Cara Lai has spent most of her life in pursuit of meaning and happiness, which landed her on a cushion for much of her adult life. Throughout many mind-body adventures including many long-term retreats, she has explored the concentrated mind, chronic illness, the value of pleasure, the power of maternal energy, and connection to the earth. In the past, Cara has worked as an artist, wilderness guide, social worker and psychotherapist. Now she finds herself intently focused on the dharma path, practicing both on and off the cushion in unconventional ways, and using intuition as her guide. She tries her best to teach from the most authentic and vulnerable place she can muster, and is still learning about the contentment of simply existing.
Nakawe Cuebas Berrios
Nakawe Cuebas Berrios feels blessed to be able to study and journey through different healing and spiritual traditions in her life. The common thread between the many traditions that have touched her path has been the belief that health and wellness depend on a balance between the mind, body, and heart. The healing systems that she has studied are: Midwifery, Chinese acupuncture, Ayurvedic medicine and yoga. Spiritually the practices are Lucumi (Cuba), with roots from the African Yoruba culture and indigenous ceremonies. These practices helped to strengthen her connection to the Earth and Cosmos. Her ancestral home is Puerto Rico, blending the Spanish, African and Taino Indian roots that flow from her ancestors, and give her guidance and strength daily. Her Nuyorican roots are honored by her experiences growing up in New York City.
By profession she has been a Midwife for 40 years and has worked in community health centers in the Bronx providing services of midwifery/well women health care.
For over 20 years she has immersed herself in the teachings of the early Buddhist schools, mainly Theravada and Thai Forest. She studied in the Dedicated Practitioners Program and Community Dharma Leaders Program affiliated with Spirit Rock. She teaches Meditation through the Buddha Dharma. Presently she is in the IMS Teacher Training program, where she shares the Dharma by assisting and teaching on retreats. For 10 years she has served as a mentor with the BAUS Prisoner Correspondence course.
She believes we all have the potential to live a life of wisdom and compassion for our benefit and for the benefit and happiness of all beings. These are the teachings of liberation, the truth that she wants to share. She gives gratitude to all her teachers who have guided her throughout the years.