Calm Conversations in the COVID Era

By Steven Libowitz   |   May 7, 2020

Gail Brenner, the longtime Santa Barbara-based clinical psychologist who held regular weekly Meetups for meditation and more, left town for an extended journey around the world shortly after publishing her book Suffering is Optional: A Spiritual Guide to Freedom from Self-Judgment and Feelings of Inadequacy in November 2018. Now back in the U.S. after a three-month visit to Asia and currently sheltering-in-place in Oakland, Brenner has begun conducting “Calm Center Online Conversations” over Zoom every Tuesday morning at 9 am.

The events are an opportunity to come together “to support each other in the field of love and presence at this challenging – and sacred – time,” beginning with a guided meditation then time to reflect on the opportunities being given to slow down, turn inward, and be with our experiences. “We’ll practice welcoming whatever arises – the fears, frustrations, and gifts of this unique time. You are most welcome with your fears, doubts, questions, and insights – and simply to share sacred space together,” according to the invite.

“These calls have been lovely with people sharing what’s in their hearts to express,” Brenner wrote in an email.

The events are free and are recorded for later viewing on Brenner’s website. Visit for registration to receive the Zoom link.


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