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Drawings of Gertrude’s Adventures Beyond Ideas

Jaya Julienne 




Notes on Meditation

and Aliveness


Open Dharma



Teachings to Illuminate Your Inner Journey

Gemma Polo Pujol


Starting April 1, 2024, we will only be able to fulfill book orders within the UK and the EU.

For orders in the US, there will be a few weeks' delay.

Please inquire at 

We hope to find new printing and delivery services

to serve everybody this year.

Already Here


Drawings of Gertrude's

Adventures Beyond Ideas



I LOVE this book!  A must-have for everyone. Jaya’s brilliant work of Gertrude brings us back to what is essential and what is possible when we are present to letting life happen. A gift to us all. 

~ Elizabeth Cutler, co-founder SoulCycle and Peoplehood

Each page is a portal to a tangibly new energy, full of freshness, poignancy and delight. Each gaze brings something new and very much alive. This collection is a gift that brings joy and possibility in equal measure.

~ Claudia Horwitz, social change facilitator, writer and yoga teacher


(Local taxes may be applied in some locations)

With calligraphic simplicity, Jaya Julienne Ashmore draws on over 35 years of meditation experience to bring alive Gertrude, a character with a tall hat and an ample heart. Right from the earliest drawings in 2017, Gertrude gets lost and feels her way along, with courage and wonder, to the most subtle and profound human experiences. Relatable yet inspiring, Gertrude hints that we may already have what we need within this messy mind, world and lifetime. In Already Here, Gertrude keeps finding aliveness right here, no matter what happens.

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Gertrude - handful of letters



International meditation teacher Jaya Julienne Ashmore studied religion and art at Harvard and has taught meditation through deep rest to thousands of people over two decades.

Jaya integrates her own love of meditation—and of life—with rich experience in the traditions of Buddhism, Advaita (non-duality), yoga, Christianity, and Hindu mysticism, as well as ecology, embodied movement, and the Japanese art of Jin Shin Jyutsu®. In the early 2000s she founded the nonprofit teaching collective Open Dharma® to help people of any background light up with life in their own unique ways.

Along with making art and offering online and in-person meditation and teachings, Jaya loves gardening and being with her two children in their current home in Catalonia, Spain.


“Meditation through deep rest is trusting that aliveness is already here--we're made of life; we can't get out of it. Awareness is already here. We can relax from the work of trying to create awareness with attention. We can get to know the connection between attention and awareness, and  let awareness do the work. Let presence carry us.

~Jaya Julienne Ashmore


I LOVE this book!  A must-have for everyone. Jaya’s brilliant work of Gertrude brings us back to what is essential and what is possible when we are present to letting life happen. A gift to us all. 

~ Elizabeth Cutler, co-founder SoulCycle and Peoplehood

Somehow I feel like I've known Gertrude all my life. Yet, even as a long-time dharma friend and student of Jaya's, I couldn't have predicted her arrival.

Each page is a portal to a tangibly new energy, full of freshness, poignancy and delight. Each gaze brings something new and very much alive. This collection is a gift that brings joy and possibility in equal measure.

~ Claudia Horwitz, social change facilitator, writer and yoga teacher


From the ocean of Jaya’s own life dance, Gertrude emerges to meet the magnificence of every human heart. Already Here is powerful, simple and profound, and has a delightful soul that emanates beauty, fun and depth.

~ Gemma Polo Pujol, international spiritual teacher and author of There Is Light and Only Light: Teachings to Illuminate Your Inner Wisdom.


The Gertrude series, both knowing and naive, captures the intriguing tenderness of being human. Jaya Ashmore’s curious, peaked-hatted avatar explores and reveals the wonders of a life lived in presence, inviting readers in by weaving simplicity with depth.

~ Jessica Kerwin-Jenkins, author and wellness coach

Out of Nowhere



Notes on Meditation and Aliveness


an Open Dharma anthology

with an introduction

by Jaya Julienne Ashmore

This book is precious. It is bursting with juice and with heart. It is a kaleidoscope of colours, insights, subtlety and the taste of ultimacy. It invites us to leave ourselves behind and be swept away into life without limits. The book is a collection of wild and wonderful meditations, poems, and creative expressions by Jaya and those around her. It is a gift.

~Dr. Stephen Fulder, founder and senior teacher of Tovana




 Notes on Meditation and Aliveness


(Local taxes may be applied in some locations)


Where does creativity come from?
What is aliveness?
What is meditation—and what isn’t?

Out of Nowhere harvests the creativity, questions and wisdom emerging in deep rest meditation and daily life during a two-year online program with Jaya Julienne Ashmore and 50 meditators from sixteen countries. Interweaving thirty-three voices, Out of Nowhere speaks through words, images, teachings and practices about living a real life with courage, wonder, generosity and fulfillment. 

This intimate collection of meditations, poetry, art, inquiry and real-life experiences invites you in, to discover your own aliveness firsthand, no matter what your circumstances. Explore how Dharma arises amongst our connections, practice and in real living, artfully weaving through a moving, wide-ranging journey.


Tami Barkai


…How does it feel in the body to be like a plant in the

earth that has received the right amount of rain?

Waiting to change, to grow in one direction--roots.

And in the other direction--to step outside to the

open air, to be what it was born to be...



Anita Lintula

“...In August the previously fully accessible natural area was fenced off. One morning I woke up to the sound of trees being felled. Aspens, rowans, birches. When a big tree falls, it sounds like a deep sigh. My daughter cried seeing the men with their chainsaws. 'Will the trees grow back?' she asked. I took part in one of Jaya’s online meditation sessions while the trees were being felled, and I felt all but peaceful….”



Jaya Julienne Ashmore


What is life? 

What is deep cleaning? 

What does grief need?

How does joyfulness spread?



Emma Philander


“…We float for a while

Songbird heart and I


Petals, released,

by hands

That love

Too much…”

India-Israel Parliament slide show 3.jpg


Out of Nowhere is a bright and intimate collaboration among thirty-three authors and artists from thirteen countries across nineteen time zones.


The words and art of deep rest meditation teacher Jaya Julienne Ashmore interweave with the diverse real-life stories, poems, practices, doodles, photographs and paintings by many of the participants in her online meditation program "Out of Nowhere." Scientists, artists, teachers, activists, musicians, social workers, gardeners, yoga instructors, grandmothers, sons and sisters--the diversity of contributors offers readers permission also to be authentic and fresh. Being welcome just as we are brings forth our radiance and receptivity to Dharma, a living support from within.

Jaya founded the nonprofit teaching collective Open Dharma® in the early 2000s to help people of any background light up with life in their own unique ways. Volunteers from a dozen countries--as well as participants in retreats and programs--are an integral part of Open Dharma.


Be inspired by the honesty and authenticity of contributors Amy Selena Reynolds, Andrew Blandy, Anita Lintula, Caroline Lang, Carolyn Pallon, Danielle Kerris, Emma Philander, Erika Linton Groff, Frances Hearnden, Freema Luwisch, Hazel Butterworth, Helen Iles, Hilary Austin, Iris Winkel, Jaime Hagel, Julie Tucker, Karen Sumey, Karina Dahlum, Katurah Hutcheson, Kylie Bakker, Lisa Benson, Mary Alice Hurvitt, May Ament,  Nanda Huneman, Noon Baldwin, Odelia Weinberg Peri, Shahar Yarkoni, Shilpa Shah, Sophie Reynolds, Steph Hodgson, Tami Barkai and Tara O’Leary.

“Meditation through deep rest is not about doing nothing—we can learn to quiet down but we cannot stop life. Rest allows life to unwind knots of worry and past hurts, and leaves space for aliveness to fill us with wonder, creativity, and carefree clarity.”
~Jaya Julienne Ashmore


Pilgrims in an online Ark

I experienced the Out of Nowhere sangha as a gathering of pilgrims threaded across the planet and braided together in the online ark we created. A welcome rest break from the everyday struggle on the road. 

~ Tara O’Leary, contributor: "In the Garden"

"This book captures the heart of dharma for me and speaks it in a million different ways! Through vibrant paintings, extracts of meditations and teachings, doodles and real human stories, it connects me with what is simple, profound and beautiful about being alive"
~Emma Philander, contributor

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Gemma's Book




Teachings to Illuminate Your Inner Journey


Gemma’s book reads like her life: wild and free. Her wide-open heart is on every page, her love of depth behind each word.

Martin Aylward

Dharma teacher and author of "Ne te quitte pas: Le corps au coeur de la meditation"



Teachings to Illuminate Your Inner Journey



Publisher’s review

Some of the best spiritual books don’t rely on daily lessons or exercises but emerge instead from a place of gentle stillness, with every sentence pointing you toward peace and offering assurance that you are already on the path. Dip into this book or read it from cover to cover, and you will get a fresh perspective on your suffering, with joy and a sense of meaning arising to take the place of pain. Gemma Polo Pujol’s crystalline and powerful spiritual lessons are reminiscent of Eckhart Tolle and there’s an incredible patient wisdom that runs through the words, born out of her deep experience of life and teaching.


Over the years, people on retreats have asked me to put onto paper the words spoken in my Dharma talks, to help them remember the days of connection and keep the momentum of the inner journey. I was unsure; so much of the content of those talks was inspired by the deep connection with the specific people on the retreats at that specific time. 

A couple of years ago, I asked Danielle Kerris, an English writer, friend and long-time participant in my retreats, to play with the idea of creating a book. Since then we have distilled more than 100 talks into the pages that you have now in your hands. The book represents the essence of my teachings and retains a flavour of my English spoken in a Spanish accent.

It is meant as a book of inspiration rather than a manual on how to meditate, or how to walk the spiritual path. It is organized under chapter headings that represent, in my experience, common steps on the spiritual path. That is not to say that the journey will be the same for everyone or that the steps will happen in the same order as in the book. Our hope is that you can open the book at any point, letting the words become a meditation, a song, a whisper. If on the way you find company, and you feel held and understood, loved as you are, shaken, then these pages will have found their completion.

Inviting people again and again to wider frequencies of being is my vocation, for this place where there is light and only light is a realm that belongs to every human being and ultimately is all that is.

May these words illuminate your path.

Gemma Polo Pujol

Gemma Polo Pujol.jpg



Gemma Polo Pujol is a spiritual teacher, and co-founder of Open Dharma Europe and a pioneering eco-retreat centre in Spain. She lived in India for a number of years and embraces wisdom traditions from the East and the West. For the last two decades, she has been offering deep rest and meditation retreats around the world, one-to-one guidance and nature-based circles and pilgrimages.


Gemma Polo is as real and rare as they come, a modern day teacher with a devotional heart akin to St Francis of Assisi. She has pursued ‘her call’ with fire and great tenderness, travelling across the world and back, and has, unlike many – realized it! Gemma reimagines and infuses spiritual traditions with her fresh and original voice. How lucky we are to have her! 

~ Jess Huon, writer and Dharma teacher

Gemma’s book is a journey from inspiration to inspiration. It is a rich exploration of the spiritual path, a colourful tapestry woven from threads of her personal life journey, instructions and guidance on meditation and spiritual practice, and many beautiful insights along the way. It is full of ‘whispers that guide our heart’ to use her words, showing how we can be available and listen to the deep voices within that are longing to be heard. The emphasis throughout is that we can go beyond the functional striving for self-improvement, to a place where we are carried by the currents, we surrender to a much vaster world, we are open to the call of grace, and what seems so far away is entirely obvious when we allow ourselves to drop into it. Deep surrender opens us to our magical life, but we need a helping hand to let go, and this book is that. 

Stephen Fulder, Spiritual teacher and author of What's Beyond Mindfulness: Waking Up to This Precious Life

Written in a clear and easy to understand style, There is Light and only Light offers worthwhile read for all those wishing to look deeper into the experience of being human with an interest to uncover spiritual sensitivities.

~ Christopher Titmuss, Author of The Buddha of Love and The Mindfulness Manual

A clear and generous book. Gemma and Danielle have distilled Gemma’s teachings to bring forth an accessible and moving introduction to our pioneering work with deep rest meditation. This book can save lives, and help readers attune their meditation and living towards natural freedom. 

~ Jaya Julienne Ashmore, Founder of Open Dharma and co-founder of Dharmaloca

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