About Shashi Salma Darling

I’m a conscious dance facilitator, dance movement psychotherapist, dharma and mindfulness teacher,  I’ve been facilitating conscious dance and meditation in a variety of contexts since 1998.

My methods are theoretically and practically informed by Insight (vipassana) buddhist meditation, western psychotherapeutic models and ecopsychology.

During an MA in art and ecology (Falmouth 2006) I developed Wild Divine Dance as a mindful embodied awakening practice incorporating stillness and movement, indoors and in the wild. Much of the process was developed on beaches in Devon, Dorset and Cornwall, and on Dartmoor, UK.

My offerings are led by a number of substantial dance movement awareness trainings since 1997, my work with clients and students over 20 years, embodied engagement with the landscape and directing performance in nature. Its also informed by over 2.5 years cumulative silent Theravadan buddhist retreats, dharma study, and my personal experience and ongoing journey in healing trauma and living heartfully.

As a Dance Movement Psychotherapist between 1998-2009 I held Dance Movement Psychotherapy for groups and individuals in mental health services for adults with eating disorders, drug and alcohol addiction, chronic severe depression, anxiety disorders, diagnosis of schizophrenia, bi-polar, borderline personalty disorder; in forensics, with care-givers, refugees, unemployed and with adults and teenagers with physical and learning disabilities.

My study of meditation practices has led me to spend extended periods in monasteries and retreat centres in India, Europe and the USA since 1989, primarily in the Buddhist Theravada ‘vipassana’ or Insight tradition.  My dharma teaching is informed by numerous regular silent retreats since 2001.  The longer ones have been 1 month in 2003, 6 months in 2010, 1 month in 2012 and 4.5 months split through 2017.  I have a particular interest in the meditation practice of deep absorptions (metta jhanas).  My trainings in teaching the dharma have included the Dharma Facilitators Program with Christopher Titmus 2003-2006, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) training with Dr Jon Kabat-Zinn, Dr Bob Stahl at the University of Massachusettes, and Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy training at Bangor University. I’m recommended to teach Theravada Buddhist Meditation (Insight Meditation) by Ajahn Amaro of Amaravati Monastery, Hertfordshire.

I have taught mindfulness and meditation since 2001 in the community, in non-profits, in UK National Health Services mental health clinics alongside clinical psychotherapy practice, and to NHS staff. I now teach the general public as Director of The Mindfulness Consultancy and a mindfulness trainer and retreat leader at University College London, London Mindful, and for Meru Health (digital therapeutics), Finland.  I’m a visiting dharma teacher at Heartcamp, San Francisco and a mentor on Insight Meditation Center’s online dharma course based in Redwood City, California.

I’m registered for private practice and supervision with the Association of Dance Movement Psychotherapy UK (ADMP), an elected member of the ADMP Council, trained with Joanna Macy to teach ‘The Work That Reconnects’ and a member of the UK Ecopsychology Gathering.

My dance, movement and body based training has included:

• 2001 – 2004  Dance Movement Psychotherapy MA level training (registered for group and individual psychotherapy, equivalent to UKCP / MFT)
• 2013 Diploma in psychotherapy supervision, Roehampton University, UK
• Since 1997  5 Rhythms training with Gabrielle Roth, Susannah & Ya’Acov Darling Khan, & other teachers
• 2005 MA Art and Ecology (mindful movement in nature) Falmouth University
• 2001-2009 Walk of Life Environmental Movement with Helen Poynor
• 2001 – 2009 Jungian Authentic Movement with Leah Bartal and Linda Hartley, UK and Tina Stromsted, USA
• Since 2001  Anna Halprin’s RSVP cycles
• 2011-2013 member of Anna Halprin’s Performance Lab, California, USA
• 2002 Amerta movement with Suprapto Suryodarmo (Prapto), Java
• 2001-3 Eco somatics with Sandra Reeve, UK
• 2014 -present  The Open Floor with Kathy Altman, Lori Salzman, Andrea Juhan and Vic Cooper
• Body mind centering with Bonnie Bainbridge Cohen USA
• Butoh with Marie Gabrielle Roti, UK
• Continuum with Emilie Conrad, USA
• Contact improvisation
• Since 1997  Scaravelli yoga with Gary Carter, Peter Blackaby, Diane Long, John Stirk, UK, Esther Myers Canada.
• Registered Yoga Elder with the Independent Yoga Network.
• 1999 UK Certified massage therapist, aromatherapist and reflexologist