The Awareness Podcast, Ep.# 71: Living in Not-Knowing with Jenny Beal and Hѐlen Vink -Miksang: Expressing the Beauty of the Ordinary World

hѐlen vink -miksang jenny beal living in not knowing Jun 08, 2023

In this podcast, Jenny and Hѐlen discuss the Dharma Art of Miksang, a form of contemplative photography, and its role as a spiritual practice on the path of beauty.

Hѐlen describes how difficulties in her life led her to the Dharma Arts and Shambhala Buddhism. Miksang practice starts from being open and available. We have a tendency to overlook moments of pure, fresh seeing, and conceptualise what we see, giving everything a name and a form. In Miksang, instead of photographing objects, we express the simple, direct and brilliant experience of a flash of perception, before the mind has applied any concepts to it. It’s an effortless way of meeting the sacred world at any moment during daily life. When we let go of likes and dislikes, good and bad, and the egoic desire to create a beautiful photo, we discover beauty all around us, shining in the ordinary.

To find out more about Hѐlen and the Dharma Art of Miksang, including details of her online and European events you can visit her website here:
The website contains examples of photos produced during the Miksang training courses that Jenny attended with Hѐlen.

If you are interested in exploring spiritual awakening, we invite you to register for our free 7 Days to Awakening self study course, created by Lisa Natoli and Bill Free.

About Hѐlen:

Hѐlen Vink is a practitioner and teacher of Miksang, a method of contemplative photography.
In her late teens she was an expert ice-skater and focused all her efforts on becoming an Olympic speed-skater. But two weeks before the Dutch championships, an accident put an end to her Olympic dream and her whole world came crashing down. She felt totally lost. Initially, lacking any clear direction, she spent much of her time partying, discovering ‘normal' life and experimenting with drugs'.

Her love of art led her to art school where she studied photography and sculpture. However, the contemporary art scene wasn’t what she was really looking for.

After another period of despair, she came across the Dharma Arts teaching of spiritual teacher Chögyam Trungpa and rediscovered her innocent, childlike joy. Her focus was initially on the Dharma Arts, but she went on to learn meditation and study the Shambhala teachings and Tibetan Buddhism, living and working in Shambhala Centres in France and the US. After a number of years, her Dharma teacher, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche, encouraged her to go back out into the world.

She completed her Miksang training and qualified as a Miksang teacher with Michael Wood, who developed the original curriculum for Miksang training. She now runs Miksang courses in Europe and online, sharing her joy and freedom of being fully present and connected with the beauty of our ordinary everyday experience.