts and prayers. Wishing you courage, peace and presence in the weeks and months ahead. With deep gratitude and love, Penny xx

  • Yuka Nakamura

    Thank you so much Mark for setting up this page – and wonderful to be connected at this time with all of you. Rob – you are in my heart and in my prayers! Much love yuka

  • James Blake

    Rob, many thanks for taking the time to post your news here. Will be thinking of you very often, with love, well-wishing and gratitude. My stepfather Paul had successful bowel cancer treatment at Derriford this year and was very happy with the care he received there. Mark, many thanks to for setting up the site.

  • martine

    Hi Rob , Im sending all my love asever, and hope to see you soon in person. I know this is a hard journey … but I know you will find your way through it all . martine xx

  • Dayajoti

    Dear Rob, very good to have updates.
    I love the phrase from the ‘Tiratana Vandana’ ‘an incomparable source of goodness to the world’: that’s you. Tonnes of love, Dayajoti

  • Faith

    Hello Rob…I am thinking of you a lot and remembering your playfulness and your big heart…sending you lots of love and a big hug. From Faith

  • Margaret

    Dearest Rob, you’re not testing this impermanence thing are you? Sending you love every day since I heard last week. So wonderful to hear from you though to be fair, your words are never too far from conciousness. And thanks Mark for your genius in getting this set up. I’ll definitely be joining in the nightly prayers. Much meta, margaret

  • Domenica

    Lovely to join a sense of the sangha sitting together. Thank you Catherine for letting us know. Thank you Mark.

  • Faith

    Somehow I managed to set up two message posts instead of one and do not know how to delete this one! So thought I would take the opportunity to thank Mark for setting up this space for our reflections. xx

  • Juliet

    Dearest Rob – thinking of you and sending you love. As you can see you’re not alone and you’re loved and cherished by many many people. xx

  • Paul Heatley

    I am James’ stepfather previously mentioned. I had bowel cancer and had an operation less than four months ago at Derriford. I am now walking some miles on and around Dartmoor and cycling when the weather allows. I wish Rob all the best and hope his treatment is successful as mine. Metta Paul

  • Mina K

    Dear Rob, thinking of you very much. Your teachings are priceless, your book a gift, your wisdom a great blessing to us all. Much metta to you, and thank you for making the time and finding the energy at such a difficult time to to keep us all up to date with your news. With the deepest respect and gratitude – blessings. Mina

  • Joanne Pitt

    Hello Rob, hello everyone, I was just reflecting on how grateful I am to be able to come to this site, read the comments and updates and have this opportunity to say to Rob how much listening and reading your teachings has effected change in my life. I’m not sure I would be saying this outside of this situation and that makes me realise how powerful it is to be able to connect in this way. My hope is that you are able to receive the well wishing and love that is being sent to you, in the spirit it is sent, unconditionally for you, as a result of how you have touched our hearts. With warm thanks to Mark, Catherine and everyone.

  • Kate Fyfe

    Thinking of you Rob, so glad that even so far away I can be able to feel part of our community to support you.
    I am very grateful to be able to sit and send metta. You have offered so much – I hope to be part of the group who can
    give a little back. Kia kaha (Maori for be strong) katex

  • Angela Savory

    Dear Rob, I was so sorry to hear this news. I really appreciated the support you gave me when I visited Gaia earlier this year. Your teachings have really helped me. I send much metta and I hope your health improves. Thinking of you and sending you much love, kindness and courage to face the journey you are on. Angela xx

  • Zofia

    Dear Rob, I am thinking about you with a lot of gratitude and fondness and sending an XL size Metta and Refuah Shlema. Zofia

  • Jenni Reid

    Hey Rob, I am so grateful that this page has been set up so that I can let you know just how much I am thinking of you at this time. I’m sure you have a wonderful support network around you locally, but if there is ever anything we can do to help support you then please don’t hesitate to ask. Sending you so much love, metta and healing vibes, Jenni (+ the bump) x

  • Zofia

    Dear Rob, I’d like to add to this beautiful stream of love flowing towards you the XL size combined Metta and Refuah Shlema from me.
    With a lot of gratitude and fondness
    Zofia

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, I am very shocked and sad to hear that you are unwell and what you will be going through. You are a very talented communicator and have a big heart. I have benefitted enormously from your teachings over the years. I will hold you in my thoughts and send you metta.
    Judy Slater

  • Beata Bryceland

    Dear Rob, thinking of you at this very difficult time and wishing you all the very, very best. May you sail safely through it. With metta and gratitude. Bea

  • John McLane

    Dear Rob, I was so shocked and saddened to hear about your illness. I feel such gratitude to have received your love, kindness and the endless blessings of your teachings. Your compassion kept me on the path during difficult times. So much wisdom, grace and dedication towards others… I will hold you in my heart and send endless wishes for your well-being. Thank you Mark for making it possible to share our wishes and keep us updated. With Love and endless metta. John

  • Matt

    Hey Rob, we met at the Yatra 12 years ago and at Gaia House a couple of times since. Just want to wish you well and hope that your recovery goes ok and you get all the support you need. With much Metta and kind thoughts, Matt X

  • Anthea

    Rob, I was so sorry to hear your news, and send you every good wish and hope.
    Metta, Anthea

  • alexandra bridgeman

    sending you so much love Rob and support for your ease and healing before, during and after the op. With love and metta, Alexandra

  • Camilla Armstrong

    You are in my thoughts Rob. May you feel nourished and supported by the circle of love that surrounds you 🙂

  • June A.(from yatra+Gaia house)

    Rob, sending you many healing thoughts from from this part of the world.

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob. So grateful that you are sharing information with us. You are much in my thoughts (and as usual still ‘talking in my head’!) and I am so glad to be able to join in a daily meditation to send you healing and loving thoughts. With much metta. Lynda. x

  • Andrew Broadhead

    I am here, offering prayers in support of Rob’s speedy recovery from his current condition. I too have benefited so much from Rob’s support on my journey of self-discover. Actually, he helped me completely ‘turn my practice around’!!
    I will join the evening meditation whenever possible and have been offering the Dance of the Directions with my partners at Sacred Sites around the Southwest offering prayers for healing.
    Love and Light to you all. It is a gift and of such great benefit for the Sangha to be connected in this way.

  • Andrew Broadhead

    Sorry!! Didn’t mean the photograph t be so massive. Trusting my appearance with my partner Tracey in this way (at Scourhill) is okay.

  • Michelle Cobbin

    Dear Rob, shocked to hear that you’re poorly. Offering prayers and metta for your safe passage through this illness. Your work is a constant support for me on my own wonky path, and I thank you truly for enriching my dharma practice. Thank you to Mark for setting up the page, and Christopher for bringing it to my attention. I hope the combined love your receive here helps to heal. With metta. Mx

  • amaranatho

    Blessings to you Rob
    Amaranatho

  • Reza

    Hi Rob. Thinking of you and sending Love. And may we all benefit from this reminder of the mortality of our earthly body. I hope to see you sometime as I always enjoy our encounters.

  • Sallie Rose

    Be well love Sallie Rose

  • cherylee

    Rob……………I am trying to find the right words but they keep disappearing. So I will connect with you within the metta. Rob please know you are loved , supported and within the silence I will listen to your words that may or may not disappear before they are heard. Lots of love x cherylee

  • Lorna Edwards

    dear Rob, sending love, joy and healing …gratitude to you for ‘knowing’ to send love and joy.

  • Anne F

    Dear Rob,
    I was very upset to hear the news about your illness…damn this impermanence thing! 🙁
    I am so grateful for the wisdom, kindness and guidance I received from you on my last two retreats at Gaia House- so very valuable. Your teachings continue to inspire and support me. You are very much in my thoughts and in my heart at this time- I wish you strength, ease and healing, and am sending oodles of metta your way!
    Namaste, Anne xxx

  • Peter Gingold

    Rob – you are in my thoughts a great deal. Peter

  • Richard Baughan

    Rob, You are in my thoughts and my heart. Thank you for all the times we have met. with metta.

  • kate honey

    Dear Rob, only met you a couple of times, but you’ve helped me so much. Hoping against hope that you get through this. We need you! Much love and respect, Kate

  • Oriana Lea

    Feel the love, Rob, from all of us who hold you so dear in our hearts.

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Rob and dear Dharma community,I am thinking of you Rob, from the west of ireland, having just arrived home from Gaia house, sending this poem, may it be soul food for us all. I am so very grateful to be able to connect with you all and to support Rob, through a wide weaving tapestry of love. with much metta, Paula xx

    Swimmer,
    Be not the drowning swimmer,
    limbs thrashing, sinking ,

    gulping for air.
    Rather a seabird on the surface of the ocean,
    rising and falling with its peaks and troughs.

    Don’t be blown away by the hurricane,
    battered and bruised
    with the breath knocked out of you.
    Rather a tree, arms outstretched
    to receive the wind’s pummelling embrace,
    deeply rooted.

    Don’t hide, frightened, in your dark cave.
    Rather be a soft, sleek animal,

    skillful and alert
    to the sun’s glow, the rain’s caress
    and the comfort of your beating heart.
    a poem written by a dharma sister, Rachel Holstead

  • Verena Englert

    Dear Rob,
    Love Verena

  • Alison

    Dear Rob,
    Soul adventurer, searching and reflecting in all that jazz, my warmest and deepest well-wishing. Much love, Alison

  • Paula Martin

    Resting gently here , after a beautiful shared sit in Sligo, Ireland, softness of heart, night fall descending, Thank you sangha for connecting . Love Paula

  • Steve StJohn

    I stumbled across Rob many years ago on Dharmaseed and he immediately became my favorite teacher. I’ve never been to a formal meditation or retreat. I’m kind of a lone wolf that way. I live in Fort Worth,Texas and have a severely autistic adult son that I care for. It is quite challenging at times but I would end most days listening to one of Robs talks most of which I have downloaded. His unique approach, deep insight always unafraid to go deep into topics and of course his wonderful sense of humor I found quite compelling. I found I would rather listen to talks of Rob’s that I have heard many times before rather than listen to anything else. His talks have helped me develop the patience I needed to become a better caregiver for my son, put the world and this existence in perspective and for that I am very grateful. Get well soon Rob. The world benefits so much from the light you provide.

    • Steve StJohn

      My sister just completed her second battle with cancer and after treatment she is at this point at least cancer free. The science has produced some very effective treatments of late with more coming with each passing day so there is much hope to be had these days that did not exists just a few years ago.

    • Chandima

      What a nice comment

  • Jaqs C

    Here’s a blessing for courage from John O’Donohue’s book Benedictus….

    For Courage
    When the light around you lessens
    And your thoughts darken until
    Your body feels fear turn
    Cold as a stone inside

    When you find yourself bereft
    Of any belief in yourself
    And alll you unknowingly
    Leaned on has fallen

    When one voice commands
    Your whole heart
    And it is raven dark

    Steady yourself and see
    That it is your own thinking
    That darkens your world

    Search and you will find
    a diamond-thought of light

    Know that you are not alone
    And that this darkness has purpose:
    Gradually it will school your eyes
    To find the one gift your life requires
    Hidden within this night-corner

    Invoke the learning
    Of every suffering
    You have suffered

    Close your eyes
    Gather all the kindling
    Above your heart
    To create one spark
    That is all you need
    To nourish the flame
    That will cleanse the dark
    Of its weight of festered fear

    A new confidence will come alive
    To urge you towards higher ground
    Where your imagination
    Will learn to engage difficulty
    As its most rewarding threshold

    Warm metta Rob…x

  • Eamonn L

    Love You Bro ,Your in my heart and practice. May you continue to Expand in the light and vastness_/|_.X

  • jill bird

    Dearest Rob, of course I want to join with all in wishing you much metta and good health in mind and body but mostly I feel gratitude for you as a man with a huge heart and intellect. The gratitude is also for your persistent and dedicated practise and exploration over the years, sometimes when you had a very sketchy map. I also appreciate your ability to risk letting go of any fixed view and to question deeper. So much so, that I can honestly say you have transformed my practice and life by your teaching and example. Many people are walking with you.

  • julia wright

    Dear Rob

    I have just got back from the BDS camp where I was very
    sad to hear that you were ill. Many of us there were thinking of you and
    sending love. You are held so dearly in so many hearts. The past ten years, you have inspired, supported and
    encouraged me and I don’t have words to express my gratitude. As always you
    motivate me to practice and I am very glad of the 8.45 sitting.

    Dear Rob, I send you healing, warmth and love. It is
    comforting to know that if anyone has the strength and wisdom to face the experience
    of illness it is you.

    With much metta,

    Julia xx

    • Mina K

      Lovely words Julia. You express much of how I am feeling.

  • Tim Dalgleish

    Dear Rob,

    We haven’t seen each other for a while and I was deeply saddened to hear your news. Thinking of you Big Man! Be strong.

    With love

    Tim

  • lindsay

    Hey Rob – been struggling to find the right words to shape the appreciation for how your words and teachings have opened up the whole world view, shattered everything, but provided a compass too, a light in the dark, illuminating so much beauty. Perhaps image and music might fit where words fail so here’s a short clip that sums up some of all of it. Love to all, in multiple directions. May you be well x ps. click on that wee ‘see more’ button to see more 😉
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0nDQOrBx4A

  • Henriette Lofstrom

    oh goodness I’m overwhelmed with sadness, I guess that tells you I am still not enlightened 🙂 I wish you all the strength and love at all possible, to overcome this horrible disease
    love Henri

  • Jake Dartington

    Dear Rob

    You’re very much in my thoughts – sending you much love and wishing you well.

    With lots of love

    Jake

  • Sarah Lovatt

    Dearest Rob I hope that all this love is helping you get through this difficult time. Thinking of you praying for you and wishing you all the very best with all my love and deep gratitude xxxx

  • Justin Dalton

    Rob, Man what a dude, It’s been pure oxygen to listen to a champion of the poetic imagination amidst what often seems such a conservative dharma scene. Restlessly exploring images of sheer, unadulterated beauty, inspiring others with the fierceness of imaginative vitality, re-visioning meditation as an apprenticeship to beauty, Reminding us all that “it’s not life thats important, but soul” much love and swift recovery, justinx

  • Anita Lintula

    Dear Rob, thinking of you warms my heart here in Finland. I am sorry to hear the challenging news. And send you lots of love and a warm hug (even though it’s not Gaia House style :).

  • Gavin Milne

    Hey Rob. Lovely to read through all these comments just now – and inspiring running into you the other day, sharing a laugh about how busy being ill can make you, and seeing you look so well. Exemplar of the practice! Wishing you well through all of this, and any help we can be with practical stuff etc. just give us a shout. Glad that the dharma is with you…. Love Gav

  • Jennifer Muller

    Dear Rob. May you be well through all that unfolds. May you be safe and protected. May you love and be loved. And may you be free. x

  • De Rek

    You’ve helped me so much Rob. Thank you. I’ve been thinking of you. Good luck with the op.

  • Lorna Edwards

    Dear Rob, may the op go well.

  • cherylee

    We are all here for you Rob, with so much love and support . Wishing you a very gently recovery x Cherylee

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Rob,holding you very close in our hearts today, and sending lots of metta to you and the surgeons! Jacquix

  • Dayajoti

    Sending huge love to you Rob and all of us rooting for you xxx

  • Judy63

    may you be well Rob XXX

  • Matt York

    Muchos Metta Amigo. Xxxx

  • Steve StJohn

    Texas metta headed your way. Hang in there Rob.

  • Andrea Mardon

    Thinking of you Rob and sending lots of positive,loving energy to you, Catherine and your whole team xx

  • Gary Born

    Thinking a lot about Rob and hoping for the best result . Thank you, Catherine and Mark. Gary

  • Oriana Lea

    Going to listen to Santana’s ‘Smooth’, Rob, and send you all my love and positivity and everything I can for you to be well again. X

  • Mina K

    Thinking of you Rob. Blessings to Catherine and Mark and many others who are supporting Rob at the moment. xxx

  • Joanne Pitt

    Dear Rob, Sending you love and light, in this amazing web of metta. xxx

  • Karen Sivan

    Thinking of you and sending love to you and all around you. Karen ♡

  • martine

    A birthday gift indeed my old friend you are about to have a new lease on life . I am holding you in heart wishing you all the grace and luck in the world.
    Martine

  • Josh Newmark

    Best wishes for the surgery Uncle Rob, thinking of you.

    Love, Josh

  • Rosanna

    Dear Rob, thinking of you, with love. Rosanna

  • Yuka Nakamura

    I am so relieved to read that the OP went smoothly! May you recover very soon, dear Rob! You have been in my heart and my thoughts today and will continue to be there. Thank you Catherine and Mark! Yuka

  • Andrew Broadhead

    Happy! I danced 9 Rounds of the Dance of the Directions at lunchtime overlooking the water of Millbay Plymouth, sending Love Light and Healing to Rob.

  • julia wright

    Such good news. A collective breath out!

    Sending love and light

    xx

  • Harula Ladd

    That’s such wonderful news! Thank you so much for confirming so quickly that the operation was a smooth success. I can’t stop smiling. Ok, now to sit and give (huge!!!) thanks:-) Love and blessings, Harula x

  • Eric Williams

    So glad to hear that the surgery went well. I wish I could express in words what your book and teaching have meant to me and to my practice. I am dedicating any merit from my practice to you and your continued recovery. You’ll continue to be in my thoughts.

  • alice

    Dear Rob and those who are tending you during this time, sending you great love and some of that k’pow buddha stuff, may your body reveal its healing and your heartmind be steady…like others i am touched by a wave of gratitude for all your teaching, your presence, your grace…your dharma talks at GH would cause tears to roll down my cheeks, not because i was sad, but because my heart knew it was encountering truth…even now, you are teaching us and opening our hearts, without doing or saying anything. Braveheart! may you be well, may you be at ease. alice

  • Jaqs C

    Hey Rob….what beautiful words your surgeon prepared you with. So glad it went smoothly. It all happened whilst I was asleep on the other side of the world, though i fell asleep listening to your guided meditation on a loop and so somehow I was with you there too…:) .hopefully you woke up feeling like you had just had a holiday in heaven. So happy your are now free to just recover and rest and feel the love…
    …..warm best wishes..Jaqs x

  • Julia

    Wonderful news. Thank you Catherine and Mark for keeping us up to date and giving us the opportunity to hold Rob in our hearts and minds. At work today I took pauses to wish Rob well, and I am appreciating the blessings of his medical team and all the support of his friends.

  • Jenny

    Thank you Catherine & Mark for keeping us informed. Sending much love to Rob from Gaia House with all best wishes for your healing and recovery.

  • Akashavajri Rios-Lopez

    I haven’t had the fortune to meet Rob; yet his Dharma talks and book (Seeing That Frees) have been wonderful aides in Dharma teaching and practice. Thank you Rob … sending you metta from Mexico.

  • ann bodhaniya bruton

    Dear Rob, so glad to know the surgery went well. May all go as well with your recovery. With love and gratitude.

  • Mat Schencks

    Dear Rob,

    Glad to hear that the operation went well. I’ve deeply appreciated your inspiring teaching and guidance over the past 10 years and wish you well in your recovery.

    With much love,

    Mat x

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Rob, How wonderful wonderful to know you are through your big operation and that it arrived so soon, and to know you were under the care of such kind and skilled hands . A huge heartfelt well done to you , i am so glad that your body received the surgery smoothly , and that all has been well, my heart has a broad smile, may your body now continue to heal as it knows naturally to do, may you receive in abundance all the love and kindness you offer so freely to others as you recover. May all the different medicines do their work, on all levels . Gorgeous to hear the news from Catherine and Mark, thanks to you both, with much love , Paula xx

  • Paula Martin

    ……….and happy happy birthday Rob !! i will be have a freezing cold dip in the atlantic to celebrate with glee . paula

  • Paula Martin

    and happy happy birthday too Rob ! a great time to doubly celebrate , i will be having a morning dip in the atlantic to say hippip yurray

  • Jill Shepherd

    Dear Rob
    Even though I only got to practice with you for two weeks at the FR, your teaching/presence has had a powerful impact on me over the last few years, through your talks and book. I hope you can somehow connect with my deep appreciation, together with that expressed in all the other comments, and that it become a source of healing for you.
    With metta, Jill

  • Joanne Pitt

    Thank you Mark and Catherine for updating the site and sending emails to connect us with what has been happening.
    Happy Birthday Rob. May you be well….
    Jo

  • Ben Johnston

    Good morning Rob,
    Geraldine and I are relieved and happy that the operation was successful.
    Yesterday afternoon we and Jo Kennedy, in response to Catherine`s message offered a little meditation session for you and your team of doctors etc. I hope your recovery is very swift, wishing you lots of love and a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY.
    Ben

  • unfoldingkarma

    Hi Rob. Your friends at IMS (the Retreat Center and the Forest Refuge) in Barre, MA are sending you waves of metta and healing energy. Wishing you an easeful recovery. With loving wishes, Bryony Smith

  • Judy63

    So happy to hear that the medical team took good care of you. Now I hope you make a good, steady recovery.

  • James Blake

    Happy birthday Rob! My heart was lifted by the news of your successful operation. Wishing you the best possible recovery now x

  • John McLane

    Many Happy Returns Rob! I was so relieved to hear the operation went smoothly.I hope you are able to get lots of rest x

  • Gary Born

    Great to hear that the op went so well – what a way to prepare for your birthday! Best wishes Rob , and hoping for a good recovery. Gary

  • Viorica

    Happy Birthday Rob!!! <3 <3 <3
    Much love, light, joy and gratitude (from Romania) be with you!
    Thank you Rob!!!

    You are a blessing for so many of us!

    You are so loved and blessed! <3

  • alexandra bridgeman

    Happy Birthday Rob!! What an incredible 50th celebration to have after the hours in surgery yesterday, I’m thrilled to hear it all went smoothly.
    with lots of love and blessings for your swift healing
    Alexandra and Jamie xx

  • Judy63

    Happy 50th birthday, Rob! (young man!) I will be 52 next week. May you have a great decade.

  • Mina K

    Happy 50th! wishing you well and a good recovery x

  • Juliet

    Happy 50th Birthday dear Rob. What a way to spend the last day of your forties! I’m so glad you’ve had the operation and that it went well. May this process bring you deep healing and well-being. Wishing you a joy filled new decade. With much love, Juliet. xx

  • Sari Markkanen

    Dear Rob so happy to hear that the operation went well! You are very much in my thoughts. Happy birthday wishes, much love and healing to you Rob, Sari

  • Angela Savory

    Oh wow! An operation and your 50th birthday in the same week! That’s quite a special synchronicity there 🙂 Wishing you many happy returns and much metta and good wishes for a good recovery, with love and blessings x

  • June A.

    Happy, very healing Birthday.

  • Julia

    Wishing you a happy, peaceful and comfortable birthday, and a speedy recovery.

  • julia wright

    Happy birthday Rob. May this year be one of healing and happiness.
    x

  • Steve StJohn

    Happy Birthday Rob! 50 is the new 40. Get well soon.

  • Bridget Wilson-Becker

    Happy Birthday Rob! I am just getting wind of all this……and am digesting the news that you have been operated. As always, I hold you in my thoughts and heart. Much love & wishes for a quick recovery oxoxoxoxo Bridget

  • Akasati Annie Mcauley

    Happy birthday Rob. Thank you so much for your excellent (not just saying that – it IS excellent) book which came at a good time for me and many others in the Triratna Buddhist community (there is an online discussion group for TR order members to study it together chapter by chapter). Very best wishes for you recovery following the op. We met very briefly at the climate march last year – I had a cuddly toy mole named ‘anarchist mole’!

  • Jenni Reid

    Happy Birthday Rob!! Soo glad to hear the operation went smoothly. Now for an equally smooth recovery. Sending you lots of love as always, Jenni and the bump xx

  • martine

    Happy birthday Robert from Sesame Street. I hope you are doing as well as you can be and that the drugs are giving you good hallucinations on your 50th !
    Love martine

  • Ostell Leya

    Hi Rob, Been thinking of you everyday and just found out that your operation went smoothly and it is your 50th !!! today – how transformational is that. In my experience, 50th birthdays kind of chew you up and spit you out just as you thought in a deluded way that you might be getting the hang of this Life stuff. Watch the dreams. I am in the middle of a massive John O’Donoghue fest and I send you this link to a great talk he did in 2007 for some nourishment http://www.greenbelt.org.uk/media/talks/14229-john-odonohue/
    Title is Imagination as the Path of Spirit. Anyway if in your recuperation you need any help – lifts, chat, shopping whatever I am here but sending you ease, rest, healing and love for now.

  • Rikke Nymann

    Happy Birthday Rob! Sending you lots of healing thoughts and metta.

  • Mariano Gil

    Happy birthday dear Rob! Glad to hear the operation went well. I just found out what you are going through. Send you much love and healing energy! Xo Mariano

  • Rehena

    Happy Birthday Rob from sunny South Africa. Glad to hear your operation went well. Birthday wishes with heartfelt loving kindness. Thank you for your wonderful teachings.

  • Rosanna

    Happy Birthday Rob! Loads of Love. Thought of you a lot today, while drawing my first Medicine Buddha.. May you be healthy and safe. X

  • Oriana Lea

    Bon Anniversaire, Rob! Many happy, healing thoughts winging their way to you from Normandie. Xx

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob, welcome to club 50! A happy birthday to you. I just found out you haven’t been well and had an op. Wishing you a very speedy recovery. Hope you amaze your doctors like the Dalai Lama did when he had his op. No pressure! Love Sabu x Hug!

  • Anna Strange

    Dear Rob, happy birthday! Wishing you love and healing, peace and light, and wishing I was back at Gaia House instead of in this crazy world. Love Anna xx

  • Kate

    Hey Rob, sending all warm blessings, many healing thoughts, & much love on your 50th Birthday … Wow, long time …. So glad to hear op went smoothly yesterday, & do hope you gather strength & feel a bit better soon. Many thanks to Mark & Catherine for keeping us posted. Hoping you have good friends & family around you today … & more wonderful Doctors & Nurses. Am moved to share with all these lovely folks posting my favourite photo of you of ALL TIME! You are 21 here I think … Such a great smile. See you soon I hope. Love, Kate Xx

    • Mark Ovland

      Fantastic Kate! That’s lovely to see. I fully encourage people to post more pics of Rob through the ages… 🙂

      • Kate

        Thanks Mark! Okiedokie – I will post a few more!! (All from around the same time period tho’ I’m afraid … ) You asked, don’t forget!! …… Kate Xx

  • Kate

    oops. sorry! wasn’t meant to be that big! it was small when i scanned it!! … oh well … k Xx

  • Sigrid Streat

    Happy Birthday Rob!!! Hope you had a good day and am so glad to hear today that the operation has gone well. May the healing and recovery be swift and you be feeling well soon. With much love X

  • lindsay

    Hey Rob – Today we toasted you a speedy and full recovery, and a happy birthday, at the end of a full day’s rehearsals between the Dharma Action Network for Climate Engagement and Children Against Global Warming. We shared our deeper motivations about how each of us feels about climate change, and let the words of the children direct the tone of the piece. Really looking forward to sharing something special next Sunday alongside a host of other groups, coming together for a mixture of stunts, performances and creative interventions against oil sponsorship. We’ll miss you there in person this time, but will make sure we get some good footage. And look! DANCE got a mention in The Guardian! Whoop whoop! For our full message click on the ‘see more’ button beneath.
    http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2015/sep/03/art-not-oil-plan-protest-british-museum
    Get well, heal up, big love and happy birthday! xx

  • Tess

    Happy birthday, dear Rob, and a blessed, enchanted year to come! So glad and grateful the op went well. May your body recover quickly and fully, held in light and love. Sitting with you, and for you, every day. All my love, Tess

    And: am so glad for the evening sit, for the shared tide of love, for the beauty of Sangha – thank you to everyone for this – I find it very supportive. And a heartfelt thank you to Mark and Catherine for the (much needed) updates.

  • Darcy Newmark

    Dear Uncle Rob,

    I hope you are recovering well and happy birthday to you
    Would be lovely to see you soon and am thinking of you,

    Love Darcy x

  • Bat El

    Dear Rob,
    Happy birthday. was so happy to hear it all went fine. Hope it will be a new healthy reborn for this round B day. i truly belive in your open wise heart-mind to take a goos care of you. sending lots of love and healing energy . Bat el

  • Lorna Edwards

    Dear Rob, happy birthday ‘boxing day’! and healing wishes

  • Luisa

    I hope you are gradually feeling better and wishing for your full recovery (look forward to seeing you full of beans again and offering your generous dharma talks, no matter how long!, that is, if that is what you would want to do after this…).
    A very Happy Birthday, Rob and hope you will be able to celebrate in style in due time. With warm metta thoughts for you…
    Thanks both to Catherine and Mark for your news. Much appreciated.
    Luisa

  • Jo Kennedy

    Hi rob I only heard of your illness yesterday. I hope you are recovering well from the op. Sending much love and good wishes for your recovery, I’ll be joining the evening metta wave that is coming your way. All good things, Jo

  • Diana

    Glad to hear all going ok and that you are still inspiring others to good things. Nigel and I are thinking of you and holding you in our hearts with love. Diana x

  • Michelle Levi

    Dearest Rob
    Ollie and I have been leading a retreat this weekend and we both dreamt of you last night, so then logged on this morning and found out that it was the day of your operation and your birthday, nice to feel that connection beyond words and space. So pleased to hear that it went well and we both wish you a quick and easeful recovery and that your next 50 years be full of radiant health and vitality.
    Namaste
    Michelle

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Dear Rob, You were thought of and talked about so fondly in many conversations at the BDS camp. I’m adding my metta and good wishes to all these, hoping that tho its a long recovery period it will go as smoothly as possible and hoping you will have all the support you need. I’m abroad from 12 – 28 Sept but if theres anything else I can do of course please ask. I’m in close contact with Mark as you know. With much love, Ivan

  • Susan Caldicott Ford

    Dear Rob,
    I’ve been thinking of you and sending prayers for your well being. You have been so dedicated both in your personal practice, the depth of your study and your heartfelt compassionate and astute teaching. So grateful to have been inspired by you. Wishing you full healing and strong recovery, all in perfect timing. Much Love to you Susan

  • Andrea Hosfeld

    Dear Rob,
    Everyday my heart speaks to you and is blessed. I imagined you giving a dharma talk from your hospital bed, baffling people on the wards with talk of Schrodinger’s cat… and then worried, in the same moment, that someone wouldn’t have the foresight to record it… Ha! Sending you so much love and light and extra strength for your special exercises. Xx

  • Anne F

    Hi Rob,
    Just saw the news update. Very pleased to hear you got an early op and that it went smoothly. Wonderful! And all before your fiftieth. Many happy returns- now you’re all mended, ready for the next 50 years of your life…;-) (Yeah yeah, I know we can’t predict these things, but I’m feeling optimistic.)
    Wishing you a full and easeful recovery. Take it easy!
    Love, Anne x

  • Viorica

    Dear Rob,
    I never met you but your recordings are gold for me and always will be.
    Your book is a very precious gift, so thank you for that.
    I want you to know how grateful i am for your clear and loving message, for the wisdom-love-compassion i received listening your teachings.
    May you shine loving and joyful for many many years because you are a blessing….
    Much love and light to you, Rob!

  • River

    Happy recovery and happy birthday Rob! Sending every wish for ease and strength in the next weeks and months. You are very much in our thoughts and hearts. Much love from all at Sheffield Insight x x x

  • Susan Jordan

    Dear Rob
    I’ve only just heard from Catherine what a serious operation you’ve had, and I wish you all the very best with your recovery from it. I can’t say how much I’ve valued your teaching over the years and gained from the conversations we’ve had. I’ve felt a real resonance with your psychological understanding and been inspired by your fresh and creative approach to the dharma. My thoughts are with you now on this beautiful September day.
    With much appreciation and metta, Susan Jordan

  • Was a little shocked to hear what was going on! Hoping the recovery continues well. All the best, Rob, lots of love x

  • Frances Lewis

    Dear Rob, wishing you lots of deep rest at this time and a smooth recovery – with love Frances

  • Trish Bartley

    All the very best to you, Rob. Holding you in our hearts and sending you patience and rest, as you heal from surgery.

  • Laura Fearns

    Was shocked and saddened to hear of your news Rob. It brought a smile to hear how the diligence you are applying to your exercises are rippling around the ward! Your teachings have had a very positive impact on my life. Your kindness, hard work and wisdom are a huge inspiration. Sending you much love to take all the time, care and rest you need in this period of healing.

  • Jane Brendgen

    Dear Rob, I’m so sorry to hear that you’re not well. May you recover well following your operation. I’m holding you in mind and heart.
    Jane Brendgen

  • Amanda Anderson

    Dear Rob, Wishing you all the best and lots of time to rest. Thinking of you. Ooodles of metta and a belated Happy Birthday!

  • Stephen Banks

    Dear Rob, sending you good wishes for a speedy recovery. I have been on two retreats with you, including the one with Chris Cullen when you played music in the evening, which was an incredibly profound experience for me (I’m a musician too). And have recently read your fantastic book, which has been very inspiring and life changing for me. Thank you, and may you teach lots more and write more fantastic books!

  • Julie

    Dear Rob, I’ve just opened the Gaia House newsletter and received the news of your
    illness and surgery. I only know you through listening to your talks downloaded from dharma seed. It feels important to
    let you know that your teaching is reverberating in the world and also that
    news of your current situation have been received with care and concern and well wishes.

    I remember listening to one of your talks several years ago,
    that you gave in 2009 at the IMS Forest Refuge – “No self, No world”. I recall it so clearly as I was on a plane flying home
    from a 10-day retreat. Flying over the mountains and the
    combination of the view and listening to your words… throughout that talk
    I was just blown away and touched by your teaching and how it both resonated in my current
    experience and also provided a sense of encouragement and curiosity for further exploration :-). Thank you for your
    inspiration and creativity in sharing the dharma with us.

    Sending warm wishes for your healing and well-being~~~~

  • Bernadette Vincent

    Hi Rob, I have never met you but I recently started listening to some of your talks as you were recommended to me by my psychologist who knows you. The talks on Mind states and the Emotional body in particular. I just wanted to tell you that it has brought me so much more understanding about myself, and also moments of peace. I live in Cambodia at the moment but my dream is to be able to come to Gaia House one day and take part in one of your retreat. So I wish you a full recovery and sending you love and hugs.
    Bernadette.

  • giel

    Dearest Rob,

    Please rest when rest is needed, laugh when you feel like laughing, sleep when you are tired, look out of the window when your curios look takes you there. Be well, with all what is and keep going your road with courage and compassion. With meta and love, Giel

  • Jon Stein

    wishing you well Rob and sending you some Follaton-flavoured metta…

  • cathy sutcliffe

    Dear Rob, wishing you very well and much healing on your road to recovery, with metta, Cathy and Terry Sutcliffe, Bath

  • Jem Shackleford

    Dear Rob, Although not knowing you personally I have felt your presence through Gaia House and your Dharma Seed teachings. You bring such a lot of love and warmth to the world and hope that you can feel the way in which that it is returned through these comments and heartfelt wishes. Much love during this time and rest well, Jem

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Hi Rob, so shocked to hear you’re in hospital! Actually cried at work when I read the news! You have such a profound connection with people, it’s such a wise and skilful quality and I feel so blessed to have listened to you and sat in meditation with you. Rest well and let your body heal – sending you metta and hoping you recover quickly. Be patient and smile my friend – we all love you so much xx

  • Jane

    Dear Rob. I so hope you are resting and healing well. I heard your voice a couple of years ago on Dharma seed and recognised you immediately….from my earliest explorations of meditation and the Buddhist path at University back in the 80s. We were both at meditation group – at Oriel College. I seem to remember you as having long hair, being interested in music and being naturally and easily absorped into deep meditative states. Isabel was our teacher. Patrick was there, Tony too (from S Africa). Jack and others. I only came for a few terms before leaving University but visited Amaravatti, Gaia House and have been on a long winding path of exploratoin since. I have been
    so happy to see how much you have shared with the world. love Jane. (Now living in Stroud, Gloucestershire)

  • mei-wah

    Dear Rob,

    as much as can be sent in words, I’m sending you letters and spaces typed with care, concern, comfort and love.
    all the best of me,

    Mei-wah x

  • Shirley Kay

    Dear Rob, So glad to hear that the operation was a success. Rest well and heal well.. Sending metta and holding you in my heart. With love, Shirley

  • Catherine T

    Dear Rob,
    Wishing you recovery, equanimity and serenity. With many thanks for your teachings both individual(once) and in a group.
    Catherine

  • Ally Stott

    Ah dear Soul, you’ve been with me so much over the last week as I’ve been up in the Scottish borders on retreat. When I returned It was a surprise, and great news to hear that you have had the surgery, and are following your path of recovery, well done you!
    Sending great oceans of love, prayers and healing light your way.
    Ally

  • martine

    my darling Rob I do hope you get to read this . Say no to visitors for a while ….my mums Whipple was a success but the recovery was slow and often not linear we are all here when you are ready to receive us. i love you and think of you daily and wish you a very smooth recovery . I will come and see you when Im back in England with Dan maybe too. … until then old friend stay well positive and strong . hugs and love martine

  • Alison Marshall

    Dear Rob, So glad the operation went well. Thinking of you and sending love and light. Alison

  • coppe

    Glad that your operation went well, Rob. Hope you have a speedy recovery. Remembering your compassion, insight and patience when I was on personal retreat eight years ago at Gaia. Hermitage Wing 2007: Full moon seen through the twigs of a tree – cracked disc of ice in the night sky. Peter Jenner.

  • Kate

    Hey Rob,

    Am very glad to hear you were both miffed on your birthday & being your usual fastidious self re. your exercises!! Feel sure these are very good signs & bode well for your recovery!! Thinking of you lots & sending much love. Hope you are feeling a little stronger & that you can really, really REST & recover some energy. All power & love for your healing. Can you get your hands on that shirt I sent??!!

    Mark ask for more photos!! (So don’t be miffed!!) … So, folks, here is: 1) Rob looking serious & thoughtful & aged around 19 I think (this is from one of his old student cards, hence staple holes & ink stamp), 2) Rob looking a little intense but very tall, dark & handsome, at Oxford, in 1985, 3) Rob making a funny face, sitting on me & our friend Dr. Tim Dalgleish, (who has posted below, & has since defected to Cambridge, I believe … ) again, at Oxford in 1985, & 4) Rob holding my niece, Natalie (who is now a gorgeous young woman of a mere 28, so may not like this pic of her at this tender age, sorry Nat!) in Newbury in 1987, soon before moving to the USA … Hope they don’t come up really huge but if they do … it’s not my fault!! This Disqus does something weird! …

    All for now. Do please keep posting news. Thank you for that. Much love, & many thanks,

    Kate Xx

    • Joanne Pitt

      Dear Kate, thank you for sharing these photos of Rob, while I don’t know him personally, he continues to inspire my practice and it’s wonderful to share more of his journey during this time when he is in the thoughts and hearts or so many. Much gratitude. Jo

      • Kate

        Thanks, Jo. You’re very welcome. Good to know! Love, Kate Xx

  • Kate

    sorry, they rearranged themselves!! …. you can work it out tho! Xx k

  • NeLi Martin

    Hey Rob, I just read GH news to learn of you illness. Many blessings for your recovery my friend… I love your book and still remember your fine work as the bin yogi on your year long retreat while I was kitchen manager at GH… I sense you will take all this in your stride as I remember you did with a doctor visit during your retreat.. Love, blessings, metta and confidence in your recovery coming your way from Australia…

  • Brigid Avison

    Hello dear Rob. Just back from two weeks in the Cevennes, to find that you’ve had the op, so glad it was sooner than expected and went well. Thought of you lots when away, especially as I was reading `Dialogues with Scientists and Sages: the Search for Unity’ — conversations between Renee Weber and David Bohm, Lama Govinda, Rupert Sheldrake, the Dalai Lama (on compassion as a field of emptiness), Bede Griffiths and others. If you’ve not read it and would like to, at some point in your convalescence, I’ll send it on. Such a joy to read how many other people have felt blessed by your being in their life, as I do. Sending you love and wishing you whatever you need for this stage of your wonderful exploration of being alive…

  • Victor von der Heyde

    Hi Rob: there’s more of us here in Oz thinking of you and having images of your body getting strength and recovering well. Some people whom you’ve never met but who’ve been touched by your book: they’re thinking of you too. Wishing you healing energies, long life, lots of spirit and spirits to support you. Victor

  • harry ungoed

    Hi Rob. Didn’t know quite just how much you meant to me until I read that you’d gone into hospital. Bit of a shock. You’re a diamond geezer, and just knowing you’re in the world makes it a better place – more hopeful somehow. Anyway, get well soon. Worrying about you, but not worried about you. Love and thanks always. And thanks to Mark for setting up the site, will follow news of your convalescence like that of a royal from here on in.

  • William Rittenberg

    Dear Rob, I can see you so clearly in my minds eye, strong, sensitive, kind and helpful, to others and me personally, and I
    feel much gratitude for your dedication and teaching over many years. I’m so glad your operation was
    successful. I hope your healing is rapid and you recover completely. I’ll be anxious to know how you’re doing and I’ll check in regularly to get your latest news. For now, sending you many, many thanks, and much love
    Bill Rittenberg, E. Lansing, MI

    .

  • Heather Martin

    Dear Rob,
    I only just heard about your illness and operation, and am catching my breath. I find a huge upwelling of
    warmth and tenderness towards you, and send you wishes for all the ease and space possible, and much love too.
    Heather.

  • Adrian Allen

    Hi Rob,

    I was sad to hear that you needed to go into hospital for such an operation, but happy to hear that it went smoothly. I will be dedicating
    my sittings to your recovery and return to health. Have fun with the exercises;) All my best wishes.

    Adrian

  • Emma Brodrick

    Dear Rob,

    Trusting you are being held tenderly by the Dharma – just as you are in so many hearts.

    This Whipple malarkey is pretty full on, belying an innocent-sounding name. (If someone said they’d been “Whippled” I would imagine them giggling and covered in ice-cream.)

    Wishing you deep rest and as easeful a recuperation as is possible in hospital and beyond. If at any point I can be of any assistance in any way, it would be a pleasure – Mark has my number.

    Sending you a whole lotta love to add to this glorious metta mountain.
    Emma

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob, So pleased you didn’t have to wait as long as expected for the operation and that all is going well. I know from your work with me that you have infinite patience! Which will be a wonderful resource for you through this next stage in you healing. Sending all the loving kindness that I have experienced from you over the years. Much love. Lynda

  • David Brown

    Dear Rob,
    I just heard about your operation. You have so many supporters and we all wish you a speedy homecoming. Let us know there is anything you need and we will do our best to help.
    Very best wishes
    David

    Mark, thank you for setting up this site.

  • Marion Meuffels

    Dear Rob, just read about your illness and operation. May you recover soon and be well. I dedicate my sittings to your good health. I appreciate you teachings so much. Thank your for your wise words in the interviews, talks and book. They still form a profound guidance in my practice. With metta, Marion

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Fantastic photo Rob – so glad you haven’t lost your cheeky sense of humour!! Rest and let your body heal and know that you are so loved x

  • Lynda Benham

    Trying out uniforms for your next job? Which is ????? Not sure why but you look as if you are about to burst into an Italian song while selling ice cream!

  • Judy63

    Liking the head gear.

    Good luck with being a patient patient.

    Slow but steady recovery to you after this big procedure.

  • Steve StJohn

    nice hat

  • Kate

    Very good to see you & good to hear. Great hat. Lara & I are staying in Sandy Lane on the Gower Peninsula where you may dimly remember we hitchhiked & stayed, back in the Dark Ages … Have a fab view of 3 Cliffs Bay from back of our place … Thinking of you lots & sending love. All blessings, strength & deep rest & recovery from here on in – & hope to see you soon … Kate Xx

  • penny g

    Dearest Rob, I’m so happy to hear your news and see your smiling face. Wishing you much love and light on your recovery journey – may it bring joy and blessings xx

  • martine

    Hi rob so happy to see you! And glad you are doing so well. Sending lots of love martine xxx

  • Sharda Rogell

    Dear Rob, It was such a treat to see your smiling face and to have a personal message from you. It meant so much. I have been following along with all the events since I heard about your retreat being cancelled. I am holding you in my heart and sending you many blessings for a quick recovery so you can once again be sharing your profound dharma that so many deeply appreciate. Warm wishes, Sharda

  • John McLane

    Great hat Rob! Are you on the jazz ward? Lovely to read your message and to hear of your progress.Inspirational as ever.With metta and deep appreciation of your presence.J x

  • Jenni Reid

    Wow I feel such a deep sense of gratitude seeing this photo. Not to mention much happiness at seeing your ‘Robness’ shining through your smile. Thankyou for the update! Much love as always xxx

  • Oriana Lea

    My smile reflected your smile when I saw you this morning – only even bigger! It is wonderful to ‘see’ you agai. What great progress, Rob, and always a sense of ‘play’! Continuing to try and bring that into my life and practice…… Xx

  • Sarah Lovatt

    I’m so glad to see you smiling and in such a lovely hat! I’m going to do some skipping to celebrate! So glad that you are feeling the love, but please let me know if there is anything I can do. With all my love and giggles Sarah L xxxxx

  • Yuka

    Thank you for this update, Rob! So happy to see you smiling 🙂 Yuka

  • Sarah Magdalen Peak

    Hi Rob, great to see you looking so bonnie, Nick and I have been feeling for you these past few days and holding you in our hearts from not too far away!

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,

    Great to see you! My spirits are lifted already. Very funny look too!!!

    You look fantastic ,…..did you actually just have a major op and are you really 50?
    You look more handsome than me.

    P.S GREAT PICS FROM THE OTHER DAY

    Love
    Ben

  • Frances Brodrick

    Dearest Rob, sending you so much love and thinking of you lots and lots. May you be peaceful and feel the love. May you be safe as your body recovers and does its magic. Many blessings and light moments dear one. With love, Frances

  • Julian

    Dear Rob,
    Sending you lots of metta and good wishes,
    Julian

  • Joanne Pitt

    This latest post has made my day and I’m sure many others. How wonderful of you to post at this stage of recovery and acknowledge all of us at a time when energy is precious and fleeting. There truly is value in that which we give away. Sending you strength to your body and courage to your heart. Love Jo

  • Angela Savory

    Love the recovery photo! So nice to hear that all the drips, drains etc have been removed – hope your journey to wellness continues to go well, metta x

  • Antoinette Steenekamp

    Dearest Rob, so pleased to see your lovely smile and to hear all is going well for you.Thinking and praying for you. Thank you so much for keeping us all posted on your well-being. Sending you lots of love and hugs

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Dear Rob, What a fantastic picture!!! I love the party hat! I hope your recovery continues smoothly and you grow stronger every day!
    Today our very small local Sangha met up for the first session of study, of your book, “Seeing That Frees”. We looked at Part One, and this lead us into a very alive, wide ranging, and rich discussion – we broke off to read Thich Nhatt Hanh’s poem, “I will Say I Want It All”, refer to your Dharma talk On “Truth”, and read a wonderful poem on emptiness by Rumi (can’t remember the title) all unplanned, but very relevant at various points! It looks like your book lends itself beautifully to this kind of shared exploration and we are all very excited about the journey you have opened up for us. With much gratitude to you Rob for this wonderful and very vital material. I’m sure I speak for all in the Norfolk Sangha in sending this appreciation. Jacqui

  • julia wright

    Hi Rob
    Seeing you with a bed pan on your head and a big cheeky smile aint half cheered me up. So pleased to see you doing so well. Take good care
    Julia
    xxxx

  • Varasuri G. Jean Pietarinen

    Dear Rob, We’ve never met, but I’ve gotten a sense of your remarkable being from both your book “Seeing that Frees” and your talks online. The way you teach so obviously springs from a deep well of practice and understanding and has helped me and others in our sangha immensely. Want to express deepest gratitude for your generosity in sharing your knowledge and yourself. Wishing you a full recovery of health. Metta, Varashuri

  • Paula Martin

    Dear rob, I had a beautiful beautiful sense of you today in my heart, surrounded and infused with love and a lightness of being , how lovely to now see from your sharing that these waves of love from the collective are indeed palpable to your body, heart and mind , may you continue to know this deep sense of support, thank you so much for sharing how you are ,wonderful to hear you are freer from all the contraptions . Go gently gently gently , today I am on a tiny island off the coast of Istanbul, where there are no cars , only horse and cart and lots of bicycles…..sending lots and lots of love from this starry and warm spot, paula x

  • Padraig

    Dear Rob, Although never having met you personally, I feel a kindredness of spirit throughout your talks on Dharma Seed and in “Seeing That Frees”. Thank you for so thoroughly and so courageously navigating the nooks and crannies of the Dharma and for expressing your explorations so beautifully. Your book is truly a masterpiece and helped me greatly in my own journey. Wishing you well in your recovery. Maha Metta. Pádraig.

  • Sari Markkanen

    Dear Rob, I feel a huge JOY reading your words and seeing your lovely smile!! I hope your recovery will continue to go well. With love, Sari

  • Joanna Oughton

    Dear Rob, so sorry to hear that you are seriously ill. Wishing you a wonderful day and a speedy recovery. With love Joanna O

  • Matt Sage

    Hello Dear Rob. Dan told me you’ve been in a spot of bother. I am sending a Tsunami of Love directly from my heart into your own. May you grow strong soon, brother. xxx

  • Pam Warner

    Dear Rob, so pleased to read your progress and that the operation was successful. Belated Happy Birthday, and love the hat! Sending much love.

  • Mina K

    Rob, great photos from your younger days, and lovely to see you with your new hospital ‘hat’ – is it obligatory now?! Lovely to see people’s comments here and glad you feel you can soak them all up and enjoy all our heart filled energy that we are sending to you. x

  • Anne F

    Dear Rob, lovely to see you smiling and looking chirpy – it lifted my heart and made me chuckle 🙂
    I’ll be on retreat at Gaia House the next few weeks so won’t be following your progress online, but will be tuning in and continuing to wish you well with your recovery.
    All the best, Anne x

  • Mark Ovland

    Felt very tender just now sitting with you all in mind. I imagined us all sitting in a vast circle, Rob sitting with us, amongst us. It really filled my heart with such peace and gratitude after what has been a difficult day. So appreciative of our shared practice.. may all merit be dedicated to Rob’s health.. and to the health of all beings..

  • Margaret

    Dear Rob, I’m so happy to know that you are through your op and on the mend. I’ve been missing you a lot and sending you much love. Margaret

  • Robin Bowman

    I,m pleased your operation went well; and wish you so much love and blessings on making a recovery. You have been such an inspiration to me over the years, and your Dharma talks have always resonated (as well as making sense) more than any other teachings i’ve heard. Your talk on Right View is one of the cornerstones of my day to day life. Thank you for all you’ve brought ,and will continue to bring ,to this world.

  • tina

    Dear Rob,

    I’d like to add my voice and heart to all those world-wide wishing you well and sending you love. It seems one of those strange things in life that we often don’t feel able to give expression to our appreciation of another until jolted out of our complacency (or shyness) – not even here in the TQ9 region! So, many thanks Mark and Catherine for setting up this page, giving us updates and granting us this opportunity. Rob, you may be aware that I’ve done many retreats at Gaia House over the years. Regrettably, I often go away with the sense I’ve missed the bigger picture – as in the development of wisdom, compassion, calm. However, as I grow older and a little less demanding, I’ve come to very much appreciate and benefit from even the smaller picture – within which you loom large, regardless of any ‘direct’ involvement in my retreat experience: your very light foot-step and humungous presence; your gentleness of being which radiates warmth, care, compassion and aliveness; the twinkle in your eyes, still in evidence even post-op in your baby-blue pyjamas! Thank you so much for all you contribute and all that you are.

    may our love nourish you as you have so generously nourished us,
    Tina

  • tina

    Dear Rob,

    I’d like to add my voice and heart to all those world-wide wishing you well and sending you love. It seems one of those strange things in life that we often don’t feel able to give expression to our appreciation of another until jolted out of our complacency (or shyness) – not even here in the TQ9 region! So, many thanks Mark and Catherine for setting up this page, giving us updates and granting us this opportunity. Rob, you may be aware that I’ve done many retreats at Gaia House over the years. Regrettably, I often go away with the sense I’ve missed the bigger picture – as in the development of wisdom, compassion, calm. However, as I grow older and a little less demanding, I’ve come to very much appreciate and benefit from even the smaller picture – within which you loom large, regardless of any ‘direct’ involvement in my retreat experience: your very light foot-step and humungous presence; your gentleness of being which radiates warmth, care, compassion and aliveness; the twinkle in your eyes, still in evidence even post-op in your baby-blue pyjamas! Thank you so much for all you contribute and all that you are.

    May our love nourish you as you have so generously nourished us,
    Tina

  • Julia

    Dear Rob,
    Very happy that the op went well and wishing you a speedy recovery. While working at G H I have appreciated your
    dedication and support immensely. You are a rare gem J, one that
    embodies wisdom, compassion and the intellect and is an inspiration to us all. Your gentleness and guidance helped me
    tremendously in my understanding of the Dharma and that “magical” word emptiness.
    I’ve been sending you lots of Metta in my meditation, so keep smiling. I’m
    enclosing a photo of a flower I took recently. Much love. Julia

  • Julia

    Dear Rob, very
    happy that the operation went well and wishing you a speedy recovery. While working at G H I have appreciated your
    dedication and support immensely. You are a rare gem J, one that
    embodies wisdom, compassion and the intellect and is an inspiration to us all. Your gentleness and guidance helped me
    tremendously in my understanding of the Dharma and that “magical” word
    emptiness. I’ve been sending you lots of
    Metta in my meditation, so keep smiling….. I’m enclosing a photo of a flower I
    took recently. Much love. Julia

  • Julia

    Dear Rob, very
    happy that the operation went well and wishing you a speedy recovery. While working at G H I have appreciated your
    dedication and support immensely. You are a rare gem J, one that
    embodies wisdom, compassion and the intellect and you are an inspiration to us all. Your gentleness and guidance helped me no end
    in my understanding of the Dharma and that “magical” word emptiness. I’ve been sending you lots of Metta in my
    meditation, so keep smiling……. I’m enclosing a photo of a flower I took
    recently. Much love. Julia

  • Julia

    Dear Rob, very happy that the operation went well and wishing you a happy recovery. While working at GH I have appreciated your dedication and support immensely. You are a rare gem, one that embodies wisdom, compassion and the intellect and you are an inspiration to us all. Your gentleness and guidance helped me no end in my understanding of the dharma and that “magical” word emptiness. I’ve joined many others in sending you metta in my meditation, so keep smiling….I am enclosing a photo of a flower I took recently. Much love. Julia.

  • Judy63

    Thank you Catherine for the update and for taking good care of Rob. Don’t forget to take good care of yourself also. It is a massive procedure and will as you say take a lot of adjustment. Love to you all, J x

  • Andrew Boswell

    Thank you, Catherine and Mark, for the update and the wonderful work you are doing in looking after Rob.
    Rob, all best/warm wishes to you and your digestion and your experimenting. Sending metta daily.
    Love Andrew

  • jivajanemasheder

    Dear Rob, glad to hear you are out of hospital, and I know for a fact there is tons of love coming to you from Brighton – I don’t think it’s subject to the high winds we’ve been having! quite a few sangha friends have been talking about sending love and care to you, and in the next bodhi tree newsletter I’ll let people know about this website unless you say otherwise.
    sending love from B-right-on
    Jiva

    • Mark Ovland

      Hi Jiva, yes do feel free to give out the website address in the newsletter. Thank you! x

  • Patrizia De Chiara

    Dear Rob, sending you much love and strength. May you get better every moment, and may you be peaceful and at ease. Ci vediamo

  • coppe

    Thanks for the update, Catherine. Rob, it’s reassuring to know you have good friends around you at this difficult time. Also know that you have a wider circle of people out here, like myself, who have been touched by you and who are nurturing you in our thoughts and feelings. Peter Jenner.

  • Isabeall Logan

    Dear Rob,
    I recently learned of your surgery, and am sending you so much love and gratitude. I now host a little meditation group in Vermont, and we are dedicating our sittings to sending you metta and full-recovery wishes! Your teaching is with me every day and I will be forever grateful for your gentle patience and caring humor. Love and care pouring out to you from central Vermont!
    Isabeall

  • Yuka

    Dear Catherine, so glad to know that loving people are taking care of Rob – thank you! Dear Rob, may all the love streaming towards you support the healing process of your body so that it may regain balance and strength quickly. Much much Metta and Karuna to you to hold you during this time – Yuka

  • nic

    Dear Rob,
    Catherine’s tender and honest picture of this new path you’re on touched me very deeply. Each of us who love you, whether we’re near or far away, will be on our own journey with your illness. For me it has been your deepest and most urgent teaching yet. I have struggled with it and been hijacked by fear sometimes, but i know that there is really no choice but to keep on practising, deeply, all that you have taught, and to expand this heart’s capacity for love and fearlessness. I’m not sure yet what I can meaningfully offer you from here, but for now maybe that’s enough.
    Sending so much love dear Rob,
    Nicx

  • Karin Esaiasson

    Dear Rob,

    I have been thinking about you almost constantly since I read the Gaia letter last week.
    Carrying you so much in my heart.
    How I wish you to be well. Please be.
    Love
    Karin

  • Kate Fyfe

    Thank you Catherine.. such a slow Journey it really is one breath at a time. I feel it a privilege
    to be part of this sangha supporting Rob, AND the people supporting Rob. Kia kaha (be strong in Maori),

  • Rebecca Brewin

    Dear Rob, just to say with so many others that I hold you in prayer…it’s wonderful to know the stream of this outpouring, just as you have poured out so much to everyone so wholeheartedly. In the mystery, the ruach, the breath of life…may it be that this will flow into your digestion. So good to also read Catherine’s words and that her wisdom and strength and care is with you right now. Sending you love, metta and wishes for all deep rest, energy and healing to bring you peace and wellness. With gratitude, Rebecca (Brewin)

  • Ollie Frame

    Dear Rob. It has taken me this long to write something, but I have felt
    so very moved by your journey with all this since I heard of your
    illness a few weeks ago. I have felt connected with you each step of the
    way, with each update reverberating through my being long after I have
    read it, particularly this last one. You are in my heart and in my
    prayers, and I look forward to seeing you again when you are well once more.
    Wishing you strength, health and peace, with much metta, Ollie

  • lindsay

    Thanks Catherine for your beautiful words, and the updates on Rob’s health, and the tender care you’re providing to him. Heart feels so nourished in this weave of relationships and flow of messages, and the love we’re sharing for Rob, and for each other x

  • Anthea

    Dear Catherine – thank you so much for this news and, particularly, for all the care that you are giving Rob. I know that the carer sometimes has almost as much to bear as the patient, and hope that you are able to preserve some quiet restorative time for yourself. Continuing metta for Rob, yourself and everyone around you.

  • Frances Brodrick

    Holding you in my heart Rob. Good luck with the experiments, with this journey. Thank you to all who are supporting Rob, this website and the sangha. Love Frances

  • Jennifer Muller

    Dear Catherine, thank you so much for the update. It’s so touching and good to know Rob is being so lovingly supported by you. May you both be well, through lows, experiments that haven’t “worked”, and everything.

    “Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.” ―
    Rabindranath Tagore

  • Erica from Toronto

    Dear Rob,

    I will never forget how you helped me at a critical time in my practice. Sending you and your support network much strength and high spirits as you heal from your surgery.

    Sincerely,
    Erica from Toronto

  • Jill

    Thank you all for your love – I feel very big hearts. Much love to Catherine – hoping your are taking care of yourself too. Just to say that the DANCE presence on Sunday In the British Museum and other galleries was awesome and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who was thinking of Rob, Catherine, Yanni and Kirsten, knowing they were there in spirit. It’s beautiful. Jillxx

  • Richard Baughan

    Dear Rob,
    My heartfelt wishes for your recovery. I so look forward to seeing those red crocs coming round the corner. with much metta, Richard

  • Julia

    Dear Catherine, thank you so much for the update and for looking after Rob. Also thank you Mark for setting up the website and updates.
    Dear Rob, I’ve joined other souls in sending you lots of Metta in my meditation, all this love is weaving its way to you so keep smiling….. I’m enclosing a photo of a flower I took recently: softness and sharpness all in one, strength in softness just like you, Much love. Julia

  • Julia

    Dear Catherine, thank you so much for the update and for looking after Rob. Also thank you Mark for setting up the website
    and updates.
    Dear Rob, I’ve joined other souls in sending you lots of Metta in my meditation, all this love is weaving its way to you so keep smiling…. I’m enclosing a photo of a flower I took recently: It has softness and sharpness all in one, in other words strength in softness just like you, Much love. Julia

  • Dan Hillier

    Dear Rob,
    I feel like I’m coming late to the party here, but I’ve been sending you love and prayers for well-being since I heard about your illness a little while ago. Around 30 of us sent prayers for your healing a recently during a medicine circle and I’ve been holding you in my heart, prayers, meditation and thoughts daily. Wishing you an easeful recovery and a felt sense of all of the love and wishes for healing that are pouring your way from us all.
    I so appreciate your teachings and the conversations we have had so far, the range and depth of where we explore is so inspiring for me Rob, and through it all your kindness shines through.
    Here’s a poem by Rumi for you that springs to mind:

    Loving-kindness is drawn to the saint,
    as medicine goes to the pain it must cure.
    Where there is pain, the remedy follows:
    wherever the lowlands are, the water goes.
    If you want the water of mercy, make yourself low;
    then drink the wine of mercy and be drunk.
    Mercy upon mercy rises to your head like a flood.
    Do not settle on a single mercy, O son;
    Bring the sky beneath your feet and
    Listen to celestial music everywhere.

    Blessings to your entire being Rob, and especially the places that need the healing the most right now.
    And thank you Catherine for your ever splendid self and your kind caring for Rob, please do let me know if there’s anything I can do, there or here. I’ll be in Devon some in early October.
    With much love, metta, kindness and all the good stuff,
    Dan (Hillier)

  • Domenica

    Thank you for the honest update Catherine. Gratitude to all of you closely supporting and sensitively caring for Rob, known and unknown. To Rob and all of those around you, wishing that you may all find ways of sustaining and nurturing yourselves amidst the difficulties, weariness, pain and discomfort. . Sending much Karuna and in this practice learning how the hearts capacity can grow more open with courage, deeper, wider and softer . With love and healing wishes that the experimentation brings helpful insights and soothing nourishment.

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Catherine and Mark,
    I am slow to find words this week, but you have all been in my mind and heart, held gently and dearly. Catherine and Mark, thank you for your all your care for Rob on all levels, and for sharing this piece of the journey with us so honestly. Since hearing of Robs news i have felt my own heart open into places not felt before, deep love and appreciation, layers of grief and a soft soft sadness coming and going……this heart of ours knows no bounds and has a wisdom beyond measure, and i see this journey now as a continual invitation to open more and more. I wish you both all the holding needed in your holding of Rob, and that the wings of compassion may be balanced by a deep trust and equanimity in all that is unfolding,
    ………and to Rob, i am holding your blessed teachings near to me as i hear of your difficult week. This operation is indeed a huge huge shift for the physical body, and the whole of your being, and no doubt many delicate ingrediants are needed for settling and soothing. May you move so very gently with your body and heart at this time. May the wisdom of your own body Rob, reveal what it needs for its deeper healing. i am also holding a space within for the part of you, and of all of us that is beyond limitation, beyond time and space, beyond suffering, for that which is already free. With much love Paula x

  • karen

    Hi Rob, I’ll be off to Gaia next week. Will miss you. Hope you’re sleeping lots – sleep is one of life’s miracles – and that you are slowly but surely healing. And remember – things change! Thinking of you. Much love, Karen.
    And thanks to Catherine for the caring, both for Rob and for all of us out here waiting for news and bringing us up to date.

  • Kate

    Let us be thankful for our practice. Let us be thankful for our teachers of the dharma. Let us be thankful for Rob and the outstanding teacher named Rob. Let us be thankful that the operation was a sucess. May your recuperation be with ease. My gratitude to you,Rob. Kate Shuster

  • Frances Brodrick

    It is a beautiful day here in London, and I’m thinking of you, dear Rob. Sending love, Frances

  • Oriana Lea

    It is a gloriously sunny day in Normandy also and I, too, am thinking of you, Rob, and sending much metta xx

  • Rosanna

    Thinking of you so much dear Rob, sending healing and metta, and gratitude to you . Thank you so much to Catherine, and all those who are caring for you. Love xx

  • martine

    Hi rob I want to spk to you!
    I wish you could call my mother you know she wants to spk to you too. Her recovery was amazing whipple we have lots to share with you but firstly you mustn’t trust what the doctors say they know nothing about nutrition so seek out a good nutritionist who can help you …

  • Margaret

    Monday morning, the start of a new week. Knowing that whatever lies ahead, your teaching and kindness come with me. I wish I could repay that now! So sorry you have to walk this difficult road though a relief to know so many are walking with you in body and spirit. This is ‘one moment at a time’ practice for sure. Sending much love, margaret
    PS thank you Catherine and Mark for including us

  • Ana Monica Antunes

    Dear Rob,
    I have been regularly listening to your dhamma talks and they greatly support my practice. Thank you so much for the gift of your teachings.
    This small pair eyes has caught my attention and I thought I would share this with you. I took it a few weeks ago when on retreat.
    I wish you a smooth recovery and that your cells regenerate your body back to good health supported by all the good wishes and love coming your way. And a big thank you to Mark for supporting this.
    Much love, Ana Monica

  • Susy Keely

    Dear Rob,

    Hoping you have as much comfort as is possible as your body heals. Your perspective continues to be radically elucidating for me. Along with the many others sharing here, i will continue to hold you in my heart.

    Much love,
    Susy

  • hlask

    Hey Rob, Just heard you have been unwell… thinking about you and hoping you have a strong and smooth recovery.

    Much love and best wishes

    Howard

  • Jo Chadwick

    Dear Rob,
    I am so sorry to hear all this and truly hope that you are feeling a little bit better and that each day is a little easier for the tummy. lots of love, Jo

  • Nathalie Bourquin

    dear Catherine,
    thank you for this long and loving update. I am sorry to read that the process is so delicate and painful and am very touched imagining you taking such great care of Rob.
    this inspires me again and more to stay related and connected in my heart.

    i am also very touched when reading all the beautifully inspired messages of the Sangha. so thank you all and once again thank you Mark!

    dear Rob, you are in my heart, so i carry you with me wherever I go, whatever I do (ok I admit I am forgetful sometimes ☺️) but you know we all do our best! and when i drop my presence many others are there to continue to keep the net of love and care tight and alive.
    muuuuch Love and even more than that!

  • Julia

    Dear Catherine, thank you for your loving update too, and all the care and support you are offering to Rob. It is very good to know you are there. I’m thinking of you both, and Yanai too, with so much love and well-wishing as you navigate times of uncertainty and difficulty as Rob heals and becomes accustomed to his new body. In my mind I see you all surrounded and suffused by a huge circle of golden light from your love and practice, and that of all the supporters, known and unknown across the world.

    At Gaia house last week on the MBCT retreat I felt the absence of Rob, but in other ways he was present as his teachings were spreading out to influence the teachings of others, in radically opening ways. Such deep bows to you Rob and such gratitude for how you are enriching the lives of countless others.

    Holding you Rob, Catherine, Yanai and other close friends of Rob in mind and heart and prayers.

    Love Julia Wallond

  • Alain Bernay

    Dear Rob
    I only discovered you a week ago while searching for Dhamma talks on the Jhanas. Many thanks for your clear and inspiring teachings that I can’t wait to put into practice at my next self-retreat at Jhana Grove here in Western Australia.
    I also just found out about your health issue and have since included you in my Metta practice.
    Wishing you a full recovery and that you’ll be able to continue serving the Dhamma.
    Would be very interesting to know how your years of practice are helping you in your current situation; equanimity is the word that comes to mind.
    With Metta
    Alain

  • Caroline Lang

    Dear Rob … I was so sorry to hear about your operation, there I was in France imagining all of you in the midst of your Imaginal retreat when actually you were heading towards hospital. I so hope you find some moments of physical comfort as you dive deeper into the mystery. I really enjoyed seeing more of you this year, particularly enjoying the delights of Kirsten’s party and that profound night of the all night-sit. My thoughts are with you and I send you very much love, Caroline

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Rob, and dear Sangha,
    It is a beautifully calm morning here in Sligo, a gentle autumnal haze lying low over the sea, two gracious mountains stand tall and steady behind me. I wonder how this week has been for you all ? Rob , you have been with me in mind and heart, especially in the moments when i attend to others who are unwell, remembering the spaciousness and steadiness that lies within my heart, sensing into all the support you have given me in remaining steady amidst another’s pain. thank you again and again ,
    I will share a poem i was drawn to this week , especially these last few lines, with much love, Paula

    Stop and Stand , by Rachel Holstead
    Stop and stand
    on your own patch of ground
    – where your feet are.

    Really stand there,
    all of you- body and mind.

    From this place
    comes all your wisdom,
    comes every answer
    that is possible for you to know
    right now.

    and when you see hurt,
    hold tight to the sword
    and know that you cannot fix another.

    Instead bear witness with the ground
    to that other body,
    to all its found and unfound wisdom.

    and when you think
    ‘i want to take your suffering ‘
    just stand.

    and when you think
    ‘i want to take your pain’
    just stand

    and when you think
    ‘i cannot bear to stand here, i have to do something’
    just stand .

    and if you really must do something,
    then remember love
    and breath it
    and be it.

    and let the seams of your soul
    soften and melt away
    so the boundary
    between me and you
    is no longer there
    and we are both love,
    ground and standing feet,
    question and answer.

    • Kate

      Thanks for posting this wonderful poem, Paula. It’s really beautiful & has moved & strengthened me. Love, Kate B Xx

      • Paula Martin

        thank you for sharing dear Kate, and i am glad to hear you appreciate the poem, it brought ease to share, with love , paula xx

    • rebecca temple

      powerful words, thank you for posting x

    • Bill

      Beautiful.

  • Adrienne

    Dear Rob,
    I heard yesterday at Oxford’s retreat day how poorly you are and you have been in my heart and thoughts much since then. Really, I know how dedicated to us, your students, you are but this is way above and beyond the call of duty to get us to open our hearts and share our love and care with the world. !! Though it seems to be working. 😉
    Let us weave our love and care for and around you now until you are strong and better again.
    You are a treasure in the world and I am so grateful for your teachings. with love Adrienne

  • Kate

    Thinking of you very much Rob, & hoping you are feeling a little better & stronger. Hoping you can eat something, & that the experiments go well … All power to your new tummy system. Be lovely to hear some news of you. Thanks so much Catherine for your beautiful post above … So good to hear & to know that your tender loving care, & that of Mark & other friends, is being woven around Rob at this time. Thank you. & thanks to all folks posting, for sharing their prayers, pictures, poems, attention & devotion. Wishing you well Rob, sending much love & light, & many prayers for your healing & resting. Kate Xx

  • Jaqs C

    Dear Rob et al….In the silence and in the not knowing ….i/we sense this difficult place…..and like all the difficult places you have always helped us see love, kindness, gentleness, compassion in the centre of it….may there be love in the centre of this difficult place….Thinking of you all,,,,Jaqs x

  • Sarah Lovatt

    Dearest Rob this is when I wish I was a poet like you. It’s so hard to know what to say so I’m just going to send my love and hope that you are finding the ‘love bath’ nourishing and soothing.
    Thank you to all of you who are looking after Rob.
    With all my love xxxxxx

  • Karen Boreham

    Dear Rob, though we have not yet met, I feel you are my teacher through your wonderful book and dharma talks. My heartfelt wishes and love to you; I hope your recovery is complete not just for your own sake but for all the people whom you’ve inspired throughout the years, and are continuing to inspire. Love Karen

  • Judy63

    Hello Rob I hope that you can enjoy the beautiful autumn sunshine – Judy

  • Ray Richardson

    Hi Rob,
    I am saddened to hear of your struggles and hope your recovery goes well. Thankyou for all your support and guidance……….thinking of you.

  • Hazel Strange

    Thank you for the update Rob. Our hearts are full of loving feelings for you and we send metta at every pause in the day. So glad you have access to great nutritional advice. May your recovery continue as smoothly as possible. We are both so grateful for your teachings. Boundless metta from both of us

  • jana passley

    Hey..

    I remember the last time I saw you.
    Life wasn’t working and then I left like a different person. Like Bikram, I felt like losing it all…

    Stay well super man.. X

  • mercedeslucky18@yahoo.com

    Hi Rob, thank you so much for your kindness to let us know how is going. I pray for your peace of mind, for power in experiecing life as it is, in love and joy… Please, please from the bottom of my heart, think deep before taking the decision regarding chemotherapy ( i talk as a profesionist). In Germany already the imunotherapy had great results and presents no danger and no agression to the body. Much love, light and power to you, Rob.

  • Mina K

    Lovely to hear your heartfelt words of hope and gratitude notwithstanding the difficulties you are trying to navigate through. Wishing you peace and love. You are in my thoughts and prayers

  • Margaret

    Thinking of you dear man sending much love. Your words bring sadness and joy to my heart. Ah what a gem you are! The radiance is palpable. Happy eating 🙂

  • Jenni Reid

    I find myself sobbing into my breakfast bowl this morning whilst reading your update Rob. My heart is touched deeply by your words and courage and by the beauty, depth and richness of your relationship to the journey unfolding to you. Mixed with all that are threads of sadness and shock at the thought of you leaving us any time soon. Blessings and so much love to you xxx

  • James Blake

    Dear Rob, many thanks for your update, especially when your energy must be low. Even when you’re facing such personal challenges you manage to offer us all a lot! Thinking of you with love, wishing fervently for the best possible recovery and for continuing strength in your practice.

  • Harula Ladd

    Thank you dear Rob for this detailed and very moving update. I find myself clinging (sure, I know I’m not supposed to but, hey…) to your phrase ‘a corner is being turned’. I continue to send you all my love and well wishes as I sit, whilst also playing with the image of all the future corners ahead of you having also been turned, so that I may once again turn the corners in Gaia House corridors and see you walking towards me. I miss you, and yet your wisdom and warmth continue to inspire me deeply as I listen to your talks and do my best to live those teachings to my own level of current capability, as I serve the house in your absence. Huge gratitude, Harula xxxx

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, thank you for your sobering update. You are in my thoughts and in my heart. You equanimity in the face of your current challenges humbles me, also I feel sad and angry at life that you find yourself in this situation (not so mindful of me …). I am glad to hear that you are well supported and have a nice place to stay. I wish for you to be as well as you can be and find some pleasure in every day. Judy

  • rebecca temple

    Thank you dear rob for offering seeing that enquires, opens, and loves, again and again this has deeply touched my life, you, have deeply touched my life.

    In your recent words I find honesty, physicality, hope, and a continuing invitation to live a life whose heart is spacious enough to hold fear and pain so tenderly, and rest in a trust so vast it seems to expand in you and from you – i bow to that.

    Woven together through the gifts you have sown in so many many hearts, our love flows to you as many rivers, as deepening roots, as wide open skies… and in all the tiny moments of kindness that matter more than ever!

    Deep gratitude to you and all those by your side at this hugely challenging time x x x

  • Joanne Pitt

    Thank you for posting this morning and sharing with us salient parts of what’s been happening the last few weeks. My heart is very touched by your words and I send you much love for your continued experiments with your new ways of living. Glad you feel supported and open to receiving, the love being sent to you, at this time of many changes.

  • Jennifer Muller

    Thank you for sharing, Rob. As someone else has posted, I also sobbed into my breakfast bowl, reading your update. I am truly touched by your paragraph on practice/reflections, and I deeply bow to you and the resonance of the words, for they are exactly how I wish to be able to see, feel and express myself about life. So beautiful sentiments. Thank you so much for your great teachings, I practice a lot with your talks and book, so much has been given by you. May you continue to have blessings flood into your life. May life pull through this body of yours, and recover fully. Much metta.

  • gloria mirsky

    Rob,
    I pray you are guided along this journey and receive the deepest inner peace every step of the way. We are all sending you love and healing blessings. You have given us all so much, you have such a large, generous spirit may it all come back to you many times. We weep and pray and look forward to your healing and beautiful smiling face coming through this crisis and being stronger than ever! XXXOOO

  • Kathryn Buxton

    So moved by your words Rob, I just can’t believe your work is done on this earth as you have so much to give…. I don’t want you to go because knowing you are there at Gaia guiding us through the teachings with such love and good humour is a profound comfort to me in these troubled times. May your body get stronger for the difficult times ahead and always know how loved you are…X

  • kate honey

    Dear Rob, may you turn a corner, and may your body start to accept food again. I read your update in a youth hostel in Helsinki, and was very upset to hear that the cancer was at an advanced stage. Could only assuage my feelings a bit by writing music – perhaps I’ll post it later! You have given so much to the world, and I am so grateful for how you’ve helped the fledgling eco-dharma communities, and for having known you. May we all know strength!

  • cherylee

    Dearest Rob, it’s so hard not to cry but I always look towards where there is healing and trust these parts will heal the rest. I know you will grow through this and around it . We are all here for you. Some of us will share while close to you others bare witness from a distance. You are an inspiration may you continue to be inspired. We hold our hands and hearts together wishing you much love and light(please imagine a four year old wishing you well because she is rooting for you, she said you was kind to her so now she is going to be kind to you-me too). Much love x cherylee

  • Gwen Jones

    Dear Rob, I’m so bummed that you have to go through this. You have been so helpful and have touched me so deeply, as you have so many others. I’m sure you have no idea how many lives you have changed. In spite of the difficult news it is impossible for me to think of you without joy. Thank you for all the inspiration – for living so fully without compromises and for all the complicated beautiful dharma talks. May you recover to give many more! I am holding you in my heart with love and gratitude. And gratitude and mudita to those who are caring for you.

  • lindsay

    Hey Rob. Thanks for sharing your journey with us; it touches a raw and tender spot, and helps me realise the edges of where I’m not allowing openings in response, out of fear, out of sadness. Life seems to keep providing countless ways in which the heart gets broken open, and I’m thinking now of a conversation between Sharon Salzberg and Alice Walker where she speaks about how ‘hearts are there to be broken – life keeps finding a way – for with it you get a sense of openness, as if the wind could blow right through it’. Feeling into the expanse of the breaking, opening heart, with love to you and everyone connected through you xx
    Full interview here: http://www.lionsroar.com/start-with-a-flower/

    • Paula Martin

      dear lindsay, your words resonate deeply with my heart , which has been unravelling in tenderness these past few days, thank you for sharing these beautiful photos and for your words, Paula x

      • lindsay

        It’s beautiful and poignant to connect in this way, this weave of relationships and support and love x

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Dear Rob,
    May all the healthy cells in your body begin now, with tenacity and energy, to consume all the unhealthy material, gaining in strength and vigour as they do so. May this process continue through the days and nights, supported by the healthy cells of your family, your friends, your wider sangha, the healthy cells of the earth and the cosmos…… Until once again you are bathed in wellness.

    With much love and heartful wishes for your well being,

    Jacqui xxxx

  • lorna edwards

    Dear Rob, thank you for sharing how you are and I’m holding the hope for healing and recovery. I came across this song recently and have never thought of ‘this’ in this way: “we’re all leaving, even the ones who stay behind. we’re all leaving in our own time….” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=22PP3Lnm6y4 And finding our shared experience – in this way – somewhat comforting. And offering it for each and every one of us in this community and for all beings. sending love, Rob

  • Cris Milher

    Dear Rob,
    I am the one deeply grateful. Whatever is that we do in this world, it makes no sense at all if we are not doing it with the purpose of making a difference in the life of others. You also have already done a difference in mine with the strength and courage I am aware you have had all these past very challenging days. Thank You. I am touched and humbled by your words that encourage me to keep going in the practice.
    Very warm hugs,
    Cris

  • Carol Stephens

    I’m holding you in my heart Rob and sending out much love each day for your full recovery. XX

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob. Having missed your presence so much on the Engaged Buddhism retreat it was wonderful to see a posting from you. And then such a shock to read. I am so pleased, for you, that you feel able to keep bowing to it all. I have a very long way to go before that is possible for me. I am really really attached to the idea of you staying alive for a very long time. And I believe you will. With much love – and, as always, gratitude. Lynda x

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Rob,
    thank you Rob, again and again for the honesty of your sharing. This feels so very very difficult, for you, and for all of us who are connected deeply through our love of the dharma. My heart has wept many gentle tears this past few days, in hearing that the cancer is advanced. I have had the feeling that these tears, many of us share, are cleansing the heart, and offering moisture to the earth, as if she is thirsty. I definitely do not want you to die, you offer such precious precious gifts to us all, that are beyond words, and so much in need. In the midst of the heart that cries open, i bow deeply to the earth, that you have this human life, and have devoted yourself to this path of awakening, and i bow too, that i am hear to receive, and continue to receive the teachings from you, now more than ever. this week i have been absorbing myself in the practices of chapter 24 of your book Rob, what to say, words are beyond me ….emptiness views and the sustenance of love ……it is an exquisite and deeply beautiful teaching, and i hope that in practising , i can offer back some of what i have received from you. for now, i wish that you be filled and refilled with that which connects you to your own beautiful wholeness, which is already, complete and perfect as it is. May your body feel so deeply held by the earth, that from which we come, and in time, return. Please know where i am if you need any support navigating your journey with oncology. With love Paula

  • Bernadette

    Beautiful and gentle words from a beautiful soul. I only just met you through your talks and I have been touched in so many ways. I do hope that you will still be among us for sometime. Wishing you well <3

  • Monica

    Rob – your courage and equanimity totally blow me away. You continue to inspire me and countless others, even in the midst of illness and facing death. I sincerely hope you get well. Lots of love Monica

  • Caroline Lang

    Dear Rob … thank-you so much for sharing how you are, of course I feel very moved in a million different ways, I found this poem of Wendell Berry for all of us

    ‘As timely as a river
    God’s timeless life passes
    Into this world. It passes
    Through bodies, giving life,
    And past them, giving death,
    The secret fish leaps up
    Into the light and is
    Again darkened. The sun
    Comes from the dark, it lights
    The always passing river,
    Shines on the great-branched tree,
    And goes. Longing and dark,
    We are completely filled
    With Breath of love, in us
    Forever incomplete.’
    Sabbath Poems 2000

    May you rest well in your new home on the moors and enjoy the leaves as they turn into light and gold. Much love to you Caroline

  • Bert Seager

    Dear Rob, Long time! Narayan recently spoke to me about your health. And she also let me know about this web site. I am so moved by your generosity in being so open about what is happening to you, and in allowing this method of communication – where you can receive the outpouring of love from friends and yogis and people you have taught and helped over these years. And at the same time everyone knowing that you needn’t get back in touch personally. I am sending metta and wishes for your health and ease – and at the same time wishing that there was more that I could do for you. I recently found and pulled out the CD and music that you wrote and left with me before you left Boston. I am very happy to have this music to work on and play – music was such a lovely connection that we shared. I would write you a newsier letter now, but this doesn’t seem like the forum for it. And I am not sure the news matters all that much. I am just so grateful for your work and life and hope that you are feeling the love that we are sending from the old yogis group here in Cambridge Massachusetts.

    • Paula Martin

      Dear Bert, how lovely to hear of these old connections, thanks for your sharing. I am a student of Robs only in these recent years. I will be over at IMS Cambridge in two weeks time, and hope to call in for a sit, perhaps a linking of old paths in some way !! with much metta Paula, ireland

  • Dan Hillier

    Dear Rob, it’s good to read your latest news and inspiring to read of your feelings around death and choices made. I very much hope this current and upcoming treatment improves your health. I’m sending you much love and warmest wishes for your well-being. I’ll be in Torquay for Thursday – Saturday morning this week if there’s anything at all I can do for you while I’m in the hood.
    I’ll be in ceremony and prayer on Saturday evening and will be holding you in my heart as I lead some of the chanting.
    Peace and light to you, dear teacher and brother.
    Dan

  • Boaz

    Rob!

    I have just finished my retreat at GH… finally I can see this website and catch up on your news. It’s a privilege to read your accounts and be touched by all that has been going on for you.

    In the midst of the GH hermitage silence, your current situation has definitely been felt as you left.

    We all sat and practiced metta for you on the day of your operation, which was probably the most moving moment I have had in the hermitage meditation room. I was deeply relieved that everything went fine, as planned.

    Thank you for sharing with us details of your experience – it is a rare, powerful and inspiring voyage through which I am learning much.

    With all my care and metta to you and all those who care for you,

    Boaz

    PS: the retreat went very well 😉 – more on that when we meet next!

  • lindsay

    I so loved reading this Sarah, thanks for sharing. The imagery is beautiful! x

  • Yoga Ratna

    Hi Rob, I’ve been greatly inspired by things I’ve heard or read by you – especially your talk The Necessity of Fantasy. Thank you! Wishing you well, and sending much love, Yogaratna

  • Susan Walker

    Hi Rob, I’ve only heard of you through others and also your book ‘seeing that frees’….this has been a wonderful source of inspiration for myself and many others.Thank you for sharing your wisdom in such a generous way. Sending much metta on this part of your journey. Sraddhadipa

  • Eva Therese Næss

    Dear Rob. My heart breaks with both sadness and light reading your and your friends words, the struggles, the pain, the exhaustion, and the hope, the understanding and the honesty. Just coming out from a retreat at Gaia House it felt like the site and building itself is holding its breath, resting in this state between in and out. I wish you so very well! Much love to you. Eva

  • Nick Maxwell

    Dear Rob I think of you often for your kindness and wisdom and send you my love and a prayer. Please stay well. In a week’s time I’ll be at Gaia again and will meditate for you there too. With metta. Nick

  • Anne F

    Hello again Rob,
    Thank you for your last post, which was deeply touching. I was upset to hear how challenging it has been for you physically, and somewhat disheartened to hear the results of your tests. I was very moved to read of the grace with which you are facing all of this. I’ve since reflected, wow, that’s how I want to be if I get seriously ill or when I am facing death. So, I shall keep working on it…

    Since my retreat at GH I am continuing to work with these feelings of loss, sadness, and grief, which seem to be something of a theme for me at the moment. I am allowing it all to move through me as it wills- sometimes it’s like gentle waves lapping at the shore of my heart, sometimes it’s not around and my heart is at ease, and at other times the waves are giant and come crashing down. And yet, alongside what is difficult, the metta is there, and as it comes into contact with the suffering I am also sensing more into a feeling of compassion. Sometimes I’m breathing it out to wherever it needs to go; at other times I have a sense of it being a field of love that is holding me, holding you, all of us, the whole caboodle. It feels warm and comforting.

    One other thing. In the midst of an occasional outpouring of grief I keep having these moments, where I suddenly get a glimpse of how the feeling is being fabricated in the moment. I just see how it is all wrapped up with clinging, aversion and identification. And in the moment of seeing this, it’s like I step back, there’s a release, and poof, the grief has gone. And then in the next moment I’m identified again and it’s back. Something doesn’t want to let it go. Very interesting. Trust that I shall keep investigating this further…;-)

    I’m posting this beautiful Leonard Cohen song, which has been going round my head these last few days. I especially love these lines:

    O troubled dust concealing
    An undivided love
    The Heart beneath is teaching
    To the broken Heart above

    I’m sending it out as my prayer for your recovery, and for the mending of all our broken hearts: ‘Come healing…’

    With much metta and gratitude,
    Anne xxx

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUB1O2cT2gM

    • Eva Therese Næss

      Thank you, Anne! This was beautiful !
      With metta, Eva

    • Paula Martin

      Thank you Anne for sharing, i really resonate with those moments of freedom and clear seeing …and then the oscillation back to a wave of sadness……as the human heart opens , seeking greater clarity and truth into that which is beyond….go gently, dharma sister

  • Oriana Lea

    I am feeling very moved by these beautiful and eloquent messages as I head into Gaia House on a personal retreat. The depth of feeling expressed, of love, of gratitude, of compassion, are palpable and I feel humbled to be part of this wide group of souls all wishing for the same thing; a healthy outcome for Rob. Rob, you have guided me through such difficult times at GH with love and kindness and wisdom and humour. You helped me open the door and see the possibility of things beyond. Beyond the fear that has been present in my life for so so long. I will miss your presence so much but I will try and continue down this path without you – for now. My love and warm good wishes wing their way to you, to the very heart of you, and to Catherine and Mark and all of those who continue to care for you, nourish you and surround you with love. xx

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob,

    Here is Philip Glass – Opening – for you for a sunny autumn Monday.

    Poignant yet confident. Like you.

    https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=OPENING+YOU+TUBE+PHILIP+GLASS&FORM=VIRE1#view=detail&mid=80CE693190C81E069E1580CE693190C81E069E15

  • deborah

    rob — sending you tons and tons of love. sorry to be late here, I have been out of the Gaia loop the last year or so .. miss all of you, xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx deborah hamilton

  • David Cassard

    Dear Rob. I recently found out the news. My thoughts are with you through these challenging times and those fierce messengers and teachers sent by life. I have been touched by your kind, open and clear presence in the few times I met up with you in Gaia House and through your deep teachings, and you continue to be an inspiration in the way you seem to be living through all this. Wishing you well, sending healing thoughts and love.

  • Sara Quinn

    Hi Rob we did the first dedicated practitioner course at Gaia house together. I heard about your operation through the London Insight meditation mailing list. I think it was. I have just returned from a teacher training level 1 retreat with Master Ming Tong Gu in Colorado. He teaches Wisdom Healing Qi Gong from the medicine-less hospital in China. Have you heard about him? I started training with him 3 years ago before discovering that Jack Kornfield and Sharon Salzburg also highly recommend him. I didn’t know this to start with. I just found him on google whilst looking for a local Master Qi Gong teacher in Hertfordshire. I had absolutely no intention of travelling to the USA at the time! I realise you are recovering from major surgery and that Qi Gong maybe the last thing on your mind. However I can not recommend this system of healing highly enough. It absolutely compliments dharma practice. You don’t need to be physically fit or able to practice it. In China people who where bed ridden began by practising visually with extraordinary results. There is also sound healing for organs which I have found extremely effective (believe me I was sceptical at first and have never been into sound healing before). I am staying in Totnes for 1 week from 24th Oct to 31st Oct with my two children. If I can try offer some teachings or practice in some way please let me know. We can modify. Otherwise I will send you distant healing and could also send you a CD? On the retreat I just completed was an oncologist from Colombia who is wanting to use this Wisdom Healing Qi Gong with her cancer patients. There are also some excellent online courses. You just visualise or do sound healing. http://www.chicentre.com Thought I’d just let you know. Perhaps you know about this already? Wishing you a strong and full recovery Lots of love Sara

    • Mark Ovland

      Hi Sara, thank you for your message and ideas. Could I send you a personal email? Perhaps email me at mark@robburbea.com then I’ll have your address 🙂 Lots of love

  • Joanne Pitt

    Hello Rob, Catherine, Mark and everyone in the Sangha. It’s been 6 weeks since your operation and birthday Rob and I am hoping things are beginning to settle a bit but aware they may continue to be complex. In the spaces, I send you all peace in your hearts for meeting things as they arise, greeting them and inviting them in, like a good host. Sending love, metta and strength for your continuing journey along this path. Jo

  • Mark Peacock

    Dear Rob, I haven’t had the opportunity to meet you but the prolific teaching you have shared has been such a help. A few years ago I found your podcasts, and felt that your talks seemed to evoke an unusual sense of subtlety, range and depth. They are also very practical and I found myself trying out some of the things you described. Over the last 3 or 4 years listening and re-listening to your talks and practicing with them, I feel that a new range of useful and freeing practice viewpoints has begun to open up.

    When teachers I work with directly bring up similar points that might otherwise have gone over my head, it’s much easier to tune in to them. A couple of years ago I found that other people I encounter online were describing similarly from finding your podcasts. Your book has been amazing, it’s difficult to imagine a richer Dharma book. Recently I’ve been drawn to be more intimate with mortality. Last night I happened to google on your name, found this site and news of your illness. (Thank you to anyone who has helped make this site available so that we have the opportunity to join in the sharing with Rob.)

    I wanted to suggest that there are likely many people online who have been helped profoundly by all the effort and care you have put into trying to really explain how to understand and work with difficult and profound parts of the path. My heart is feeling this keenly, gratitude and best wishes.

  • lindsay

    Hey Rob, and everyone connected through this space and through you. Feeling called to share a wonderful documentary called ‘Human’ by Yann Arthus-Bertrand which I chanced upon tonight, a collection of thoughts, stories and portraits of humanity, touching on the innate goodness and tenderness which sits within us all, along with our shared suffering, and our capacity to love, to heal, to go beyond all the ways in which our culture and language has shaped, differentiated and influenced us. It brought to mind your teachings on mythos and the dimensions of the eternal within us, along with a deep sense of gratitude for this fleeting and mysterious life, and for all the dharmas, along with a sense of awe for the infinite web of connections which make up a life. So much beauty in the world. Wishing you well, x lindsay
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdb4XGVTHkE

    • Victor von der Heyde

      Thanks for posting this Lindsay. It’s beautiful, touching.

    • Fergus

      Hi Rob, I really want to send you lots of love and best wishes. I am still in shock having just read the extent of your illness. I know it was many moons ago that we spent time together, but I still refer to my time with you when people ask about the benefits of practice.
      You extolled the virtues of the “timeless dimension to everything” in such a quiet calm and assured way that I still resonate from our discussions. Every year I promised myself to come and hear you teach. I joked with you once that maybe you missed a few cuddles during your solitary retreats, I am now sending you one of those Big cuddles …..right now! Lots of love , Fergus x.

  • Chris Savidge Acupuncture

    Hi Rob, we don’t know each other, though we have many friends in common. I wanted to send you love and wish you the best as you move through what I imagine to be an extremely challenging time. Much love from Canada. Chris

  • Lara Heaton

    Hi Rob, some of my dearest India sangha friends know you, and turned me onto your talks almost a year ago now, and i have loved them, the deep intelligence and love that comes through them, and some very new perspectives for me. Thank you for that. It’s amazing to read how you are doing spiritually. Thank you for sharing the depth of your experience. It’s quite inspiring. I wish you very well and send much love. May the eating begin! Lara from Canada

  • lorna edwards

    Dear Rob, an article in Observer – a different ‘view’ of cancer – outside a Buddhist one (and maybe it is a Buddhist one!) – thought it might be helpful. http://www.theguardian.com › Society › Cancer – sending love, lorna

  • Anita Lintula

    Dear Rob, I saw a dream last night where we met and I was prepared to take care of you like the other sang
    ha people in UK as far as I have understood from this page. I am here in Finland but it really felt that we met in the dream. So sending you a lot of warmth and caring from Finland. And of course if needed I should travel there as well but I am quite certain that you have good carers there already. And yes, Qi Gong sounds good. Hoping to organise trainings of support for cancer patients with bodywork (shiatsu and Qi Gong maybe as well) to Finland as well. Lots of love. Anita

  • Joanne Pitt

    “Little fish, O heart,
    you cannot live without water.
    Throw yourself back into the river”
    Rumi

  • Jaya Julienne Ashmore

    Namaste, Robji, from Spain. I have been thinking of you a lot since I heard of your journey with illness. Now, with the help of Sandhya, I have found this way to send you a small message of love and deep appreciation for all your living and serving in the Dharma–so fully living and serving, meeting people in their sprouting and flowering.
    In the peace of the timeless…with a cyber hug and smile, wishing you well
    with lots of love,
    Jaya

  • Susie Hampshire

    Dear Rob, I was so sorry to hear of the difficult journey you have been going through. You are have been a shining light of energy sweeping through the corridors at Gaia house, a pleasure to be in conversation with, a truly inspirational person. Your book continues to show me the way and when I shut my eyes your dharma talks bring great peace in my heart. So I wanted to send you huge gratitude, heart wishes and courageous strength on this cloudy Monday in Bristol. I have attached a 2min video that made me smile in wonder of the world. See – https://vimeo.com/69225705 if you fancy it :0) Sending biggest metta, Susie

  • Sarah Lovatt

    Wish I had the words just to say you’re amazing and have helped me so very much I love you. Xxx

  • renate

    Dear Rob,
    I am so sorry to read what you have to go through right now.
    To meet you and to talk to you was so precious to me, when I was on retreat at Gaia house last summer. I am so thankful, that you simply were there, when I unfolded all the troubles of my heart and mind. It touched me deeply.
    Now I light a candle for you whenever I have the chance .As a wish or a prayer for your recovery, just a small light of hope. May that wonderful peace of mind you express in your last update be there for you all the time and carry you through the challenges you meet now.
    with love
    Renate

  • Anon

    Rob, we haven’t met but I’ve benefited from and enjoyed your teachings through your book and talks on Dharmaseed.org. Your work is inspirational and a wonderful gift. Thank you. I wish you the best during this difficult time.

  • John McLane

    Rob, You are often in my thoughts.

    When we spoke some 15-16 months ago during Catherine’s retreat, you recommended I put myself on the sitting group list despite not having an established group in my hometown. I wanted to let you know that last night we held our first Tunbridge Wells meeting. People spoke afterwards of how promising the group felt, both in our presence and with our plans.

    All thanks to your encouragement and inspiration.

    With Love and metta to you,

    John.

  • Richard Zen

    Endless Mudita!

    Richard Zen

  • Marie Schofield

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R_Uw7lwg5Ts

    May you be well and free from suffering

  • Angel Adams

    Dear Rob Thanks for the update. Your words are infused with compassion and courage. here is some butterflies and flowers etc to celebrate life and love as there are oh so many who love you

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MQiszdkOwuU

  • Hi Rob. I was sad to hear the news today about your illness, and not surprised to see the wisdom and clarity that you bring to the process. It can look like “we” on the outside are looking at “you” on the inside, as though we’re not all going through this ineffable living/dying thing in every moment. No one gets out alive! And I hope you are around and healthy for a very long time. I had a cancer diagnosis and surgery in July (I call it a near miss) and my brother is in the hospital right now, probably approaching death before too long. It’s a gift to all who witness these traumas and dramas, a wake-up call that can remind us of what’s important, and what’s not. I haven’t seen you for years, but I still feel a kinship and connection. I really wish the best for you, and it’s beautiful to see the outpouring of love and affection for you and the effect you’ve had on people. Love, Dave

  • Kate

    Thanks so much Mark for the no-news-good-news post today. Much appreciated. Yes, good idea, is relieving & kind. Good to hear Rob’s energy level seems to be improving overall, & that his eating is a bit more varied & not so boring. 🙂 Thanks again to you & all wonderful folks caring for Rob & much love & warm blessings to Rob, you, & all … Kate B Xx

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Thank you Mark for this update. Please send love to Rob, and love and much gratitude to all you helpers who are doing so much to support him. Jacqui x

  • Steve StJohn

    Glad you’re doing well Rob. Was listening to your “Realizing the nature of mind” talk last night from May 2009. One of my favorites. Hang in there Rob.

  • deborah

    Thanks for update; so happy to hear that Rob’s energy is increasing along with his appetite. Thanks to all on the helping staff. Sending lots of love and wishes for continued improvement and patience with the process. It’s really heartening to read all the comments here and to see how many people have been deeply touched by Rob’s deep kindness. It makes me want to continue with my own ways of being kind and to do what I can to be available and caring to all beings I meet. I remember simple things Rob said to me at Gaia, or the kinds of things we talked about in interviews and meetings and yeah, it’s these simple day-to-day actions that make so much difference. Much love to all of you. May all beings be happy. I’m sitting with you all, in a different time zone and 1000s of miles away, still feeling really close.

  • Rosanna

    Dear Mark , thank you so much for caring to inform us with this encouraging non-news, and for the circle of love you all, are drawing around Rob..so much beauty and ‘kindfulness’ is being revealed.. Bowing to Rob, the expansion of taste buds and all of you, with love xxx R.

  • Maite Alonso

    Hi Rob, I just do not know what to say and still I do want to put in here my presence, my concern, my care and my best wishes to you and your recovery. Keep up, we are all in there with you! 🙂

  • Jnanavaca

    Dear Rob, We’ve not met. I’m part of the Triratna Buddhist Order and Chair of the London Buddhist Centre. I wanted to say a heartfelt ‘thank-you’ for writing ‘Seeing That Frees’ – it’s had a profoundly positive effect on my practice. I’m sorry to hear of your illness and I very much wish you well. With much metta, Jnanavaca

  • John

    A flower can sometimes change the course of a person’s day. Beauty brings us back to our senses, makes us softer and more aware. You’ve been a flower in many people’s lives. Hope you grow old and frail. Love.

  • Kate W

    I am very shocked and sorry to read that Rob is ill. He’s a great teacher, and he and Mark were very kind to me on a Gaia House retreat Rob was leading. I hope his practice sustains him during this very difficult time.

  • Rob so sorry to hear of your illness. You have been and still are such an inspiration to me and so many others, a measure of which is how the Sangha is rallying. So touching to read so many beautiful messages too. I hope everybody’s wishes, prayers and energy helps you fight this. I am thinking of you and sending you love from China. Wishing you a speedy and full recovery. Tony xxxx

    • Sorry guys don’t know how to delete this photo 🙂

      • lindsay

        It’s a lush photo! Can feel the stone on the sole of my foot. Angkor Wat, right?

        • Hi Lindsay, Thanks, yes it is, well spotted 🙂

  • lindsay

    The miracle of inner work, and the shifts, transformations and connections occurring at the deepest of levels. LOVE to every cell within your body dear and precious Rob – may they be well! x
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yKW4F0Nu-UY

    • Mark Ovland

      Mind-boggling! Beautifully done, love the soundtrack choice 🙂

    • Jane

      Lovely, thanks so much Lindsay…the galaxies of inner and outer space, mystery and miracle of life _/|_ much metta and hugs xxx

    • Brigid Avison

      Feeling such awe… the ever-changing connecting and releasing worlds within worlds, our ocean body… Found this is deeply moving. Whatever is happening in our body, however `ill’, it is truly wonderful….

  • Becky

    Hi Rob, I spent Saturday at a Bristol day retreat led by Yanai on contemplating death and on doing so, one thing I realised was that I have a long list of people I want to say stuff to. You likely have no idea who I am, but you are on the list.

    Last October you led a similar day retreat in Bristol called ‘Freeing the Self, Releasing its Demons’. I spoke to you at the end through a tight, trying-not-to-cry throat that inevitably resulted in a sob. You responded with so much calm, wisdom and gentleness and what you then said, was so simple and spot on and I have reflected on it many times since. That retreat day was incredibly timely, given what I was
    experiencing at the time. I went in full of, well, terror, actually and left with inspiration, excitement, welcoming of whatever was to come. Not a dissimilar experience to other day retreats led by you, prior to that!
    You said I could contact you and I have wanted to say thank you for some time, but haven’t until now. I saw you at Gaia House over the summer when I was on a retreat there, silently planning to make sure I booked a retreat you were leading another time soon! Obviously, the opportunity to speak to you was not there that time. So anyway, here it is now… thank you Rob.

    So many thoughts about you since learning of this diagnosis and treatment and watched things unfolding for you, on this website. Your response and openness and that of this sangha and community is so touching. My heart has much warmth and gratitude and many, many well-wishes for you. I mean, actually those words are inadequate. Words are generally, inadequate. Sure you know what I mean though. Go easy, take care, be well.

  • Anne Bulmer

    Dear Rob,

    So sorry to hear how serious your illness is. I just wanted to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the help and support you have given me while on work retreat over the last 5 years. My practice is the most fulfilling and worthwhile thing I have ever done and is the major factor, along with community, that has supported my recovery from CFS.

    May you be well, may you be happy, may you be free from suffering and the causes of suffering, may you be peaceful, may you be filled with joy and happiness.

    Much love and metta Anne Bulmer

  • Margaret

    Dear Rob, thinking of you lots. Glad the food is going down better. I’m in the camp that wants to see you old and frail! How many lives you have blessed this earth, it’s so wonderful and inspiring to read. Deep peace to you

  • Patrizia De Chiara

    Dear Rob, sending you peace and Metta. Hope you get better moment by moment, day by day.

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob. Sitting reading Seeing that Frees (just started The Relationship with Concepts in Meditation) and, as happens at least a couple of times a day, experiencing a wave of gratitude for both your teachings and your being. (Also listening to, and practicing, Metta & Emptiness retreat talks). Have just applied for 3 month retreat next spring. I guess you won’t be there. Will miss you.
    So you keep bowing to everything if that’s what works for you – and I’ll keep expressing my attachment to you living for many many more years!
    May you be well and happy
    May you be safe and free from fear and suffering
    May you be filled with joy
    May you be peaceful
    With love and Metta
    Lynda

  • Kalyanavati

    I’m reading Seeing that Frees and want to express my appreciation to you for producing a work that is helping so many . . . sending you much metta Rob and I hope your recovery and treatment go well.

  • Gerben Hieminga

    Dear Rob,

    It has been four years since I’ve been meditating intensively under your inspiring guidance at Gaia House. I am still enjoying the fruits of it and what seemed astonishing back then has become more normal and much less of a big deal 🙂
    I just heard the news about your illnesses and I it is hard to find words in such a situation. My wife is working as an assistant pathologist and I understand that pancreas related cancer is hard to treat. Therefore I wish you wisdom and strength in the process. Hopefully it will be a healing one. And of course I also wish you lots of joy and happiness with the people close to you in the difficult times of chemotherapy. And if it eventually will lead to your passing away: may you be at ease and peace!

    Here in Amsterdam I am enjoying my family. After my time at Gaia House I became a dad and last month another daughter came into my life. Right now we are struggling with the sleepless nights….that can mess up your mind pretty badly. But even that will change and of course the little ones give lots of energy as well.

    Thanks for recording your dhammatalks and putting your wisdom on paper! It is priceless!

    All the best and greetings out of Amsterdam,

    Gerben Hieminga

  • Dan Hillier

    Dear Rob, I just read over your update from October 1st again and again feel moved by your description of the fruits of your practice.
    Sending you prayers from London Town for your healing, and much love and peace for every cell of your body to feel well and full of life.
    Gratitude, metta and respect as always Rob, and may you return to full health and well-being.
    Dan

  • martine

    rob , are you reading this, do you have internet access?
    Im hoping youre ok . sleeping eating feeling ready for the 11th. Im thinking of you always every day every night . The urge to run and be with you remains . 30 yrs of memories in how many countries… Im waiting for the green light.
    Ive loved you longer then anyone else I know . is there anything you need ? anything you want? any silly thing- name it. love always martine xx

  • kate

    Dear Rob, wonderful to know that you’re surrounded by kindness and enfolded in so much love. May you find all the comfort, softness and strength you need right now, to be with the pain and uncertainty you’re facing, and find peace within it. Sending you and all the sangha who are caring for you, near and far, much love and heartfelt appreciation.

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,
    …wishing you well.

    Ben

  • Ben Johnston

    and wishing you happiness & ease.

  • penny g

    Dearest Robji,
    It’s so lovely to hear from you in the midst of your trials and travails. Though it looks as though the surgery hasn’t greatly impacted your workaholic tendencies :). Please try and take it easy! I’ll keep my eyes and ears open re alternative approaches.
    With much love,
    Penny xxx

  • Viorica

    Dear Rob, i am so glad to read your message…. thank you so much for thinking about us and for sharing news about your health.
    I am really happy to read that you are open to the possibility of other treatments options…
    From my experience with my brother, both methods (chemotherapy and radiotherapy) are not enough, there should be a method to raise the immune system too, because these two methods are killing not only the cancer but the body too.
    There are many other methods, depends on how your body is responding…..
    I pray for the best treatment to show you up….
    Much love and gratitude,
    Viorica

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, thank you for your update, I am glad to hear that things have been improving for you lately. It is quite an assault course that you are embarked on. Aside from your schedule of conventional treatment, some say that laughter is the best medicine. I hope that you have something to laugh, or at least, smile about every day. Love Judy.

  • Yuka

    Dear Rob, thank you for your update – it is wonderful to read that you are feeling better! Somehow your message makes me feel optimistic that there is a realistic chance that you will be well again, although it sounds like you will need all your strength to go through this treatment. I wish you from my heart that the treatment will be successful! May your sense of experimentation and imagination continue to accompany you and and let you find the best available therapies. I am holding you in my heart.
    Much karuna and gratitude, Yuka

  • Karen Goldman

    Wishing you well, Rob. I do hope the chemo is beneficial and not too hard. It sounds like your body is doing a good job of healing itself at the moment – hopefully that will continue. Thinking of you. With love, Karen G.

  • June A.

    Hello Rob
    It is good and refreshing to read your gentle voice. I’m glad to hear that things have been a bit better physically than a few weeks ago, that you are able to move and even work, and I hope that the next medical and non-medical healing approaches go as well as they possibly can. Sending many, many healing thoughts to you.
    June A.

  • Anne F

    Hello Rob. I just finished listening to your series of talks on the Psychodynamics in Meditation. I decided I’d jot down a few notes that I can refer back to, so as I can remember it better. Some sixteen pages later…hey, your talks are seriously long!! Lol. Anyway, I’m finding this set particularly helpful. Love having lists to refer to 🙂
    Thanks for your recent update. Glad to hear you’re feeling better. I wanted to wish you all the best with starting chemo tomorrow. I hope you are able to tolerate it okay, and I wish you strength and courage. Thinking of you.
    Much love,
    Anne x

  • Steve StJohn

    Rob, glad to hear you are feeling better and eating a wider range of foods. If there is anything you need that will make you more comfortable just let me know. Amazon will do the rest 🙂 Just give me an address to ship it to.

  • Richard Zen

    Hi Rob,

    I’m glad you’re feeling better. This might be a bit technical but I’d like to thank you for pointing out the Welcoming method as it’s improved my noting practice enormously. Your understanding of Nagarjuna and how the intention to pay attention includes some stress has also, essentially :), improved my standard of living as a human being.

    You are greatly appreciated.

    Richard Zen

  • Suzanne Kammin Baron

    Dear Rob,

    I am so saddened to learn about your illness. I only discovered you and your talks through dharmaweb last week While I have felt deeply connected to a therapist or two in my life (and feel unusually blessed that I was able to have that), I have never had a meditation teacher and have never in fact lisitened to a dharma talk by anyone who struck me so profoundly as you have. The depth and range of your understanding is amazing and the passion with which you speak is incredibly moving. Your talks, in fact, have inspired me to get back on course with a regular and deep meditation practice. I believe they will be helpful in keeping me on course.

    How sad that I was introduced to you only at this time. While I am aware of the severity of your prognosis, my hope is that one day you will be well enough to teach again and I will be able to experience your teaching first-hand. I am sure, however, that whatever happens you will meet the future will courage and grace.

    Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom through your talks and teaching.

    Suzanne

  • Chris C.

    Hi Rob

    I hope everything goes well today. Thinking of you.

  • Ali French

    Dear Rob, great to read your update and to hear that you are feeling better! I hope that the chemo today goes as well as it possibly can. I have feelings of great gratitude both for your wonderful teachings and for your spirit in facing this illness.
    With mega metta and thanks, Ali

  • David Roth

    Hi Rob.
    Just heard you’re unwell but pleased to find your website and read you’re feeling better. Just wanted to say hello and wish you well so…
    Best wishes.
    Irene and Dave
    Middle Barn, West Ogwell

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,
    Good luck with the chemo.

  • Dayajoti

    Dear Rob, sending love and wishing you well with the treatment. Your book seems to have gone viral in our sangha btw. 🙂 What a huge gift it is, thank you. xxx Dayajoti

  • Sarah Lovatt

    I am so glad that you are feeling a bit better. I hope that you cope with the chemo as well as possible and that it works. Thinking of you and still sending love baths. Take care, with All my Love Sarah L xxx

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Hi Rob, Sending you loads and loads of love now and over the next days and weeks, and hoping that it mixes with the chemotherapy and brings deep healing to all the cells in your body. May you feel the love from the whole sangha coming to you as you receive your treatments, and feel that as the chemotherapy enters your body it is infused with love.

    Much metta, Jacqui

  • elina

    Dear Rob,

    Sending you much loving and healing energy to you. I have never been on a retreat with you yet but I have been nourished by your online talks and also really appreciative of your presence at the climate action meditations and marches. You have been in my thoughts while I’ve been organizing the upcoming meditation gathering with DANCE in London on Sunday 29th Nov – you will be in my heart and I will sit and walk for you too on that day.

    With love
    Elina
    (Wake Up London sangha)

  • Anne Bulmer

    Dear Rob,

    Hope the chemo went well on Wednesday. Thinking of you at this experimental time.

    Much love and metta, Anne

  • kate

    For you Rob, with love.
    https://youtu.be/D7CH9cRN8Rg

  • lindsay

    Heart feels in a very tender spot today, what with the suicide attacks this week in Baghdad, Beirut and Paris, and all the ills of the world bearing so heavily at these times. It will be a comfort tonight during our sit for Rob to feel into the heart of hearts, the beating pulse that sits beneath everything, and extend my well wishes for the body of Rob’s being outward to the wider body of our shared humanity, particularly to anyone who is frightened, oppressed, ill at ease. To a world where every life matters, with love x

  • Jonathan Whiteson

    My Dear Friend Rob. I have just heard from MK. I emailed you but do not know if you are getting emails at this time. I am reading your blog and these wonderful posts. I am trying to comprehend and process everything. It takes time… You know. My heart beats with love and caring for you as it has for close to 40 years. Near of far, that will never stop. I hope (and can see) you smile knowing that I am thinking of you. In the mix of the hear and now, the memories of the great times we have had together can be very uplifting. Perhaps healing. At least reinforce that smile. My smile and my love are focused on your healing, one moment at a time. Forever, your friend, Jonathan

  • Dani

    Wishing you peace and joy. I have just ordered your book and am greatly looking forward to reading it. I have found your talks inspiring, especially in the way you are able to clearly express your wholehearted understanding of the Buddha’s teachings, for the benefit of students like myself. With love and appreciation, Dani

  • hlask

    Hi Rob, been thinking of you every day and following your progress. So pleased that you are feeling stronger. Hoping and praying that the chemotherapy helps you and that you cope with the regimen as well as is possible.

    With love, Howard

  • Chandima

    Dear Rob, I got to know that you are receiving chemotherapy yesterday. I was only looking for a Dhamma talk to listen to and this is what I found out! I am so very saddened by this. I am thinking of you and feel very gateful for your teachings. When I first listened to your talk on “the meaning of refuge”, I was so moved by your understanding of Dhamma and your genuine practice. I hope and pray that you tolerate chemo well and it will have miraculous effects. Sending you lots love and blessings.
    May the Dhamma protect you today and always!
    Chandima

  • jonathan refson

    Hi rob.
    I only came to know you were I’ll from Jonny W, today. I am so sorry to hear this. So long since we were in touch.
    I hope you get a good response to your chemo. I really wish you well, old fried
    Best wishes
    Jonathan Refson.

  • Jeremy Axelrad

    Hi,

    We’ve never met, but I have been inspired by you and your teachings- I just found out that you are ill, and wanted to let you know that I’m wishing you well and thanking you from my heart for your gifts to the world.

    Sending love,
    Jeremy

  • Dan Hillier

    Hi Rob, just stopping by to say hello and that you are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Peace and love to you, may you be free of anything that stands in the way of radiant, splendid health.

    Warmest wishes and much metta,

    Dan.

    ‘Midnight.
    No waves,
    no wind, the empty boat
    is flooded with moonlight.’
    ~ Dogen

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXQ939BnnoM

  • Patrizia De Chiara

    Hi Rob,
    Hope the chemo works for you as a good friend … helping you! Next week I am going to Sarnath in India to do volontary work in a school for poor children. I”ll take your book ‘Seeing that frees’ with me. Sarnath will be a nice place to read your words :-). Looking forward to it.
    Wishing you all the best, Rob. And sending you Love and blessings!
    Ci vediamo, Patrizia

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, I hope that you are keeping warm as we move towards the shortest day of the year. Judy.

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob, I haven’t visited this site for a while, so I’ve just caught up with what you’ve been going through since I last saw Catherine. Of all the years of spiritual search, knowledge and concepts, nothing seems more appropritate than a simple hug…. heartfelt hug. Take good care my friend. Sabu x

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,

    Thinking of you.

    I hope you are feeling well, and if not,..okay the next best.

    I`ve been going through a bit of turmoil lately, nothing serious, but nevertheless it has made me ponder life somewhat. Basically my football team NTFC (for short) the cobblers to aficionados have been facing extinction (slight exaggeration) due to financial issues and like other cobblers fans it has been killing me, so to speak. On top of this i`m facing the prospect of going back to work again after my, nearly year long sabbatical, and it rains every #%?@ing day……so i`ve been thinking of alternatives, and death seems like a nice one:)

    Like you and everyone else, I would like you to carry on for a while yet, but if that`s not to be……..can you put in a good word for me.

    Love
    Ben

  • Amanda Anderson

    Dear Rob, I am amazed you found time to record the talks … you’re so generous and such a gift to this world! I’m listening to the first one and it feels so good to hear you speak. I’m praying for your well-being and hope you’re being as compassionate to yourself as you are to everyone else!

    Oooodles of metta

  • gloria mirsky

    Dear Rob,
    I am looking forward to hearing these talks. I am sure they will be inspiring at the least and life changing at most, as usual. So generous of you to think about your students and to continue your teaching, it will be wonderful to hear your voice. We are thinking of you and our sitting group has included you in our healing prayers. Robert Nagourney, MD in California writes in ‘Outliving Cancer’ of his specialized combo chemo formula which has beaten back pancreatic cancers for many years. We are holding you in this light. Much Metta.
    G.Mirsky

  • Dear Rob,

    I’ve been meaning to call for the past
    few weeks for a check in and only just yesterday discovering that you’ve been ill. I’m so
    sorry to hear it and wish I could have expressed it sooner.

    Your
    work (talks, writing) and your example have been such a tremendous
    resource and inspiration and the generosity you’ve shown have made such a difference in my life. I’m not sure
    that I could find another teacher who practices the dharma with the
    same grounding and yet sense of experimentation and adventure that you do, and that
    resonates so closely to my own work as an artist.

    Thank you so much and I sincerely hope you feel better soon,

    With much love,

    Bill

  • Justin Dalton

    Whoa…..Fire in the disco! How cool is it that the Imaginal retreat is available? It’s way cool… Thanks Rob

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Just started listening to these listening. Yet another wonderful gift to so many people – thank you Rob. With much metta from me and the Cheltenham sangha.

  • Ivan Hatvany

    …these latest talks …that should say..

  • Rose Lewis

    Hi Rob, just got my tablet back which I got reception to lock away as it felt too seductive. So now I can send you an ocean of blessings, metta, joy and boundless love. I dedicate every day of my retreat and any merit I may have earned from it, to your swift healing and recovery. I can’t say it has been easy, being on long retreat without you to support and guide me, but your absence and situation have made me absolutely determined to be open to and embrace whatever arises, become ever more sensitive and responsive to my inner guidance, to my outer, inner and secret refuges and to use all my ingenuity to navigate the obstacles which have arisen. I have had to abandon all my preconceived ideas about this retreat and enter an entirely new direction, that of deep somatic meditation. Catherine will have told you, I think, how I am doing. Go well, dear spiritual friend, in this latest stage of your journey, and I profoundly hope I will get to journey on the path of the imaginal, or whatever path it turns out to be, with you at the end of July. Endless metta, Rose

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob – I hope that you are doing as well as can be expected. Has anyone discussed with you the potential of curcumin as an anti-cancer treatment? It is derived from turmeric and there have been a number of studies on it. Judy x

    • Mark Ovland

      Thanks Judy, have just sent you a private email 🙂

  • Ed Cooper

    Hi Rob – I have just started listening to your recent talks on imaginal practice. I also really enjoyed dipping into Seeing That Frees earlier in the year. I say dipping in as I feel the material you have provided will be a companion for years ahead…..they are rich and provide so many doorways for potential exploration. You are a great teacher….and although we may never meet face to face, the clarity of your communication cant help make me feel a sense of connection and gratitude. Im wishing you the best and really hope for a positive outcome regarding your treatment…..

    thanks so much and sending you metta,

    Ed

  • Joanne Pitt

    I have a sense of expectancy tonight, listening to your new teachings and I am filled with gratitude, and wonder, at your ability to communicate with such clarity and love.

  • Jennifer Muller

    Dear Rob. I only started listening to and working with the material of the latest set of talks, but *oh boy* they are amazing! I lack the words to describe how deeply they resonate and encourage on sooooo many levels. I am blown away and so grateful. Thank you so much! The gods are clearly with you. May you be well wherever you journey.

  • Hi Rob, thinking about you and hoping you’re coping with the chemo and as comfortable as can be. Much love and metta,

    Bill

  • jill bird

    Still thinking of you Rob and also of the vast and disparate sangha that you have created through your teaching, guidance and compassion: many of whom neither you or I have actually met. There will many who have been and will be thinking of you as we join together in various loving acts for the planet and all sentient beings in different parts of the UK and in Paris. The ripples spread through the whole universe and through all time. Jill Bird

  • Fabien Parker

    Hello Rob, I am writing this message to send you from my heart all the best for you now and in the future.
    I got to know your talks only since a few months and I have been really touched by your compassion, gratitude and generosity. My heart is with you.

  • Richard Baughan

    Hi Rob, Just wanted to say how wonderful it was to see you at Gaia House the other weekend. I felt very touched by you coming over for a hug and a brief chat. As always my contact with you opens my heart. If there is anything you need or I can do please let me know.
    With love and metta. Richard

  • Vanessa Priestley

    Hi Rob. I have only just found out about your illness as I was trying to find out your retreat programme for next year. I regularly listen to your Dharmaseed talks and have found them so helpful and inspiring. I have also benefitted so much from your teachings at Gaia House and the meditation days in South Wales. Your approach to the Dharma is vast and unconventional. Your knowledge and way of teaching is profound. You have even got me reading books on Quantum mechanics. May I join with all your other students in wishing you well as you undergo treatment. Thank you for your guidance and inspiration. May I also wish you a Happy Xmas.

  • Alison Marshall

    Dear Rob, Wanted to send you best wishes for the festive season and hope that you can enjoy it in between the chemo. The Paris climate outcome of course fell short of what we had hoped for but it was amazing to see so many people there committed to a better future. But its so weirdly warm right now how can anyone be a climate change denier! I just got back from Moscow and there was only a sprinkling of snow – very unusual. Thinking of you and sending metta, Alison (Marshall)

  • Robert

    Hi Rob. I have only seen you in passing at Gaia House. I wish you peace, health, happiness and ease.

  • Carol Stephens

    Dear Rob, wishing you much happiness for the Christmas season. So glad to hear that the treatment is going well for you and that you were able to pop into Gaia House recently. May you feel bathed in all the love that is sent your way. Carol x

  • Sarah Lovatt

    Dearest Rob you continue to inspire – Thank you – you are so wonderful. I hope so very much that you get better soon. I’m glad you are able to work a little, I’m sure its good for you – in moderation! Keep bathing in the love baths, I’m sending you everyday. Wishing you Peace and Joy with all my heart Lots and lots of love – all that I have xxxxx

  • deborah

    Dear Rob, thanks for the update and the photos! Wonderful gifts for the season, and the quiet joy you describe comes through in both and fills me, also. Thanks to your friends who are helping with research! So far I’ve listened to three of the talks you recently posted; lots of new territory here and obviously too much to mention in this note so you’ll have to imagine where it’s taking me 🙂 🙂 I’ve just had foot surgery so am also a bit limited on the physical plane … many thoughts about that and the mysteries of life. I’m in Mexico so sending best wishes from this mountain culture to you and all Devon beings; right now I’m off to ring the bell at my local morning meditation group. tons and tons of love to you, xxx deborah

  • Rob as ever you remain an inspiration, even through difficulty you continue to learn and share ! Though I’m far away and sadly can’t contribute more you remain in my thoughts. It’s an honour to know you. Much love Tony xxx

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Lovely update Rob, I can still see that cheeky glint in your eye which is wonderful to behold and probably the best Xmas present I could ever get!! Love you so much and feel deeply touched and moved by all the beauty this situation has brought up…. Life is so tender. Take care and stick in there…. Xxxxx
    Kathryn

  • John McLane

    Hi Rob, Your often in my thoughts. So good to see your smile and spirit shining in the latest photos. Your presence is something I’ve carried inside as a great inspiration for some years now. Wishing you a restful end to the year. With Love John X

  • Alexander Johnson

    Hi Rob, although we only spoke a couple of times I just
    wanted to say how much of an inspiration you and your teachings have been for
    my practise. Reading your book has given me an immense enthusiasm for the path.
    I am forever leafing through it and practising new ways of seeing things. All
    the best with your recovery.

    With Metta.
    Ali

  • Julia Wallond

    Dear Rob, it is really lovely to hear from you, and see your photos. Thank you for sharing your journey with us. Wishing you joy and peace this Christmas season. With much gratitude for your presence and teachings, Julia (Wallond)

  • Simon Thompson

    Hi Rob,
    I’ve just finished a long period of retreat at Gaia House. I missed the great interviews we’ve had in the past, but was still able to hugely benefit from working using the structures and frameworks you’ve provided for my practice (and for so many of us). In the library I’ve seen your book constantly being referred to. Whenever I borrow a Gaia House MP3 player (for recorded talks) and there’s any talks left on it, they are always yours. Many times during the November solitary, it was your talks that were selected in the evenings for people to listen to together.

    At EcoDharma (Spanish retreat centre) this spring I met members of the community living there who spoke positively about listening to your talks on Dharmaseed.

    So all your fantastic work is continuing even when you are not physically present.

    Wishing you well in every possible way,

    Simon

  • Julie

    Dear Rob,

    I only know you through listening to your talks on dharmaseed and reading your book, but you have been very inspiring to my practice. I am grateful to hear that you are having some times of feeling well and some hopefulness about your healing. Your spirit really seems to glow through those latest photos and may that energy and the support of all beings near and far carry you through.

    Also thank you for your incredibly detailed and nuanced talks that you recorded recently on imaginal practice. I was really not sure what to expect and have found yet again new doors opening. I have only listened to a few so far, they are quite rich and I have a sense of them percolating and ideas and new perspectives bobbing around in my head and heart. so grateful that you have had the energy to offer these – may your teaching and work continue to energize and nourish you.

    warmest regards,

    Julie

  • Angela Savory

    Dear Rob, Just wanted to send love and blessings at Christmas, Metta xxx Angela

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,

    …nice hat!

    You look great!!! May you have a beautiful Christmas, and may 2016 blossom and bloom in your kind direction.

    Love
    Ben

  • Josh Newmark

    Grandma says she likes your hat! Wishing you well.
    Love from Josh

  • janey francis

    Lovely to see and hear from you, you look like a Christmas pixie! Much love and well wishes to you for ongoing healing and recovery. Janey xx

  • Mina K

    Blessings to you Rob, you are still very much in my thoughts. x

  • Paula Martin

    thinking of you Rob, mark …and of all the sangha this day not long returned from 2months at the the forest refuge, a blessed blessed time…..
    Rob , I felt your wisdom, and presence and heart so strongly at times, reminding me within the silence that in truth , within the emptiness of it all , there is no separation, none whatsoever. In receiving your most recent post, I felt a softening in my own heart sensing a softness and almost a vulnerability or delicateness in your being at this time in your courageous journey
    may this poem, written of metta, weave its way into your heart and into all the spaces that yearn, to enrich, enliven and free
    with much love , and huge gratitude for the continued unfolding of our paths
    paula xx
    may the angels in their beauty bless you,
    may they turn towards you streams of blessing
    may the angel of awakening stir in your heart
    to come alive to the eternal within you
    to all the invitations that quietly surround you
    may the angel of the imagination enable you
    to stand on the true thresholds
    at ease with your ambivalence
    and drawn in new directions
    through the glow of your contradictions
    may the angel of healing turn your wounds
    into sources of refreshment
    may the angel of wildness disturb the places
    where your life is domesticated and safe
    take you to the territories of true otherness
    where all that is awkward in you
    can fall into its own rhythm

    john o Donohue

  • Chandima

    Very Merry Christmas, Rob. Thinking of you and sending you best wishes for the new year too

  • Amanda Anderson

    Dear Rob,

    I’ve been so touched by your courage. I was listening to some music by Messiaen and remembered being introduced to Quartet for the end of time in one of your retreats. I thought I would share a link for the Discovering Music programme (you probably know if it already)… it is so beautiful and Stephen Johnson does an excellent job of guidance!

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p020bhsx

    Wishing you oooodles of rest and lots of beautiful music to keep you company! Thank you for all your wonderful teaching and I pray that 2016 will be easier for you.
    Amanda

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob,
    Spending this New Year’s Eve in precious solitude and silence at home, and reading Seeing that Frees, I will also be thinking of you and all that your teaching brings me and opens up for me. Hoping that joy, deep beauty and grace become ever more frequent visitors for you in 2016 and that your body continues to strengthen and heal. And trusting that you will continue to exist for a long time to come and that your work will continue – and also, allowing a selfish wish – that you will continue to be part of my journey in person. Happy New Year Rob.
    Love
    Lynda

  • cherylee

    Wishing you all the best for 2016 Rob! With metta & so much more x

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob,
    Thank you for your update and for your photos. I am glad you are getting others to look at alternative options to sift the wheat from the chaff for you. I am glad to hear that you are looking at doing some work. All the very best to you and the people around you for 2016. With love from
    Judy

  • coppe

    Glad to hear you are in are in reasonably good spirit considering what you have been through and that you feel able to work a little, which must be a joy. Wishing you all the best for the New Year. Peter Jenner.

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Dear Rob – Your post before Christmas and your latest talks are inspiring as ever – I’m listening to these most days & will soon be re-reading parts of your book that I worked through in the Spring. Like so many people you are much in my thoughts & with so many people sending you metta and good wishes, its great to read your comments about joy, beauty and grace. Love, Ivan

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Dear Rob, Just resurfacing after the Christmas/ New Year hullabaloo!! Hoping that 2016 is kind to you and you continue to feel held by all the love being transmitted to you. I feel that the transmission permeates all who know you – I can’t recall your face without feeling deep joy and gratitude! And it is so lovely to see the photos and you looking so amazing in that hat!!!! Much love, Jacqui xxxxxx

  • David Roth

    Hi Rob. Thank you for your update. We miss you cycling through we and windy West Ogwell!
    Wishing you peace and comfort in 2016.
    With love and God bless.
    Irene and Dave.
    xxx

  • Mila Milli

    Dear Rob, sending you all my love and blessings. I am praying for your recovery. Beata

  • lindsay

    Happy new year to Rob and to everyone! May we all find time to celebrate our own good selves and that which is never not wholly well and sufficient, articulated beautifully in this poem by Edveeje Fairchild. Blessings and love xxx Lindsay

    All this time it was you
    whispering to me
    through the leaves
    and the rustle of the woods.
    All this time it was you
    surging forward and then back
    along the shoreline of my solitary life.
    All this time it was you
    raining down
    and rising up through me
    as mountain mist.
    All this time it was you,
    my Natural Self.
    Now that I know you
    it changes the entire Earth.

  • Paul Cons

    HI Rob . Only found out quite recently that you have not been well and wanted to send you my best wishes .You are in my thoughts. I remember well my retreats with you and your wonderful talks at London Insight. You continue to be an inspiration in the way you are dealing with your illness. Love Paul x

  • Meg

    Dear Rob, I am so very grateful for your teachings! I have been listening to your recordings on Darma Seed for several months.
    The imaginable work has been particularly important as I have been “seeing” images/beings all my life without a way to work with them, hold them or some kind of permission to open to this world. Thank you, thank you. I am also reading your book on emptiness Slowly. I am finding it opening and freeing…
    My prayers for your healing and I trust the healing of the Gods are most Sincerely with you..everyday.
    I love you my teacher, please take good care.
    God’s speed.
    Meg

  • Rosanna

    Dear Rob, thank you : your presence and your voice is in itself ‘a re-enchanting of the cosmos’..Wishing you healing and all the good for this new year and for many many more . With love, Rosanna

  • jill Bird

    Dear Rob, thank you for sharing your progress with us – appreciated. Your words (and all the comments and poems posted here) touch my heart. Much love Jill

  • Dan Hillier

    Dearest Rob, thank you for the latest news, I’m glad to read about your being well enough to consider w

  • Dan Hillier

    Dearest Rob, thank you for the latest news, I’m heartened to read about your being well enough to consider work again…
    As always I am sending you warmest love and wishes for healing and well-being your way – you are in my prayers and I think of you often with much light.
    I’m in Goa at the moment and tomorrow will be leading a metta bhavana circle at a little yoga centre at Little Cove, and will be dedicating my own wishes your way.
    Peace, love and shining health to you dear Rob,
    Dan

  • Anne F

    Hello Rob. A slightly belated Happy New Year to you. I remember us exchanging this greeting when I was on retreat last year, and then having to admit, well, maybe it’s not feeling so happy actually… And you jokingly remarked something like, ‘Oh well, there’s always next year!’ and made me laugh. 🙂
    I was glad to hear that the chemo is going as well as can be expected, and I hope you are coping with the side effects and that it is becoming easier for you.
    Eric and I recently did a mini home-retreat for a few days and listened to a series of talks from one of your samadhi retreats. We’ve been finding these teachings so very beneficial- we’re hugely grateful, thank you!! He sends his love too by the way (he’s not big on message boards ;-))
    With much metta, and all good wishes for your health and happiness in 2016,
    Anne x

  • Jaqs C

    Hello Rob,
    Greetings and happy new year to you. May you this year be enfolded with love, gentleness and kindness both inside you and around you to bless whatever is coming your way….and as you have always taught us to allow fully…may your watchfulness be rewarded with beauty and deep insight….and for you to know deeply how deeply loved you are…..warm best wishes, Jaqs x

  • Lynda Benham

    Hi Rob, I don’t generally remember dreams. But last night you appeared and at some point lay down on your side and said “I need to have some cuddling”. Hmmm, I thought. Is this appropriate? But I lay down on my side behind you and provided some cuddling. And now – appropriate or not – I am sending this ‘imaginal’ (and very respectful) cuddle to you. I do hope the treatment is continuing to go well. X

  • Jennifer Muller

    Rob, thank you so much for sharing. Beautiful. Beautiful. Beautiful. It *does* make a difference, and your teachings have been opening up what feels like totally new dimensions of understanding, experiencing, perceiving and hence freedom for me. I am so grateful for the visions, explorations, questions you share. You are such an inspiration and the exploration with your material/approach etc feels like it can go onto infinity and beyond!! And it will 🙂 May you be well and your body be strong.

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, thank you for sharing your thoughts in your fulsome update. This does not sound good – for the physical body – but I admire the clarity and openness with which you greet your new experiences. I am afraid for you, but I appreciate your trancendence of standard reactivity. I am trying to think how I would be if presented with these challenges. Angry, scared, bewildered I expect. But you are made of different stuff. I am glad that you are proceeding with the curcumin, a friend has had a good experience with this. In the end we are all fragile and finite (in our current forms) – awareness of this makes our time here all the more precious. We are all hurtling towards the same end, some faster than others, as I get older time seems to pass faster. The clichés are true life is short, and you are engaging and exploring each moment with an extraordinary equanimity. My love to you.

  • June A.

    Thank you very much.

  • Susan Jordan

    Dear Rob Thank you for this beautiful and moving piece. I so much appreciate your generosity in offering it to us in the midst of all your physical suffering and discomfort. At a time when I feel caught up with the ‘reality’ of the conditioned self it’s a reminder that there are other possibilities and other ways of seeing both life and death. I hope all your different treatments are helpful and send much metta. Susan Jordan

  • Bernadette Vincent

    Dear Rob, I can not say that I understand all of what you are saying since I’m still new to your teachings, but when I was reading, I could almost touch a sense of hope and freedom and it gave me goosebumps :-). Much love from Cambodia <3

  • penny g

    Hi Rob, and lots of love and deep gratitude to you for sharing this, it is so lovely. You are a blessed being, and blessing flows from and through this. Love you lots, Penny xxx

  • Very beautiful Rob, thank you so much for this update. I’m glad to hear you are doing well even in these circumstances and your example is inspiring as always. Much love, Bill

  • Andrea Hosfeld

    Dear Rob,

    Your recent post touched me deeply. This morning I went out for my dog walk holding my intention for the day which was to inquire into which ‘perception/view’ was most skilful throughout the day — particularly working on flexibility – my ability to shift from metta, for example, to a view of everything as ‘sacred’ or to a mindfulness of visual texture. There is often some inner critic that arises when I don’t sustain a particular perception for very long. My inner coach comes in and wants to ensure that I choose the ‘right’ perception. Today, when this arose, I tried to bring allowing to the coach, and returned to the view of the moment (which for most of the walk was light and texture as it was a blissfully clear and sunny morning). At times I could feel the being want to lean in to the view of everything being sacred and sometimes I felt into the beauty of my breath, sending it up through the back, imaginally. As the walk was ending, however, I felt the anxiety of the rest of the day creep into the mix. I wondered which perception would be most skilful? What do I do when this old fear habit comes creeping in? Which perception will help me hold it/transform it/honour it? Allowing? Mindfulness of the body? More metta for my fear?

    I feel a deep confidence in what I am practicing and a faith that it will bring greater lightness, freedom, and love as I progress. I feel a bit clumsy with it at times, not sure if what I am doing is bringing more flexibility. My gut feeling is that I need to spend much more time cultivating these views, becoming familiar with their nuances and the things they bring in the moment, so that I have a greater ability to call on them and practice them.

    I am enjoying your imaginal talks — savouring them. pondering them, letting their possibilities sink into the heart. I have begun asking myself, ‘Is there potential for soul making in this moment?’ Clearly, it is easier while out on a walk or when I am singing or painting or writing stories but I am trying to play with the boundaries of what falls into ‘soul’ and what doesn’t.’

    You spoke in your last post about people having a sense of possibility in practice, of where it can go. I suppose I felt I needed to write and let you know that this is the greatest gift you’ve given me as a student. Perhaps there is a certain amount of faith that is involved. When I listen to your talks, your love and wonder and giddy school boy excitement floods me and practicing feels very much like being presented with a table covered in art materials: feathers, bits of glass, paint, yarn, sand, water, old earrings that don’t have a mate… and I am allowed to combine these things in any way I choose on paper or canvass or in the form of a sculpture, not knowing what I will produce, using love as my guide. In order to practice this way I must keep loosening my fist when it contracts around ‘right’ or ‘wrong,’ ‘real’ or ‘imaginary.’ I’m gathering more faith, by the day, in my capacity to do this.

    Last night I woke from a dream in which I was holding a baby in bed. In the dream I suddenly became aware of the fact that I hadn’t fed the baby, hadn’t attempted to breast feed or bottle feed. I could feel the weight of this baby in the dream, and my surprise that she was now a part of my life since I don’t have any children nor any plans to have any. Part of the dream focused on breast feeding for the first time and the anticipation of the sensation that I would feel in doing this. I rarely remember my dreams but found that the weight of this baby has stayed with me, the wanting or needing to carry her. The curiosity about breast feeding also remains. What feels freeing is that I have a way to practice with this, to play with this image without striking it dead with my interpretation. I could say, for example, that it has to do with a desire to feed and nurture artistic pursuits. That wouldn’t be far from a certain sort of truth. But I am finding more beauty and richness in staying with the resonances which you mention in your talks. There is a loveliness in knowing this image may unfold more, ripple through the soul, give rise to more than the simple mind is able to imagine. This is the possibility that you’ve given me.

    I think that practicing the emptiness ways of looking from ‘Seeing that Frees’ are making me less afraid of playing. Sometimes when I am standing at a queue in Waitrose or riding my bike to a cooking class, I practice seeing the emptiness of what I’m thinking, what I’m seeing, how I’m feeling etc. This has become a well worn practice.

    I suppose I’ve said too much and still haven’t said everything! Mostly, I wanted you to know how your teaching continues to touch my life and point to possibilities with a mystical beauty that can’t be adequately described. I am, day by day, acclimatising to the razor’s edge, and there is rarely a day that passes in which I don’t give thanks for your patient, giving heart and for the way the universe has manifested and has been shaped on its journey through you.

    I will be going on personal retreat at Gaia in February and hope to work with the practices I’ve mentioned above. I’ll let you know how I get on!

    Sending you much love for the sickness. I like to imagine you sitting in the dark, conjuring pathways of light.

    All my love,

    Andrea

    P.S. Have you tried including any fermented foods? At the moment I am fermenting porridge, sour tonic beverages, sauerkraut, kimchi, coconut yoghurt. Fermented foods are meant to be easier to digest and modern science is still trying to discover how big a part they play. If you’re interested I recommend Sandor Katz book ‘The Art of Fermentation.’ He was diagnosed with AIDS in 1990 and while still relying on modern medicine in some capacity, has managed to do miracles for his immune system. At the very least, it might help with fattening you up!

  • karen boreham

    Dear Rob…Your words remind me why I’ve read your book twice and am on the 3rd reading, and why though we’ve not yet met I hope for that time to come one day.Years of practice made me feel intuitively that there is more, that I’ve not touched on what is there, that something is waiting just out of reach, something holy and divine and radiating love. Your words and experiences point the way. With profound gratitude and heartfelt metta to you dear friend-and-teacher-I’ve never met, Karen

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Hello Rob, thanks so much for the last post my friend. Exquisitely honest and beautifully expressed. I marvel so much at how you find the words to express the inexpressible! I can’t profess to understanding it all but I liked the idea of leaning in to the experience – of emptiness offering so much freedom. These are such profound teachings. On a practical note I am so concerned for you and your health and I ask the universe to send you what you need. Much love to you. Kathryn xxx

  • Ben Johnston

    Hi Rob,
    Thankyou for your post Rob!
    I second what the Kathryn wrote below…

    So you said you like to hear what our news is….So then i`m back at work now (working with a nursing agency) I am working the odd shift at a residential home in Totnes. The home is home to 12, I think, people with learning disabilities. I think you`d get on with Shembo v well, he`s a shining light and v funny!!, he calls everyone variations of their name, so for you he may say Robby Rob or Robby Rob boo, or his bog standard crumb-cutter. He is a massive Staus Quo fan and has words from the song `wanderer` on the wall above his bed, a tune he likes to hum to new people to whom he is polite and very amiable and he`s originally from the States and likes his coffee. He has severe cerebral palsy, I think, his legs are buckled and his back is twisted, he uses a frame to walk and he can only walk v slowly.
    This is a new chapter for me,….I like working with Shembo and the other guys there and I like the uncertainty that comes with not knowing one week to the next whether I will earn enough money to pay the rent etc (I spent all the money I inherited on travelling, spending time on retreat and not working last year) although at times I have moments of panic, I feel my practice is more alive now; just metaphorically stepping back from thought more and more, and pausing, and stopping, and breathing and just being I feel it is more a part of my everyday life and that it protects and nourishes me.
    I still house-share with Geraldine, just the Totnes side of Harberton, she is wellish, she has ups and downs. I know she is v concerned about you.
    Lots of love Rob,
    Ben

  • Elena MacDonald

    Dear Rob. It’s been some years now since I came to Gaia House for one-to-ones or retreats but I wanted to say that I am thinking of you so much right now. I am reading your book and it has your unmistakable blend of precision and compassion that I have always found so remarkable and somehow has a way of making the inaccessible accessible. In the same way your post today – talking about your experience in the night with choosing and using a practice and the results – gives me – and I’m sure many others – great encouragement to continue opening, experimenting, believing that all things are possible. May the great love, service, skill, seeing, accepting and encouraging that you have given me and so many others come back a thousand-fold to you now. May you truly know in your innermost being how much you are loved, treasured and held. Wishing you so so well Rob. Elena xxxxx

  • Viorica

    Hi Rob,
    Thank you so much for your post, i am very impressed and moved by your sharing…
    Emptiness… but a very alive and fresh emptiness … that’s what i always found in my “hard” times… For me, the attitude is the main point, curiosity or fear? That’s what made a huge difference in the way i perceive.
    I want you to know that you are loved by so many people who never met you… because your great book and so many recordings.
    I want to share my gratitude for your work and for you kindness…
    Lots of love and joy to you, Rob!

  • Laura Fearns

    Dear Rob,
    Thank you so much for sharing this profound experience of practice. I find it very helpful when teachers are open about their practice as this uncovers the mystery that often shrouds those we (I) respect, and makes what is possible seem also possible for myself. It brings the ‘mysterious’ closer to my sense of reality and potentiality as a traveller in this body.
    The universe shines through you so beautifully, however thin and weak. May you be safe and well, may you be peaceful.
    Much love, Laura x

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Dear Rob, Many thanks for your latest inspiring post. I will reread this numerous times as i have with your previous posts on this site. I feel so blessed (as with such a number of others) to have listened to your teaching so many times over the years and word-for-word sentences & phrases come back to me over and over again. Having the Dharma seed website is another gift. You continue to inspire the Tuesday sangha group here in Cheltenham and my own practice happens really hour to hour through each day, with quite a strict 30 minutes on the cushion. With love..

  • Karen Sivan

    Greetings from India Rob. I returned to Kerala a few months ago and am much more comfortable with myself here! I keep dropping into your site for news of you and today after reading your words felt I’d like to let you know that I do. I’m sure even more people than you know about are affected by your circumstances and are moved and inspired by your (re)actions. Lots of warmth and colour to you from this side of the world. Karen ♡

  • deborah

    Hi Rob, early morning greetings from north of San Francisco, moon shining through pine tree. Your latest post really impresses me, and thanks for sharing a helpful bit of your meditation style. I do understand the great sense of peace that comes from experiencing emptiness and seeing one’s own life – sensations, memories, experiences – in this field of emptiness, though, of course it stops feeling empty and feels like something else altogether for me. The idea that many of us, most of us, all of us, accept immovable limits, yet these limits are movable and perhaps fictitious, liberates me from a lot of the discomfort I’ve been feeling recently; I’m going to keep playing with this concept.

    Hope you are finding more foods that nourish, satisfy and delight you.

    I’ve been remembering how at Gaia House I often saw you leaving or returning on a bicycle; never knew the destination of your rides but I was impressed that you were a strong, vigorous rider — especially compared to the slow, deliberate pace of certain Gaia work yogis — anyway, in my mind’s eye I’m seeing you riding the hills and lanes around West Ogwell.

    much love & much gratitude to you and all in your circle,

  • Patrizia De Chiara

    Dear Rob, I just returned from Sarnath, India. You travelled along me in my heart and mind. Now sending you my Love from Amsterdam.
    Thank you for your updates. Hope you will get some extra weight. Did you try some Italian food 🙂 ? Take care!! Ci vediamo, Patrizia

  • cherylee

    Dearest Rob , received with love from yours . May we all learn how to die before we die. Learn to be awake before we awake. Then with grace we can come and go with the flow that our breath whispers .
    Cherylee. X thankyou for sharing part of your journey. Carefully I watch your footprints x

  • Victor von der Heyde

    Hello Rob,

    Good to see another post of yours. And helpful to be reminded of how views (possibly not so conscious) limit what we think practice can lead to. So easy to forget that. Also really good to see in black and white the teasing out of the many experiences of freedom and awakening. Particularly after some interpretations of the Buddha’s “just one taste” quote.

    I did a solo retreat a couple of months ago, working through your talks an hour a day. My regular retreat-buddy couldn’t make it this year so just me. It was good. These were your talks earlier than the recent imaginal practice / soulfulness ones. I’ve since been going through the latest ones. One benefit of these recent talks is that I’ve found it easier to relate to non-Buddhist practices more.

    I’ve mentioned these recent talks to friends here (long term Insight Meditation practitioners), and said how I good I found them. When they asked me what was in them I’ve launched into an enthused description (hopefully not too long) and each time, when I finish, the friend(s) change the subject. I can think of a few possible reasons for that. I guess it’s very different framework compared to the more traditional Theravada-based perspective. I’ll take it as a caution, particularly if I try to incorporate some of what you say into talks.

    Speaking of talks, I’m getting used to the different tone in your more recent series. I guess tone is so dependent on the audience (or lack of audience). Touched about how you focussed on getting these recent talks out – they feel like gifts really – when you would have had (I’m guessing) lots going on.

    After a time of wondering if I’d still do a 3 month retreat at Gaia House if you’re not there, I thought I’d keep my booking and still go (late this year). There’s nowhere I know as supportive like that here in Oz, even in SE Asia. So it’s a question of how I’d get there and keep a low-ish carbon footprint. I have a plan for that.

    I’m also on Chinese herbs and a turmeric based mix for the Leukemia. So far going okay.

    I’ll include a pic I took three weeks ago of my house-mate. Not quite a house-mate really: she lives in the garage.

    Wishing you better health, energy and long life.
    Love from the other side of the planet,

    Victor

  • Dan Hillier

    Hi Rob,

    Thank you for the update, I found it a moving and inspiring read, at just the right time when I’m renewing my regular sitting practice after it having gone off the rails somewhat lately.

    Peace, kindness, love, beauty, and all the good stuff to you and all everywhere and beyond.

    Dan

    ‘Midnight. No waves,
    no wind, the empty boat
    is flooded with moonlight.’
    – Dogen

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob,

    Thank you so much for your recent posting. I wish things were going better with your weight – but was cheered to find this sentence on the web from the wife of someone who had a Whipple for pancreatic cancer in 1998 – and is still doing fine. “…. he looked emaciated. Like death warmed over. No weight was going on, he had months of chemo yet to go, and I felt like he was going to starve to death before we got there.” Finally though, the chemo stopped, the nausea stopped, and “the sun came out.”

    And thank you also for sharing an example of your personal experience, in the hope that it may help some of us have a greater expectation of what is possible from practice. I guess I have always heard this thread in your talks – although perhaps not with such a specific example – and, because I trust you, it has convinced me that such things are possible (rather than teachers just repeating what they have been told, or read, by other teachers). But possible for me? Still no evidence of that! My ‘hopeless striver’ is not so loud – but I wonder why I have such difficulty with having a regular daily practice. And, having had my first real taste of a deeper calm and peace, and happiness, during my one month retreat last year (all blasted to smithereens by my friends suicide 3 days after I left) I wonder whether I will reconnect with that place during my 3 month retreat starting in April. I have been feeling sad that you will not be there – but have just realised that you are usually on retreat yourself during those three months! So, I will have to continue to trust my own intuition about what to practice and how. And to use your talks as my teacher.

    Much love to you Rob.

    Lynda

  • Andy Coburn

    Sorry to hear this news about your health Rob. The CLS boys send all their best.

  • Fergus

    Hi Rob,

    I have just been very touched by your account of emptiness, like a little boy who reads adventure stories and is inspired by some crazy explorer whose single-minded doggedness takes them beyond the known; and then comes back and in their stories expands the horizons of others- well yours is just the same adventure to me. And yours is a journey of awareness, a perception I can foster while I am looking at the keys of my key board- very inspiring.

    The phrase that also stuck out was;

    “I wonder now (still with some hesitation) if it would not be more helpful to do so sometimes.” I am hoping that I can encourage you to do so more.

    I just wonder how you feel after sharing it?; does the telling of the story deplete you, or energise you, or does it do neither? I guess the reason for my question, and I am not looking for an answer, is whether you find the act of sharing reinforces the emptiness of the sense of perception itself? The emptiness of the veil; perception of reality or reality; “there is nothing on which the dust can settle”; I am hoping that maybe in the act of sharing that becomes a little clearer? I am reminded of the story of the Buddha and the lotus flower and how fortunate we are that he saw what he did in it. Our last conversation was themed around your resistance, and yet the utter inevitability of you becoming a teacher….I think the metaphor “dragged kicking and screaming” comes to mind. I wonder if it wasn’t also the Buddha himself who blossomed the day he realised the teaching within the lotus flower that was emerging from the mud.

    As a very grateful recipient of the message you wrote above.

    Thanks, Big Hug x. Fergus x.x.

  • Connor

    Dear Rob,

    We haven’t met, but I consider you one of my teachers, as I spent a long period listening to your catalogued talks before and after evening practice, initially interested in your thoughts on the integration of a Thai Forest perspective into ones life, then following your ideas about the possibilities that arise out of emptiness, engaged Buddhism and imaginal practices. Your perspectives and insights completely changed what contemplative practice meant to me, and the way that practices related to the rest of my experience. I have a lot of gratitude for your work and for finding it. I listened to all your talks and they changed the path I was on.

    I was troubled to hear of your illness but am inspired by how it seems you are, during this challenging period. I know you are well but still wish your anatomy wellness.

    Best wishes and much gratitude,

    Connor

  • Steve Hajioff

    Dear Rob,
    I just wanted to let you know that I, like so many, am thinking of you. Reading the comments here it is clear that you are still inspiring people, as you always have…. excelling at so many things yet tempered by such kindness and humility you inspired me to grow up to be a better me. Be well, old friend…
    Steve x

  • jane brendgen

    dear Rob. Heartfelt thanks for your deeply touching and inspiring post on your experience of emptiness. May your practice continue to nourish the bodymind, bringing ease, spaciousness, joy, peace, healing and wholeness.
    with a deep bow to your wisdom, heartfulness and generosity.
    Jane Brendgen

  • Lard Galloway

    Dear Rob, it’s been more than ages since we spoke. Out of the silence I want you to know you are never far from thoughts. Only recently coming to terms with the news that shook me so much last August. Your recent words here mean so much, and as I listen in this Sacred Universe you opened the door to, I’m comforted by the realisation that your teaching will always be Here. Listening always, Laurence

  • Lard Galloway

    ps I thought this would be up your street, some serious kung-fu foot work… 🙂 Lx https://media.giphy.com/media/26ght2GFICFOl41Ak/giphy.gif

  • Boaz

    Dear Rob,

    Thank you so much for your last account – it’s such a joy and contemplation to read your sharing.

    You’ve been in my thoughts as a pillar of ethics, concentration and wisdom upon which I can help maintain a perspective in my daily actions. I am getting more and more engaged with the work of Mindfulness in different sectors, and often struggle to keep the highest standard of integrity and depth which this work demands. Somehow though, through the struggle, it feels important work for me is being done, and that I am learning lots.

    I often reflect on this great question you once asked me along the lines of: “would you rather be fulfilled, or would you rather be free?” I am seeing, slowly, that of course these ‘tasks’ or ‘orientations’ are interlinked, but they involve different components of my experience and personality depending on the task or situation at hand. Therefore, they require a constant ‘reconfiguration’ and ‘working with’ – often shifting from one mode to the other. This has helped me deeply in including so many facets of my active life, outside of retreat.

    Thank you 😉

    • Boaz

      PS: that kung-fu football clip is the most amazing sports clip I have ever seen!

  • Patrizia De Chiara

    Dear Rob, sending you Love and Peace. Un abbraccio, Patrizia

  • Dayajoti

    Rob just read the section here re your book, with updates, thank you again again. And again thank you for that last post. So so inspiring and beautiful.

  • David

    Dear Rob,

    Like others here I have not met you in person but truly consider you one of my teachers.

    I was given your book on emptiness as a Christmas gift and scanning the contents I could immediately sense the resource I had been given. It would take me far longer to begin to understand the depth and subtlety of the same resource!

    Your work in that book along with the imaginal course completely overhauled and refreshed my view of the dharma, self, world and other. As a result it is impossible to convey my gratitude, respect and love. Yet it is even more difficult to convey this other way in which I regard you which shows up as an imaginal figure imbued with a curious mix of non-fear, improvisation, curiosity and above all humour!

    Much love,
    David

  • Lynda Benham

    Dear Rob, Have just read Mark’s latest posting. I am so glad there are still treatment options open to you. I wanted to let you know, given our conversations last summer, that I am starting a 3 month retreat at GH on 1st April. It will be strange you not being there – or at least not physically. Your presence will be very strong. I will of course miss not being able to have interviews with you – but I am holding the ‘vision’ of you being there if/when I do a one year retreat. As I already know the Art of Concentration retreat talks off by heart (!), thought I might move on to Metta and Emptiness. Especially anatta practice – so many layers of self still around! This Rumi poem says it all for me. So will finish by sharing it. I am sure you know it. And I am not sure that lots of formal sitting is the way now.
    I look forward to hearing how everything is going when I return from retreat (I will know less about you being at GH than if I were here at home!). With love and gratitude. Lynda
    Inside this new love, die.

    Your way begins on the other side.

    Become the sky.

    Take an axe to the prison wall.
    
Escape.

    Walk out like someone suddenly born into color.
    
Do it now.

    You’re covered with a thick cloud.

    Slide out the side.
    Die,
and be quiet.
    Quietness is the surest sign 
that you’ve died.

    Your old life was a frantic running 
from silence.
    The speechless full moon 
comes out now.

  • Paul

    Dear Rob,
    I have felt shocked and deeply saddened reading about your illness, and also deeply grateful for your teaching and love. I recall my last retreat, and how a smile from you in the corridor energised me, woke me up, filled me with loving intention to practice. You are a quite brilliant teacher, you are also a quite brilliant person, and you continue to touch my soul deeply as both, with love Paul

  • Sundra

    Dear Rob I want to thank you from the depths of my heart for sharing your practice in your post of 25 Jan. I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in November last year, just weeks after my father past away unexpectedly, and I’m currently having chemo. My father’s death and facing my own mortality for the first time in my life has been a profound experience for me as a practising Buddhist. In many ways my life and practice have become so much more alive – at least for the first few months. I have felt quite alone in terms of my practice at this special time in my life, and I think through this aloneness and having a lot of practical things to deal with over the past 6 weeks, this sense of aliveness and the heartfelt wish to benefit others through my suffering has dissipated. I do my practices and set my intention, but they’ve lost their energy. You’ve touched my heart deeply today with your post – I feel as though I’ve come home again – thank you so much. I look forward to listening to your recent talks in particular. And please, please, from the depths of my heart, I request you to keep posting so openly and honestly, please, please help me and others to make the most of our precious lives through being touched by your teachings. With much love and gratitude, Sundra

  • Dan Hillier

    Dear Rob,
    I hope this message finds you doing well in yourself, however that may be at the moment.
    I’ve just got back from a week-long retreat at Gaia House and wanted to say that much of it was spent with you via your book and your teachings, and in my metta practice, as well as a general warm regard throughout. I had a crack at your book when I downloaded it onto my kindle but that device just doesn’t work for me, so it was great to tuck into your writing in book form, and fantastically helpful and enriching to my week. I’ve bought the hard copy now and am reading it now before I head back to GH for a 6 week retreat in May, where I’ll certainly once more be using it as a guide. Thank you, it’s a wondrous book and super inspiring.
    Although our meetings/talks were only just getting started last year before your illness showed up you are a very important teacher to me, both from those meetings and calls, and the talks available on dharmaseed (which I’ll be listening to this afternoon as I make a new picture) and at GH, and now the book too.
    You’re in my thoughts very often, envisioned as being surrounded by light and love and well-being.
    Be well and be happy.
    With love and gratitude, and a mega-blast of vintage metta,
    Dan

  • Dear Rob,

    I just want to say that I finished listening to your 3-part talk ending with “In Praise of Restlessness”. Talk about art! Those talks are a masterpiece! As as artist, I have often wondered about the incompatibility of the struggle in making work and the usual teachings of the dharma. Thank you for helping me to reconcile these things. The talks open everything up and are so inspiring.

    You are a rare gem. Thank you for being an atypical dharma teacher!

  • Noirin Sheahan

    Dear Rob,
    You are a great inspiration and a dear friend in my heart. During a recent retreat I listened to many of your Dhamma talks and they really energized my practice and opened up new doors for me. Thank you for developing and sharing your very life-affirming understanding of the Dhamma. Deep gratitude for your help in bringing unacknowledged aspects of myself to the light of awareness, and seeing these dissolve into mystery.
    We have a small Insight Meditation study group in Ireland and are now about to start reading your book and trying the suggested practices, so will be thinking of you even more frequently. May the gratitude and love of all your supporters find its way into your cells to bring health and strength.
    With much metta,
    Noirin

  • Rosanna

    Dear Rob,
    may Spring do to you what it does to cherry trees….With much Metta

  • D
  • tina

    Dear Rob,
    Inspired and touched by your latest post – such an ever-generous reaching out and sharing of wisdom, reflections and love even with your limited energies and resources. And I’m guessing you or your ‘MRT’ have heard of a recent publication, “The Cancer Whisperer” by Sophie Sabbage, but I mention it in just in case its slipped by, or for others on this site who might be interested. It’s deeply inspiring and humane, dealing as much with personhood, dignity, inquiry, wisdom, trust, love (probably not so much you can learn there Rob!) as navigating the conventional and alternative ‘systems’. Healing in its fullest capacity – and in my opinion valuable to anyone who wants to heal their life, with or without cancer. Sending much love and well wishes – as well as the book should you not have it & wish for it! Just let me know.

  • Fergus

    Hi Rob,

    I “imagine” – pun sort of intended- you are well aware of the Gospel of Mary Magdalene. I am just reading the version by Jean Yves Leloup. He speaks to the importance of the “imaginal” and the centrality of this understanding as being at the core of the teachings of Jesus. With it being Easter- I thought I would include here his interpretation of the nature and intent of Jesus’ resurrection as understood by Mary who experienced this resurrection first hand. Jean writes, and I quote from his book- The Gospel of Mary Magdelene.

    “The Gospel of Mary goes much deeper. It is witness to an altogether different mode of understanding that the “masculine” mind typically overlooks:a domain of prophetic or visionary knowledge that, though certainly not exclusive to women, definitely partakes of the feminine principle, and is sometimes known as the angelic or Eastern dimension of human knowledge. The Teacher is questioned on this subject by Miriam of Magdala.: what is the organ of true vision? With what eyes is she able to behold the Resurrection? The Teacher’s answer to this is clear. The resurrection can be seen neither with the eyes of the flesh, nor with the eyes of the soul (psyche). This vision is no hallucination, nor is it any sort of fantasy linked to sensory, psychic or mental stimulation. Furthermore, this gospel tells us that the resurrection is not to be categorized as purely spiritual pneumatic vision either. Rather it is a vision of the “nous” (The exact words of Jesus as recounted in Mary “There where is the “nous”, lies the treasure” Mary 10:16). The “nous” is a dimension often forgotten in our modern anthropologies. In the ancient world the “nous” was seen as “the finest point of the soul”; or as some might say today, the “angel of the soul”. It gives us access to that intermediate realm between the purely sensory and the purely spiritual, which Henry Corbin so eloquently names as the imaginal.

    Here we have gone beyond any metaphysical opposition of subject vs. object. We are in the presence of a metaphysics of openness- a place of meeting, confrontation and merging of subject and object known in their interdependence. Reality is neither objective nor subjective; it is an inclusive third state where the two imaginally become one.

    A living deity who wants to communicate thus necessitates an intermediate realm between God and human, between the invisible and the visible, between the world of immaterial spirits and material bodies. It is in this intermediary imaginal realm that Miriam has her meetings with the resurrected Christ. As with the ancient prophets, God activates the necessary visionary imaginal forms in her, so as to bring her to the Divine. It is only in this sense that Christianity can indeed be said to be; “born from the imagination of a woman”.

    This reveals a field that has been little explored by contemporary philosophies, which still oscillate between the metaphysics of being and of Otherness. The task of the next century will surely be one of engagement with this philosophy of openness, or the in between realm. Philosophy will no longer seek the missing links in Greek and Semitic thought, but in this oriented synthesis- hereto rejected by both sides- which begins to reveal itself in these early Christian texts. A true renewal of thinking about the source of the New Testament writings must pass through a regeneration of the imagination.”

    Much Love,

    Fergus

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Lovely to hear from you Rob, I’m sure you are overwhelmed but the generosity is exactly as it should be. You have given us all something so much more valuable than money – we are the ones overwhelmed by your generosity of spirit.
    Take care my friend
    Kathryn x

  • Sarah Lovatt

    Dearest Rob feeling deep heartfelt gratitude for all that you have given us and continue to give us. It feels really lovely to be able to help you and to share in this with so many other people really fills me with such a deep joy. Thank you for helping me to find love peace and joy these gifts you give are priceless. Thank you thank you with all my love xxx

  • Dan Hillier

    Dear Rob,
    I’m so glad to read that plentiful funds have rolled in, may they facilitate your full recovery…
    Sending love, peace and wishes for your well-being always,
    Dan.

  • Steve Beecham

    Dear Rob
    Sometimes words are not enough,
    However I do want you to know that you have been and continue to be in my thoughts and wishes daily.
    Thank you for your enormous contribution to the dharma.
    Steve.

  • Margaret

    Morning Rob, sending much love on this beautiful April day. You are in my thoughts daily and daily I benefit from your inspiration and understanding. I am visiting my daughter and her partner in York just now, and there’s a copy of your book by the sofa in the sitting room. So your influence spreads…thank you for all you have given us and wishing you well as the spring unfolds. Blessings, Margaret

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Hi Rob, I hope your treatments are going well and that you are also getting lots of beautiful sunshine and nature. Missing you a great deal and so looking forward to seeing you in July. With much much love and hugs, Jacqui x

  • Max

    Dear Rob,

    Just a note to wish you well and express deep gratitude and appreciation for you and your teachings. I haven’t met you in person yet, but your talks and book have moved me in many ways. Somehow I feel that I know you, maybe through all that’s conveyed in the talks. And the sharing of your own practice and process on this site is so beautiful and inspiring.

    I hope, for you and for us, that you will be teaching and writing and living for many years to come. Whatever the future brings, wishing all of the goodness that you’ve brought forth brings you much joy and satisfaction and peace.

    with much metta,
    Max Erdstein

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob, Hope you’re doing ok and enjoyed the CD I sent you. There’s been a documentary series on the internet called ‘The Truth About Cancer’. You’re probably already aware of it. There are nine episodes of extensive research a few of which are still available, and the whole series can be purchased very cheaply from the states. Iys by a chap called Ty Bollinger who’s had so many loved ones die of cancer he went on a mission. There are currently only three episodes still online, 1, 2, & 9. Not sure how long they will be there. I’ve only had time to view clips, and it looks very interesting.
    Check it out.

    https://go.thetruthaboutcancer.com/?a_aid=550894055d93f&chan=G2TyBollinger

    All the best

    Love Sabu x

  • Rosanna

    hi Rob , thinking of you. Boundless Metta

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Love you so much Rob, effortlessly x

  • Margaret

    Dearest Rob, how wonderful to hear from you! It’s a lovely image seeing you savouring the natural world around you and being nourished by it. Spring has sprung up here too and have just returned from my first Eve in my kayak! Think of you often, most meditations, and always feel inspired by your energy. Drink in the love dear man!

  • deborah

    Hey Rob, always good to hear how you’re doing and I also like hearing what other sangha members are up to. I’ve recently been introduced to Jacob Colliar; do you know him? Like someone else I know he’s a North London lad who spent time at Berklee and MIT designing a harmonising synthesiser. His music and energy have made me happy recently so I share it with all:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GNG7zLUr7Pg Truckloads and truckloads of love to you, xxx deborah

  • Jaqs C

    Great to hear an update though of course we would prefer to hear its not so challenging and perplexing and enigmatic a journey for you….But your courage is beautiful. to witness…May the blessings abound and the love grow through all this…warm best wishes… jaqs x

  • cherylee

    Dear Rob, wishing you so much love and light as you make your way through this journey.

    Sending you metta and so, so much more x Cherylee

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob,

    I am sorry to hear that that you have been having a tough time physically. You meet it with such grace and eloquence. I don’t really know what to say.

    I am glad that you can enjoy the beautiful spring and have been engaging in work actvities.

    All best to you,

    Judy.

  • June A.

    Rob, Thank you for your clear, generous sharing of these challenges and blessings. Warmest healing thoughts,

  • jana passley

    Strong determination and courage Super Man.. X

  • Monica

    Rob – you continue to give us so much, even while coping with serious illness and pain. You are awesome! When I read your ‘posts’ I feel re-inspired to practice. Sending you every possible blessing and all my love. Monica

  • Sabu

    Thanks for the update Rob. Its appreciated. I have been wondering how you are doing. You are in my prayers. I wonder if you are actually on the mend – that’s the tone I’m holding.

    Love

    Sabu x

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Thank you for the health update Rob and thank you for the ‘push’ you gave my practice with your comments about momentum etc. I’m lucky enough to now be in Spain high in the mountains on another retreat. I’m looking 20 miles down a beautiful valley to the Med in the distance. Lovely to hear your comments about the beauty of living in the wonderful Dartmoor and the way you feel blessed (as I do when I think of your teachings). With metta, Ivan

  • Anita Lintula

    Thank you Rob for your inspiring and encouragiing update. I have read every post so far. This one and one of the previous ones give me strength to cope with quite a tricky health issue in my life – very different one but still. So thank you so much of your existence in this world and these posts. <3 Anita

  • Erica

    Dear Rob, it’s been awhile since I commented but I’ve been checking in this site and reading your posts over the months. Thank you for your continued updates. I’m glad to read you have been able to visit Gaia House, and to write. You are still in my thoughts and those of so many others. Sending you encouragement and metta from Canada <3

  • Victor von der Heyde

    Hi Rob, Sounds such a tough place for you to be, even with the sense of blessing and appreciation. Wishing for you that it gets easier.

    Really appreciated your Ecology of Love series. I went through slowly, making notes. Found the talks totally absorbing: like a novel that was hard to put down. And curiously it helped me make more sense of aspects of some of the earlier imaginal practice talks.

    I’m co-teaching on a week-long starting this week, up in the rainforest. Our annual retreat there. All my talks are infused in a way with what I’ve learned from you: or at least those parts that have hit home with me. I mention you too.

    Still coming for the three months at Gaia House, starting in September. The wish to minimise my carbon footprint has led to most of the trip over being by train. Train up the Queensland Coast, then a flight from North East Australia to South East Asia, then train up through China, across to Eastern Siberia, then train all the way to Newton Abbott. With stops and some visiting on the way. Maybe if I was younger I’d be into it for the adventure, but that’s not really the motivation. Feels something of an odyssey. There’s just not any place over here that offers the same support for longer retreats as Gaia House.

    Here’s a pic I took in the back garden a while back. Dragonfly but looks un-dragon-like with the sweet wings.

    Hope things go well. Victor

  • japhyryder1

    Just sending you tremendous good wishes and love. Your book has touched me profoundly, but the writings on this blog far more still. I salute your courage and joy in the face of such challenges. Thanks for being such an inspiration.

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Sending lots of love and good wishes. You are with me in my thoughts and in my heart always. Jacqui xxxxxx

  • Chandima

    I am thinking of you and sending you lots of love, Rob. Hope you are feeling energetic and peaceful. I was listening to a talk and my heart is filled with gratitude- this is how I felt when I first listened to you about 8 years ago
    Hope things are getting a bit easier for you.

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Hi Rob – thanks for the update, it sounds like hard work and my heart goes out to you. I’m sending you not just love but lots of positive energy too. I’m lost for words really but your words about finding so much joy in all this experience is a great comfort.
    I’m glad you know that you are held and have a felt sense of this, what a beautiful gift.
    Take care big guy
    xxxxx

  • Suzanne Laura Kammin

    Thank you for this update, Rob. So glad to hear you’re getting at least a bit of a break from chemo and are in good spirits. You are an inspiration as always. I hope you continue to feel better and whatever decision you make regarding your treatment leaves you continuing to feel at peace. Sending metta, Suzanne

  • Andrew Boswell

    Dear Rob,

    Glad to hear that you are back home after being in hospital. We are listening to the retreat preparation talks and guided meditation each day and so grateful for this and all your teaching. Much gratitude for this.

    Sending you all best wishes and strength, light and energy to work with all the challenges and decisions (chemo etc).

    Love Andrew

  • John McLane

    Dear Rob, As ever, I am deeply moved and inspired by your courage and equanimity. You are often in my thoughts and always in my heart.
    With metta and Love, John

  • Suzanne Laura Kammin

    When I was at Sloan Kettering recently, I saw this photo (aptly titled: Buddha, Lantau Island) and fell in love with it. I recently purchased one from the photographer, Jane Yeomans. I am so looking forward to get it back from the framer but wanted to share this gorgeous image with you and Mark.

  • Will Turner

    Hello Rob, I was at Gaia today, pruning hawthorn in the June rain (where’s the sun?). Thank you for your sharing of how it is for you, your strength of spirit shines through your words. I thank you for that. With all good wishes, Will Turner

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, such a tough gig which you carry with such grace and clarity. I am sorry that you are suffering and am thinking of you. I hope that you can enjoy our lovely English lingering summer evenings, love from Judy.

  • janey francis

    Dear Rob, you continue to be such an inspiration in meeting the immense challenges of your situation with such grace and open-heartedness. Sending you much love and holding you gently in my heart. Janey xx

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Rob,It is definitely a two way thing, because I am feeling deeply
    nourished and blessed by all that is flowing out from you too. I
    genuinely experience that.

    Hope you can bath for a while in this chemo free time without having to think about decisions.

    With much love and gratitude,

    Jacqui xxx

  • Ali French

    Lovely comment below Jacqui, and one I’d very much like to second. With much metta and care, Ali x

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob,

    Thanks for the update. Like many others I too have been wondering how you are doing. For some reason your post brings me to the many times when I used to be at Gaia House, and then a day or two after my retreat I would visit somewhere coastal like the South Downs and just be with the place and with an almost totally quiet mind and experience the aliveness of it. Literally feel the Soul of the Cliffs and the Water through the sensing of my own Soul and know that this aliveness is what Life is and that it is eternal; and that it is in everything. However, that’s a rare experience now as I now see that when we get to certain points on the spiritual path there is a call for deeper surrender; and through my resistance I experience much of this aliveness as anger together with its effect on me. How to embody this aliveness? That’s our journey, I guess. I thought I’d share some pictures taken with my old cheap smart phone.

    Keep drinking the nourishment. After so many years on the path I’m realising that self care and surrender are the same thing. Here’s to embodiment!

    May we all be well, at peace, happy, and free from suffering.

    Sabu x

  • Susan Jordan

    Dear Rob

    I too have been thinking of you, especially when I’m at Gaia House. I was very moved by your post, which to me conveys both the physical difficulty and your spaciousness around it. I was especially touched by the deep welling up of creativity – still indomitable in the midst of all this – and the continuing freshness and discovery in your practice. I’ve been drawn to your teaching by this sense of freshness and creativity, and by the lightness with which you communicate that ‘this is not all there is.’

    I wish you well in the coming weeks and hope that whatever you decide about treatment will be in harmony with your body and soul.

    With much metta

    Susan Jordan

  • Margaret

    Oh dear Rob! What a human being you are! The richness of your experience is like an awesome sunrise: incredibly moving and life affirming and radiant. Thank you so much for all your are so generously giving us through your practice and sharing. May your decision come easily and confidently and in the meantime, enjoy the love drink. Warmest, Margaret McL

  • James Blake

    Rob, your messages here feel like a huge gift to everyone who cares about you and who is inspired by you. So pleased to read about all the good stuff, wishing you all the best with the difficult x

  • Mabeth Ciurans

    Dearest Rob, i feel deeply touched by your sharing and am holding you dear. Coming to Gaia in a couple of days so see you at the retreat 🙂 with much much metta to you <3 <3 <3 Mabeth, from the Netherlands.

  • Jennifer Muller

    Dear Rob, I lack the words in response to it all… Really how mysterious life is. We who have received teachings and presence from you, in whatever shape and form, I say we are the blessed ones! So much gratitude for all that you are sharing. Wishing you a pain-free retreat, with or without chemo, may you be well, come what may. Jennifer, from Germany

    • Rosanna

      so beautiful..<3

  • cherylee

    Dearest Rob,
    I have so much love and respect for you. I am truly grateful for the opportunities I had to live, work, study and practice along side you.

    I will continue to send you metta during this journey, trusting it will make a difference. I’m sorry I can’t make the retreat but in spirit I will join you all .

    Continue in Grace,
    X Cherylee

  • Michele Ennis

    Rob,

    You don’t know me, but I just listened to your guided Space of Awareness meditation. I have been meditating daily for about 10 years now and I must admit that I had never listened to one of your meditations before today. It was one of the best guided meditations that I have ever heard. I had been feeling that my meditation had become somewhat stagnant in the last month or so which is why I have been online searching for a guided meditation to inspire me. I am so happy to have found yours. I was so excited that I looked you up online and was saddened to find that you were ill. I just wanted to wish you well and let you know how much that single video meant to me. It was like a light coming on. The way you explained and guided the meditation brought me so much further in my practice. I will be listening to as many of your guided meditations as I can find.

    Obviously, many people are inspired by you. I feel lucky to be one of them. Thank you.

    • Peder Solvang

      Thanks for that comment. I am in exactly the same situation as you describe – and had the same experience when I got in touch with Rob’s meditations (and writing). As you may be aware, over 200 talks and meditations with Rob are online. Here is the link http://dharmaseed.org/teacher/210/

  • julia wright

    Dear Rob

    You are in my thoughts often and I send love and good wishes. I hope to see you in a few weeks at the retreat. I am not well today and although the prognosis is that I should be fine in a few days, it is a challenge and I take great support from your posts as well as admiration as I struggle with the pain and discomfort. xxxx

  • Anthea West

    Rob, sending you all my very best wishes as always. It’s a hard road that you’re walking, but as you say there are many people who are beside you in spirit. Anthea

  • lorna edwards

    Dear Rob
    Felt your presence at the recent retreat, especially when I was weeding in the garden! Glad you are ‘going on’ and wish you all the best.
    Lorna

  • coppe

    It’s a hard road you are walking, Rob. But know that you are not alone. You have never been alone. None of us is ever really alone, however much we may sometimes think/feel that we are. As you reach out to us, we reach out to you. And to each other, though we may never meet in the physical sense. We are all human, all perfectly imperfect. We are all incomplete which is why we reach out to each other, as we try to complete the circle of life.

  • Lard Galloway

    Thank you Rob, for everything.

    With Love, Laurence

    Here’s a link to various sized files of Rob’s portrait and the photo of the group from Rob and Catherine’s ‘Re-Enchanting The Cosmos’ retreat. Such deep bows _||_

    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/hyp3eq3cw5ap1rs/AACyGg2mpdhi8lOL0tDHqCyNa?dl=0

    • Rosanna

      Dear Rob sending My Love and Thanks to You, and All the Circle of Enchanters Everywhere in the Pluriverse. Tugice-nang’ dear Mark for beeping us all in touch within the net.’ Shard’s have got their beauty you know , on can see a lot through them and up there thank you to all my fellow retreatans there, a didn’t manage to say bye. I ask for your forgiveness for any hurt i may have caused voluntarily or involuntarily in actions of body speech and mind to anybody including to myself , and I will try and forgive at the ‘pest ?!’ of my abilities any body who may have caused me harm , voluntarily or involuntarily for acts of body speech and mind. Still Loving You All …in friendliness and in The Dharma. Little sisters bow with love or try their best to…. the He…Art, hear their h eart (h) and all , while Friends and Teachers bake the Bread, take it out fragrantly from the Oven and Bring it Over Too. Also I take this opportunity to thank Chris and Kirstine who accompanied me to the station with great love, and kissing fingers and waves of love on their lips. thanks to James, for sharing a’ guided silent meal of knowing’ with me,.In the small pond with the tiny Buddha, and for taking care of albratoss tired on the shores.To all the Staff For Golden Olimpics Karma Yoga and me’ Be Dingen, conditioned’, but only a Beat. Finally dear Anna for sharing the Vision of the Eyes and Reminding me with Her Striped Leggings of my true colours – guide ‘Pippi Longstrumpor ‘, whose author, great Astrid Lindgren, I met in Rome many years ago at a seminary she gave on her 80th birthday, and gave me One Cherished Present OF My LiFE, ( A very Gentle caress), and Anna ‘anew ‘for the 2 squares of dark chocolate . which I then ran back after you, to share one- re ..back ( I am not that generous , by the way… I was ‘moved’ by the’ self.. consciousness’ of having brought a whole bar of dark chocolate in’ my thank you single? roomm’..
      And also for beind there in some mind less mindful Walks of Myne..I Ha ve loved you All Holding gently in the TinyCradle of the Heart (h) ..Big Sisters Brothers And You All. I Love You Rob > ..I LOve You Too..Our friend with a Broken Arm who Left Full with Lili Love in Herald Clear Piece Of News… No NEws is Good News <3

      Translation: Simply Trying To Thank You XXX

  • Lard Galloway

    The group photo from ‘Re-Enchanting The Cosmos’.
    Print sized files in the link below;
    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/hyp3eq3cw5ap1rs/AACyGg2mpdhi8lOL0tDHqCyNa?dl=0

    • Rosanna

      Bellissime/ i !! <3 dear friends x

      • Lard Galloway

        Was sorry you had to leave before we did this photo, hope you had/are having fruitful times at plum village 🙂

        • Rosanna

          thank you Lard!
          i actually had not left yet
          .was in my room upstairs and caught a breathtaking glimpse of the beauty of togetherness and goodbyes of you all, through my window. .but my heart was so so deeply touched and naked in hurt and magic wonder, i couldn’t join you.

          . thus i tried and rest (not easy, i didn’t want us all to leave) within my love , and vulnerability:( though pulled by a strong desire to rush down and hugg you all). 🙂

          Chose Solitude : one of my forms of care (fear? at timestoo ..something so meaningful AND intense as our retreat , was a difficult transition to part .

          so i did’nt come down for’ more’ goodbyes and farewells, found it easier for the soul to stay still, with the whole world in, than to depart.

          With much metta to you , a greatest harvest, and joy

          .

  • June A.

    It’s great to see the pictures below. Thank you! What radiant smiles!

  • Rosanna

    Dear Mark thank you for your email, and sorry for my question. With love and a hugg . Ogni Bene x

    • Rosanna

      Dear Mark , thank you for your email and sorry for my question at the end. Much love and a hugg. Ogni Bene , Riva x

  • Amanda Anderson

    Just tuned in to this … good to see Brian Cox expressing his concern about climate change and the sceptics!
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-australia-37091391
    Graphs are important … (I’m a lapsed scientist!)

    • Rosanna

      Dear Amanda, just after you departed yesterday i REALIZED I HAD LOST (hindsight meditation ;-)my favourite) the ‘sleep’ of paper onto which you had written your email! So please contact me. It was beautiful to meet you in such a moving place. By the way, in ‘energy body solidarity’ with you, I managed to arrive in London at 1a.m and not at 9.30 as ‘expected’. Love to you dear friend, be in touch, be touch, ‘Fatti viva’. Rosanna xxx

      • Amanda Anderson

        Dear Rosanna,
        Sorry for the few days’ silence … I returned to quite a lot of chaos and work! I’ve been trying to find your email address and not succeeding (so much for slips of paper)! Anyway, here’s my email address (can’t think of another way of doing this!)
        amandaand30@hotmail.com
        I’m slowly adjusting to Oxford life after the rather lovely time in Devon. Lovely to meet you and hope you’re easing back into London life.
        Love, Amanda

  • bill

    Such a lovely update Rob (thanks Mark for keeping us all informed). And so glad to hear you’ve been feeling better, all things considered. You’re in my thoughts daily, truly – your voice through your recordings, your book and our conversations resonate with me each morning or evening during my meditation. I wish I could express how grateful I am but words don’t do the sentiment justice. Sending you much love and strength Rob, all the best,

    Bill

  • Judy63

    Lovely to see your smile, Rob, and you looking more robust. Make sure you get some sunshine too to stock up on your vitamin D. Judy x

  • Margaret

    Dear Rob how good it is to see your fuzzy photo and hear that you are having a better time. Have been thinking of you a lot recently, knowing (sadly) that I missed your retreat and just spending a week in the States with family. I miss you a lot and send a bouquet off well wishes. Lots love, margaret

  • Karen Goldman

    good to see you looking so well, Rob. Maybe see you when I’m on retreat next month? With much love, Karen

  • Annie Conder

    Hi Rob, wonderful to see that you have put on some weight. You look well. You are in my thoughts a lot, I feel so blessed that our paths have crossed. Sending you lots of love and hugs. Annie

  • Joanna Graham

    Dear Rob, what a beautiful retreat experience, I am so glad to hear that. A deep bow to you, and your wonderful team. Thanks for sharing and wishing you as much vitality as it is possible to have, and good luck in the coming weeks. Love jo g

  • janey francis

    Hi Rob, I have just returned from a very beautiful five day silent retreat with Adyashanti. You came into my mind today and I was wondering how you are so it was lovely to see a fun, feathery photo of you and to hear that you had managed to teach the retreat. I hope you continue to experience more vitality and your intestines begin to heal again. Holding you in my heart. Janey xx

  • Rosanna

    Hi Rob, just to say ‘grazie’ for retreat and update. wishing you ‘ogni bene’ and blessings for the next tests coming up.

    love and light

    from the empty bowl of all there is
    ,and the other ways round , and back too.

    in all directions..

    ciao
    riva rose x

    .

  • David Roth

    Good to hear your positive news Rob and see your picture. Heard you were back and kept an eye out for you but missed you!
    Love and God bless.
    Irene and Dave at Middle Barn
    xx

  • Simon

    You’re in my thoughts Rob. I continue to feel a deep sense of gratitude for your teaching during my long retreats 3 – 4 years ago which opened up such a wealth of perspectives on emptiness. It’s enabled me to now start exploring Vajrayana practice which would previously have been unthinkable for me.
    Blessings,
    Simon

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Beautiful, Wonderful retreat,thanks to Rob,Catherine and Mark.

    much love, Jacqui xxx

  • Jennifer Muller

    Rob, thank you for continuing to share how you are doing. Much appreciated. Some great pictures there, feathers and smiles and whatever fuzziness life throws in!! May you be well and happy 🙂

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Hope you’re managing to enjoy this fine weather Rob, must be stunning on the moor. I’ve been sticking solidly to 30 mins practice
    a day through August (& Dharma Seed talks every other day) up till its lapsed last 3 days. (Writing this down here should ensure getting back on track !). A 4-day retreat approaching in October gives further motivation. When I’m ‘on it’ every day your words return so often & always inspiring. Also finding it helpful here reading others’ comments on their own practice. Lots of love (& to Mark), Ivan

  • Ivan Hatvany

    …Also…The cheltenham group here also held a first Day Retreat couple of weeks ago & we sent merit your way at the end. Plan is to
    have these one day a month, (anyone living within an hour or so might be interested & very welcome)

  • Peder Solvang

    Just a word of gratitude. I have only met you through writings and recordings. I first discovered your book “Seeing that frees” accidently (if there is such a thing as accidently). I’ve been looking for non-secterian, non-dogmatic books that combines philosophy and practice, and here, finally, I found exactly that. It is a wise, warm and wonderful book. After that I found the talks. They are a blessing for me living in a kind of remote area.

    I’d like to add also that as your teachings helps me, quite a few people benefit from it. Being a Drug Helpline counsellor here in Norway I have contact with about 5000 people each year. Practicing, listening and reading helps me give better counselling. Helping people think about addiction in terms of dependent arising (not in terms of an “inherently existing state inside a brain”) can have some very freeing effects: It gives people new perspectives, other ways of looking, helpful both for the users and their relatives, families, partners and friends. Thank you so much. May you be well. You are in my thoughts and I listen and practice your advise each day.

  • Michelle Desrosiers

    Happy birthday, Rob. With love and thanks for everything you’ve done. Miss you.

  • Rosanna

    Buon Compleanno Rob!

    May the wishes of your heart come true! Happy Now and Now and Now, and the Now after that and the Now before this one..!.to re-enchant to-morrow and yes-terday too.:.is The Present .. in music, of the spiritual warrior swimming against the stream..!
    May you be happy and safe ! may you be healthy ! live with ease..
    blessing the soles of your pilgrim feet on the journey to .. and the soul too..
    on the bound- less shores of living and loving.. and some american spirit cigarettes ..looking for peace within and every where . ‘.All is Ablaze’.., for the way out of circling ..yesterday the most amazingly beautiful ‘H-E-A-RT exibition at the Barbican, about (nearly whole of us ..and our) lives and loves..With all the love.. ..<3 ti voglio tanto bene.Ogni Bene ..Riva xxx Auguri!!!

  • Rosanna

    Buon Compligiorno e..

  • Victor von der Heyde

    Hi Rob,

    Touching for me to see you going through the mill with such an unburdened feel. Hope your liveliness and energy get more chance to flourish long term.

    I made it through most of the largely train trip from Brisbane to Newton Abbot. Just one more short leg … from London.

    You probably would’ve seen pictures of the Buddhist deva sculptures making offerings in Hong Kong. I went to look at them on the way here and took these pics. Curiously the one offering music (pipes) is meant to represent offering wisdom. I thought of you with your background looking at it. The other one here: incense in the box (think that’s what it is), is meant to represent ethics.

    Much appreciation from me for all you’ve offered. Still working with it.

    Victor

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob – shift into autumn – hope you are enjoying these beautiful cool golden days.

  • Anita Diamond

    Dearest Rob,
    Your teachings have been a wonderful blessing to me and you continue to inspire me with the fruits of your practice.
    In the middle of a very painful labour, I recalled your words to ‘notice that which is neutral’. I put all my attention into my index finger and tried to understand neutrality. It was a temporary respite – but it was a profound shift amidst such brutal chaos and pain.

    I will never forget the complete attention you held me in during a meeting whilst on retreat some years ago. I don’t think I have ever felt so fully heard before. I still need to practice metta everyday as you suggested.

    May you be well, may be at ease

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Thinking of you Rob and sending Blessings and love. Jacqui xxxx

  • jill bird

    How lovely to hear everybody’s thoughts and that Rob – you have more energy. Very lovely! Jillxx

  • Ivan Hatvany

    just sending Autumn good wishes to you Rob and Mark – I’ll think of you whilst at Gaia House in October, love Ivan

  • Anne Bulmer

    Hi Rob,

    Just wondering how you are? Glad to hear you have/had some vitality in your limbs – I understand that one well☺ Wishing you well and much ease.
    Love Anne❤

  • Rosanna

    Carissimo Rob,

    feelthinking of you through the seasons. evergreen. though You are Present i miss You. till the golden hues.

    with love to you and Mark

  • William James

    Hi Rob, I lead a Dharma study group in Australia and this year we have been using “Seeing that Frees” as a springboard for deep inquiry. I would like to thank you for creating such a comprehensive explanation of the Buddha’s teachings and to let you know how helpful it is in promoting insight and understanding. The group wishes to send you all their love, gratitude and best wishes.
    Thank you again
    Love
    Will

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Wishing you ease and comfort, Rob. Thinking of you and sending Blessings and Love. Xx Jacqui

  • Margaret

    Thinking of you so much Rob and sending warmest wishes. You continue to be a deep presence within me and your good humour and clarity are gifts I treasure. With much love and appreciation, Margaret

  • Sitting Skirt

    Dear
    friends, I write this as an offering and an aspirational prayer, may these
    words be of benefit and bring harmony to the world.

    If you have
    heard any of Rob’s teachings it’s very likely that you heard him talk about
    different ways of looking, that the perspectives we have are important places
    to investigate. That the world is a dependent arising and that our relationship
    with it is inseparable from whatever is manifesting. This then is of course
    also true for Rob’s health and I would like to offer a way of relating to what
    has happened in Rob’s life the last year.

    Rob’s sickness made me understand something about the immanence of death for a
    human being; inherently that which has been born will die. Facing the very real
    possibility that Rob’s death may come rather soon touched me, as I know it has
    for others. It allowed my heart to open and to love him ever more deeply; the
    devotional aspect of love became much more available. The urgency made my fears
    and limitations seem small and I plunged myself into these beautiful ways of
    practice. It was a real joy, and the possibilities of perception widened to
    embrace God, Jesus and other seemingly religious phenomena.

    Again, if you have been following Rob’s teachings, perceptions like this are
    highly integrated in his world. So for me who trusts and respect his teachings
    it was a natural process to accept and inhabit this, even if it is gradual and
    not at all final. To practice that these religious perceptions are just as real
    as the perception of the train I’m currently riding, that is what his teachings
    invites me to do.

    Springing from this I have come to access a view of his health situation that
    brings both freedom and love. That he is fearlessly facing his possible demise (as
    we all must our own) as an offering to us, as an invitation for our hearts to
    melt and be touched by his immense love, which is both powerful and gentle. He
    is calling us towards awakening, calling us home, to the divine. To answer the call
    brings both a sense of duty and of joy, it is my duty to let him live on
    through me and doing that brings joy. In a way I’m sharing this, in a way Rob
    is, in a way none of us are, it’s love that wants to be shared, that naturally
    wants to shine.

    With
    kindness and appreciation,

    Hannes,
    your Swedish brother

    • Rosanna

      Thank you ..

    • Paula Martin

      Thank you sharing, so true , and heart opening

  • Joanne Pitt

    Hello Rob, persistent thoughts of you prompted me to write tonight. A mixture of emotions have arisen and collapsed into a beautiful sadness. I’m not sure it is mine and it can’t find full expression in me, so I am sharing, incase others are feeling this too.

  • Jacqui McCarney

    Would love some news soon. Yes, feeling some grief right now, hoping it is just personal stuff, and nothing to do with how you are Rob. Xxx Jacqui

  • Suzanne Laura Kammin

    Thank you for this update, Rob. I was just wondering today when we would hear from you! I am happy to learn that you have found a doctor who is willing to push the envelope and aim high and that you feel it is the right thing for you. Of course, we are all hoping for the best possible outcome. Wouldn’t that be the greatest gift! I continue to reread your book and listen to your talks every day over and over again and they continue to inspire and guide me in my ever-deepening practice. I will keep sending thoughts of metta and healing for you out into the cosmos, hoping that that my wishes for your good health and longevity might be of benefit in some small yet tangible way.

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Bless you Rob, beautifully written as always and straight from the heart. I bow to your generosity of spirit in sharing with us this difficult and challenging part of your journey. I realise the tears and tenderness I feel for you are also deep tenderness I feel for myself and the world…
    Glad you are taking some control over your treatment, that will help and also I hope the treatment works for you too! Take care sweet friend xxx

  • Margaret

    Hey yippee! So wonderful to hear from you Rob and read your ever inspiring message. What a wonder you are! Wishing you well for your treatments. Much love, Margaret

  • Janey

    Hello dear Rob, thank you for sharing so much of what is happening for you with us. It is very inspiring to read about your inner experience being so filled with joy and awe, in the midst of such great challenges with your body. It is indeed testimony to the fruits of practice and the profound opening of the heart.
    I hope you will forgive me if I make a suggestion for healing amongst the countless I imagine you have received. Matthew Manning, who is a world renowned healer who lives in Ashburton, has had a high rate of success working with cancer patients and he is on your doorstep. I met him last month and felt him to be very genuine, open and warm-hearted.
    Much love to you. Janey xx

  • Cathy

    Dear Rob,

    I’m so glad to hear your news of progress and your continuing dharma voice.

    Wishing you well,

    With gratitude,

    Cathy

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob,

    Thank you for your clear and fearless update.
    Would that I had a fraction of your equanimity in the face of my modest challenges!
    I am glad that you are supported by such good people.

    Judy x

  • Jennifer Muller

    Hi Rob.
    Thank you for sharing what’s happening for you – for me, you sharing openly really helps to keep myself open, you show how we can be in life in the face of difficulty, and of course generally, knowing we will die.. thanks for being a great teacher this way 🙂
    It is good to hear you have got a new doctor who is on your “cure-team” as it were. When I read that, it felt like there is so much positivity in that mere fact and I am glad you have someone medically who walks with you wherever you might need to go (treatment-wise, as you describe).
    When you describe how some days are mostly filled with fulfilling medical needs, for me this sense comes up that I reckon we all know when we have to do things that we rather not spend so much time on and yet we know (and accept) that they need to be done. I wish you ease with those days, and plenty of natural daylight.
    It is inspiring to read about the fruits of practice and I wish the universe heaps plenty more beauty and joy on you!
    To infinity and beyond. Jennifer

  • Lina

    Hello Rob,
    I was recently introduced to your teachings through one of your guided meditations on compassion that was assigned in the master’s program that I am pursuing in mindfulness for educators. The clarity, wisdom, and love that you transmit through your words is something quite extraordinary and unlike anything I have experienced before. In searching out more of your guided meditations and teachings, I fell upon your website today and read of your current challenges. Reading your words, I am struck by your strength and compassion in the face of your illness. Thank you so much for your teachings! I feel such excitement and gratitude as I consider the great list of your teachings and the wisdom you so openly share. May you carry this suffering with compassion Rob. May we all carry it with you. May you abide in joy and peace. With boundless love, Lina.

  • Lina

    Thank you Rob for the update and for sharing your journey with us. Wishing you so much strength and compassion. With great love, Lina.

  • cheryl

    I continue to wish you well and send you metta with so much more .
    Xcherylee

  • Andrew Broadhead

    Continuing to send lots of love, Rob. Looking forwards to sitting with you and Catherine in 3 months time.

  • Oriana Lea

    You are with me every day, Rob, and are a reference point in so much of what I do. I feel so fortunate to have you in my life. Sending warm good wishes and much love for continuing good progress…..

  • Joanne Pitt

    Hello Rob, sending you a big thank you for your latest update and warm wishes and gratitude always. Joanne

  • Jennifer Muller

    Dear Rob, thank you for the update on your medical journey. For 2017 I wish you continued success with the treatment, plenty of strength and ease, and ceaseless joy and wonder at enquiring into this life. May it be a year full of happiness for you 🙂 Jennifer

  • Paula Martin

    Thinking of you rob, and sending metta to you and all around you. Grateful this near full moon night to feel connected to this sangha so full of heart, and looking forward to the Spring retreat , with gratitude, Paula xxx
    sharing a poem that feels close to heart with this recent transition through winter solstice …..

    For Light

    Light cannot see inside things.

    That is what the dark is for:

    Minding the interior,

    Nurturing the draw of growth

    Through places where death

    In its own way turns into life.

    In the glare of neon times,

    Let our eyes not be worn

    By surfaces that shine

    With hunger made attractive.

    That our thoughts may be true light,

    Finding their way into words

    Which have the weight of shadow

    To hold the layers of truth.

    That we never place our trust

    In minds claimed by empty light,

    Where one-sided certainties

    Are driven by false desire.

    When we look into the heart,

    May our eyes have the kindness

    And reverence of candlelight.

    That the searching of our minds

    Be equal to the oblique

    Crevices and corners where

    The mystery continues to dwell,

    Glimmering in fugitive light.

    When we are confined inside

    The dark house of suffering

    That moonlight might find a window.

    When we become false and lost

    That the severe noon-light

    Would cast our shadow clear.

    When we love, that dawn-light

    Would lighten our feet

    Upon the waters.

    As we grow old, that twilight

    Would illuminate treasure

    In the fields of memory.

    And when we come to search for God,

    Let us first be robed in night,

    Put on the mind of morning

    To feel the rush of light

    Spread slowly inside

    The color and stillness

    Of a found world.

    – John O’Donohue, To Bless the Space Between Us:

    A Book of Blessings

  • Rosanna

    Thank you Rob. Every good wish for this new year. Love

  • Rosanna

    Thank you, Rob. Every good wish for this new year! With love, R.

  • Jill Bird

    Warm wishes and peace to all of this wonderful sangha and of course, to you dear Rob. So many gifts and so much beauty! I loved the O’ Donohue poem. I shall read it out to my sangha at home.

  • Hi dear Rob, i am just reading your book ‘Seeing That Frees’ – thank you for this excellent work – it is indeed freeing in bringing together so many different skillful means on the path.
    i wish you all the best for your journey and share the blessings of my practice with you,
    santacitta

  • penny g

    Hi Robji, it’s really lovely to hear that you’re doing so well… I am thinking of you often, with lots of love and good wishes, Penny

  • Bernadette Vincent

    That is wonderful news indeed <3
    Big love from Phnom Penh, Cambodia!

  • Hazel

    Jumping for joy, best news, metta, metta,metta

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob, so pleased to hear your positive news! Bodies can be mysterious things, the doctors don”t always have the full picture. And thank you for the photos. It is spring now, everything is waking up, I hope beautiful spring Devon lifts your spirits and consolidates this positive turn in your condition. Love Judy.

  • Julia

    Hi Rob, great news 🙂 that lifted my heart and brought a big smile to my face :). Love the photos. Lots of love and best wishes.
    Julia

  • lindsay

    FANTASTIC news Rob! So great to read, and to feel into our giant-sangha-heart doing a joyful somersault. Much love to you, Mark, Catherine and everyone for the upcoming retreat xxx

  • Lina

    Thank you Rob for sharing this wonderful news! I am rejoicing in this moment and sending you so much love.
    Lina

  • Stephen

    Wonderful news!
    With boundless metta.

  • penny g

    Dearest Rob, I am so happy for you! Tons of love xxxx

  • deborah

    Great news & great photos, tho the guy on the left … I dunno. Happy you can cut back on the chemo & hope you are feeling better all the time. Have a wonderful retreat; I’ll be thinking of all of you there. thanks also for putting some of our music on this page! A nice addition.

    xxxxxxxx deborah

  • Nathalie Bourquin
  • Luisa

    Dear Rob
    Most certainly those eyebrows are a serious fashion statement 😉 Good choice!
    Delighted to read your news and to see your impish spirit. The body reacts in mysterious ways, which is way Medicine is as much guess work as it is science.
    I am sorry I will be not be at your retreat next week, but hope to be at the next one whenever that is. Enjoy it and thank you for sharing your news, your music and your teachings.
    May you be well and be healed in fantastic ways.
    Luisa

  • Rosanna

    E MA HO! Such beautiful news!!! Thank you, Tugice-nang! Impressive pictures, Archie looks irresistible.. Metta and Spring to all of you travelling together in the ark!

  • Mary Booker

    Such good news! I am very much looking forward to the retreat. Lots of love from all in the Exeter Sitting Group. Mary

  • Joanna Graham

    Dear Rob, wonderful and amazing news. So happy. What a day! Thank you for sharing the news and the photos. Much love to you and your fabulous team. Wishing you a great retreat. Love Jo xx

  • Psychology Videos

    Good luck on your retreat. Learning Active Imagination at the same time as the prior retreat “Path of the Imaginal” has been rewarding. In active imagination we are supposed to act on our internal voices/archetypes/needs and your instructions that we can honour them but we don’t have to act on them reduces a lot of stress. Thank you. ~ Richard

  • Heather

    Wonderful news, I am so pleased for you, what an inspiration you are!
    You might like to watch this, a short 2 min clip from YouTube, David Attenborough, very beautiful.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8WHKRzkCOY

  • June A.

    Wow, that is such good news! May your healing continue. And the eyebrows…

  • Ollie Frame

    Wow. Really great news Rob. Very uplifting to read that and to see your wide smile and bushy eyebrows. Ollie

  • Oriana Lea

    FAN-TAS-TIC, Rob! I am sure that your smile on receiving that news reflects my own on hearing it. Sending love and all good wishes. Xx

  • John McLane

    Hi Rob, This is such a delightful update. I love the pictures and to see that smile and glint in your eyes. You’re often in my thoughts. Sending you endless metta and love, John x

  • Anne F

    Hey Rob,
    So very pleased to hear your good health report – very heartening! 🙂 May the healing continue…Sending you love, Anne xx

  • Adrian Allen

    Very happy to read this latest update Rob, I will be thinking of you in my metta practice and wishing you improved health to come. Adrian

  • cherylee

    You are truly blessed Rob .
    Thank you for taking good care of yourself.

    My thoughts will continue to be with you.

    Much love

    Cheryl

  • Judy63

    Spring is everywhere. I hope that Devon is looking beautiful.

  • Paula Martin

    Dear Rob, today, i am so enjoying your new talks posted on dharmaseed – eros and the brahmaviharas at present – so beautiful , this talk feels a gorgeous and very whole next ‘piece ‘ having explored and sat with the anatta practices in your book , it feels a wonderful invitation to open to the divine , the emptiness and the fullness of all threads of being ‘human’ , i m also enjoying a sense of delight at your new teachings , thank you for continuing to explore and share, sending you continued well wishes for your body mind and heart ….and lots of love Paula xx

  • Joanne Pitt

    Hello Rob, it was so lovely to hear your update in March. I wasn’t able to be on retreat with you all this time for ‘The Alchemy of Desire’ but I can feel how the sangha are exploring the theme in our Facebook group and it’s beautiful to read and share their explorations, along with my own. I imagine the Devon countryside is becoming very lush at the moment and you are out in it when possible, enjoying the world around you. Know how much you are being wished well, in every moment.

  • David Roth

    I’ve just been speaking to Rob in West Ogwell. I couldn’t get over how well he looks, it really made my day. With love and God bless you Rob.
    Irene and Dave at Middle Barn
    xxx

    • Chandima

      Thank you for sharing this. I was thinking of Rob and it’s lovely to know he is doing well.

      • David Roth

        I’m so glad I could share this with you. I was delighted to see Rob. God bless.

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob, I do hope you’re doing well. It sounds like from your updates that you are. I hope you don’t mind me using this forum for another reason as I know you are passionate about the environment and the impact of pollution. Here’s a petition to help phase out diesel https://secure.greenpeace.org.uk/page/s/no-new-diesel-cars
    and the New Scientist article specifying why we should ban it.
    https://www.newscientist.com/article/2131067-diesel-fumes-lead-to-thousands-more-deaths-than-thought/
    Your probably already aware of this.

    That last post from David Roth made me smile 🙂

    Take care my friend!

    Sabu x

  • Padraig

    Dear Rob, We have not met in person but I wanted to express my gratitude to you for your teachings. They continue to inspire and nourish me and encourage my shy soul to explore myriads of little infinities.
    I thank you and wish you countless blessings on your journey. Pádraig.

    “The hour is striking so close above me,
    so clear and sharp,
    that all my senses ring with it.
    I feel it now: there’s a power in me
    to grasp and give shape to my world.

    I know that nothing has ever been real
    without my beholding it.
    All becoming has needed me.
    My looking ripens things
    and they come toward me, to meet and be met.”

    Rainer Maria Rilke, The Book of Hours (I, 1), translation by Anita Barrows & Joanna Macy

  • Rosanna

    Dear Rob, may your wishes come true! With much metta. rosanna

  • D Urso Rosanna

    Happy Today, Each and Every Day Rob! Auguri di Infinito Bene. Sarva Mangalam.. plus English Rain Of Blessings 🙂
    Buon Compleanno for the coming today! (just realized your birthday is tomorrow)

  • Joanne Pitt

    Happy Birthday Rob, you’ve been in my thoughts persistently today so I thought I’d check in to say Happy day to you today and everyday.

  • Mabeth Ciurans

    YAY Dearest Rob magical!
    Deep bow to you and your regular oncologist! And tons of love and hugs.
    Take care dear friend.
    Much metta Mabeth

  • Lina

    This is wonderful news! Thank you for sharing so openly and for allowing us to walk this journey with you in some way. I feel such gratitude for your words now and for all your teachings. My heart is with you beloved Rob. With joy, Lina

  • Judy63

    Dear Rob – thank you for your update. Certainly mixed positive messages and areas of uncertainty and confusion, but meantime, cause for celebration. Just to add that I participated in the retreat at Gaia House that finished last week, at one point I looked out of the window and was pleased to see you walking past the window outside. I had not seen you at all since your diagnosis, so it was nice to see your face again. Good luck with everything, and as you say, will be nice to have a break from the chemo. I do admire your grace when presented with these unfolding challenges. Take care of yourself, love Judy x

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Dear Rob – Thank you for the update. Very pleased to hear about the scan result and I hope the break from chemo will bring its
    own benefits. When I dip into your book and listen to your many talks on Dharmaseed it’s just like receiving timeless echoes
    from our conversations so your teaching feels very much alive. With love, Ivan

  • Mike Heverin

    Dear Rob,

    Thank you for the good news. I wish you many healthy times ahead. Your work has been an inspiration to myself and others.

    Thank you.

  • Suzanne Kammin Baron

    I’m so glad the scans were clear, Rob but am sorry to hear about your doctor. It sounds like a stressful situation for you to be in; however, if anyone can be in the not-knowing with equanimity, I know it is you. I have no doubt that your imaginal work will help you navigate through all the uncertainty with grace. Love, Suzanne

  • Bernadette Vincent

    Such wonderful news :-). I admire your resilience and your will to continue to love and be amazed by life. My young nephew is battling his third cancer at the young age of 21, with only one transplanted kidney left. I’m also in awe of his courage. Wishing you all the best. Hugs and loveXXXX

  • Simon

    Great news Rob. Good to hear that. Sending you lots of good wishes.
    Simon

  • Anne F

    Very pleased to hear the good news of your scan result, Rob. Thanks for updating us. I hope the confusion around your treatment becomes clearer, and that all conditions keep coming together in the best possible way to make you well. Your instruction and guidance often come to me in my practice, gently nudging me in the right direction, and my heart feels touched and grateful for the wisdom you have shared. Wishing you many blessings and sending much metta,
    Anne xx

  • Adrian Allen

    Although there is uncertainty in regards to your treatment, it is great to hear such positive news from this last scan Rob. I hope that the situation improves further and I, along with others I’m sure, are sending you much metta at this time.

    Best wishes
    Adrian

  • coppe

    Glad to hear your positive news regarding the scans. It must lift your spirits. In the world of modern medicine, as elsewhere in life, it would seem that it is not always easy to find the best path to take through the jungle of uncertainty. But we carry on as best we can in the knowledge that we are not alone in our seeking. All the very best. Peter J.

  • Psych Reviews

    Great to hear the positive test results. Best wishes on your continued recovery!

  • Sabu

    Hi Rob,
    I’m under the impression you’re doing very well despite the ‘un/certainty,’ as you put it. Congratulations on being cancer free. Perhaps you are where we all are ‘uncertain’ and you’re aware of it but we believe we are certain. How to totally be in that place/space without any reaction whatsoever? Could that be our goal or journey? I hope you find the strength to continue doing what you love.
    A sunset for you.
    All the best
    Sabu x

  • Lina Blanchet

    Rob,
    You describe it as, “the mystery of grace,” and I feel enveloped by this mystery as I read your words. To be a witness to this lens with which you are viewing this unfolding of events in your life, is a play of this grace in my life. I’m inspired here to think that the practice really does work, that equanimity is possible, and that a heart can hold infinity. Thank you for sharing so openly. Love and strength to you Rob!
    With Gratitude,
    Lina

  • Simon

    Good to hear your oncologist is available again to support you. Hope you’re enjoying the beauty of the autumn up on Dartmoor.

    Love,
    Simon

  • Jennifer Muller

    Hi Rob,

    thank you for the latest update, it is great to read that you can continue with the treatment (cause like you say who knows what’s there at cellular level) but that you are well overall also! It is a blessing 🙂

    Whilst on twitter, I came across tweets relating to John Coltrane, and I had to think of you (I remember you talking about him in one/some of your talks). So here are the links (about a new mural in Philadelphia, and a new film), you might find it interesting/like ?!

    http://wrti.org/post/new-mural-rising-honor-john-Coltrane

    http://www.coltranefilm.com/

    Keep well, J.

  • June A

    Thanks for these updates Rob. I’m glad to read the good news from September and also that your doctor is back and that you are in good spirits, benefitting from practice and support near and far.

    • June A

      Sending best of thoughts from across the sea.

  • Yasmin

    Thanks Mark for the update. It is wonderful to hear that the scan results show no cancer, and that really does sound quite miraculous. But very sorry to hear about the crash you were both in. What a shock. Glad everyone came out of it basically okay (except the car) but really sad to hear of Rob’s broken ribs on top of his broken heal. I hope the treatment for the osteoperosis will be helpful and that all the broken bits will heal up soon. I’m wishing so much for Rob to enjoy some good health. Sending much love, Yasmin from Brighton X

  • Kathryn Buxton

    Great news about the remission Rob but so sorry to hear about the car crash and the uncomfortable aftermath….it’s been a long and frustrating path but maybe some light at the end of the tunnel now. Wishing you good health and speedy recovery. x

  • Lina

    Thank you Rob and Mark for this news. The joy of the clear scan entwined with challenges of broken bones and the accident….my heart goes out to you both holding you close in my heart through this path. Your resilience teaches me to never give up. My wishes for your strength and well being continue dear teachers and friends. With love always, Lina

  • Ivan Hatvany

    Sending love & warm wishes after this good and bad news. As someone below said seems like real light at the end of the tunnel with the cancer. You both continue to inspire so many people,

  • Jonas

    Hey Rob. Just wanted to say that your 2015 Imaginal retreat talks have completely transformed my views of meditation practice and have contributed a great deal to getting me out of a rut. Thank you so much. I hope your health situation improves soon!

  • Jill Bird

    Hello Rob and Mark, I just heard last night about the osteoporosis, broken bones and the car crash – a big shock! I’m so relieved that you are both otherwise unscathed and that Rob’s spirit has come through these very tough times. For me, your investigation of and personification of the Dharma is very special and an inspiration and let me know how you get with the hybrid!

  • coppe

    Glad to hear the good news and it is good news. The relief and optimism Rob must feel about the condition of his pancreas more than offsets the diagnosis about the condition of his heel and the effects of the car crash. Every new day is a gift. Best wishes to you, Rob, and to Mark and all those giving direct support to Rob in these difficult times. Peter Jenner.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes