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Detailed List of Retreats

"Doing Your Own Thing" Self Retreats are available throughout the year between the Conducted Retreats (and occasionally on weekends).

These retreats are in Noble Silence.

25 June 2017
  • Iyengar Yoga: Deepening your practice

    Teacher: Judy Farah
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R. 250 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 25 June 2017 - Thursday 29 June 2017

    judy_farahThe upsurge of interest in the ancient practice of yoga attests to its proven physiological and psychological benefits. But our sedentary, western lifestyle has stiffened our limbs and spine to such an extent that many people find the yoga asanas (poses) difficult to perform. Iyengar yoga evolved to deal with this problem - safely, without forcing the body into harmful contortions. Iyengar uses simple, but carefully calibrated props and other supports to achieve postures that would otherwise be unattainable except after years of practice.  This retreat is suitable for beginners and for those who may have practised other forms of yoga.

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    Judy Farah has taught the Iyengar method of yoga for 13 years. She attended a number of intensive teaching workshops at the Ramamani Institute in Puna, India, under the direct tutelage of the living exponent of this method, Guru Yogacharya BKS Iyengar and his daughter Geetaji.

30 June 2017
  • Walking The Sacred Way: Poise, grace and presence in walking

    Teacher: Marguerite van der Merwe
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 30 June 2017 - Saturday 01 July 2017

    marguerite-van-der-merweThe essential art of walking - this most ordinary activity of daily life - has been degraded into mindless, extreme exercise. As we change this conditioned mindset, we can restore the poise and elegance of body-mind. In this retreat, we will learn the basics of good body management in daily life as we sit, stand, bend, walk and do what we do. These basic activities are hugely compromised by the stresses and challenges of our lives and times, including sedentariness and techno-speed, resulting in strain, injury (back pain being the norm), diminished attention-focus and performance. Current research reveals the all-round benefits in walking and walking well. We will re-learn walking as nature designed it - effortlessly, gracefully, consciously - in an atmosphere of quiet attentiveness, thereby restoring our inherent poise, grace and kindness. Natural conscious walking then becomes an art, a therapeutic life skill which leads to health and well-being. This is meditation-in-action: a mindful body and embodied mind.

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    Marguerite van der Merwe has been teaching The Alexander Technique for twenty eight years, as well as tai chi/chi kung. She is author of "The Art of Walking and Eve-olution" (under her birth-name Marguerite Osler), with more than thirty years' experience in the mind-body-spirit domain. Concerned with development and enrichment of the whole individual, she weaves together principles and practices of scientific, psychological and spiritual understanding into the realm of the body, and into the rich art of living consciously, and constructively.  In 2016, she was awarded the Chancellor's Medal of the University of Free State for exceptional service to the country. She is the sister of Antony Osler.

02 July 2017
  • Rejuvenating The BRC: A family retreat with children in mind

    Teacher: Sheila Berry, Lihle Mbokazi and Sipho Msiya
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge children: (up to the age of independence) 50% discount
    Dates: Sunday 02 July 2017 - Thursday 06 July 2017

    sheila-berrylihle-zulusipho-msiyaCome and join us for some serious fun and adventure this winter!  Spend 4 days filled with games and stories, nature walks, making art and toasting marshmallows under the stars in the beautiful environment of the BRC. This is a family retreat aimed at children of school-going age (10 and up) and offers a basic introduction to Buddhist thought and practice as well as guidance for parents and children to explore spirituality through connecting with nature and creative expression. Children must be accompanied by an adult, preferably a parent.

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    Sheila Berry is an ecotherapist and wilderness psychologist who reconnects people to the Earth as the source of physical, mental, psychological and spiritual well-being and health. For the past two years, she has headed the Save Our iMfolozi Wilderness campaign and worked closely with the Fuleni communities to prevent Ibutho Coal's proposed open cast mine on the boundary of the iMfolozi Wilderness Area, a rhino sanctuary. Her work with indigenous people in Africa, particularly hunter-gatherer communities and rural Zulu Communities, has been a vital source of inspiration for her.

    Lihle Mbokazi  passion and compassion for the Earth, all creatures and for people who are suffering, pushed her from her humble beginnings to becoming the first Zulu woman wilderness trail guide with the Wilderness Leadership School. Her enthusiasm for Wilderness has taken her to the UK and the World Wilderness Congress in Spain. She is currently working for "EarthLore" in KZN as a community animator, engaging with the elders and gleaning wisdom from them. She co-founded "FezaFunda", an environmental education centre at the beautiful Kei mouth in the Eastern Cape and is part of the Zulu Trail Team that exposes young students to the culture and traditions of rural Zulu families. She is currently studying psychology.

    Sipho Msiya His love for nature and plants started when he was at school. In the afternoons, over the weekends and holidays, he worked at the local nursery in Howick. When he left school, he was employed by the Dusi-uMngeni Conservation Trust in their alien clearing programme along the banks of streams and rivers. When Beacon Hill, a 40 ha gem of mist-belt grassland in Howick that supports many critically endangered plants, needed to be cleared of invasive aliens, Sipho was the obvious choice to direct this project. More recently, he has become a trail guide with the Zulu Trails.

07 July 2017
  • Karma Or Fate? Why things happen the way they do

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 100 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 07 July 2017 - Sunday 09 July 2017

    louis_van_loonEvolutionary Biology and Quantum Physics reveal a universe that is infinitely interconnected and where everything co-arises with a multitude of other things. It is a dimension of reality that is spaceless and timeless: an Implicate Order, or Singularity. Every single event that has ever happened or has the potential to happen is embedded in it. As living beings, we are woven into this unimaginably complex causal network where nothing escapes being recorded and is ready to act out whatever needs to be resolved. This is strikingly similar to the Buddha’s teachings on Dependent Origination (paticca samutpada}: karma.

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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.

14 July 2017
  • "Hell is other people" - The magic, misery and mystery of relationships

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R.150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 14 July 2017 - Sunday 16 July 2017

    louis_van_loonHell is Other People: these words by the French existentialist philosopher, Jean-Paul Sartre, often seem to be too true for comfort. But we can neither choose our parents nor our siblings. And that is only the beginning of a life that is dominated by interpersonal relationships - some of which will prove to be harmonious, others deeply problematic.  Relationships expose our expectations and projections; the psychological games we play with ourselves and others. We tend to stagnate and become rigid, unavailable, because we fear that opening up to another person leaves us vulnerable to manipulation, abuse and hurt.  But that is good news: relationships can become dynamic opportunities to move beyond narrow self-interests and fixations - enabling us to grow beyond our inhibitions and boundaries.  This retreat suggests ways of doing this.

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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.

21 July 2017
  • How To Draw What You See: A pen and ink sketching retreat

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 21 July 2017 - Sunday 23 July 2017

    louis_van_loonYou don’t have to be or become an artist to be able to sketch what is in front of you.  Everybody can see that some things are shorter than others or to the left or right of something else.  So you simply draw it like that.  You don’t have to be - or become - an artist to do that.  All you need is one eye and two fingers.  Participants will be taken through a series of practice sessions in this type of “Seeing-Drawing” after which they will draw a variety of subjects, from still life through to landscape scenes and portraits - all in the space of a weekend. Sketching is one of the loveliest of skills anybody can acquire. You can take your pen and sketchbook anywhere and experience what it is like to be truly present in where you are.  All materials will be provided.

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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.

28 July 2017
  • Finding And Keeping Your Centre

    Teacher: Tessa Pretorius
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 28 July 2017 - Sunday 30 July 2017

    tessa_pretoriusThe Buddha’s teachings emphasise the importance of taking care of ourselves in order to be of service to others.  Most of us, whether we are professional caregivers or people caring for family, colleagues or friends, miss this vital step.  When we are told to take better care of ourselves we either feel we don’t have the time or don’t know how to do that or where to begin.  The secret lies in finding your Centre – because when we are centred in our own wholeness we are able to deal with what life throws at us.  This retreat will teach you practical tools to help you find, regain and retain your balance and centre so that you can ride life’s merry-go-round with equanimity.  This retreat is ideal for care workers and anyone wanting to be more effective in caring for themselves.

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    Tessa Pretorious is an ex-trauma counsellor, activist, philosopher and writer, and has been facilitating workshops on self-care and mindfulness for over fifteen years. She was trained by Patricia Cane (founder and creator of Capacitar International) whose work she has incorporated into training programmes for NGO's, hospitals, members of the justice system, the SAPS, as well as in her own course "Softening Anger Mindfully". She believes self-care is essential for personal well-being and, as in Buddhist practice, essential to the service of others.

04 August 2017
  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R.250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 04 August 2017 - Sunday 06 August 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.  

     
09 August 2017
  • Stoep Zen

    Teacher: Antony and Margie Osler
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R. 450 surcharge
    Dates: Wednesday 09 August 2017 - Sunday 13 August 2017

    anthony-and-margie-oslerStoep Zen means to apply traditional Zen Buddhism to contemporary life in South Africa - to be able to meditate in a chair on a stoep as well as on a cushion in the meditation hall.  This is a Zen retreat that makes a bridge between formal Zen practice and daily life. It includes meditation, talks, exercise, interviews and fireside chats and is held in silence.

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    Antony Osler was the first meditation teacher at the BRC in the early 1980's. He spent some years as a Zen monk with Joshu Sasaki Roshi and later received "inka" from Zen master Dae Gak of Furnace Mountain. A legal arbitrator in his professional life, he has published three popular books on Zen life in South Africa: "Stoep Zen"," Zen Dust "and "Mzansi Zen" (Jacana Media). In 2016, he was awarded the Chancellor's Medal of the University of Free State for exceptional service to the country.  He lives with his family on a farm in the Karoo where he sits on the stoep, meditates in an old shearing shed and holds Zen retreats with his wife, Margie.

    Margie Osler is a senior student of Zen Master Dae Gak. She leads Zen retreats jointly with her husband, Antony, and runs regular workshops for abused and traumatized children.

     
18 August 2017
  • Yogis Live Longer: Hatha yoga for health and resilience

    Teacher: Howard Lipschitz and Christine Withiel
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 18 August 2017 - Sunday 20 August 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 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.

25 August 2017
  • The Heart Sutra

    Teacher: Chamtrul Rinpoche
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 25 August 2017 - Sunday 27 August 2017

    chamtrul rinpocheThe Heart Sutra can be said to be the most essential point of the 84,000 sets of teachings that the Buddha gave. It is said that only an incredibly fortunate being can receive teachings on this Sutra. Taught during the second turning of the wheel at Rajgir, Vulture’s Peak, the conversation which became the Heart Sutra occurred between Avalokiteshvara and Shariputra whilst the Buddha was engaged in absorption meditation. The conversation addresses the emptiness of inherent existence of the five aggregates of a person and is thus a summary of all Buddha's wisdom teachings.

    Understanding and experiencing emptiness is necessary to alleviate gross and subtle misconceptions of mind. This leads us to the state beyond suffering, Nirvana.

    Chamtrul Rinpoche will explain the key points of the sutra, which are obscure to the ordinary mind, to help us deepen our insight into the true nature of existence.

    “Gate Gate Paragate Parasamgate Bodhi Soha” (the essence meaning of the heart sutra condensed into mantra)

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    Chamtrul Rinpoche has taught for over 20 years to thousands of Tibetan monks and foreign students (monks, nuns and lay people), in Tibet, India and other countries. In the words of Rinpoche himself: “Teaching is what I do in this life. Wherever someone asks me to teach, I am there.” 

    More details on Chamtrul Rinpoche’s life can be found on Rinpoche’s offical site in the page “autobiography”.

    For more information and for updates on Rinpoche’s teachings please visit https://safricachamtrulrinpoche.wordpress.com 

01 September 2017
  • The Genius Programme: How to move from habit thinking to genius living

    Teacher: Graeme Butchart
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 01 September 2017 - Sunday 03 September 2017

    graeme-butchart

    We are all born genius. That is to say we all begin with the full spectrum of intelligence, analytical, operational, emotional and creative. Yet, as our journey through life unfolds, we begin to adjust and conform to societal structures and norms, one of which is the manner in which we acquire the abundant knowledge, that is there for the taking. These standards and conformities ultimately produce a different thinking and behavioural mind from the one we started with, often to our detriment. Much of what we learn is beneficial. Equally, a great deal of our gained knowledge actually ends up getting in our way, limiting our thinking and reducing our experience of life, stunting our growth, defeating self-development and self-awareness. The Genius Programme helps identify those voices of judgement that have captured our thinking and created unproductive habits. It introduces new liberating tools that rebirth the intuitive and creative aspects of ourselves, and provides everyday practical exercises that connect us to the genius within.

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    Graeme Butchart journeyed into education, following thirty years in the “rabbit hole” of advertising. He lectures in creativity, innovation and communication at numerous institutions and business schools. His passion for the development of the willing mind was the motivation to study consciousnesscoaching in 2005. Working with such diverse groups and individuals helped him to recognise that everyone has vast creative potential, left mostly untapped, causing many to remain “stuck” in their habits of living. Wishing to contribute, he wrote The Genius Programme, a practical workbook that helps to guide the individual into an innovation of self and the discovery of purpose. 

03 September 2017
  • Health Retreat: Discover Your Best Self

    Teacher: Dr Kaz Kiepiel
    Cost: 3 or 6 days' accommodation + see below
    Dates: Sunday 03 September 2017 - Friday 08 September 2017
    kazalette Participants have the choice of spending 3 or 6 days with Dr Kaz in the healing, pampering environment of the BRC, exploring and discovering their best possible self. Your daily package includes:

    Two consultations with Dr Kaz
    Daily massages and complementary therapies
    Interactions relating to physical, mental and emotional health
    Mindfulness and movement classes
    Nature walks
    Wholesome and healthy meals and drinks

    For more information, and cost see: www.doctorkaz.com

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    Kazalette Kiepiel (Dr) (aka Dr Kaz) is a leading specialist in integrative medicine. Qualified as a medical practitioner, registered in both England and South Africa, she is also a specialist kinesiologist and Health and Life coach who practises integrated holistic and functional medicine by combining orthodox medicine with an array of complementary health tools and skills. Her extensive experience and knowledge of allopathic medicine, homeopathy, nutrition, kinesiology, colour therapy, use of the SCIO and SCENAR bio-feedback machines, together with her empathy and coaching skills, make her unique in her field. She also gives lectures, speaks on the radio and runs health retreats and workshops on nutrition, stress management and holistic health care. Dr Kaz also gives lectures, speaks on the radio and runs health retreats and workshops on nutrition, stress management and holistic health care.

08 September 2017
  • Meditation For Beginners

    Teacher: Elizabeth Gaywood
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 08 September 2017 - Sunday 10 September 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.

15 September 2017
  • A Taste Of Mindfulness: On being here - now

    Teacher: Lisa Firer and Craig Henen
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 15 September 2017 - Sunday 17 September 2017

    lisa_firercraig_henenOpen to newcomers and seasoned meditators alike, this retreat gives participants a taste of the practice of Mindfulness: developing moment-to-moment, non-judgmental awareness. This powerful practice enables one to relate with equanimity to whatever is unfolding before us and makes it possible to work more creatively with the stresses and demands of daily living.  Based on the work of Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, this retreat combines traditional eastern wisdom with modern science and psychology and aims to generate a greater sense of present-mindedness, less reactivity, and more relaxation, body awareness and self-compassion through mindful exercises, yoga, group discussion and reflection. This unique format enables one to integrate this practice into one’s daily life.

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    Lisa Firer is an artist and facilitator with a background in education and psychology. She offers, in a variety of contexts, both mindfulness and Biodanza, a dance-movement system of human development. Since 2010, she has been developing Stillness-Dancing, an integration of movement and meditation practices For the past five years, she has been developing Stillness-Dancing, an integration of movement and meditation practices. She studied the teaching of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction at the University of Massachusetts, USA, Centre for Mindfulness in 2005; she is an internationally accredited Biodanza facilitator and has recently completed a certification in offering Mindfulness-based Interventions with Stellenbosch University.

    Craig Henen is an executive coach and facilitator, offering several mindfulness-based interventions to individuals and groups. He works with an integral framework of experiential learning, systems theory, emotional intelligence and mindfulness practices, providing a stimulating and safe environment for executives and their teams to examine, evaluate and improve their leadership styles, skills, and processes. He co-facilitates with Lisa Firer in a range of mindfulness applications.

22 September 2017
  • Open The Heart And Still The Mind: Embracing life with courage and trust

    Teacher: Sue Cooper
    Cost: 4 days' accommodation + R. 300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 22 September 2017 - Tuesday 26 September 2017

    sue-cooper-2014This 4 day retreat, integrates meditation and the wisdom of Buddhist psychology and is held in a nurturing and containing atmosphere of contemplative (Noble) silence. We will focus on the cultivation of life-affirming qualities of heart and mind to support the development of courage and trust, necessary for growth and discovery. The Spring theme of new beginnings will help to inspire and encourage fearlessness in the face of change and uncertainty, so that we can embrace our lives with a greater freedom, compassion and joy. In addition to offering short, individual sessions, Sue will offer daily sessions of chi kung movement meditation, to enhance the integration of body, heart and mind. There will also be time for restorative rest, silent walks in the beautiful gardens of the BRC.

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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. www.suecooper.co.za  

29 September 2017
  • Body Sensing: Feed Me Green! The art of harmony, balance and flow

    Teacher: Yasmin Lambat and Nicholas McLean
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 29 September 2017 - Sunday 01 October 2017

    yasmin-lambetnicolas-mcleanEnlightened healing methodologies tend to revert to ancient and traditional insights. These held that traumas - be they emotional and psychological or physical and organic - involve both the body and the mind. They avoid the drug regimes advocated in modern allopathic medicine which tend to divorce the mind from the body. Body Sensing is a Somatic (mind-body) healing therapy that uses the body’s innate wisdom to release tension and negative feelings and helps to rewire negative moods through centering and realigning our sense of being through movement and mindfulness. Mindfully integrating breath, mood and movement promotes a sense of harmony, balance and flow which has proved to be particularly effective for people suffering from stress and anxiety and the resulting physical symptoms such as chronic back pain, migraine fibromyalgia and other autoimmune conditions. If moods and emotions influence body physiology, how do they influence the food choices we make and how can we learn to choose more wisely? Embodying mindfulness by eating with more awareness is a powerful way of developing both physical and emotional well-being.

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    Yasmin Lambat is a Mindfulness Coach and Somatic Movement Therapist, registered with the International Somatic Movement Educators and Therapists Association (ISMETA) in the USA. She believes that physical health is an embodiment of how we feel, and influences our overall well-being. She was always curious about the mind, but never considered that the body/mind could be one she experienced it in her own body. That turning point led her to study and research the scientific literature on the body/mind connection and how moods and emotions influence body physiology. She established her own Somatic Mindfulness practice called "Body Sensing", which helps to restore energy, vitality and integrity (a state of being whole) using mindfulness and movement inspired by yoga, tai chi and other Somatic practices like Feldenkrais.

    Nicholas McLean finds purpose in helping people to experience healthy living through mindfulness, eating for vitality and growing energising food. His discovery of the healing benefits of eating simple whole food has led to creating smoothie, juice and salad cleansing programmes that can be easily created in any kitchen. As a wellness coach, his relationship with food wasn't always a healthy one until an enlightening journey through India led him to becoming a vegetarian Yogi. Being receptive to life's lessons, he has adopted a moderate and holistic approach to wellness.

01 October 2017
  • A Mindfulness And Wellness Retreat: How to release tension and toxins, restore well-being, and re-align our body-mind

    Teacher: Yasmin Lambat and Nicholas McClean
    Cost: 4 days' accommodation
    Dates: Sunday 01 October 2017 - Thursday 05 October 2017

    yasmin-lambetnicolas-mcleanIf you often feel that you are exhausted, overwhelmed, need to calm down, want to start eating healthily but…This retreat will explore a new way of living through simple, yet profound practices of mindfulness. It will help you to relieve stress and pain, restore energy and vitality, reshape your body and mind, teach you to make wiser choices and live life with more purpose. We will explore body-centred mindfulness to shift habits through mood and food. You will learn an integrated approach to wellness, which will not only enliven your body and mind during your stay, but you will be left with tools to live life better.

    For more information, and course fee, contact Nicholas: retreat@ifeelcalm.com / 0824379776.

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    Yasmin Lambat is a Mindfulness Coach and Somatic Movement Therapist, registered with the International Somatic Movement Educators and Therapists Association (ISMETA) in the USA. She believes that physical health is an embodiment of how we feel, and influences our overall well-being. She never considered that the body-mind could be one until the moment she experienced it in her own body. That turning point led her to study and research the scientific literature on the body-mind connection and how moods and emotions influence body physiology. She established her own Somatic Mindfulness practice called Body Sensing, which helps to restore energy, vitality and integrity (a state of being whole) using mindfulness and movement inspired by yoga, tai chi and other Somatic practices such as Feldenkrais.

    Nicholas Mclean finds purpose in helping people to experience healthy living through mindfulness, eating for vitality and growing energising food. His discovery of the healing benefits of eating simple whole food has led him to create smoothie, juice and salad cleansing programmes that can be easily made in any kitchen. As a wellness coach, his relationship with food was not always a healthy one until a journey through India led him to becoming a vegetarian Yogi. Being receptive to life’s lessons, he has adopted a moderate and holistic approach to wellness.

06 October 2017
  • Zen Pen: A writing - being and meditation retreat

    Teacher: Dorian Haarhoff
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 06 October 2017 - Sunday 08 October 2017

    dorian_haaroff.jpgLooking at your image in a clear stream,you answer the question by your very presence

    In this workshop we explore the connection between writing and meditation. We write and meditate on the many changes and transformations we experience as we journey along the river of our lives.  We consider how creativity steadies the boat and how writing helps us dip the oars into dark water so we may navigate the river safely.

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    Dorian Haarhoff  is a writer,  story-teller and mentor.  Passionate about developing our innate creativity and imagination, he believes in the power of stories to spread loving-kindness, to grow the moment and bring healing. Dorian’s workshops are based on his text, The Writer’s Voice.  He draws his inspiration from mythology, whole-brain theory, narrative therapy, Zen, creation spirituality, the new physics and eco-and Jungian psychology.  He is a former professor of English (Namibia) and facilitates story/writing workshops. His poems appear in Quiet Food and The Cake the Buddha Ate

08 October 2017
  • Mirror, Lens And Window: The Art Of Journalling

    Teacher: Dorian Haarhoff
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 08 October 2017 - Wednesday 11 October 2017

    dorian_haaroff.jpgSome record only what has happened to them; but others record how they happened to the universe. Henry David Thoreau

    The word ‘journal’ comes from Old French ‘day’. So it is our daily encounter with ourselves through the mirror, lens and window of words and silence. ‘Journal’ echoes the word journey, as we travel through inner and outer landscapes. In this retreat we write with the ear, eye and heart.

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    Dorian Haarhoff  is a writer story-teller and mentor.  Passionate about developing our innate creativity and imagination, he believes in the power of stories to spread loving-kindness, to grow the moment and bring healing. Dorian’s workshops are based on his text, The Writer’s Voice.  He draws his inspiration from mythology, whole-brain theory, narrative therapy, Zen, creation spirituality, the new physics and eco - and Jungian psychology.  He is a former professor of English (Namibia) and facilitates story/writing workshops. His poems appear in Quiet Food and The Cake the Buddha Ate.

13 October 2017
  • Nia Technique: Experience The Joy Of Movement

    Teacher: Susan Sloane and Karyn Cardoso
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 13 October 2017 - Sunday 15 October 2017

    susan sloanekaryn cardosoLearn why Nia is a lifestyle practice that has a vitalising impact on your nervous system and strengthens your ability to sustain body-centred awareness. Feel how every cell in your body can vibrate in joy and how you are connected to everything that surrounds you. It generates the sensation of loving and appreciating your body through music, movement, dance and martial arts. It is more than a  cardio dance fitness class.

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    Karyn Cardoso has danced since she could walk. Her interests lie in philosophy, science and spirituality. A Waldorf Kindergarten teacher by profession, her passion is to share Nia, the dance of life, with everyone, as it connects us to our essence, bringing joy, fitness and healing on all levels.

    Susan Sloane is a Nia Black Belt Instructor, and is the resident White Belt Trainer for Africa.  She has been involved in health and healing modalities for more than 13 years.  She runs a Nia community-based centre in Johannesburg which offers classes, workshops and intensive training in Nia and yoga for people with a variety of fitness levels.

20 October 2017
  • Sacred Drumming:Exploring Natural Rhythms

    Teacher: Richard Ellis and Marc Kress
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 20 October 2017 - Sunday 22 October 2017

    richard ellismarc kressDrumming and music-making are ancient ways of transcending one’s routine lifestyle, opening ourselves to spiritual realms of healing and creativity, which is experienced as liberating and rejuvenating. The whole universe is a continuous flux of pulsating rhythms. Drumming connects us to these rhythms, facilitating a change in consciousness that leads to a sense of unity and well-being, which promotes deep relaxation and healing. In this retreat we will be learning basic drumming techniques and exploring rhythmic creativity which will be combined with meditation practice and contemplation.

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    Richard Ellis has been a drummer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist for the past forty years. He was a founding member of The Usuals and ‘Ndangered Species with Kenny Henson. He formed the first all-percussion group Interitmo  with Mike Mazzoni in 1997, and in 1999 started the first Drum Circle in Durban at the Bat Centre. Over the past twenty years he has conducted corporate team building, sound relaxation therapy and healing workshops with Marc Kress. He facilitates sound journey meditation/rhythm workshops for all ages and levels of expertise on drums and percussion. His mission is to connect people with their inner primal rhythm and sound, thereby helping to create a stress-free community.

    Marc Kress facilitates sound journey meditation/rhythm workshops for all ages and levels of expertise on drums and percussion. His mission is to connect people with their inner rhythm and sound, thereby helping to create a stress-free community.

27 October 2017
  • You Can't Fill The Hole In Your Heart With Food: Developing a mindful approach to eating

    Teacher: Richard-John Chippindall and Xenia Ayiotis
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 27 October 2017 - Sunday 29 October 2017

    rj chippindallxenia ayiotisAs a practice, mindful eating can bring us awareness of our habits and thoughts around food and our bodies. This workshop is based on a combination of Mindfulness-Based Eating Awareness and Intuitive Eating Principles. The focus is on creating a healthy relationship with food, using a non-judgemental and compassionate approach to re-learning internal physical and emotional cues to guide us when, what and how much we eat. The workshop covers how to deal with cravings and urges through the development of mindfulness skills. It also draws on techniques from cognitive behaviour therapy that enables us to become aware of, and manage, our sometimes destructive patterns and habits around food, eating and our bodies. We will also look at emotional triggers that can lead to overeating and binge eating, and how these may be effectively understood and dealt with.

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    Xenia Ayiotis has transformed her relationship with food through many years of mindfulness and yoga practice. She holds a Masters degree in languages from Wits University and has a background in organising tours to southern Africa. She is a certified Mindfulness-Based Eating Awareness Training Practitioner and Intuitive Eating Counsellor. She is in private practice and facilitates workshops on how to achieve a balanced, respectful, healthy and joyful relationship with food.

    Richard-John Chippindall had an academic career in Microbiology until attending Louis van Loon’s retreat Hell is Other People in the 1990’s where this introduction to Buddhist philosophy inspired him to study clinical psychology. After qualifying, he spent eleven years working at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in London where he gained extensive experience in providing mindfulness-based interventions to patients with emotional and psychological difficulties, as well as chronic health problems. He is now in private practice in Johannesburg.

03 November 2017
  • S.O.S: Awakening to self, other and sisterhood with all life. A retreat for women

    Teacher: Rene Stevenson
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 03 November 2017 - Sunday 05 November 2017

    rene stevensonTo awaken is to be intimate with all life   Dogen

    In this experiential retreat we explore what it means - as women - to pay radical attention to all our relationships: with ourselves, others, the world.  We will enquire into the question: what does it take to engage life fully and open-heartedly; to cultivate what C. G. Jung called a “kinship with all life”?  We will spend time in silence, walking in nature, meditating, story-telling and reading poetry, alone and in conversation, dancing and creating, through which we will cultivate an attitude of befriending our experiences - whatever these happen to be.  Inspiration and guidance are drawn from Buddhist wisdom and meditation practices, psychology (particularly Jungian) and images of the archetypal feminine, to cultivate loving-kindness to ourselves and others, and to be truly present, and awake in our lives.

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    Rene Stevenson is a clinical psychologist in private practice in KwaZulu-Natal, a long-term Buddhist practitioner and poet. In her work with individuals and groups, she combines creativity, the wisdom of spiritual traditions, especially Buddhism, meditation/mindfulness and Western Psychology (especially Jungian) as well as  dream work in supporting and facilitating healing, transformation, well-being and deepening self-awareness.

06 November 2017
  • Chi Whiz: An introduction to chi kung

    Teacher: Colin Kemery
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R100 surcharge
    Dates: Monday 06 November 2017 - Wednesday 08 November 2017

    colin kemeryChi kung is an 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, increase your healing lifeforce, chi, by dissolving blockages in your body and restoring the natural flow of Chi. A programme of twenty easy-to-learn chi kung movements, practised on a regular basis, will prove to be  be invigorating and life-changing.

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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.
10 November 2017
  • Coming Home: A weekend of meditation practice

    Teacher: Stephen Coan
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 10 November 2017 - Sunday 12 November 2017

    stephen coan smlEach day is a journey; the journey itself is home’ wrote Basho, the famous seventeenth century Japanese poet and travel writer. Yet how often do we find ourselves dwelling on the past or, alternatively, travelling through life with our attention firmly projected into the future, ignoring or avoiding the present moment? Supported by a programme of sitting and walking meditation, come on a journey knowing exactly where you are, moment to moment, and thus discover your true home. There will also be time to enjoy the beautiful grounds and surroundings of the Centre. Please note that apart from an introductory talk and a discussion period, the retreat will be held in Noble Silence.

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    Stephen Coan is a writer. He has been involved with Buddhism for three decades and in his retreats explores the interface between poetry and silence and the profound benefits of doing nothing, seriously.

12 November 2017
  • Silent Music: A meditation retreat

    Teacher: Stephen Coan
    Cost: 4 days accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 12 November 2017 - Thursday 16 November 2017

    stephen coan smlMy beloved is the mountains, the solitary wooded valleys…the tranquil night, at the approaches of dawn, the silent music, the murmuring solitude…- St. John of the Cross.

    This will be a simple no-frills, “bare-bones” Zen-style retreat consisting of sitting and walking meditation, including a morning and evening dharma reading, as well as time to experience the beautiful grounds and surroundings of the centre and a chance to listen to silent music. The retreat presents an ideal opportunity to extend and deepen your meditation practice. Please note that the retreat will be held in Noble Silence, apart from an opening talk and a discussion/feedback session at the end.

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    Stephen Coan is a writer. He has been involved with Buddhism for three decades and in his retreats explores the interface between poetry and silence and the profound benefits of doing nothing, seriously.
17 November 2017
  • An Introduction To Chi Kung

    Teacher: Paul Dorrian
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 17 November 2017 - Sunday 19 November 2017

    paul dorrianChi kung is an ancient Chinese practice that boosts one’s health and longevity. Through gentle, slow and flowing movements, it integrates and harmonises one’s bodily functions and states of mind by eliminating static and toxic energy patterns. Chi kung strengthens the internal organs and skeletal structure and encourages good posture. In this retreat, Paul will teach the Healing Sounds Short Form - a set of gentle exercises that also uses sounds to cleanse and heal our major organs, and which is fun to practise. He will also teach the ancient Taoist Brain Cleansing healing meditation.

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    Paul Dorrian is an international management consultant, author and speaker.  His interest in improving employee wellness in the work place led him to teach chi kung and tai chi chuan. He has studied these disciplines under various teachers in the UK and Spain, and with the late Master Dr. Nico Snyman, his current teacher Master Marleen Bilas and with his Grandmaster Dr. Lin Feng-Chao.  He teaches tai chi in the Yang style and chi kung in the Pa Tuan Chin, Healing Sounds and Zhan Zhuang styles at his school, the Lin Li School of Tai Chi Chuan, in Pietermaritzburg.

24 November 2017
  • Integrating Yoga And Zen Meditation: Wake up with energy and clarity of purpose

    Teacher: Jane and Kevin Treffry-Goatley
    Cost: Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 24 November 2017 - Sunday 26 November 2017

    kevin goatleyjane treffry goatleyIn  this retreat,  we will combine  Yoga asanas and Zen meditation. This combined practicewakes us up from the dream of who we imagine we are, and what we think we need.This awakens our innate human qualities of empathy and compassion, releases the energy to act, develops clarity and brings a sense of purpose and commitment to our lives. We then become the person the world needs right now. The ultimate source of happiness is simply a healthy body and a warm heart - The Dalai Lama

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    Jane and Kevin Treffry-Goatley practise and teach yoga and Zen meditation in Knysna at the Lotus Studio. Jane is a certified Iyengar Yoga teacher who has been teaching since 2007. Kevin is a Zen Dharma Teacher under the guidance of Heila Downey SSN of the Dharma Centre in Robertson. They have both been attending Zen retreats and Yoga workshops since early 2000 and have facilitated Yoga and Zen retreats in Robertson.

01 December 2017
  • Building Your “BounceBackAblity”: Learning to flourish whatever the circumstances

    Teacher: Graham Williams
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 01 December 2017 - Sunday 03 December 2017

    graham williamsI love those who can smile in trouble, who can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection  Leonardo da Vinci

    Feeling overwhelmed by stress, change and disappointments at home or at work? This is a very practical retreat. Each participant has the option to compile a short questionnaire designed by psychologists, Drs Allen Zimbler and Caryn Solomon, and to receive a confidential assessment of what they personally need to do to cope better with change and adversity. We will explore what you need to develop in order to rise to the challenges that change presents and, to be comfortable with and stay in control during the process of change  - based on findings from neuroscience, psychology and Buddhism. This will enable you to find your purpose, positivity and adaptability through the joy of self-discovery and  connect with others who have also battled with change and adversity, resulting in an experience the relief  and  contentment by finding that, although we may be bombarded with change from all quarters, there are simple antidotes to prevent us from succumbing. You will have fun in the process and will leave inspired, possessing a new inner strength and practical, proven ways of ‘bouncing forward’. Each participant will take away a booklet of new insights, encouragement and exercises - so that you can continue to work with whatever arrived for you during the retreat.

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    Graham Williams is a management consultant, thought leader, speaker, and author who has worked in over forty countries around the world. He focuses on the use of narrative, anecdote and metaphor as important contributors to successful business interventions, and believes that the time has come for business to be based on character virtues.

03 December 2017
  • From The Inside Out: The Human Dynamics Of Sustainability

    Teacher: Graham Williams
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 03 December 2017 - Tuesday 05 December 2017

    graham williamsUkuphosa itshe esivivaneni – make a personal contribution to a great and worthy task

    The earth is in a sorry state ecologically, socially, economically, politically and spiritually. Fraught with tensions, discontent, dis-ease, divisiveness and unethical behaviour. Scientists maintain that ‘humans are eating away their own life-support systems at a rate unseen in the last 10,000 years’. This mid-week retreat is for those who wish to develop ethical, compassionate, forward-looking, collaborative and effective leadership, and for those who feel unconfident about being able to make a real difference, but who really want to contribute to a better world. If “a flea can bite the bottom of the Pope in Rome” (Les Miserables:  Little People) then we each can make an impact. You will experience and learn a model that is simple, practical and profound,  and is comprised of deeper mindfulness, future orientation, more effective decision-making and organic behaviour change.  Experiential and interactive, the learning will be through enjoyable exercises.  We will develop a perspective whereby the serious remains serious, but is approached in a relaxed manner, and that 'activism' isn't necessarily confrontational (Richard Rohr: "The best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better. Oppositional energy only creates more of the same”).

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    Graham Williams is a management consultant, thought leader, speaker, and author who has worked in over forty countries around the world. He focuses on the use of narrative, anecdote and metaphor as important contributors to successful business interventions, and believes that the time has come for business to be based on character virtues.

08 December 2017
  • On Giving Good Ear: The Zen of listening

    Teacher: Wanda Hennig
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 08 December 2017 - Sunday 10 December 2017

    wanda hennig smlWe might think we listen to ourselves and others, but subliminal chatter impacts our lives profoundly. Ungrounded fears and ‘stories’ we tell ourselves can trap us in unsatisfying ‘comfort’ zones. Meditation and journalling are two ways to reach the source of inner freedom and choice. Memoir is a great medium for exploring our story. Then there are in-the-body mindfulness practices we can use to become unstuck and create shifts. In this silent retreat, expect to explore and play with insights, practices and journaling around sensuality, eating and living -  the purpose being to give participants some new ways and tools to live more fully and with pleasure in the world. Bring a pen, a notebook, curiosity and a sense of humour.

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    Wanda Hennig is a longtime journalist, an author, a seeker, a traveller, a (culinary) travel writer and a California-trained and certified life coach with post-graduate degrees in psychology and education. She lived and practised for three-and-a-half years at the San Francisco Zen Center in the 1990’s, was lay-ordained by former SFZC abbot Paul Haller, and has been a BRC enthusiast from way before that. She has dealt with personal issues around food, social phobia and depression and, in the unravelling, came to see they were all inter-linked.

12 December 2017
  • An Introduction To Insight Dialogue: Spiritual friendship on the Noble Eightfold Path

    Teacher: Bhikkhu Sukhacitto and Janet Surrey
    Cost: 5 days’ accommodation + R450 surcharge
    Dates: Tuesday 12 December 2017 - Sunday 17 December 2017

    bhikkhu sukhacittojanet surrey smlThis retreat introduces the meditation guidelines of Insight Dialogue and offers an opportunity to explore the possibilities of a fully engaged co-meditation practice. We will explore the origins of suffering as well as the great potential of cultivating together the factors of awakening, including mindfulness, concentration, equanimity, loving-kindness and compassion. We will investigate Speaking and Listening as meditative practices, held and nourished by the deep foundation of silent practice. There will be periods of silent practice, alternating with meditating together in dyads, triads and small groups. The Buddha described spiritual friendship as the ‘whole of holy life’. In this retreat we will contemplate the qualities and power of our fundamental human relationality and investigate our capacity for cultivating spiritual friendship in the service of awakening, together, on the Noble Eightfold Path. Insight Dialogue is an interpersonal meditation practice. It brings the mindfulness and tranquillity of silent meditation directly into our experience with other people. As humans we are relational being. As we begin to wake up, clarity and freedom can illuminate our relationship with others and we can touch the release of suffering together. Insight Dialogue rests on the foundation of silent practice and includes speaking and listening as part of meditation practice.

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    Bhikkhu Sukhacitto is an Insight Dialogue Teacher. He was born in Germany in 1963 and first came into contact with Buddhism in 1986 in Thailand when he attended a meditation retreat, offered through Wat Suan Mokkh. He ordained there as a novice in 1989 and as a monk in 1990. He moved to the West in 1993 where he has lived at various monasteries , including Dhammapala Monastery in Switzerland for six years and  Amaravati Monastery, UK, for 4 years. On his first Insight Dialogue retreat in 2005, he was amazed by the powerful experience of meditating together with other people and subsequently joined many more Insight Dialogue retreats. In 2010 he began his teacher training with Gregory Kramer and other teachers. In his experience, interpersonal meditation is an extremely helpful aid for the development of wholesome qualities. It bridges the gap between traditional silent meditation and our everyday lives and relations with other people. He sees Insight Dialogue as an important tool for liberation.

    Janet Surrey, PhD, is an Insight Dialogue Teacher. She teaches Insight Dialogue retreats worldwide and leads a monthly practice group in  Boston, USA. She has been a faculty member of Metta’s Relational Insight Meditation Program and serves on Metta Programs’ Teachers’ Council. She has studied with a number of Vipassana teachers for over 25 years, and has worked with Gregory Kramer since 2007. Her original teacher was Vimala Thakar, but she has also done many retreats with Thich Nhat Hanh and Joanna Macy. In 2008 she completed a two and a half year Community Dharma Leader training at Spirit Rock Meditation Centre. She  is a practising clinical psychologist and founding scholar of the Jean Baker Miller Training Institute at the Wellesley Centres for Women. She is on the faculty and board of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy, and  is dedicated to a life-long exploration of the power of relationships to create suffering and the power of relationships to liberate and transform suffering.  She lives in Newton, Massachusetts

18 December 2017
  • Shibuie:When Beauty happens Accidentally - Sumie and Raku: Japanese brush painting and pottery

    Teacher: Louis van Loon, Ingrid Adams and Natasha Hawley
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R300 surcharge
    Dates: Monday 18 December 2017 - Friday 22 December 2017

    louis van loon smlingrid adamsnatasha hawley smlShibuie is the ancient Japanese concept of Accidental Beauty in which the artist is just one ingredient in a number of dynamic interacting natural processes, the outcome of which is delightfully unpredictable, but strangely beautiful - beauty that is not ego-driven or deliberate.  Louis will teach participants the classical Japanese brush painting techniques (Sumie) as these are applied to traditional subjects, such as landscape, bamboo and flower studies, while Ingrid will introduce contemporary subjects. We will use the genuine materials: solid pine-soot ink, a hollowed-out slate to liquefy it, a deer-hair bamboo-stemmed brush and absorbent mulberry paper. Tools will be provided, but sets can be purchased (R800) from the BRC. Each retreatant will receive a bisque tea bowl to sumie-decorate and glaze. Natasha will then fire up the kiln after which wewill watch the magic as the pots emerge from their ordeal of having been subjected to 1000ºC heat, smothered in sawdust and immersed in cold water. We will admire the pots as they emerge triumphantly from the scorching heat, and are used in a  traditional Chinese Tea Ceremony on the final evening.

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    Ingrid Adams has worked as a clothing and home-wear designer for the last 25 years, and has travelled extensively to India and China sourcing home textiles. A yoga teacher, and an artist, she teaches drawing and art appreciation, and offers weekly Sumie lessons in Durban.

    Natasha Hawley was born and raised in Pietermaritzburg. She attained Honours in fine art from the University of KwaZulu-Natal where she is currently working towards her Masters degree. During her Honours year,  she experimented using glazes to grow crystalline formations on handbuilt vessels. She is using her Masters thesis  as an opportunity to explore vessel-making, using discarded materials, with the intention of creating more sustainable ways of working in a ceramic’s studio. She has a special interest in alternative firing and one of her favourite methods is Raku because of the instant gratification and unique decoration produced from the interaction of  fire, smoke, air and water. She  exhibited her work in the Jack Heath Gallery in 2013 and 2015 and  participated in the Tatham Gallery’s annual event The Fabulous Picture Show. Her work has appeared in the Ceramics South Africa magazine and in the arts and crafts section of The Natal Witness.

    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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

22 December 2017
  • Grounded In Space: A tai chi - chi kung retreat

    Teacher: Alex and Jeremy Lister-James
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 22 December 2017 - Sunday 24 December 2017

    alex lister jamesjeremy lister jamesThis workshop introduces participants to the ancient tradition of tai chi and chi kung practices, which generate a profound sense of composure and balance through slow, gentle body movements. These are designed to release our Life Force, Chi, which is visualised as a current of energy that can be made to circulate, without obstruction, through our bodies and minds, bringing with it a deep sense of well-being, vigour and health. These movements have been fine-tuned over many centuries. They are performed in a relaxed, meditative manner and are elegant and exact, simple and flowing. They can be learnt by anybody, with any level of fitness.

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    Alex Lister - James initially studied the Yang Form of tai chi as a form of “moving meditation” before incorporating chi kung in her practice, together with sitting and walking meditation. She has attended retreats at the Buddhist Retreat Centre for 30 years. In her professional life, Alex is a Health Professional in private practice, focusing on the health of women and children.

    Jeremy Lister - James is a horticulturist who has been involved for many years in social, ethical and environmental standards in the agricultural sector, part of which is the provision of carbon footprint assessments. His broader philosophy includes Deep Ecology and teaching tai chi and chi kung.

24 December 2017
  • Catching The Ungraspable Moment: Christmas at the BRC: a time to reflect

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: Cost: 3 or 5 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 24 December 2017 - Tuesday 26 December 2017

    louis van loonLife consists of things coming and going, births and deaths,decay and renewal, stops and starts.  Wetry to juggle these as well as we can, liking some of it, avoiding the ones wedon’t.  But there is a deeper wisdombehind all this - one that asks us not to be so choosy and opinionated aboutwhat should and should not be happening to us. This requires us to live on the edge of the only thing that is trulyreal: the ever-fleeting, ungraspable moment. In these two retreats we willdiscover how we forget to live in the here and now when we focus too much onwhat is past and fret about what may or may not happen in the future. This is agood time of the year to take stock and contemplate our moment to moment,here-now reality in all its fullness; bid farewell to 2017 and welcome the NewYear with a renewed willingness to take life on the chin and make whatevercomes along workable.  We will celebrate Christmas with a Buddhist slant and conduct a Japanese tea ceremony. Apart from the discussion periods and ceremonies, there will be periods of meditative Noble Silence.

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

29 December 2017
  • Catching The Ungraspable Moment: New Year at the BRC: where to from here?

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 29 December 2017 - Monday 01 January 2018

    louis van loonLife consists of thingscoming and going, births and deaths, decay and renewal, stops and starts.  We try to juggle these as well as we can,liking some of it, avoiding the ones we don’t. But there is a deeper wisdom behind all this - one that asks us not to be so choosy and opinionated about what should and should not be happening to us.  This requires us to live on the edge of the only thing that is truly real: the ever-fleeting, ungraspable moment. In these two retreats we will discover how we forget to live in the here and nowwhen we focus too much on what is past and fret about what may or may not happen in the future. This is a good time of the year to take stock and contemplate our moment to moment, here-now reality in all its fullness; bid farewell to 2017 and welcome the New Year with a renewed willingness to take lifeon the chin and make whatever comes along workable.  We will welcome the New Year with a lantern-lit perambulation around the Buddha, chanting and  ringing out the old year with an ancient Chinese temple gong, and welcoming the new year with a Tibetan bell. Apart from the discussion periods and ceremonies, there will be periods of meditative Noble Silence.

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

05 January 2018
  • Time To Reminisce, Reflect And Re-assess: We will give you the space and silence

    Teacher: A self- retreat
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation
    Dates: Friday 05 January 2018 - Sunday 07 January 2018

    view3 sIt is difficult to make decisions about important issues in your life when you are immersed in them. You need some distance from them, physically and psychologically - to see them clearly for what they are. Only then, can you gain a fresh perspective on them. So, if you feel like you need a gentle, uncluttered space to tune into what lies ahead in 2018, this largely unstructured weekend will prove useful. Experience sunrise chi kung or yoga, followed by meditation, after which the centre is yours to enjoy, walking or birdwatching in 300 hundred acres of rolling hills and indigenous forests. Circumambulate the labyrinth, meditate in the Zen garden or Buddha Boma, and spend solitary time in the deer park and at the dam, stalking the light and gazing at clouds. The BRC provides an ideal opportunity to be in a sympathetic space to reflect on the things that crowd one’s life: to just be…

12 January 2018
  • Mindfulness- Always Available, Everywhere: A Vipassana retreat

    Teacher: Jonathan Preboy and Anna Scharfenberg
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 12 January 2018 - Sunday 14 January 2018

    anna scharfenbergjonathan preboyThere’s even science to back this up - an explosion of new research, complete with colourful MRI scans, demonstrating that meditation can essentially rewire your brain  Dan Harris -  10% Happier

    Yes, mindfulness will rewire your brain. It is the perfect gift. Why? Because it is available, everywhere without limits, and is completely free. The question is how to realise this gift. The answer was provided by the Buddha, the supreme teacher of meditation, more than 2500 years ago. He taught the method of Vipassana meditation as a way to cultivate mindfulness. This retreat is an invitation for beginner and experienced meditators to practise Vipassana, or Insight, using the traditional Buddhist method of Mahasi Sayadaw and Achan Tong. For beginners it is a good technique to deepen an ancient Buddhist meditation technique and for experienced meditators, a way to deepen their Insight. Mindfulness is developed by regular walking and sitting practice, and by maintaining awareness during normal activities, such as eating, showering, dressing etc, and by daily interviews with a teacher. Sustain awareness at every moment in every posture, whether standing, walking, sitting or lying down. This is the way to establish mindfulness in the heart- Ajahn Chah

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    Jonathan Preboy and Anna Scarfenberg trained in Vipassana meditation under the great Vipassana master, Achan Tong. Jonathan was formerly a clinical psychologist in private practice in Durban. Anna was involved in  managing and organising Vipassana meditation retreats in Belgium and at Dhammacari Vipassana Meditation Centre in Germany. They taught together at Wat Chom Tong Meditation Centre in Thailand, and in Mexico, Italy, Spain and at the BRC and Dharmagiri. They are based at the Tisarana Vipassananurson Meditation Centre in Prague.

19 January 2018
  • New Year Intentions And Yoga Retreat

    Teacher: Lucy Draper - Clarke
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 19 January 2018 - Sunday 21 January 2018

    lucy draperLucy has been running New Year Intentions retreats for many years, in which participants take the opportunity to reflect on the year gone by, and set intentions for the future. Intention-setting does not need to be difficult. We can simply connect with what brings us joy, makes us feel energetic and alive, and commit to focusing on these activities over the year. The retreat is inspired by the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu’s book ‘The Book of Joy’. We will explore what it means to lead a life of joy, where anything is possible, and contemplate the Buddhist ‘Four Thoughts’ of precious human birth, impermanence, karma and samsara and find out how to create a meaningful life within whatever shifting circumstances we find ourselves. We will integrate our body, heart and mind in a gentle, unfolding process of yoga and mindfulness, providing the opportunity to reflect on what inspires and energises us. By trusting our ability to tap into our own talents, we can lead our lives in a  way that also brings benefit to others. Yoga and mindfulness   practices will tune us into both our supportive and sabotaging patterns, while compassion practices will provide us with skilful ways to accept ourselves just as we are, in order to create the conditions for transformation to take place. Please bring a yoga mat, journal and pens or pencils, as well as stretchy, comfortable clothes for both yin and yang yoga practices.

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    Lucy Draper-Clarke has a doctorate in mindfulness and teacher education. She has practised yoga for 20 years and taught yoga and mindfulness in Botswana and South Africa since 2006. She has been lucky enough to study with inspiring Buddhist mindfulness and Vinyasa yoga teachers, and offers a combined practice known as Mindfulness Yoga. Her light-hearted approach to teaching allows yoga students to learn through a joyful, yet transformative practice.

26 January 2018
  • Ayurveda, Yoga And Meditation Retreat: A return to wholeness

    Teacher: Helen Altman
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 26 January 2018 - Sunday 28 January 2018

    helen altman smlAyurveda - the knowledge of life - is  a  5000 year old healing/health system that offers integrated, balanced living and preventative medicine. The wisdom of the teachings of the ancients helps us to maintain health from deep within our systems, of which yoga and meditation are a part. In this retreat we will look at the fundamental guiding principles of Ayurveda. The daily rhythm includes a talk, followed by a  class combining chi kung and simple, gentle, dynamic yoga (for all levels of fitness), walking meditation, guided visualization, yoga nidra and breathing practices (pranayama). No previous experience is needed.

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    Helen Altman has explored the somatic experience from an early age, weaving the threads of dance, movement analysis, Buddhism, Ayurveda, yoga, yoga therapy, healing and meditative practice together. She has established two Yoga Dharma Centres over the last 35 years and now lives in McGregor in the Cape, where she offers private and small group retreats at her Stillness Sanctuary

02 February 2018
  • Getting To Know The Birds And Trees At The BRC: 160 birds of a feather

    Teacher: Crystelle Wilson and Chris Dalzell
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 02 February 2018 - Sunday 04 February 2018

    crystelle wilson with gustavchristopher dalzellJoin Crystelle and Chris for an enjoyable weekend of identifying some of the BRC’s 160 species of birds (including the summer residents, the rare Blue Swallow, Knysna Turaco and Emerald Cuckoo) and getting to know the indigenous trees and many of the wild flowers that grow there. You will also have a chance to be part of the indigenous forest by planting your own tree. The weekend includes learning how to identify the most common trees in KwaZulu Natal, how to dig and plant a tree, how to maintain it, and what butterflies and birds are attracted to these trees for nectar or fruit. Walk the verdant hills and meadows among the wild flowers, close to where the Blue Swallows nest, and enjoy the rare orchids, tree ferns and yellowwoods.  Included will be talks, chi kung, meditation and some quiet time communing with nature. Bring your binoculars and a sunhat.

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    Chris Dalzell was Curator of Durban Botanical Gardens where he was in charge of special collections. He has studied, lectured and travelled internationally, collecting plant specimens from USA, Canada, Brazil, S.E. Asia, Australia and New Zealand.  For many years he guided the South African exhibition at the international Chelsea Flower Show where his stall was consistently awarded Gold and Silver-Gilt Medals. He was appointed Assistant Director for the development of Gardens by the Bay in Singapore. He currently runs his own landscaping business Chris Dalzell Landscapes.

    Crystelle Wilson describes herself as a writer, artist, birder and dog-walker who is passionate about the environment. She has a Fine Arts Degree and postgraduate diploma in Journalism. She participated in art exhibitions in Durban and Johannesburg, and worked on newspapers in both cities.  She is the editor of KZN Birds, the newsletter for  branches of BirdLife South Africa in KwaZulu-Natal, and is a keen participant in SABAP2, the citizen’s science project of the Animal Demography Unit at the University of Cape town, to map the distribution of birds across Southern Africa.

05 February 2018
  • Plant Healing - The Sangoma Way

    Teacher: John Lockley
    Cost: 3 days' accommodation + R. 250 surcharge
    Dates: Monday 05 February 2018 - Thursday 08 February 2018

    john lockleyMedicinal plants have been used in African Sangoma culture for hundreds of years - to cleanse and help people to connect to their true nature. This is reflected in conscious dreaming and in a more aware wakeful state. The Sangoma healing culture is one of the most ancient and misunderstood healing systems in the world. Yet up until the 1980’s, more than 80% of South Africans consulted traditional healers and Sangomas. Participants in this retreat will learn about medicinal plants and their uses and the role of ancestors and dreams.  Sangomas are spiritual doctors. They work with plants in a different way to herbalists. A sangoma connects to the spirit of a plant and calls this spirit forth to help heal people. Often these are plants which the sangoma has dreamt about. John will work with 3 plants that he has dreams  about, and discuss this ancient culture with participants and demonstrate how they can develop an intimate relationship with the plant world.  He will also discuss how plants are harvested, prepared and sold in South Africa today, forming an intricate triangle of relationships from the rural areas to urban towns and cities. The story of plants is the story of traditional South African culture. He will demonstrate the Sangoma version of meditative absorption through drumming, chanting and dancing. Every morning there will be a “dream circle” in which dreams will be interpreted.  Please bring a plastic basin which will be used  for  medicinal foot healing, and a dream journal, pen and paper to take notes. 

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    John Lockley has practised Zen Buddhism since the early 90’s. He studied under Zen Master Su Bong in South Korea and was invited to become a Zen monk after completing his first kyol-che (3 month silent retreat), but chose to rather follow his Sangoma calling. He was one of the first white men to be invited to train as a Xhosa Sangoma, and apprenticed under Mum Ngwevu, a well-known Xhosa Sangoma in the Eastern Cape. He runs Ubuntu “humanity” workshops internationally, teaching people heart-beat meditation, and how to connect with their dreams, ancestors, nature and one another. He holds an honours degree in clinical psychology. His book Leopard Warrior is available for purchase.

09 February 2018
  • Healing Relaxation: Opening and relaxing the heart and mind

    Teacher: Pippa Cope and Jayne Pilossof
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 09 February 2018 - Sunday 11 February 2018

    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 to practise as a senior helper in South Africa. 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.


11 February 2018
  • Working With The Elements

    Teacher: Pippa Cope and Jane Pilossof
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + surcharge R150
    Dates: Sunday 11 February 2018 - Wednesday 14 February 2018

    pippa copejayne pillosofThe 5 elements provide a very dynamic system of understanding life. They are in all living organisms, only the proportions differ.
    When the elements are in balance there is balance and harmony, when they are out of balance there is disharmony and disease.The balance is constantly changing within and around us. To help us learn how to work with this ever-changing balance of the elements in a positive way, we have to first get to know them. In this retreat we use the Tibetan schemata of the 5 elements - earth, water, fire, air and space. We explore and get to know them in a practical way. We examine and become familiar with the characteristics and qualities of each, and observe their interaction. At the same time we learn to observe our mind/body states in relation to the elements.Please wear loose comfortable clothing.

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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 to practise as a senior helper in South Africa. 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.

16 February 2018
  • Authentic Ayurveda: Restorative Yoga And Cooking

    Teacher: Nalini
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 16 February 2018 - Sunday 18 February 2018

    naliniEnjoy the restful and rejuvenating effects of restorative yoga sessions over this retreat.  Restorative yoga offers us a nurturing space where we can heal and balance our physical, mental and emotional selves more effectively. With the use of props, we are able to hold postures longer, giving us the benefits of deep relaxation. Through asana (posture), and pranayam (breathing), we learn to become more mindful in daily living. Restorative yoga offers overall support and healing to the nervous, lymphatic, hormonal, endocrine, cardio thoracic, digestive and immune systems in the body, which brings you back into harmony with your body’s natural rhythms. You will also  learn the art of preparing a dosha balancing meal, that will take you from the hot days of summer, into the transition of autumn. Be your own healer by learning how to incorporate the therapeutic properties of food, herbs and spices into your daily routine. Explore simple, yet effective Ayurvedic remedies for common complaints, using ingredients from your kitchen.

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    Nalini’s  profound love for all forms of yoga started at an early age, and has motivated her throughout the years on her spiritual journey. Inspired by Guruji Iyengar's teachings, she believes that by connecting deeply with your breath and body, you  connect  with the inner essence of who you truly are. She is passionate about women’s health, as well as maintaining balance and well-being as we get older. Her yoga classes have a holistic approach, integrating Ayurvedic principles along with asana. By drawing on her background as an alternative therapist, she aspires to create a balancing and nurturing space in her classes. Her love of Ayurveda started in her mother's kitchen as she watched her prepare her own blend of spices to use in her dosha-balancing meals.

    Nalini was featured on Mela SABC 3: https://youtu.be/r5KySwBCV2M

19 February 2018
  • Chi Whiz: An introduction to chi kung

    Teacher: Colin Kemery
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R100 surcharge
    Dates: Monday 19 February 2018 - Wednesday 21 February 2018

    colin kemeryChi kung is an 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, increase your healing life force by dissolving blockages in your body and restoring the natural flow of Chi. A programme of twenty easy-to-learn chi kung movements, practised on a regular basis, will be invigorating and life- changing.

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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.

23 February 2018
  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 23 February 2018 - Sunday 25 February 2018

    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 orPNI. 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
02 March 2018
  • Yin And Yang: A Yoga Retreat: Release, relax and restore

    Teacher: Georgie Carter
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 02 March 2018 - Sunday 04 March 2018

    georgie carterYin Yoga is the balance to our Yang lifestyle. In today’s busy world we are inundated with the pressure to do more, take on yet more and push ourselves even more. This retreat provides a balance to our often frenetic, stressful lives and will restore harmony, health and calmness. In relaxing our muscles and surrendering into our yoga postures, we are able to work deeply into the joints, ligaments, fascia and bones of the body - releasing tension and detoxifying normally inaccessible parts of our bodies. This retreat is centred around releasing, relaxing and restoring our bodies, our minds and our energy and is suitable for everyone. Please bring your own yoga mats.

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    Georgie Carter has been practising Hatha yoga for 8 years. She completed her 200-hour teacher training with The Jivananda Centre for Well-Being in 2010 and an intensive Iyengar yoga course in Rishikesh with Usha Devi in 2015. Her passion is to apply yoga to everyday life to help find a balanced and  a better way to manage daily challenges, so as  to live  a more loving, compassionate and purposeful life. She has travelled to India many times to deepen her practice. She currently lives in the Natal midlands, where she teaches yoga.
04 March 2018
  • Health Retreat:Discover Your Best Self

    Teacher: Dr Kaz Kiepiel
    Cost: 3 or 6 days' accommodation
    Dates: Sunday 04 March 2018 - Friday 09 March 2018

    kazaletteParticipants have the choice of spending 3 or 6 days with Dr Kaz in the healing, tranquil environment of the BRC, exploring and discovering their best possible self. Your daily package includes:

    Two consultations with Dr Kaz
    Daily massages and complementary therapies
    Interactions relating to physical, mental and emotional health   
    Mindfulness and movement classes
    Nature walks
    Wholesome and healthy meals and drinks. For more information and cost, see: www.doctorkaz.com

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    Dr Kaz Kiepiel is a leading specialist in integrative medicine. Qualified as a medical practitioner, registered in both England and South Africa, she is also a specialist kinesiologist, Health and Life coach who practises integrated holistic and functional medicine by combining orthodox medicine with an array of complementary health tools and skills. Her extensive experience and knowledge of allopathic medicine, homeopathy, nutrition, kinesiology, colour therapy, use of the SCIO and SCENAR bio-feedback machines, together with her coaching skills and volumes of empathy, make her unique in her field. She also gives lectures, speaks on the radio and runs health retreats and workshops on nutrition, stress management and holistic health care.

09 March 2018
  • Tai Chi With Ease

    Teacher: Richard Jordi
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 09 March 2018 - Sunday 11 March 2018

    richard jordyTai chi is an ancient Chinese martial art and energy practice and has long been regarded as important for health, well-being and longevity. Western medicine has come to recognize the beneficial effect of regular tai chi practice. It leads to increased vigour and flexibility, better balance and mobility, and to a strengthening of muscles and joints. Tai chi is a profoundly relaxing activity physically, psychologically and emotionally because of its ability to bring the mind to rest through slow, graceful movements of the body. Tai chi with ease offers a balm to the stresses that arise from work, family life, relationships and living in a complex society. This workshop will teach you simple, meditative tai chi sequences that you can practise at home or in the office, to bring some balance into your life. A manual and DVD for self-study will be provided.

     

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    Richard Jordi has been practising and teaching tai chi and chi kung since 1996. He originally studied under the late Sifu Leslie Reed of the International Taijiquan and Shaolin Wushu Association and currently collaborates with Faith LeLievre, from Hilo, Hawaii, in the WaterWays school and the TaijiNature project (www.taijinature.com). More recently, he  studied the practice of Liu He Ba Fa (Water Style) under Grandmaster Shou Yu Liang and Master Helen Liang. He is currently studying Swimming Dragon Taiyi Chi Kung with Sensei Hans Menck of The Freedom School of Martial Arts. He is a writer and works for a labour service organization in Cape Town.

16 March 2018
  • Healing Chi Kung: For Health And Vitality

    Teacher: Dr. Hu Jin-Yun
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 16 March 2018 - Sunday 18 March 2018

    dr hu jinyun smlExplore this ancient  Chinese practice that boosts one’s health and vitality.  Participants will learn the key techniques of how to master chi kung and incorporate it into their daily lives, effortlessly. These techniques are easy to learn, are useful and powerful. The healing power of chi kung works on both the physical and spiritual level - if it is done correctly. These techniques include breathing, timing, warm ups, postures , movement and mind projection. Dr. Hu will also introduce some Chinese medicine for detoxing, lowering cholesterol, decreasing body fat and relieving water retention. This retreat is designed to suit beginners, as well as those who have practised chi kung previously.

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    Dr. Hu Jin-Yun is a certified Traditional Chinese Medicine Doctor in China. He is a registered Acupuncture Practitioner at the AHSPCA, as well as the BHF in South Africa. He received his Master’s Degree in medicine from the Heilongjiang Chinese Medicine University in China. Currently, he is finalizing his research for his PhD.  Apart from his medical and academic studies,  Dr. Hu has been practising Tai-Chi Quan, and Qi Kung in Taiwan since 1995. He now lives in Somerset West, in the Cape.. He has his own private TCM clinic, the Helderberg Acupuncture And Healing Centre, where he practises this ancient art form of Traditional Chinese healing. He regularly presents seminars to the SAACMA (South African Association of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture) and  has been lecturing at the Juniata College in America since 2013.


23 March 2018
  • Sitting Quietly - Doing Nothing: A taste of sustained meditation

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 23 March 2018 - Sunday 25 March 2018

    louis van loonWe 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 and  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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

29 March 2018
  • Open The Heart And Still The Mind: A path of courage and compassion

    Teacher: Sue Cooper
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R. 350 surcharge
    Dates: Thursday 29 March 2018 - Monday 02 April 2018

    sue cooperThis  4-day Easter retreat  is held in a contained and nurturing atmosphere of contemplative (Noble)  silence and integrates meditation with the wisdom of Buddhist psychology. Through meditation practices and teachings which cultivate calm and compassionate awareness, we will  explore different ways to heal and integrate the fragmented body, heart and mind. As we learn to free ourselves from our habitual self-destructive tendencies, which are driven by fear, shame and perfectionism, we will discover the possibility of a more compassionate and joyful relationship to ourselves and with life, which is both healing and transformative. In addition to offering short, individual sessions, Sue will offer sessions of chi kung movement meditation, to enhance the integration of body, heart and mind. 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. www.suecooper.co.za 
     

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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.

06 April 2018
  • Meditation For Beginners

    Teacher: Elizabeth Gaywood
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 06 April 2018 - Sunday 08 April 2018

    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 techniquesas 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 in the visits of his Holiness the Dalai Lama, and other Tibetan teachers to SA 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.

08 April 2018
  • Rejuvenate and Innovate Photography Workshop: A 5-day Photogarage

    Teacher: Angela Buckland
    Cost: 5 days' accommodation
    Dates: Sunday 08 April 2018 - Friday 13 April 2018

    Angela BucklandThis is a ‘top up workshop to rejuvenate photographic creativity in the beautiful surroundings of the BRC. The workshop has been designed to accommodate photographic production 50% of the time and the other 50% for personal ‘down time’ -  for relaxation and reflection. The programme will include photographic projects, inspiring photography films, presentations on contemporary photographic practice and group discussion. Participants are expected to have a working knowledge of their camera.Technical support will be available but visual literacy will be emphasized over technique. Expect fun, laughter and a genuine enquiry into your own personal artistic process. Chi kung and meditation will be offered. Bring your laptops, card readers, yoga wear, umbrellas,  swimming costume and a sense of humour.  For the  course fee and additional details see:www.photogarage.co.za or e-mail angelabuckland@yebo.co.za. 

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    Angela Buckland taught in the Fine Arts Department at Durban University of Technology for many years. She is a photographer living and working in Durban and a practising artist and educator ,running her own private photography school, Photogarage. She has held a number of solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally and has published three books: Zip Zip my Brain Harts, Light on a Hill and Quiet Place.

13 April 2018
  • The Awakening Shift Experience: Realise your magnificence!

    Teacher: John Homewood
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 13 April 2018 - Sunday 15 April 2018

    john homewoodDissolve 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. He 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 companybefore leaving to start his own business. He has a passion for expanding people’s awareness and their potential and has the ability to impart deep truths in an easy and understandable way
15 April 2018
  • Going Deeper Into The Awakening

    Teacher: John Homewood
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 15 April 2018 - Tuesday 17 April 2018

    john homewoodGoing deeper into the process of  awakening offers participants deeper Awakening Shift teachings and counselling time. This retreat will therefore include further intimate discussions and teachings, plus counselling sessions with John, dealing with individual life challenges and providing tools and insights to break through  blockages  in practical ways, allowing the joy of life to flow once more, often seemingly, in miraculous ways. The retreat includes  guided meditation and chi kung.

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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  their potential and has the ability to impart deep truths in an easy and understandable way.
20 April 2018
  • The Spirit Of Healing Retreat: Healing on four levels - with a special focus on dealing with cancer

    Teacher: John Homewood
    Cost: 3 days' accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 20 April 2018 - Monday 23 April 2018

    john homewoodThis powerful workshop looks at healing on four levels, and incorporates a special focus on dealing with cancer: Body (mechanistic, diet and supplements); Mind (mind-body connection); Soul (energy);and Spirit (transpersonal healing). It includes the seven vital steps to healing disease in the body naturally, and will showhow to bring balance to the mind and emotions to allow life to flow freely again. While so much focus is placed on changing the physical cells in the quest to heal, it should be understood that we are, first and foremost, spiritual beings on a soul journey. As Einstein observed, “The Field is the sole (soul) determinant of the particle”, meaning that all physical reality is predicated on a field of non-visible, non-physical energy, which physicist Max Planck called ‘the Matrix’. This Field of Energy should be the starting place of all healing, and not left until the end after all else has failed. There is a huge gift of soul growth and cleansing in the journey towards healing, and this understanding needs to be incorporated into any healing regimen. In finding yourself or a loved one with serious illness, there is a window of opportunity for immense transformation. John will provide insights and guidance on optimising healing at the physical cellular level and in addition will include profound insights into the energetic aspect of the journey towards wellness and healing.

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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  their potential and has the ability to impart deep truths in an easy and understandable way.

26 April 2018
  • Yogis Live Longer: Hatha yoga for health and resilience

    Teacher: Howard Lipschitz and Christine Withiel
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Thursday 26 April 2018 - Sunday 29 April 2018

    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 and bring a yoga mat.

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    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.

    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.

04 May 2018
  • Sacred Drumming:Exploring Natural Rhythms

    Teacher: Richard Ellis and Marc Kress
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 04 May 2018 - Sunday 06 May 2018

    richard ellismarc kressDrumming and music-making are ancient ways of transcending one’s routine lifestyle, opening ourselves to spiritual realms of healing and creativity, which is experienced as liberating and rejuvenating. The whole universe is a continuous flux of pulsating rhythms. Drumming connects us to these rhythms, facilitating a change in consciousness that leads to a sense of unity and well-being, which promotes deep relaxation and healing. In this retreat we will be learning basic drumming techniques and exploring rhythmic creativity which will be combined with meditation practice and contemplation.

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    Richard Ellis has been a drummer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist for the past forty years. He was a founding member of The Usuals and ‘Ndangered Species with Kenny Henson. He formed the first all-percussion group Interitmo  with Mike Mazzoni in 1997, and in 1999 started the first Drum Circle in Durban at the Bat Centre. Over the past twenty years he has conducted corporate team building, sound relaxation therapy and healing workshops with Marc Kress. He facilitates sound journey meditation/rhythm workshops for all ages and levels of expertise on drums and percussion. His mission is to connect people with their inner rhythm and sound, thereby helping to create a stress-free community.

    Marc Kress  is a yoga teacher and percussionist living in Durban. He was attracted to the yoga path while travelling through India in 2003. “I had discovered a path of self-practice and discipline that fulfils my desire to grow on a spiritual level by working with the body and mind”. Marc has been practising and studying in India and South Africa with various teachers in different styles of yoga, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Sivananda, Tantra and Astanga. He has a Hatha Yoga teaching qualification from the Yoga Alliance and is also a certified Iyengar Yoga teache

10 May 2018
  • Life Writing: A workshop on memoir

    Teacher: Dawn Garisch
    Cost: Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Thursday 10 May 2018 - Sunday 13 May 2018

    dawn garischHere I am once again, disguised as myself – from About Death and Other Things  - Alexander Ristovic

    Life writing is not only about developing technical skills. It is also a way to reflect and grow awareness. The tools we need to write about what we know best are tools we need to live more creatively, less anxiously. Whether you are writing fiction or poetry, life writing skills can help to deepen observation. We each have life motifs or themes that are more or less unconscious. Yet an evolving pattern binds our journey from birth to death into a whole coherent piece. Getting to know more about the story we are living helps us to ride our stories, rather than our stories riding us. We will reclaim memory and imagination as means to release ourselves into awe and creativity, connectedness and purpose, awareness and pleasure. Through identifying and engaging with the images that shape our time  on earth, we will find refreshing approaches to put our personal stories down on the page. Bring a notebook and pen, two objects from the period you want to write about - one that represents something you loved about it, and one that represents something you disliked about that time. Beginners are welcome.

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    Dawn Garisch has had five novels, a collection of poetry, a non-fiction work and a memoir published. Her short stories and poetry have appeared in anthologies, journals and magazines. She has had a short play and short film produced, and has written for television and newspapers. Three of her novels have been published in the UK. In 2007 her poem Blood Delta was awarded the DALRO prize. In 2010 Trespass was short-listed for the Commonwealth prize for fiction in Africa, and in 2011 her poem Miracle won the EU Sol Plaatjie Poetry Award. Her short story What To Do About Ricky won the NAFfunded Short.Sharp.Story competition. Her  novel Accident was published by Modjaji in 2017 and her adaptation of her novel Trespass was staged. She is interested in trans-disciplinary work in science and art, and between different art forms, and teaches life writing and creative method courses. She is a practising medical doctor and lives in Cape Town.

15 May 2018
  • Colour And Energy Healing Workshop

    Teacher: Maureen Edgcumbe
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Tuesday 15 May 2018 - Thursday 17 May 2018

    maureen edgcumbe smlImagine yourself in a colourless world - no warm reds, oranges or yellows, nor cool blues, greens or turquoises or any of the infinite colour combinations. Colour healing comes from, and is an important part of, the entire realm of energy. Colour is an intimate part of our being. The introduction of colour into our surroundings and clothing is an energetic statement. Light and colour are more revealing than form. Colour is life! During this workshop we will discover the powerful story that colour can reveal. We will play with an array of coloured glass pebbles, dyes, water, clear glass, and light which  is a fascinating introduction into the realm of holistic healing and creative expression. This experience will open up a more profound sense of self-awareness and intuition and help us to understand what can block the creative process and how to overcome it. Profoundly simple, but simply profound.

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    Maureen Edgcumbe is a successful professional landscape and portrait artist. Originally arttrained, she later qualified as a Specialized Kinesiologist. Prior to undertaking painting on a fulltime basis,   she spent 25 years running her Kinesiology practice as well as her Creative Expression Workshops. More recently she explored, via the ‘integral’ and ‘ontological’ schools of coaching, her own personal development through working one-on-one with a professionally certified coach. Given her commitment to compassion and attention to detail in her engagements, she  is a trusted and sought-after intuitive coach who has a unique ability to identify the root-causes of many personal challenges and unlock creative and personal potential.

18 May 2018
  • SoulCollage®: Know yourself - and you will conquer the universe….

    Teacher: Corinna Botoulas
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge Botoulas
    Dates: Friday 18 May 2018 - Sunday 20 May 2018

    corinna boutalas smlSoulCollage® is a fun, easy, and creative way to express your inner world. Using intuition, imagination, and your willingness to explore, you will learn to create a deeply personal deck of wisdom cards. These collaged cards represent the varied and uniquely personalised aspects of who you are. They will lead you on a journey of self-discovery. By re-connecting to your innate creativity and accessing and enhancing your intuition, you open up the channel to your soul’s wisdom and access the potential which resides within you. SoulCollage® taps into the transformative power of images, intuition and synchronicity where you  gravitate to images that have meaning for you - even though you may not know why. SoulCollage® works directly with the language of symbols, images and archetypes. The weekend workshop is about resting your left brain and using your right brain to connect with your soul as you play with images , shapes and colours. No previous experience is required.

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    Corinna Botoulas is a Horticulture graduate. She runs her landscaping business since 1994. In parallel to this she also runs her healing practice since 2009. A graduate of Reiki, Astrology and a Soul Collage ®Facilitator, her passion lies in empowering people in discovering 'their inner soul-full selves' and awakening them to their life's potential and the deeper self- understanding of themselves.

25 May 2018
  • Why Does The Buddha Smile? : Wesak - celebrating 25 centuries of Buddhism

    Teacher: Louis van Loon and Stephen Coan
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 25 May 2018 - Sunday 27 May 2018

    louis van loonstephen coan smlWesak is celebrated by Buddhists worldwide during the full moon of May.  It  recalls the Enlightenment of the Buddha, as well as his birth and death. We will explore the trajectory of the way the Buddha’s philosophy adapted itself so readily to many different cultures, as it travelled across the globe. We will do this in readings and traditional teachings,  fireside chats, sitting and walking meditation.  As will be done in all Buddhist countries at this time, we will hold a  Wesak ceremony with traditional chanting and a candle-lit circumambulation. The retreat will be held in an atmosphere of contemplative silence for the most part.

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

01 June 2018
  • The Yoga of Food

    Teacher: Meryl Currie
    Cost: 3 days' accommodation + R. 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 01 June 2018 - Sunday 03 June 2018

    meryl currie smlJoin Meryl founder of "It's All Good Organics" for a weekend of yoga and food, and explore the Yogic approach to diet. Learn the principles of how to prepare delicious, nutritious plant based food through practical demonstrations; How food affects consciousness. We will explore the ethics of food production through the principle of Ahimsa. The weekend will incorporate all 5 principles of Yoga :
    Proper Exercise: Yoga Asanas
    Proper Breathing: Pranayama
    Proper Relaxation 
    Proper Diet
    Guided relaxations and vegetarian delights will leave you feeling nourished inside and out.

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    Meryl Currie has been teaching yoga and meditation since April 2008.  She is a 500 hour accredited Sivananda Yoga teacher and has studied at their ashrams in Kerala, India; Paradise Island, the Bahamas and the Sivananda Yoga Centre in London.  She is also qualified as a Yoga Sports Coach Through Yoga Sports Science (UK) specialising in training athletes to enhance their  performance through sports-specific training. She is the founder of It's All Good Organics an organic, plant -based cafe and ethical store and is passionate about helping people to live with more awareness in the modern world.

08 June 2018
  • Make Life Your Guru: An introduction to Buddhism and meditation

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 08 June 2018 - Sunday 10 June 2018

    louis van loonIn a world where many traditional beliefs and superstitions have disappeared, we have become rudderless and cynical. Life is often not much more than a meaningless journey from birth to certain death.  Whilst it lasts, we try to acquire some happiness and avoid suffering.  Is that all there is to it? Or does life happen “when we are busy making other plans”, as John Lennon so memorably said?  Buddhism maintains that we are not living realistically: we are missing some fundamental truths about ourselves and the world we live in that distort and obscure what is really going on in our lives. Shouldn’t we try and find out what life is about before we die?

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

15 June 2018
  • Your Precious Life: Discovering Avenues To Meaning And Purpose

    Teacher: Klasie Wessels
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 15 June 2018 - Sunday 17 June 2018

    klasie wesselsOur search for meaning is the most prominent quest of our time. More and more people today are on a personal quest for meaning and a deeper sense of purpose, in the hope of enjoying a happier life. Logotherapy, as an existentialist analysis, was developed by Dr. Viktor Frankl - more famous for his book Man’s Search for Meaning . Frankl was practising as a neurologist and psychiatrist in Vienna when, as a Jew, he was sent to the concentration camps. There he refined his therapy on how to discover meaning in life despite suffering. This secular approach offers many parallels with that of Buddhist philosophy.The weekend workshop will include activities and worksheets to assist participants to discover their own unique path to meaning. It will also be infused with case studies from Tibetans who escaped from the Chinese occupation of their country,  as living examples of how it is possible to live life powerfully despite severe challenges.

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    The workshop facilitator Klasie Wessels, is a Director of the Viktor Frankl Institute SA and teaches Logotherapy at Unisa’s Center of Applied Psychology. He also facilitates adult and school student journeys to the Tibetan community in Dharamsala, India and have facilitated 23 such 11-day experiential retreats in the past 6 years. He works directly with the Tibetan Government in Exile and is the South African coordinator for the Office of Tibet. Before embarking on the mindfulness retreats with the Tibetans, he was Chairman and and MD of a large Advertising Agency in Johannesburg – FCB. The workshop is registered with the SA Board of People Practices and qualifies participants for CDP points. 

22 June 2018
  • Iyengar Yoga: Nudging the body into shape and health

    Teacher: Judy Farah
    Cost: 2, 4 or 6 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 22 June 2018 - Sunday 24 June 2018

    judy_farahThe upsurge of interest in the ancient practice of yoga attests to its proven physiological and psychological benefits. However, our sedentary, western lifestyle has stiffened our limbs and spine to such an extent that many people find the yoga asanas (poses) difficult to perform. Iyengar yoga evolved to deal with this problem - safely, without forcing the body into harmful contortions. Iyengar uses simple, but carefully calibrated props and other supports to achieve postures that would otherwise be unattainable except after years of practice. This retreat is suitable for beginners and for those who may have practised other forms of yoga. The weekend retreat is an introduction to the Iyengar method. For those who wish to consolidate their practice to a deeper level, the additional 4 day retreat is strongly recommended (24-28 June).

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    Judy Farah has taught the Iyengar method of yoga for 13 years. She attended a number of intensive teaching workshops at the Ramamani Institute in Puna, India, under the direct tutelage of the living exponent of this method, Guru Yogacharya BKS Iyengar and his daughter Geetaji.

24 June 2018
  • Iyengar Yoga: Deepening your practice

    Teacher: Judy Farah
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 24 June 2018 - Thursday 28 June 2018

    judy_farahThe upsurge of interest in the ancient practice of yoga attests to its proven physiological and psychological benefits. But our sedentary, western lifestyle has stiffened our limbs and spine to such an extent that many people find the yoga asanas (poses) difficult to perform. Iyengar yoga evolved to deal with this problem - safely, without forcing the body into harmful contortions. Iyengar uses simple, but carefully calibrated props and other supports to achieve postures that would otherwise be unattainable except after years of practice. This retreat is suitable for beginners and for those who may have practised other forms of yoga. The retreat is for those who wish to consolidate their practice to a deeper level.

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    Judy Farah has taught the Iyengar method of yoga for 13 years. She attended a number of intensive teaching workshops at the Ramamani Institute in Puna, India, under the direct tutelage of the living exponent of this method, Guru Yogacharya BKS Iyengar and his daughter Geetaji.

29 June 2018
  • Negative Emotions Keep Tripping Us Up: Is there a way to liberate them completely

    Teacher: Melanie Polatinsky
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 29 June 2018 - Monday 02 July 2018

    dr melanie polatinsky sml”Mindpoisons” stand in the way of our enlightenment... The Buddha taught  us how to work with these emotions - from the Path of Renunciation to  Purification and Transformation to Self-liberation.  Whatever the case, if we want to become enlightened, we must avoid becoming trapped in  negative emotions. In this retreat, in a relaxed and flexible environment, we will explore:
    • A Dzogchen view to life to enable us  to examine our own nature  and the condition of all phenomena
    • examine and practise some of the techniques of Self-liberation from negative emotions - "self" meaning - not subject to causes and conditions
    • Looking at the Five Wisdoms and how they relate to our psychological toxins
    • Experience other simple practices of meditation and their applications to daily life.

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    Melanie Polatinsky is a psychotherapist, and teacher of Tibetan Buddhism, and has been empowered to teach by Lama Yeshe Rinpoche, Abbot of Samye Ling Monastery, in Scotland. She has worked,  taught and conducted retreats in a variety of fields for the past 45 years. These include meditation, dream work, death and dying, bereavement, inner child work, relationships, karma and reincarnation, inner peace, the five Wisdoms, discovering your true potential, and many other Buddhist topics including a Dzogchen View of life. She has done several retreats in India at Palpung Sherabling Monastery. She runs a Tibetan Samye Dzong Centre in Johannesburg and is involved in ongoing teaching in the above fields as well as many aspects of vajrayana practice. She also teaches a Bardo group to train people in the death and dying teachings of Tibetan Buddhism, as well as extensive direct work with the dying and their families. She has a private practice in psychotherapy with a Buddhist approach.

06 July 2018
  • Rejuvenating The BRC: A family retreat with children in mind

    Teacher: Sheila Berry, Lihle Mbokazi and Sipho Msiya
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    children (up to the age of independence): 50% discount
    Dates: Friday 06 July 2018 - Tuesday 10 July 2018

    sheila-berrylihle-zulusipho-msiyaCome and join us for some serious fun and adventure this winter!  Spend 4 days filled with games and stories, nature walks, making art and toasting marshmallows under the stars in the beautiful environment of the BRC. This is a family retreat aimed at children of school-going age (10 and up) and offers a basic introduction to Buddhist thought and practice as well as guidance for parents and children to explore spirituality through connecting with nature and creative expression. Children must be accompanied by an adult, preferably a parent.

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    Sheila Berry is an ecotherapist and wilderness psychologist who reconnects people to the Earth as the source of physical, mental, psychological and spiritual well-being and health. For the past two years, she has headed the Save Our iMfolozi Wilderness campaign and worked closely with the Fuleni communities to prevent Ibutho Coal’s proposed open cast mine on the boundary of the iMfolozi Wilderness Area, a rhino sanctuary. Her work with indigenous people in Africa, particularly hunter-gatherer communities and rural Zulu Communities, has been a vital source of inspiration for her.

    Lihle Mbokazi’s passion and compassion for the Earth, all creatures and for people who are suffering, pushed her from her humble beginnings to becoming the first Zulu woman wilderness trail guide with the Wilderness Leadership School. Her enthusiasm for Wilderness has taken her to the UK and the World Wilderness Congress in Spain. She is currently working for EarthLore in KZN as a community animator, engaging with the elders and gleaning wisdom from them. She co-founded FezaFunda, an environmental education centre at the beautiful Kei mouth in the Eastern Cape and is part of the Zulu Trail Team that exposes young students to the culture and traditions of rural Zulu families. She is currently studying psychology.

    Sipho Msiya’s love for nature and plants started when he was at school. In the afternoons, over the weekends and holidays, he worked at the local nursery in Howick. When he left school, he was employed by the Dusi-uMngeni Conservation Trust in their alien clearing programme along the banks of streams and rivers. When Beacon Hill, a 40 ha gem of mist-belt grassland in Howick that supports many critically endangered plants, needed to be cleared of invasive aliens, Sipho was the obvious choice to direct this project. More recently, he  become a trail guide for the Zulu Trails.

13 July 2018
  • How To Draw What You See: A pen and ink sketching retreat

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R 200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 13 July 2018 - Sunday 15 July 2018

    louis van loonYou don’t have to be, or become, an artist to be able to sketch what is in front of you.  Everybody can see that some things are shorter than others or to the left or right of something else.  So you simply draw it like that.    All you need is one eye and two fingers.  Participants in this workshop  will be taken through a series of simple practice sessions in this type of “Seeing-Drawing”, after which they will draw a variety of subjects -  from still life  to landscape scenes and portraits - all in the space of a weekend. Sketching is one of the loveliest of skills anybody can acquire. You can take your pen and sketchbook anywhere and experience what it is like to be truly present in where you are.  All materials will be provided.

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

20 July 2018
  • 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 20 July 2018 - Sunday 22 July 2018

    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 suitable for  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 several studios there, as well as  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

27 July 2018
  • Shape The Clay And Mould The Mind

    Teacher: Natasha Hawle and Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 27 July 2018 - Sunday 29 July 2018

    louis van loonnatasha hawleThis is a two-day hands-on workshop in which we explore the meditative qualities of repeat-action and pattern-making through clay.You will learn the technique of “wedging” which engages the body by rolling and folding the clay into itself. This is an exercise in preparation -  setting out our intentions and making sure our raw material is ready to be moulded into a medium for  our creativity. We will  make small pinch pots, which will be fired and ready to take home at the end of your stay. When clay is deftly handled, magic happens!  The evenings will end with calming down the mind in meditation and mindfulness  with Louis.

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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 brush painting, and sketching in Durban, Cape Town and Ixopo.

    Natasha Hawley was born and raised in Pietermaritzburg. She attained Honours in fine art from the University of KwaZulu-Natal where she is currently working towards her Masters. During her Honours she experimented using glazes to grow crystalline formations on hand built vessels. She is using her Masters as an opportunity to explore vessel-making using discarded materials with the intention to create more sustainable ways of working within a ceramic’s studio.She has a special interest in alternative firing and one of her favourite methods is Raku because of the instant gratification and unique decoration produced from fire, smoke and water. She  exhibited work in the Jack Heath Gallery in 2013 and 2015 and  participated in the Tatham Gallery’s annual event The Fabulous Picture Show. Her work has appeared in the Ceramics South Africa magazine and in the arts and crafts section of The Natal Witness

03 August 2018
  • The Zen Of Recovery: Twelve Steps to wholeness and well-being

    Teacher: Warren Shaw and Graeme Buchart
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R. 250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 03 August 2018 - Monday 06 August 2018

    warren shawgraeme butchartThe lessons that Zen and Recovery teach are no different from what we have suspected all along. When we respond to the call of the Steps of Zen, we are  answering our own cry for help. We don’t need to believe in the Steps, but we do need to have faith in our basic goodness and wisdom. This interpretation of The Twelve Steps conforms to the Mahayana Buddhist tradition of making the rescue vehicle large enough for everyone to define their own “Higher Power”. Just like Recovery, Zen does not seek to convert anyone - only to help in alleviating suffering. People of other philosophies, or none at all, will benefit from this look at Recovery and the Steps through the eyes of Zen,  presenting a fresh understanding of what it takes to be rehabilitated from addictions - using Zen as a tool. This retreat will be helpful to people in need of  recovery,  which includes typically,  substance addictions, but also to people who are experiencing strong negative impacts that have resulted in their living with the experience long after the event. Recovery speaks to any aspect of ourselves  that needs to heal. However, not everyone knows how to go about that in a way that will lead to a positive shift. Using the tools of the 12 step programme, any injury of self can be addressed. A progression to recovery then follows spontaneously.

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    Graeme Buchart journeyed into education, following thirty years in the “rabbit hole” of advertising. He lectures in creativity, innovation and communication at numerous institutions and business schools. His passion for the development of the willing mind was the motivation to study consciousness coaching in 2005. Working with such diverse groups and individuals helped him to recognise that everyone has vast creative potential, left mostly untapped, causing many to remain “stuck” in their habits of living. Wishing to contribute, he wrote The Genius Programme, a practical workbook that helps guide the individual into an innovation of self and the discovery of purpose.

    Warren Shaw has enjoyed a successful twenty five year career in information technology. He has had some rich life experiences, such as buying the richest man in the world a coke because he had no money. As an educator, he works with many people and cultures. His work in over 60 countries has taken him on a journey of spiritual self-discovery - a journey that first began at the BRC. He now has a keencuriosity about recovery, from personal to business, which has become his main passion.

09 August 2018
  • Stoep Zen: Living a Zen life in South Africa

    Teacher: Antony and Margie Osler
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R.450 surcharge
    Dates: Thursday 09 August 2018 - Monday 13 August 2018

    anthony-and-margie-oslerStoep Zen means to apply traditional Zen Buddhism to contemporary life in South Africa - to be able to meditate in a chair on a stoep as well as on a cushion in the meditation hall.  This is a Zen retreat that makes a bridge between formal Zen practice and daily life. It includes meditation, talks, exercise, interviews and fireside chats and is held in silence.

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    Antony Osler was the first meditation teacher at the BRC in the early 1980’s. He spent some years as a Zen monk with Joshu Sasaki Roshi and later received inka from Zen master Dae Gak of Furnace Mountain. A legal arbitrator in his professional life, he has published three popular books on living a Zen life in South Africa: Stoep Zen, Zen Dust and Mzansi Zen (Jacana Media). In 2016, he was awarded the Chancellor’s Medal of the University of Free State for exceptional services to the country.  He lives with his family on a farm in the Karoo where he sits on the stoep, meditates in an old shearing shed and holds Zen retreats with his wife, Margie.

    Margie Osler is a senior student of Zen Master Dae Gak. She leads Zen retreats jointly with her husband, Antony, and runs regular workshops for abused and traumatized children.

17 August 2018
  • Being Our Own Best Friend In This Crazy World

    Teacher: Chandasara
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 17 August 2018 - Sunday 19 August 2018

    chandasara smlThis will be a silent meditation retreat focussing on the  relationship we have with ourselves: what does “being our own best friend” really mean?  Can we be steady and at ease simply being who we are without needing to be particularly special or better or worse than anyone else?  Can we similarly be at peace with others who are different to us without being critical and judgmental? We will explore these questions, using insights from both psychology and the Buddha’s teachings on what keeps us trapped in cycles of negativity and suggest ways of how we can restore ourselves into a more natural state of ease and well-being. During the retreat, there will be periods of sitting and walking meditation, morning and evening talks, and opportunities for dialogue and discussion.

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    Chandasara spent her early adult life in political exile and later worked as a political analyst at the Centre for Policy Studies in Johannesburg. She trained as a Buddhist nun in the Forest School from 2003 to 2011, and, on leaving, completed an Honours degree in psychology while residing at Emoyeni Retreat Centre. Since childhood, she has been deeply interested in all life and nature, intuitive sensitivity, spontaneity, play, creativity and freedom. She currently resides at Dharmagiri Insight Meditation Centre,  where she teaches meditation and mindfulness, and enjoys exploring and sharing with others  the process of freeing ourselves from suffering.

24 August 2018
  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R.250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 24 August 2018 - Sunday 26 August 2018

    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

31 August 2018
  • Original Radiance - Touching into the heart

    Teacher: Kittisaro and Thanissara
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 31 August 2018 - Sunday 02 September 2018

    kittisarothanisaraThe Buddha said this mind/heart is “luminous”, yet we lose touch with core sanity and well-being when patterns of suffering are activated. The practice of presence and deepening awareness, guided by inquiry, helps orientate our life towards our natural wisdom, health and radiance - internally and externally - within each moment. This gentle weekend, guided by Dharma reflections and meditations, offers time to be, and to share together,hin a safe and contemplative atmosphere. 

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    Kittisaro and Thanissara are former monastics, trained in the Forest School of Ajahn Chah. They have guided meditation retreats for over 25 years. Thanissara has an MA in MindfulnessBased Psychotherapy Practice, and Kittisaro has completed two year-long silent retreats. They are core teachers at Insight Meditation Society, USA, and founders and guides of Dharmagiri Insight Meditation Centre in the southern Drakensberg. 

07 September 2018
  • The Yoga of Mind, Body And Breath: A journey of self discovery

    Teacher: Marc Kress
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 07 September 2018 - Sunday 09 September 2018

    marc kressThe practice of yoga brings the mind and body together into the present, connecting us with where we are and what our body tells us. Yoga is a process of listening to our body, re-connecting to  our body and breath and coming back into the present moment, here and now.  The ancient yogis realized that the ability  to meditate effectively requires a healthy, strong body. They therefore developed yoga postures, (asanas), cleansing techniques and breathing practices. Through dedicated  and regular practice of asana, , pranayama (breathing techniques) and meditation, yoga unlocks the deeper levels of our being. It is a way of moving into stillness in order to experience the truth of who we really  are. Bring a yoga mat.

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    Marc Kress  is a yoga teacher and percussionist living in Durban. He was attracted to yoga while travelling through India in 2003: “I had discovered a path of self-practice and discipline that fulfils my desire to grow on a spiritual level by working with my body and mind”. He has been practising and studying in India and South Africa with various teachers in different styles of yoga, including Hatha, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Sivananda, Tantra and Astanga. He has a Hatha Yoga teaching qualification from the Yoga Alliance and is also a certified Iyengar Yoga teacher.

14 September 2018
  • Transforming Fear: How To Turn Stress And Anxiety Into Well-being

    Teacher: Albert Buhr
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 14 September 2018 - Sunday 16 September 2018

    albert buhr smlTo reduce the suffering in the world, we need the skills to reduce our own. This workshop will teach you the practical, effective tools to do exactly that.. Unless it is released, stress  gets locked into our bodies, accumulating until it  erupts in panic, aggression or illness. Only a bold and brave reorientation can heal the roots of the growing epidemic of anxiety and depression that psychiatry has failed to quell with its quick-fix suppression of symptoms. Deep relaxation is an art, and the doorway to profound bliss.

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    Albert Buhr traveled the world to learn the best methods for subduing the stress response, after he recovered from debilitating anxiety A former novice monk, he runs workshops for people struggling with severe anxiety, and facilitates mindfulness programs in the corporate environment. As a member of Harvard's Langer Mindfulness Institute he has taken his workshops to an international audience. His book, Angel of Fear, was published in 2016.

20 September 2018
  • Open The Heart And Still The Mind: Finding Joy within Stillness

    Teacher: Sue Cooper
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Thursday 20 September 2018 - Monday 24 September 2018

    sue cooperThis 4 night, long-weekend retreat, which integrates meditation and the wisdom of Buddhist psychology, is held in a nurturing and containing atmosphere of contemplative (Noble) silence. Through the teachings and practices of compassionate wisdom, we will cultivate a calm, spacious awareness which inspires courage and trust in the face of change, uncertainty and loss. Drawing on the Spring theme of new beginnings, we will open our hearts to our vulnerability with kindness and compassion, so that we can embrace our lives with greater freedom and joy. In addition to offering short, individual sessions, Sue will offer daily sessions of Qigong movement meditation, to enhance the integration of body, heart and mind. There will also 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. Please see www.suecooper.co.za or email sue.stillmind@gmail.com.

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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.

28 September 2018
  • A Taste Of Mindfulness: On being here - now

    Teacher: Lisa Firer and Craig Henen
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 28 September 2018 - Sunday 30 September 2018

    lisa firercraig henenOpen to newcomers and seasoned meditators alike, this retreat gives participants a taste of the practice of Mindfulness: developing moment-to-moment, non-judgmental awareness. This powerful practice enables one to relate with equanimity to whatever is unfolding before us and makes it possible to work more creatively with the stresses and demands of daily living.  Based on the work of Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn, this retreat combines traditional eastern wisdom with modern science and psychology and aims to generate a greater sense of present-mindedness, less reactivity, and more relaxation, body awareness and self-compassion through mindful exercises, yoga, group discussion and reflection. This unique format enables one to integrate this practice into one’s daily life.

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    Lisa Firer is an artist and facilitator with a background in education and psychology. She offers, in a variety of contexts, both mindfulness and Biodanza, a dance-movement system of human development. For the past five years, she has been developing Stillness-Dancing, an integration of movement and meditation practices. She studied the teaching of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction at the University of Massachusetts, USA, Centre for Mindfulness in 2005. She is an internationally accredited Biodanza facilitator and is currently enrolled in the Certification of Mindfulness-Based Interventions at Stellenbosch University.

    Craig Henen is an executive coach and facilitator, offering several mindfulness-based interventions to individuals and groups. He works with an integral framework of experiential learning, systems theory,  emotional intelligence and mindfulness practices, providing a stimulating and safe environment for executives and their teams to examine, evaluate and improve their leadership styles, skills, and processes. He co-facilitates with Lisa Firer in a range of mindfulness applications.

05 October 2018
  • Biodanza: The still point of the dance

    Teacher: Lisa Firer
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R. 150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 05 October 2018 - Sunday 07 October 2018

    lisa firerBiodanza is an invitation to dance with life.  It uses music and movement to create a space in which to taste the joy of living; to experience yourself deeply and to open up more fully to others and the world around you.  It fosters a capacity for creativity and play and confident, heart-centred living.  Although the facilitator will give guidance, the movements are spontaneous and entirely your own.  There is nothing to get “right”, so experience in dance is not a requirement.  The retreat uses Mindfulness practice to support participants being present to their experience, and will include periods of silence and meditation.  We all have, inherently,  in our own way, what is needed to live a life that is rich and full, vital and present-centred.

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    Lisa Firer is an artist and facilitator with a background in education and psychology. She offers, in a variety of contexts, both mindfulness and Biodanza, a dance-movement system of human development. For the past five years, she has been developing Stillness-Dancing, an integration of movement and meditation practices. She studied the teaching of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction at the University of Massachusetts, USA, Centre for Mindfulness in 2005. She is an internationally accredited Biodanza facilitator and is currently enrolled in the Certification of Mindfulness-Based Interventions at Stellenbosch University