Making Your Mark: A Weekend of Calligraphy and Mindful Writing

with Acharya David Schneider

March 10th—March 11th

Date details +
  • £130 Full Price
Room: London meditation hall

Open to all!

For millennia, people have been making dark marks on light surfaces —from cave drawings to ink on paper as one of the most common examples. The practice of drawing and writing is intimately bound up with modern human history, and indeed has often been the medium used to record that history. In the past couple decades, however, the practice of writing by hand, has drastically declined. Our lives are increasingly engaged with digital interactions and can feel overrun with activity. Taking time to reflect on our experiences through journalling or communicating through writing a letter can truly feel like a lost art.
During this weekend programme we will look into the activity of writing by hand, whether from the perspective of calligraphy or the everyday shopping lists, birthday card or personal journaling. We will discuss some of the history of writing, including its decline, paying particular attention to the effects on us personally and on our society. 
But primarily, we will actually write — by hand, on paper. Writing exercises, both small and large scale, both formal and informal, both individual and group will take place in a sympathetic context of sitting and walking meditation, as well as group discussion.
Writing topics will be largely open-ended, but some initial cues will be given to get you started. Any sharing of written material will be entirely voluntary. 
You need no prior experience of formal writing or calligraphy to participate in this programme. Join us for a delightful exploration of the simple and profound act of writing.


The Shambhala Art curriculum was developed from the Dharma Art teachings of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. These teachings about creativity show us how we can relate to ourselves and our world with clarity, discipline, and playfulness. They bring together the creative process and meditation practice, not just for making art but to enliven the creative potential of our whole life. 

Shambhala Art Labs explores these teachings in innovative ways and are further enriched by themes from the broader Shambhala teachings to support, expand, and deepen our understanding. This Shambhala Art Lab, “Making your Mark: A Weekend of Calligraphy & Mindful Writing”,  draws on the principles of communication. As such it emphasises the aspect of Speech, from the traditional divisions of Body, Speech, and Mind as fields of contemplative engagement.

This weekend will be taught by Acharya David Schneider. David began to practice Zen under Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, and continued as an ordained priest under Richard Baker Roshi, at the San Francisco Zen Center. Later he undertook studies with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and now serves Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche as an acharya (senior teacher), a position to which he was appointed 1996. David has published two well-received biographies of Zen teachers: Street Zen, about the gay activist and hospice-founder Issan Dorsey; and Crowded by Beauty, a biography of Beat poet and zen master Zenshin Philip Whalen. A calligrapher of many years, David’s works have been exhibited internationally. He is a teacher of Dharma Art and lives in Cologne, Germany.


There will be a materials fee for this course of less than £10

The early bird registration fee of £110 is available until 3rd March after which time the fee will be £130. A concession fee of £80 is available for those earning below £17,000 per annum and a concession fee of £60 is available for those earning below £12,000.  Please contact [email protected] to request a concession. 

Payment Terms and Conditions

Please register and pay in full on registration.  Cancellation up to 1 week before the programme will receive a full refund, after that there will be a £20 fee charged for cancellation up until 9th March after which no refund is granted. Please note the cost of materials is currently being determined - we endeavour to update/confirm the resulting total programme fee as soon as possible.

Further Information 
Sat/Sun: tea/coffee & registration 9.30am, start 10am.   Finish 6pm on Saturday, 5pm on Sunday.

Lunch will be provided, any allergies please include details in the comment box on the registration screen 
For further information please email: [email protected]