Winter Retreat 2018, lean into yourself

Our winter retreats are our most popular event of the entire year – last year we had over 20 people register and participate in the online daily practices and in-person special events.

This year, our retreat lasts for seven days starting February 18th through February 25th. Our theme, “Lean In” comes from a conversation I had with my friend and mentor, Aditi Devi Ma, who is herself in the depths of a six month retreat. We joked with each other that “retreat” may not quite be the right word for what you’re doing when you dedicate a set amount of time to silence, stillness, and isolation. “If anything,” she laughed, “you’re leaning deeper into yourself – there’s really nowhere to hide.”


I was blessed to have tea with Aditi before she entered her six month retreat last fall. In her ever spontaneous and carefree style, she found a plastic googly eye on the ground and knew just where it belonged! 

Think about it – we are surrounded by distractions all day, every day. From the moment we wake up, we are bombarded by advertisements, social media, telephones, work, commute, radio, family, and finally – falling asleep with a good book. There is actually very little time free time for our minds – even when we’re eating, we’re thinking about the next thing we’re about to do. When we’re walking up the stairs, our minds are racing with calculations, judgements, fears – no wonder as a culture we are more busy, but less productive. We work more, but have less time to enjoy nature, our families, even just sitting on the porch watching the sunset.

But then, what is left when we take out the computer, the television, the radio, the books – even telling our family that we need a break for a while?

Our retreat this year will guide you gently through letting go of the myriad distractions, leaning in to your essential self – the pure, joyous, and free being that you were born to be, and introduce you to techniques to support staying with that clear, quiet, open space, even when the world comes rushing back in. 

You are cordially invited to join us from February 18th through the 25th for our annual “lean in”, joining others with positive, healing, and open intentions to receive and share the blessings of spiritual practice. We do not favor any singular religious system, but draw inspiration from the many faiths and spiritual leaders of the world to guide our journey of self-discovery. As always, our homepage will become a digital shrine on which to place your intentions and share prayer requests.

The Winter Retreat is always donation based, everyone is encouraged to participate as much as their lifestyle, commitments, and spirit allow. Throughout the week, you will enjoy spiritual readings from Thich Naht Hahn, Rumi, Rabeinu Bahya, Thomas Merton, The Dalai Lama, and others. Each day is structured with gentle yoga, pranayama or t’ai chi practices to help calm and center the mind and body; inspirational readings support our dedication to practice; and guided meditations allow for a deepening of our inner transformation. All participants have access to one-on-one guidance to help integrate spiritual practices in a busy day, and find a structure that fits with your beliefs, and goals for your retreat.

Won’t you join us? Click here to register now, and receive a free PDF all about winter retreat!

Blessings and gratitude, Arwen

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