5 Benefits to Taking a Meditation Mentoring Program

November 13, 2023 | by Awakening Dharma

Stephen Doetsu Snyder offers yearly mentorships, rare opportunities to work one-on-one with an experienced practitioner and seasoned dharma teacher. You can learn more about his 2024 mentoring program, Soothing the Longing Heart, here

The benefits of going on the journey of meditation mentoring program are not at all limited to five. Mentorships are deeply personal to every individual—no one could begin to predict the expansive impact.

However, here is a brief list of 5 benefits that are the most common across the wide range of experiences one can expect from taking a meditation mentorship.

1) The depth of your practice and understanding of the dharma grows through applying what you learn to your real life.

How you experience meditation and the study of dharma becomes your personalized path. A mentor provides the time and space to absorb and apply the teachings in you own life, not only through the examples offered in Buddhist texts or seemingly obscure analogies.

Stephen has an ability to evoke a natural curiosity in the part of the student that actually can awaken. It’s never what you expect. It’s far beyond what you thought was possible. — Thomas Jedensjö, mentorship student

2) Save time and avoid frustration with wise support while exploring the inner workings of your mind.

All journeys can be more easily traversed with a companion who can answer questions, make suggestions, and offer space for potentially disorienting experiences to be heard without judgment. A mentor has been where you are in your practice and can demonstrate that critical thoughts like “I’m not doing it right” or “not going far enough” are universal feeling with which we all work, not problems to solve. Avoid internet rabbit holes and ask your mentor when you have a new experience in your practice.

3) Your mentor holds a container of peers with whom to practice and share experiences.

The camaraderie developed between peers on the path together can be life-changing. Having the support and momentum-building power of fellow practitioners is extremely valuable when it comes to the positive impact it will have on your (and their) personal growth.

Stephen’s warm-hearted style meets students wherever they are. He’s changed my life.  — Todd Lisonbee, mentorship student

4) Creating downtime between sessions to digest new material.

One-off workshops are genuinely great and an immense privilege. However, to truly go deep into the teachings and integrate them into our lives, we need time, rest, and encouragement—all things a mentorship helps to provide.

5) While you deepen your relationship to the teachings, your mentor expands their knowledge and wisdom at the same time.

Dharma study is never one-sided. The benefit you receive from deeper practice is also experienced by your mentor. An experienced teacher is always learning from their individual rituals as well as their studies with fellow meditators. It’s the ultimate win-win in awakening.

Stephen has the rare combination of being both a powerful spiritual presence and a grounded, effective teacher. His teaching supports us to look at our own places of guarding and wounding around our hearts both on and off the meditation cushion. — Katie Brown, mentorship student

Are you ready to offer yourself the space to go deep with your spiritual practice?

Stephen Doetsu Snyder now has openings available for a special mentorship program, Soothing the Longing Heart, beginning in January 2024. We hope to support your awakening through our mentorship program or the variety of offerings coming in the new year.