Szabo’s exploration leads to course offerings at Windsor
IRON RIVER—For nearly her entire life, Colleen Szabo has been a seeker, though these days she calls herself an explorer.
In her teens while growing up in the suburbs of Boston, Szabo began doing yoga and found herself intrigued by all kinds of metaphysical subjects. Along the way, she has “explored” Christianity, “A Course in Miracles,” Sufism, the teachings of Rajneesh/Osho, Gangaji, Eckhart Tölle, Martha Beck, Rumi, and more.
Not that she stuck out in her family. After all, her mother was a Theosophist (an esoteric religious tradition) and her father Dave, a Crystal Falls native, had once met the famous Indian guru Rajneesh, had developed a philosophical interest in Taoism and practiced Tai Chi.
So after earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology at the University of New Mexico, Szabo enrolled in the counseling psychology program at the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, now Sofia University, in Palo Alto, Calif. where she earned her master’s degree. Transpersonal psychology is a sub-field or “school” of psychology that integrates the spiritual and transcendent aspects of the human experience with the framework of modern psychology.
Szabo is now an Iron River-based writer, symbologist, graphic artist and counselor and is a certified mindfulness meditation instructor. About a year ago, Szabo received the inspiration to begin teaching mindfulness to the local community and has begun offering two eight-week courses - on mindfulness-based cognitive therapy and mindfulness of pain relief.
Szabo holds the courses at her Inner Dance Studio, located in Room 312 of the Windsor Center. She plans to start a new eight-week session for both courses in the next few weeks.
“I’m a writer and I’ve been working on writing in the self-help arena, mostly using my symbolic skills,” Szabo said. “I was pretty much getting sick of staring at a computer and then I had a really huge inspiration, ‘I can teach mindfulness!’”