• Healing Relaxation: Opening and relaxing the heart and mind

    Teacher: Pippa Cope and Jayne Pilossof
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 24 February 2017 - Sunday 26 February 2017

    pippa-copejayne-pillosofEverybody experiences tranquillity from time to time because this open quality of mind is natural to all. Yet, often our bodies and minds tighten and freeze to life’s challenges and stresses, even though creative solutions and expansive ideas are most likely to arise from a relaxed state. “Healing relaxation”, designed by the late Akong Tulku Rinpoche, a deeply wise Tibetan Buddhist healer and a team of western healing professionals, is a simple, highly practical, yet profound programme which helps people repair the strains and tensions resulting from the conditions of modern life, and prevents them from developing in the first place. Relaxation and awareness practices can enhance our ability to access calm, expansive states of mind intentionally throughout our day. In this workshop, we will explore the benefits of developing such calmer states of mind, and learn specific relaxation, breathing and visualisation techniques.

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    Pippa Cope has been involved with the Tara Rokpa Therapy Process, “Healing Relaxation, a creative fusion of Tibetan and Western Wisdom”  since 1997, and was authorised as a senior helper in SA. Having worked in the caring, therapeutic and development fields in the UK, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka, she is currently the resident manager of the Tara Rokpa Centre, Groot Marico.

    Jayne Pilossof was born in India and left when she was twelve years old to live in South Africa. After a few years, her family moved to what was then Rhodesia, where she has lived ever since. She qualified as a textile designer, but when her children were born, she left formal employment and worked in the informal sector as a craft person, producing textiles and jewellery. She was one of the initial members of the "Zimba Craft Co-operative". In 1986, she studied kinesiology and various other alternative therapies, and currently has a successful practice in Harare. In 1995, she began her own Tara Rokpa Therapy  (TRT) process, and is now  a  TRT Trainee Graduate. 

  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 03 March 2017 - Sunday 05 March 2017

    ian_weinbergIn a series of talks and Mindfulness meditation sessions, we will explore the chemistry which mediates the effects of mind states on the body (psychoneuroimmunology - PNI). The talks and demonstrations will show that we can attain optimal wellness and performance by getting to know our temperament and personality traits; by being more present-minded; and through sensible, informed ways of living and behaving.

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    Ian Weinberg is a consultant neurosurgeon by profession and a pioneer in the science of applied psychoneuroimmunology (PNI). His Triangles Model© became the cornerstone for PNI instruction and intervention. A significant proportion of these interventions reflect traditional Buddhist principles. He is consulted widely both by private and corporate individuals in the implementation of wellness and performance enhancing strategies. 

  • "Plentiful" Takes The Cake! The big book of Buddha food: a cooking retreat

    Teacher: Paul Atkinson
    Cost: Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 10 March 2017 - Sunday 12 March 2017

    paul-atkinsonAfter Quiet Food and the tasty Cake the Buddha Ate, eaten to the last crumb, comes the next gastronomic adventure: Plentiful: The Big Book Of Buddha Food. It is filled to the brim with scrumptious vegetarian dishes, spectacular salads and tempting treats. Join Paul Atkinson, the chef behind the recipes, for a weekend of edible delights that will intrigue the palate.  Learn a few tricks to master some of these simple dishes that are so enjoyed at the BRC.

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    Paul Atkinson and Amy Best are the husband and wife team behind "Pudding and Prana". Together they offer retreats that nourish the body and calm the mind. Paul, the former chef and co-author to the much anticipated third BRC cookbook "Plentiful: The Big Book of Buddha Food", is passionate about vegetarian food. Amy is a firm believer that yoga can create more joy in our busy lives and her love for travel has allowed her to teach and study yoga in far flung locations over 15 years. While based in Underberg, they will conduct retreats combining food and yoga. As two former BRC volunteers, they love returning “home” to the Centre.

  • Chi Whiz - An introduction To Chi Kung

    Teacher: Colin Kemery
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Tuesday 14 March 2017 - Thursday 16 March 2017

    colin-kemeryChi kung is an ancient art that combines aerobic conditioning, meditation and relaxation without the extremes of physical exertion, making it the ideal practice for people of every age and of all levels of fitness. Learn the gentle rhythmic dance of the shamans, which increases your healing life force and dissolves blockages in your body by restoring the natural flow of Chi. A programme of twenty easy-to-learn chi kung movements, practised regularly, will prove to be invigorating and a life - changing experience.

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    Colin Kemery conducts his popular sunrise chi kung sessions at the BRC. He is currently the Estate Manager at the BRC, and has been a Buddhist and yoga practitioner for 40 years. He lived and worked in the UK, France, Denmark and the USA, and is a musician and song-writer with a passion for cooking and nutrition. 

  • Open The Heart And Still The Mind: A joyful awakening

    Teacher: Sue Cooper
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 17 March 2017 - Tuesday 21 March 2017

    sue-cooper-2014This retreat integrates meditation and the wisdom of Buddhist psychology and is held in a contained and nurturing atmosphere of contemplative silence. Through the teachings and meditation practices which cultivate calm, spaciousness and compassionate wisdom, we will discover ways to free ourselves from the addictive patterns of our fear-based conditioning, the cause of so much of our suffering. As we integrate our body, heart and mind through grounding ourselves in the present moment with an embodied awareness and a kind and compassionate heart, we will discover a powerful healing and transformation, which lead to a joyful awakening. In addition to sitting and walking meditations, Sue will offer chi kung movement meditation as well as short, individual sessions. There will be time for restorative rest, as well as for silent walks in the beautiful gardens of the BRC. Beginners as well as experienced practitioners are very welcome.

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    Sue Cooper is a clinical psychologist with almost 25 years of experience as a psychoanalytic psychotherapist, working in private practice in Cape Town since the early 1990’s. She has a long-standing interest in the interface between psychological and spiritual approaches to self-discovery and inner healing, and has attended Buddhist meditation retreats, mainly in the Theravada tradition, for over 30 years.  She has been   inspired by the teachings of Ajahn Chah of the Thai Forest tradition and is deeply grateful to her primary teachers: the late Godwin Samararatne, Kittisaro and Thanissara, Ajahn Sucitto and Stephen and Martine Batchelor. She has a particular interest in exploring how our practice enables us to embrace our humanness, integrating love and loss in our lives, so that we can live and die with compassionate awareness.  She offers weekend and longer retreats throughout South Africa. Contac: sue.stillmind@gmail.com.

  • Yogis Live Longer: Hatha yoga for health and resilience

    Teacher: Howard Lipschitz and Christine Withiel
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 24 March 2017 - Sunday 26 March 2017

    howard_lipschitzchristine_withieleYoga asanas (postures) massage the internal organs, nerves and glands, improving their performance. They enhance energy levels and stamina, flexibility and agility of the body and mind, enabling you to lead a more active and creative life. Sleep and digestion are improved.  Yoga’s focus on the body and correct breathing improve energy levels and the immune system.  As you let go of resistance and allow the muscles and tendons to release into the postures, you also learn to let go of resistance in other areas of life, accepting what is and what cannot be changed, helping you to make better choices. Wear comfortable clothes. Bring a yoga mat.

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    Howard Lipschitz avoided spinal surgery for 35 years after he was introduced to Iyengar yoga in Israel. He works as a massage therapist and teaches yoga and chi kung at The Jivananda Centre for Well-being in Durban. He competed internationally in archery and practised karate and fencing for many years.  He brings aspects of these disciplines and chi kung to his yoga teaching which is based on his personal experiences and which have been reinforced by regular trips to ashrams in India.

    Christine Withiel travels to India regularly to further her knowledge of Hatha Yoga and the philosophy of yoga. Christine and Howard Lipschitz often invite others to join them on their trips to India so that they can also deepen their experience.  She runs a teacher training programme each year at The Jivananda Centre for Wellbeing which is a Registered Yoga School with Yoga Alliance. She is passionate about sharing the philosophy and physical benefits of yoga to help people to deal with the stresses of life. She is also qualified in Ayurvedic Primary Health Care, Massage Therapy and Reflexology, Reiki and Body Alignment.

  • Meditation For Beginners

    Teacher: Elizabeth Gaywood
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 31 March 2017 - Sunday 02 April 2017

    elizabeth-gaywoodThis is an interactive retreat designed to help the “beginner” to understand and experience the basics of meditation practice. Meditation is a tool to transform the mind so that one’s life and experiences become more meaningful. This is achieved through simple, yet effective, Mindfulness techniques, as well as analytical meditation practices. Different techniques will be experienced so that retreatants can take with them tools to assist the transformative process in daily-life. No prior knowledge of meditation is necessary. The retreat will be held in an atmosphere of silence and contemplation.

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    Elizabeth Gaywood has been involved in Buddhism since the 1970’s, and co-founded the Tibet Society of South Africa in 1995. She is the current chairperson and co-ordinator of the TSSA and over the years has been involved with the visits of his Holiness the Dalai Lama, and other Tibetan teachers. She has travelled to India many times, mainly to receive Teachings and visit monasteries, and to attend Tibet Support Group meetings. She has conducted courses on "meditation for beginners" in Durban for the past 7 years and has completed training in Transformative Mindfulness Methods, which has accreditation from the University of Toronto, Canada.

  • The Awakening Shift Experience: Realise your magnificence!

    Teacher: John Homewood and Liz Kitching
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 07 April 2017 - Sunday 09 April 2017

    john_homewoodliz-kitchingDissolve your old paradigm…and heal now.
    Shift now and live your potential.

    This transformational workshop addresses three of life’s most fundamental questions: Who am I? What do I really want? and What is my life’s purpose? The uncovering of these answers is a liberating and powerful experience which changes not only the way we see ourselves, but also the way we see others and the world as a whole. The Shift Experience is based on John’s own deep wisdom and insights, taking retreatants through a shift from head to heart. John also draws on enlightened teachings such as Eckhart Tolle’s and A Course in Miracles. The retreat includes Wisdom teachings with practical exercises, guided meditations, simple yogic breathing and stretching exercises, quiet stillness interludes and question and answer sessions.

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    John Homewood is an international inspirational speaker, corporate trainer, personal growth facilitator and spiritual life coach. He is also an entrepreneur and founder of "Wisdom to Nourish". His early career in the corporate world was a steady climb from sales to senior management, and by the age of 30, became a director of a publicly listed company, before leaving to start his own business. He has a passion for expanding people’s awareness and understanding of their potential and has the ability to impart deep truths in an easy and understandable way.

    Liz Kitching has a passion for yoga and nutrition and is a natural health consultant specialising in shifting emotions through movement and breathing. She co-facilitates the Awakening Shift Experience spiritual retreats with John Homewood.

  • Sitting Quietly - Doing Nothing: A taste of sustained meditation

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 14 April 2017 - Monday 17 April 2017

    louis-van-loon-smlWe tend to associate a fulfilling and engaged life with a busy mind.  If we are not actively fretting or thinking about something or other, we will seek diversion through entertainment to occupy our minds.  Even at night we will helplessly enter yet another world of fantasy, memory and mental projection: we dream. Buddhist meditation puts us in touch with a deeper sense of awareness from where this frantic mental activity can be seen for what it is: a bubble bath of sensations and emotions. Except for some instructions and fire-side chats in the evening, we will cultivate a state of sustained calmness and clarity in an atmosphere of Noble Silence. This retreat is a foretaste of what traditional, longer, silent retreats are like. The retreat includes mindful walking, periods of rest and reflection, and a traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony.

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    Louis van Loon lectured in Buddhist philosophy at the Universities of Cape Town and Durban-Westville for 22 years.  He established the Buddhist Retreat Centre in 1980 and, along with his wife, Chrisi, directs its affairs. Both were involved in the compilation of the BRC’s popular recipe books “Quiet Food”, “The Cake the Buddha Ate” and “Plentiful:The Big Book Of Buddha Food”. His interest lies in the psychology of meditation and in the relationship between art, science, religion and philosophy.  He is an architect and consulting civil and structural engineer in private practice in Durban. He teaches Sumie, Japanese brushwork painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo. 

  • Strong In Body, Peace In Mind: Rejuvenate and restore with yoga for optimal health

    Teacher: Margot McMaster
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 21 April 2017 - Sunday 23 April 2017

    margot-mcmasterJoin Margot for a yoga retreat where we explore and delve into our strength and vitality in order to deepen and develop peace and serenity in our minds. We will connect the two with the power of breath and mindful awareness. Enjoy a progressive sequence of extended yoga classes comprising dynamic vinyasa flow, yin yoga, yoga nidra, mantra and more. Working in sequence to unlock and expand, we will explore arm balances, hip openers, backbends and twists to challenge your body to release, and then restore vitality, riding the wave of your breath as a way to surrender into postures and ultimately cultivating peace in mind. We work in Krama (or stages) so the retreat is open to all levels of fitness, but be prepared to be challenged. Please bring a mat, water bottle blanket and a strap.

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    Margot McMaster holds both Vinyasa Flow and Kundalini Yoga teacher certificates. She was guided by Mercedes Sieff, Shiva Rea, Guru Dharam and Darryl O’Kieffe, among others. She worked as the in-house yoga instructor at BBC Worldwide in London for four years, and taught in studios there, and in Costa Rica, India and Sri Lanka. She currently lives and teaches in Nottingham Road, KZN, where she integrates meditation, pranayama, mantra and heart yoga into her practice.