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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.

22 February 2019
  • The Wilderness Within: The subtle activism of engaged Buddhists

    Teacher: Tsunma Tsondru
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 22 February 2019 - Sunday 24 February 2019

    tsunma tsondruAs we travel deeper into the 21st century we experience more and more acutely - if we are awake and aware - the unravelling of the interconnected cycles and systems which make up this miracle of life on this Earth which is our only home. Increasingly, we humans don't seem to care for anything other than ourselves. The chasm that is separating human beings from the natural world and from one another is widening, with society encouraging ever more alienation. Even the very words for wild and natural things - flowers and creatures and landscapes - are being erased from the great dictionaries, to be replaced by technology-speak. And yet the words we choose become the world we live in - so we are diligently engaged in making an un-natural and hyper-me world. It is our connection, our relationship, with something that moves us to take care of it. So the key to our future lies in re-connecting ourselves to the Earth, to one another, to our true nature. We cannot survive independently from the Earth and her natural cycles and systems. No matter which strand we try to isolate, we will always find it hitched to a myriad others. Indeed, we are made of the elements. We are made of the same stuff as the stars. We and they have come from the same singularity. Yet a long time ago, before physicists had ever even theorized about the Big Bang, Dogen, the great Zen master, already knew.  I came to realize that the mind is nothing but the sun and the moon and countless stars. Can we also come to this knowing, like Dogen? How can we come to know that the sun and moon and stars are within, that the wilderness is within, that we are the whole of it? The Buddha showed us how when he awoke to the Truth while sitting under the Bodhi tree. He had found through his practice of meditation that we are the sun and the moon and the stars, that the wilderness is within, and is home. He had seen the great interdependence of all things. Taking advantage of the wilderness around the BRC, we will explore the meeting place of the outer and inner worlds to uncover our connection with ourselves, all beings, the sun and moon and the stars. The retreat will combine meditation practice with silent contemplative walking in the wilderness, as well as some of the spiral practices from Joanna Macy's Work That Reconnects.

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    Tsunma Tsondru is a nun ordained by Tai Situ Rinpoche in the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. She came across Buddhism through Louis van Loon at the BRC. After working as a lawyer and environmental scientist, she left for Spain for a traditional Kagyu three-and-a-half-year retreat, followed by a second retreat of four years. Since returning to Cape Town, she has served on the Board of the Southern African Faith Communities Environmental Institute, a multi-faith NGO, and is now its Executive Director. She spent a 10-day intensive retreat with Joanna Macy, engaging with Macy’s “Work That Connects”, which she has offered in Cape Town. Her particular interest is eco philosophy and the role that spirituality and ethics play in transforming our economic and social systems in protection of the Earth.

01 March 2019
  • Radiant Grace:A yogic journey to self-acceptance Take kundalini yoga off the mat and into your life

    Teacher: Denise (Sohandev Kaur)
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 01 March 2019 - Sunday 03 March 2019
    deniseThere is nothing outside of us, it is all within us - Yogi Bhajan
     
    Do you constantly have the feeling that you are not good enough and that you need to be more, accomplish more, see more, own more? Do you find yourself looking 'outside' for solutions? You are not alone. Many of us spend our lives feeling that we are not good enough and are in a constant cycle of self-doubt, guilt and often, loathing. Through the practice of kundalini yoga, meditation and other processes, we can take the first steps on this journey towards self-acceptance. Join us on this journey with kundalini yoga, the yoga of awareness, guiding you towards the path of your inner healing: the key to your happiness and well-being. 
     
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    Denise (Sohandev Kaur) teaches people who face challenges in life and love, to better understand their limiting beliefs and instead embrace their full potential. In 2006, she explored more deeply the tools, habits and mindfulness rituals she had used in her own healing, when she trained to become a yoga teacher in Kerala, India. Having studied extensively over the past decade, she is now a qualified kundalini and Sivananda yoga teacher and has completed the Kundalini Beyond Action Addiction programme. She teaches classes, workshops and retreats to a diverse range of students from corporate executives to artists and homemakers. Her passion is to share the powerful tools of yoga, meditation and mindfulness. 
08 March 2019
  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 08 March 2019 - Sunday 10 March 2019 08:00am - 05:00pm

    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 or 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. His new book Leading with Conscious Awareness: A narrative of personal insights published by Conscious Companies/South Africa was launched in 2018.

     
15 March 2019
  • Healing Chi Kung - For Health And Vitality Embodying and radiating the chi

    Teacher: Dr Hu Jin-Yun
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 15 March 2019 - Sunday 17 March 2019

    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 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.

20 March 2019
  • Open The Heart And Still The Mind: Embracing change and loss

    Teacher: Sue Cooper
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R400 surcharge
    Dates: Wednesday 20 March 2019 - Sunday 24 March 2019

    sue cooper 2014This 4-day 'Open the heart and still the mind' retreat facilitated by clinical psychologist, Sue Cooper, offers an integration of body, heart and mind and is held in a contained and nurturing atmosphere of contemplative (Noble) silence. Inspired by the wisdom of Buddhist psychology, with its profound understanding of the truth of Impermanence, we will explore ways to integrate change and loss in our lives, so that we can learn to bear the unbearable. Through sitting and walking meditations, compassion practices, chi kung and short individual sessions, we will strengthen our capacity for courageous presence. This allows us to embrace life and death with an open and compassionate heart, one which can rediscover joy and lightness of being, in the midst of life's challenges. 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 meditators are very welcome.

    CPD accreditation for psychologists and other HPCSA registered professionals: 26 General CEUs  are applicable and R175 admin fee is requested to receive the CPD certificate. Please also kindly be aware that as there is no teacher's fee charged, your dana for this retreat replaces the teacher's fee, which is usually R2500-4000 for a non dana-based retreat of this length of time. See: sue.stillmind@gmail.com and www.suecooper.co.za

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    Sue Cooper is a Clinical Psychologist with extensive 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, both in South Africa and Gaia House in the UK. She has been inspired by the teachings of Ajahn Chah of the Thai Forest tradition as well as the late Godwin Samararatne, Kittisaro and Thanissara, Ajahn Sucitto and Stephen and Martine Batchelor. In 2010, she created and launched her own "Open the heart and still the mind" courses and retreats, which integrate Buddhist meditation and psychotherapy. She has a particular interest in exploring how our practice enables us to embrace our humanness, integrating love and loss in our lives, so that we can live and die with compassionate awareness. She offers weekend and longer retreats throughout South Africa, as well as 6-8 week "Open the heart and still the mind" courses, on-going weekly groups and monthly half-day/day retreats in Cape Town. See: sue.stillmind@gmail.com

29 March 2019
  • Yes, You Too Can Sing! A celebration of singing and chanting

    Teacher: Sally Bosch and François Möller
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 29 March 2019 - Sunday 31 March 2019

    sally boschfrancois mollerJoin us for a joyous celebration of chanting and enjoy the wonder of your singing voice. François and Sally will help you uncover your natural voice and lift it to new heights of expression and beauty. By combining correct breathing techniques with chanting and stillness, and discovering the origin of speech, your 'body-mind' and voice will be refined. We will focus on sacred chanting, incantations and mantras which form an integral part of most religions, including Buddhism. The healing power and expressive nature of singing appeals to and affects every aspect of our being, including our intellect and emotions. Such harmonious sound opens the heart to joy and can be transforming. By Sunday, the Ixopo hills will truly be alive with the sound of chanting. Daily sessions of chi kung and meditation will take your experience even deeper.

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    Sally Bosch's studies in comparative religion brought her to a point where she put her past behind her and joined the BRC as a volunteer, and immersed herself fully in the Buddhist experience for half a year. The Centre has provided her with much of her inspiration to write her poetry and short stories.

    François Möller obtained a B.Mus. degree from Wits University in 1995, majoring in voice and composition. During his student years he sang leading roles in many productions and after graduating was a soloist for PACT Opera. In 1998 he left for Germany to take up a position as soloist at the Lüneburg State Theatre. On his return to South Africa, he was a finalist in the Opera Queensland YA Singing Competition, and changed focus from opera to light music, focussing on jazz. He is currently teaching voice at Wits University and other institutions. He recorded a CD in 2007 which includes some jazz standards as well as his own compositions. 

05 April 2019
  • Meditation For Beginners

    Teacher: Elizabeth Gaywood
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 05 April 2019 - Sunday 07 April 2019

    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 their 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 8 years and has completed training in Transformative Mindfulness Methods, which has accreditation from the University of Toronto, Canada.

12 April 2019
  • "Seeing The Light" : A photography retreat: Explore your inner light through your camera

    Teacher: Marlene Neumann
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 12 April 2019 - Sunday 14 April 2019

    marlene neumannTune in and allow Nature to flow through your heart and lens. The lens of your camera is an extension of your eye, your eyes are an extension of your heart. This weekend workshop is guided by Master Fine Art photographer, Marlene Neumann. She will take you on a journey deep into the forest where you can explore the light through your camera lens as you listen to the ancient wisdom whispered by the trees. This is not a technical workshop on how to use your camera, but rather an opportunity to learn to follow the light and allow the spirits of Nature to shine through you. Marlene’s contemplative approach will teach you new insights and a new way of seeing. See www.marleneneumann.com.

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    Marlene Neumann is an award-winning Master Fine Art Photographer who has excelled as a leader in her field. She broke the boundaries of Fine Art Photography in South Africa with her intuitive approach and her unique black and white darkroom process. She was head of the Art Department of the Port Elizabeth Technikon for twenty years and achieved her Master’s degree in photography. Her images and her life journey have been featured in many publications. Her Centre For Photography And Light is set in a tranquil art garden, creating a sacred space for her galleries as well as a creative hub for her workshops. Students from across Southern Africa attend her sought-after Creativity Through Photography workshops. Her visual journey is shared in her book: Sky Meets Land where over 100 photographs are showcased. She describes her book as a metaphor for 'mind meets heart'. As an “intuitive photographer” she also engages us with her inspiring DVD series called Capturing what people don’t talk about. Marlene celebrates life through the lens.  See www.marleneneumann.com.

19 April 2019
  • Easter In The Hills Of Ixopo: Settle the mind, radiate the chi, heal the body

    Teacher: Louis van Loon, Alex de la Rouviere, Lien Duvenage and Deborah Donal
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 19 April 2019 - Monday 22 April 2019

    cflores 5306This is a largely unstructured self-retreat with meditation, chi kung, walks and healing therapies

    Join us for Easter in the hills of Ixopo where you will be left alone in the beautiful surroundings of the Centre, to meditate in the Buddha Boma  and relax with healing therapies. Wake up to the sound of the gong, followed by meditation and chi kung in the dell. Experience the profundity of Noble Silence in the morning and what it is like to eat your breakfast quietly and really be present in that moment. Tune into the sound of the windchimes and birdsong, and the beat of one’s heart in this tranquil environment. Healing therapies such as aromatherapy, reflexology and sound therapy will be offered during the day. This retreat will allow you to rest, relax and reflect in the Easter tradition. Meals will be their usual delicious “Plentiful” best. We will also offer a Meditation On Tea, the ancient, meditative Chinese Tea Ceremony.

     
26 April 2019
  • Yogis Live Longer: Hatha yoga for health and resilience

    Teacher: Howard Lipschitz and Christine Withiel
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 26 April 2019 - Sunday 28 April 2019

    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 improves 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 is passionate about yoga and sharing the teachings. She runs 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training Courses at the Jivananda Centre in Durban North. She is a member of the 500-hour teacher training team at Anand Prakash ashram in Rishikesh, India. She is a member of the Township Yogi project which trains yoga teachers in the townships and supports the teachers in the community.

    Howard Lipschitz avoided spinal surgery after he was introduced to Iyengar yoga in Israel 35 years ago.  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 as well as chi kung to his yoga teaching which is based on his personal experiences, reinforced by regular trips to ashrams in India.

03 May 2019
  • The Awakening Shift Experience: Realise your magnificence!

    Teacher: John Homewood
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 03 May 2019 - Sunday 05 May 2019

    john homewoodDissolve your old imprisoned self … and set yourself free now…
    Freedom from grief, depression and anxiety
    Freedom from need, fear and wanting
    Freedom from jealousy and regret
    Freedom from lack of self-worth
    Freedom from non-forgiveness
    Freedom from past pain
    Freedom for Life


    Sometimes getting away from it all for a short while and being gently guided through a process of soul re-integration and healing, is all that is needed to shift your life to higher levels of love and fulfilment. Until you discover your true life purpose, your life may appear rudderless and uncertain. This retreat includes finding your inner purpose: the power of forgiveness, acceptance, surrender and presence. Participants will be guided to answer three vital questions: Who are you? What do you really want? What is your life's purpose? During this workshop participants will discover how to still the mind and access the power of presence, opening them up to greater levels of happiness and creativity. By stripping away the layers of the unconscious mind and discovering a deeper innate sense of being, participants will gain a clearer sense of purpose and direction. The Awakening Shift Experience is based on John Homewood’s own insights and takes retreatants through a shift from head to heart. He draws not only from his own experience and understanding, but also on enlightened teachings from Eckhart Tolle’s A Course in Miracles. The retreat combines wisdom teachings with practical exercises, guided meditations, simple yogic breathing and stretching, quiet stillness interludes and question and answer sessions. Participants can extend this experience by continuing with a follow up retreat: Going Deeper Into The Awakening.

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

05 May 2019
  • Going Deeper Into The Awakening - An extension of the awakening shift experience

    Teacher: John Homewood
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 05 May 2019 - Tuesday 07 May 2019

    john homewoodThis retreat is only open for participants of Awakening Shift retreats.

    Going even deeper into the process of awakening, this extended retreat takes participants further into the powerful creative space beyond mind and will include wisdom teachings, intimate question and answer discussions as well as counselling sessions with John. He will also deal with individual life challenges and questions and provide tools and techniques to break through various blockages in life, allowing  joy and abundance to flow again, often in miraculous ways. Dissolve your old imprisoned self - and set yourself free. Experience freedom from grief, depression and anxiety; freedom from fear, jealousy and regret; freedom from lack of self-worth and non-forgiveness; freedom from past pain. The retreat includes both guided and silent meditation and chi kung sessions.

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

10 May 2019
  • Yin And Yang: A yoga retreat: Release, relax and restore

    Teacher: Georgie Carter
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 10 May 2019 - Sunday 12 May 2019

    georgie carterYin yoga provides the balance to our hectic Yang lifestyle. In today’s busy world we are inundated with the pressure to do more, take on yet more and push ourselves even further. 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. The weekend 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 followed by an intensive Iyengar yoga course in Rishikesh, India with Usha Devi in 2015. Her passion is to apply yoga to everyday life in order to find a balanced and better way to manage daily challenges, to enable us 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.

     
17 May 2019
  • Under The Full Moon Of May: Wesak - Celebrating 25 centuries of Buddhism

    Teacher: Louis van Loon and Stephen Coan
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 17 May 2019 - Sunday 19 May 2019

    louis van loon smlstephen coanThe full moon of May - Wesak - is the most important day on the Buddhist calendar, commemorating the birth, enlightenment and death of the Buddha 2,500 years ago. Wesak is traditionally held on the full moon of the lunar month of Vesakha (coincidental with May) which in 2019 falls over this weekend. We will mark this festival with a programme of sitting and walking meditation with talks and reflections on aspects of the Buddha’s life and teachings and, in union with Buddhists around the world, we will hold a Wesak ceremony including pertinent readings, a candle-lit circumambulation and traditional chanting. Please note: Apart from the talk and discussion periods this retreat will be held in 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.

    Stephen Coan has been involved with Buddhism for three decades. Inspired and informed by the Theravada and Zen Buddhist traditions his retreats place an emphasis on the centrality of practice in living a skilful and enlightened life while also exploring the interface between poetry and silence and the profound benefits of doing nothing, seriously. In addition Stephen draws on his own life experience of moving between being and doing as a film and theatre director, writer, journalist, and poet. His collection of poems Chant of the Doves (2008), inspired by time spent at the Buddhist Retreat Centre over the years, is featured in A Literary Guide to Kwazulu-Natal (2017).

24 May 2019
  • Sacred Drumming: Exploring natural rhythms

    Teacher: Richard Ellis and Marc Kress
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 24 May 2019 - Sunday 26 May 2019

    richard ellismarc kressDrumming and music-making are ancient ways of transcending our routine lifestyle, opening ourselves to spiritual realms of healing and creativity, which is experienced as liberating and rejuvenating. The  universe is a flux of pulsating rhythms. Drumming connects us to these rhythms, facilitating a change in consciousness that leads to a sense of beonging 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 on drums and percussion for all ages and levels of expertise.  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 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, Vinyāsa, Iyengar, Sivananda, Tantra and Astanga. He has a Hatha yoga teaching qualification from the Yoga Alliance and is a certified Iyengar yoga teacher.

31 May 2019
  • An Introduction To Mindfulness Based Living: “Knowing the present”

    Teacher: Kerri Martinaglia and Carey Would
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 31 May 2019 - Sunday 02 June 2019

    kerri martinagliacarey wouldMindfulness is defined as knowing what is happening, while it is happening, with an attitude of kindness and curiosity. In the beginning, we notice how our attention is like a butterfly flitting from one thought to the next. So we start by slowing down and settling our mind. We then introduce practices that ground us, allowing our attention to drop out of our heads and into the sensory awareness of the body. We learn to rest in the present moment getting used to disengaging from our habits of compulsive doing. During the retreat we will be “coming home” to our body, heart and mind; applying curiosity and compassion to whatever we notice. This attitude of openness, kindness and acceptance to whatever is there helps us to live with greater clarity and resilience. The weekend will be experiential and is designed as a helpful first step in developing your own personal Mindfulness practice or as a way of refreshing your existing practice.

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    Kerri Martinaglia runs The Waterfall Retreat and Environmental Centre. In 2009 she began facilitating Mindfulness Africa courses in KwaZulu Natal. Her special interests are how the practices of Yoga, Mindfulness and Compassion can help restore our balance and enable us to live more meaningful lives.

    Carey Would is a qualified Mindfulness Africa and yoga facilitator. She advocates the importance of being grounded in the body as an anchor in the present. Only by becoming aware of each moment are we able to connect with an authentic truth.

07 June 2019
  • Your Precious Life: Discovering avenues to meaning and purpose - Logotherapy

    Teacher: Klasie Wessels and Samantha Sparkes
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 07 June 2019 - Sunday 09 June 2019

    klasie wesselssamantha sparkles sOur 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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    Klasie Wessels is a leadership coach and his company Streetschool specializes in personal development with a strong emphasis on experiential learning. He works with groups and individuals on themes such as leadership, personal growth, and finding a deeper sense of meaning and purpose in life. The most exciting part of Streetschool’s offering are the experiential workshops to India and expeditions to Everest Base Camp in Nepal. Since 2011, he has taken more than 300 people on 26 such personal development journeys. Klasie spent 25 years with the Advertising Group FCB – the last 10 years as Managing Director and Chairman of the Johannesburg office. He lectures Logotherapy at Unisa’s Centre of Applied Psychology and is Chairman of the Viktor Frankl Institute of Logotherapy SA.

    Samantha Sparkes has an M.A. in Industrial Psychology from Wits University. She is a qualified life coach and Logotherapy Educator. Most of her 20 year career in the corporate world has been in organizational and team development, change management and training. Currently she is the head of Supply Chain Training and Stakeholder Engagement at Sasol. She and Klasie Wessels are co-authoring a book on finding meaning in the workplace.

10 June 2019
  • Get On The Write Track: Memoir and mindfulness. Breathe, listen, write Your path to freedom, enlightenment and perhaps $$

    Teacher: Wanda Hennig
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + course fee: Contact Wanda: wanda@wandahennig.com / 072-664-3170
    Dates: Monday 10 June 2019 - Thursday 13 June 2019

    wanda hennig lsWe all have stories to tell, but many of us don’t know where to start. In this workshop we will stop - listen - connect - write. The focus will be two interconnected, transformative practices: mindfulness (awareness, presence, “listening” ) and memoir writing (story). You will get to meet, name and kick-start a relationship with your personal muse; mine the richness of your life for “story”; explore focussed journaling practice (self-expression, self-coaching, self-growth, liberation); start a memoir. You will get to take away tools, strategies, and a “how-to” plan to move forward. And lots more.
    For the cost of the course: Contact Wanda: wanda@wandahennig.com / 072-664-3170.

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    Wanda Hennig is an award-winning food and travel writer who has freelanced extensively for print and online publications both internationally and locally. She worked in South Africa in the newsrooms of the Daily News and Sunday Tribune and as bureau chief at Cosmopolitan magazine before going to live in the San Francisco Bay Area. There, she worked on magazines and newspapers, in corporate communications, and in multimedia and social media. She has a post-graduate degree in psychology and a Higher Diploma in Education (both from UKZN) and is a certified Co-Active Life Coach (Coaches Training Institute, California). She lived and practised at the San Francisco Zen Centre for three-and-a-half years in the 1990’s, has been meditating for 30 years, and has run mindfulness, writing and coaching workshops in California and South Africa - including at the BRC. She is the author of Cravings: A Zen-inspired memoir about sensual pleasures, freedom from dark places, and living and eating with abandon (Say Yes Press, 2017). See www.wandahennig.com

14 June 2019
  • Ayurveda, Yoga And Meditation Retreat: A return to wholeness

    Teacher: Helen Altman
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 14 June 2019 - Sunday 16 June 2019

    helen altman smlAyurveda - the knowledge of life - is a 5000 year old healing/health system that offers integrated, balanced living and preventative medicine. This ancient wisdom 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.

17 June 2019
  • Rejuvenating The BRC: A family retreat with children in mind

    Teacher: Sheila Berry, Lihle Mbokazi and Sipho Msiya
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    50% discount for children
    Dates: Monday 17 June 2019 - Thursday 20 June 2019

    sheila-berrylihle-zulusipho-msiyaCome and join us for some serious fun and adventure this winter!  Spend 3 days filled with games and stories, nature walks, making art and toasting marshmallows under the stars and lantern-lit trees 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. 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, for all creatures and 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 as a community animator for EarthLore in KZN, 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  became a trail guide with Zulu Trails.

21 June 2019
  • Iyengar Yoga: Nudging the body into shape and health

    Teacher: Judy Farah
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 21 June 2019 - Sunday 23 June 2019

    judy farah2019The upsurge of interest in the ancient practice of yoga attests to its proven physiological and psychological benefits. 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 (23-27 June).

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    Judy Farah began her yoga practice at the age of 18 and has been teaching Iyengar Yoga for the past 18 years. She has travelled to Puna many times to study and practise under the guidance of Gurus, Geetaji and Prashantji. She has attended many seminars of visiting Senior Iyengar teachers and travelled extensively to study under various other Iyengar teachers. This included doing a 6-year Medical/Remedial Course with Stephanie Quirk. It is her ongoing devotion to yoga practice that is her driving force in life. Everyone is welcome - from beginners to advanced. Please bring your own yoga mats.

23 June 2019
  • Iyengar Yoga: Deepening your practice

    Teacher: Judy Farah
    Cost: 4 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 23 June 2019 - Thursday 27 June 2019

    judy farah2019For those who wish to consolidate and deepen their yoga practice, this 4-day intensive retreat is highly recommended. You will definitely feel stretched, relaxed and fit for life.

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    Judy Farah began her yoga practice at the age of 18 and has been teaching Iyengar Yoga for the past 18 years. She has travelled to Puna many times to study and practise under the guidance of Gurus, Geetaji and Prashantji. She has attended many seminars of visiting Senior Iyengar teachers and travelled extensively to study under various other Iyengar teachers. This included doing a 6-year Medical/Remedial Course with Stephanie Quirk. It is her ongoing devotion to yoga practice that is her driving force in life. Everyone is welcome - from beginners to advanced. Please bring your own yoga mats.

     
28 June 2019
  • Life Writing: A workshop on memoir

    Teacher: Dawn Garisch
    Cost: 5 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 28 June 2019 - Wednesday 03 July 2019

    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. In 2013 her short story What To Do About Ricky won the NAF-funded 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.

05 July 2019
  • If Your Chronic Complaint Was A Work Of Art, What Would It Be?

    Teacher: Dawn Garisch
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 05 July 2019 - Sunday 07 July 2019

    dawn garischYou are invited to explore the creative information that is bound up in your persistent difficulties - your chronic illness, relationship problems, habits and addictions, artistic blocks, or spiritual dilemmas. Neuroscience confirms that our behaviour, attitudes and choices are driven by images and narrative. This explains why logic and argument are often ineffective in changing old patterns. Locked into a chronic or recurrent complaint are stagnant and blocked images. Instead of trying to get rid of the difficulty out of fear and frustration, we will explore the associated images with curiosity. This workshop will help you to identify the images that underlie the disturbances in your life and give you tools to explore them. This can release valuable information and connections about them. Paying attention and using the tools of the artist - drawing, writing, movement, clay and  collage - encourages  unexpected resolutions to emerge.

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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. In 2013 her short story What To Do About Rickywon the NAF-funded 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.

12 July 2019
  • A Retreat On Mindful Communication

    Teacher: Lucy Draper-Clarke and Felicity Hart
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation + R400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 12 July 2019 - Sunday 14 July 2019

    lucy draper clarke phd 2019felicity hart"When we are busy judging people, we have no time to love them" -  Marshall Rosenberg

    When interacting with others, we often find ourselves emotionally triggered and then we communicate in ways that hurt or harm - ourselves, the other, or the relationship between us. We have not learnt how to use mindful and authentic communication. The principles and practices we will explore on this retreat are drawn from Non-Violent Communication And Insight Dialogue, and held within a framework of yoga and mindfulness, in order to increase awareness, compassion and ease with ourselves and others. We will explore both intra-personal and inter-personal mindfulness in order to cultivate skills of empathy, compassion and a better understanding of self and other. Contemplative dyads are increasingly being taught in retreat settings as a way to promote social connectedness, something that we are often lacking in daily life where our time is dominated by digital devices. We will practise deep listening in this retreat setting, in order to learn skills that can increase feelings of closeness and strengthen relationships with our friends and partners. These practices will help us communicate with more presence of mind so that we learn to be aware of our feelings and needs and stay open to the feelings and needs of others.

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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 fortunate to have studied with inspiring Buddhist Mindfulness and Vinyāsa 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.

    Felicity Hart has run a meditation, mindfulness and yoga practice for over 30 years and now teaches within these modalities. Her formal qualifications include an Honours Degree in Psychology, an international coaching qualification, and a PGC in Mindfulness-Based Interventions from the University of Stellenbosch. She is a gifted Bach Flower practitioner, using flower remedies to heal and support her clients.

15 July 2019
  • Dharma Circle: Mid-week Meditation - How to remain calm and clear in everything we say and do: the practice of Sati

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + surcharge R150
    Dates: Monday 15 July 2019 - Wednesday 17 July 2019

    louis van loon smlVisitors to the BRC often like to experience the practice of Mindfulness Meditation (Sati), which is the kernel of the entire spectrum of the teachings of the Buddha. Sati equips us with the capacity to deal calmly and effectively with the many challenging circumstances that inevitably come our way in life. As we all know - often to our cost - when the mind is unsettled and distraught, we tend to make decisions and say and do things we often regret, upon reflection. Sati, therefore, corrects this tendency for the mind to become overwhelmed by negative emotions and enables us to find a space of mental stillness and clarity. Meditation and chi kung will be offered over this unstructured retreat, and a chance to simply be present from one moment to the next in a tranquil, natural environment.

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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.

19 July 2019
  • “Practising The Pause”: Functional yoga as an antidote for our busy lives

    Teacher: Nicci Annette
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + surcharge R250
    Dates: Friday 19 July 2019 - Sunday 21 July 2019

    nicci annette3The way we move, think, act and breathe contributes to the flow and vitality of prana - the universal energy that runs through us and everything around us. Daily stress and tension can create energetic and physical obstacles. However, when we work on freeing the breath through focused, meditative pranayama (breathing exercises) and yoga asana practice (posture), we focus on letting life energy flow through the body, which has the effect of vitalising, relaxing and healing. By practising the pause - on and off the yoga mat - we learn to slow things down and to find balance in our daily lives. We will explore ways to energise or calm ourselves by changing our breathing patterns and by moving our bodies in a mindful way, using the ancient practice of yoga. The retreat is suitable for beginners and will include sunrise and sunset meditation.

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    Nicci Annette has been practising yoga for over 20 years and teaches yoga, meditation, mindfulness and massage from her studio in Stellenbosch. Her first teacher training was in California, USA, in 2007. More recently, she did her advanced teacher training in Yin yoga in Goa, India. Her 200-hour teacher training was obtained from Ananda Sangha, South Africa, where she also gained her advanced pregnancy teacher training. She is a certified infant massage therapist and M-Technique touch therapist. She believes that the body possesses an ability to heal and restore itself, if given the opportunity.Nicci's teaching style is gentle, relaxed, accessible and welcoming.

23 July 2019
  • Delicious Wellness: How to make your body your best friend

    Teacher: Patti Good
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + surcharge R250
    Dates: Tuesday 23 July 2019 - Thursday 25 July 2019

    patti goodAre you longing for a more loving relationship with your body? Every symptom, every emotion, every negative thought guides you back home - to the exquisite connection between you and your Body Wisdom. Real nourishment doesn’t start with food; it starts with how you communicate with your body, how you let yourself feel and how you listen to and honour the messages you receive from your body. In this retreat you will learn to access your Body Wisdom through a gentle, but powerful self-enquiry process which will help you to shift years of baggage, trauma, pain so that you can create a foundation for wellness.

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    Patti Good is an empowerment expert for powerful women. She was born and raised in South Africa before moving to New York and London. She spent 14 years as part of the Inner Journey Clinic on Harley Street in London where she ran transformational healing programs to help her clients heal their wounds and find their deepest wholeness using The Journey, BodyTalk, Reiki and EFT. She is now running both one-on-one and group healing programs online and conducting retreats. Her focus is to help women to empower themselves.

26 July 2019
  • Finding And Keeping Your Centre: Taking care of ourselves in order to be of service to others

    Teacher: Tessa Pretorius
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 26 July 2019 - Sunday 28 July 2019

    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 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 be of service of others.

02 August 2019
  • "Soul Origami" - Unfolding Me: Listening with your whole being. Speaking from your deepest authenticity

    Teacher: Nicholas Burnand
    Cost: 4 day's accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 02 August 2019 - Tuesday 06 August 2019

    nicholas burnandWe are inviting you on a journey of direct experiencing, sensing and being - witnessing the mystery of existence reveal itself. The Dyad is a powerful meditation technique which rapidly takes us to a heightened level of mindfulness and self-awareness. In contrast to silent meditation methods practised alone, this is practised face-to-face. Through the Dyad enquiry we watch our hearts unfold, learning to trust ourselves, to listen with our whole being and to speak from a place of inner awareness. Just as in Origami, each fold presents a new facet of ourselves; another aspect of life. Individual and group processes will be alternated with periods of individual reflection and quiet contemplation in the beautiful natural surroundings of the BRC.  Click here to view a clip of a similar retreat conducted abroad.

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    Nicholas Burnand has reflected deeply on the question: “Is there more to life than struggle and suffering?” This led him on a quest to discover how he could live life more fully present, alive and with joy. His journey has taken him to remote places, spending hundreds of hours in retreats, ceremonies, workshops, as well as in personal daily practice. He discovered the Dyad Enquiry practice five years ago, and since then has practised and shared it in workshops, retreats, and one-on-one sessions which he offers as a CNVC certified trainer. Along with Nonviolent Communication, he has found the Dyad method to be the most deeply transformative practice that he has encountered so far. Through it he has discovered that empathy is the path to freedom from suffering - as the Buddha did 25 centuries before him.

06 August 2019
  • Working With The Elements: An enquiry into ourselves and the world around us through a deeper understanding of our environment

    Teacher: Pippa Cope and Jane Pilossof
    Cost: 3 days’ accommodation + surcharge R250
    Dates: Tuesday 06 August 2019 - Friday 09 August 2019

    pippa copejayne pillosofThe five elements provide a very dynamic system of understanding life. They make up the world around us and 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 dis-ease. 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 will use the Tibetan schemata of the five elements - earth, water, fire, air and space. We will explore and get to know them in a practical way. We will 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. The retreat will include guided meditation, gentle stretching and creative work around each element, including painting and working with clay. 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.

09 August 2019
  • Healing Relaxation: Opening and relaxing the heart and mind

    Teacher: Pippa Cope and Jayne Pilossof
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R 350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 09 August 2019 - Sunday 11 August 2019

    pippa copejayne pillosofEverybody experiences tranquility from time to time, because this open quality of mind is natural to us 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 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 effective 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.

16 August 2019
  • A Neurosurgeon Probes Wellness And Performance: Psychoneuroimmunology

    Teacher: Ian Weinberg
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 16 August 2019 - Sunday 18 August 2019

    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 or 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. His new book Leading with Conscious Awareness: A narrative of personal insights published by Conscious Companies/South Africa was launched in 2018.

     
18 August 2019
  • Mid-week Dharma Circle: Mid-week Meditation: How to remain calm and clear in everything we say and do: the practice of Sati

    Teacher: Louis van Loon
    Cost: 2 days' accommodation +R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 18 August 2019 - Tuesday 20 August 2019

    louis van loon smlVisitors to the BRC often like to experience the practice of Mindfulness Meditation (Sati), which is the kernel of the entire spectrum of the teachings of the Buddha. Sati equips us with the capacity to deal calmly and effectively with the many challenging circumstances that inevitably come our way in life. As we all know - often to our cost - when the mind is unsettled and distraught, we tend to make decisions and say and do things we often regret later, when the mind has calmed down and when we are able to reflect on them. Sati, therefore, corrects this tendency for the mind to become overwhelmed by negative emotions and enables us to find a space of mental stillness and clarity. Meditation and chi kung will be offered, and a chance to simply be present from one moment to the next in the tranquil surroundings of the BRC.

    View teacher details
    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.

23 August 2019
  • Nia Technique: How to love and appreciate your body through music, movement, dance and martial arts

    Teacher: Susan Sloan and Karyn Cardoso
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 23 August 2019 - Sunday 25 August 2019

    susan sloane b wkaryn cordoso2017Learn why Nia is a lifestyle practice that strengthens your ability to sustain body-centred awareness and vitalises your nervous system. Feel how every cell in your body can vibrate in joy and how you are connected to everything that surrounds you. 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 others as it connects us to our inner essence, bringing joy, fitness and healing at all levels.

    Susan Sloan is a Nia Black Belt Instructor, and is the resident White Belt Trainer for Africa. She has been involved in health and healing modalities since 2000. 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. 

     
30 August 2019
  • Authentic Ayurveda: Restorative yoga and mindful cooking

    Teacher: Nalini
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 30 August 2019 - Sunday 01 September 2019

    nalini2017Enjoy the revitalising and rejuvenating effects of both hatha and restorative yoga sessions over this retreat. Yoga offers us a nurturing space where we can heal and balance our physical, mental and emotional selves more effectively, as well as develop strength, stability and flexibility.  Both hatha and restorative yoga offer overall support and healing to the nervous, lymphatic, hormonal, cardio thoracic, digestive and immune systems which brings you back into harmony with your body’s natural rhythms. Through asana (posture), and pranayama (breathing), we learn to become more mindful in our lives. You will also  learn the art of preparing a dosha-balancing meal that will take you from the cool days of winter into spring.  Be your own healer by learning how to incorporate the therapeutic properties of food, herbs and spices into your daily routine  to detoxify your body and enjoy optimal health.

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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.

06 September 2019
  • Mindful Writing

    Teacher: Dorian Haarhoff
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 06 September 2019 - Sunday 08 September 2019

    dorian haarhof 2019"Between living and dreaming there is a third thing. Guess it."
    Antonio Machado

    In this retreat we wander between words and silence as we inhabit the spaces in-between. When we write and meditate we attend to the moment in a zen-pen way. This moment open us up to time and space beyond tick-tock clock time.  We draw inspiration from the mynah birds in Huxley’s novel Island who call out "attention, be here now." Word by word and breath by breath, we create an expanded sense of reality. Beginner writers/meditators are welcome, for we live this retreat weekend in beginner’s mind.

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    Dorian Haarhoff is a writer, story-teller and mentor. Passionate about developing innate creativity and imagination, he believes in the power of stories to spread loving-kindness. To bring healing. To build our belonging. A former Professor of English (Namibia), Dorian’s retreats are based on his workbook, The Writer’s Voice. His poems appear in Quiet Food and The Cake The Buddha Ate. When he grows up he’d like to be the Poet Dorieate of his spiritual home - the BRC.

08 September 2019
  • Mirror, Lens And Window: The art of journalling

    Teacher: Dorian Haarhoff
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 08 September 2019 - Tuesday 10 September 2019

    dorian haarhof 2019Some record only what has happened to them; but others record how they happened to the universe - Henry David Thoreau

    On this retreat we follow Wordsworth’s advice: "Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart." The word journal comes from Old French, day. A daily encounter with yourself. Journal echoes the word journey. So we become travellers of inner and outer regions, writing in our travelogues. Our guiding metaphor? A journal is a mirror, a window and a cameras lens.  It reflects our realities, helps us focus and opens us to the world. "A journal does not simply record my actual life but rather offers an alternative to it." Susan Sontag

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    Dorian Haarhoff  is a writer, story-teller and mentor. Passionate about developing innate creativity and imagination, he believes in the power of stories to spread loving-kindness. To bring healing. To build our belonging. A former Professor of English (Namibia), Dorian’s retreats are based on his workbook, The Writer’s Voice.  His poems appear in Quiet Food and The Cake The Buddha Ate. When he grows up he’d like to be the Poet Dorieate of his spiritual home - the BRC.

     
13 September 2019
  • A Taste Of Mindfulness: On being here - now

    Teacher: Lisa Firer and Craig Henen
    Cost: 2 days’ accommodation + R400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 13 September 2019 - Sunday 15 September 2019

    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 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, 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.

20 September 2019
  • The Karma And Drama Of Relationships: A practical Buddhist approach

    Teacher: Melanie Polatinsky
    Cost: 3 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 20 September 2019 - Monday 23 September 2019

    melanie polatinskyWhat comes first? Karma or Drama? Our previous karma - going back many lifetimes - usually thrusts us into the dramas we experience in all our relationships. Yet, it is the drama of ups and downs that usually creates more karma! So both are important to examine. All we know is that difficult relationships cause us pain and suffering, but is there a way to deal with relationships more creatively? The answer is to learn to view difficult relationships in a completely different way. During this retreat we will study the Buddhist approach to relationships from which we will learn that we are the creators of all our drama and that we need to take responsibility for change no matter how difficult. We will see relationships as a mirror reflecting our repetitive imprints both positively and negatively. This 3-day workshop will include meditation, chi kung and periods of quiet and rest.

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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 self-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.

27 September 2019
  • Yoga Mind, Body And Breath: A journey of self-discovery

    Teacher: Marc Kress
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 27 September 2019 - Sunday 29 September 2019

    marc kressThe practice of yoga brings the mind and body together, grounding us in the present, connecting us with where we are and what our body tells us about ourselves. Yoga is a process of re-connecting to our body and breath, coming back into the present moment. The ancient yogis realized that in order to be able to meditate effectively requires a healthy, strong body, so they developed yoga postures (asanas), cleansing techniques and breathing exercises (pranayama). Through regular practise of asanas, pranayama 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 are. This retreat is open to beginners and experienced students. Please bring a yoga mat.

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    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 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, Vinyāsa, Iyengar, Sivananda, Tantra and Astanga. He has a Hatha yoga teaching qualification from the Yoga Alliance and is a certified Iyengar yoga teacher.

04 October 2019
  • Deepening Your Emotional Intelligence Through Mindfulness

    Teacher: Shanil Haricharan
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R300 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 04 October 2019 - Sunday 06 October 2019

    Research on emotional intelligence (EI or EQ) suggests that a person’s ability to perceive, identify and manage their emotions is essential to making good decisions, taking optimal action to solve problems and coping with change. According to Daniel Goleman, emotionally intelligent people are aware of their own emotions (self-awareness) and they effectively manage their emotions (self-management). In addition, they are aware of the emotions of others (social awareness) and are adept at managing the emotions of others (relationship management). Each one of us can acquire and improve our EI - an essential part of our personal development. Self-awareness - EI competence - cultivates our empathy, and nurtures our compassion and caring. Furthermore, the subject of mindfulness has received huge interest from practitioners and researchers alike, with a growing body of research linking mindfulness to cognitive, physiological, and psychological benefits. Interestingly, current research shows a positive relationship between mindfulness and the development of emotional intelligence competencies. This interactive retreat supports participants in their personal development journey through gaining insights into emotional intelligence and mindfulness, and behaviour that positively impacts their well-being and relationships.

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    Shanil Haricharan is an associate professor at UCT’s Nelson Mandela School of Public Governance where he convenes the public leadership course on the MPhil programme in development policy and teaches emotional intelligence and leadership. He is currently a director at Ilifa Labantwana, an early childhood development NGO. For the past 13 years he served as  a senior advisor on public management, leadership and organisational culture at the National Treasury. He received a BSc (Medical/Life Sciences, Wits), an Advanced University Diploma in Adult Education (Natal), a MBA (UCT), and a PhD (Stellenbosch). His doctoral research focused on emotional intelligence, public leadership and organisational culture. He also completed the Gestalt International Organisation and Human Systems Development Programme at the Gestalt International Study Centre, Cleaveland, USA.

11 October 2019
  • Mindful Body - Embodied Mind: Body Sense Alexander Technique and mindful movement

    Teacher: Marguerite van der Merwe
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 11 October 2019 - Sunday 13 October 2019

    marguerite van der merweCultivating the practice of Mindful Body-Embodied Mind in daily activity, we will take each step, each activity with conscious awareness and impeccable attention. Through a combination of Body Sense Alexander Technique and mindful movement - gentle tai chi-chi kung and conscious walking - we will restore a state of ease in body and mind. The practise of Alexander Technique in an environment of attentive-relaxation offers a means to enhance and maintain our co-ordination, composure and effortless mobility. Come and walk the path to health and well-being.

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    Marguerite van der Merwe teaches The Alexander Technique and tai chi-chi kung. She is the author of The Art of WalkingandEve-olution. Concerned with the development and enrichment of the whole individual, she combines scientific, psychological and spiritual insights in her teachings dealing with the integration of mind and body. In 2016 she was awarded the University of the Free State Chancellor's Medal for exceptional service for her work in establishing The Alexander Technique in South Africa. This technique is a practical, visionary and educational method which teaches essential life-skills. She is the sister of Antony Osler.

13 October 2019
  • Deepening The Practice Of Mindful Body-Embodied Mind: The Alexander Technique Continued

    Teacher: Marguerite van der Merwe
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 13 October 2019 - Tuesday 15 October 2019

    marguerite van der merweIn this two-day retreat, we continue the practice of Mindful Body-Embodied Mind. Managing our lives in such fast-paced, challenging times, we need such life-skills: attentiveness and focus; poise and balance in body and kindness and compassion in our emotional and spiritual lives. Spend 2 days in the tranquil environment of the BRC to ground yourself in this technique.

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    Marguerite van der Merwe teaches The Alexander Technique and tai chi-chi kung. She is the author of The Art of Walking and Eve-olution. Concerned with the development and enrichment of the whole individual, she combines scientific, psychological and spiritual insights in her teachings dealing with the integration of mind and body. In 2016 she was awarded the University of the Free State Chancellor's Medal for exceptional service for her work in establishing The Alexander Technique in South Africa. This technique is a practical, visionary and educational method which teaches essential life-skills. She is the sister of Antony Osler.

18 October 2019
  • "You Can't Fill The Hole In Your Heart With Food" - Jan Chozen Bays: Developing a mindful approach to eating

    Teacher: Xenia Ayiotis and Richard-John Chippindall
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R350 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 18 October 2019 - Sunday 20 October 2019

    xenia ayiotisrj chippindallMindful eating can bring us awareness to 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 enable us to become aware of - and manage - our sometimes destructive patterns and habits around food, eating and our bodies. We will also look at the emotional triggers that can lead to overeating and binge eating, and how these may be understood and effectively 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 in the 1990’s. 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.

25 October 2019
  • Peace Through Love, Peace Through Meditation: Buddhism as a life-path

    Teacher: Ken Holmes
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R400 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 25 October 2019 - Sunday 27 October 2019

    ken holmesBuddhism is described as being a life-path rather than a blind-faith religion: the famous Path of Peace. Yet peace exists on many levels, from meditative states of peace, through to being at peace with oneself and life around us to the ultimate peace of being inseparable from eternal love and wisdom. Ken will present these driving forces from a perspective of practice and experience rather than dry theory. The weekend retreat (Part One) will consider the realities of developing an evolving path of meditation and of awakening a purer form of love, showing how these lead to a deeper sense of peace with life as we experience it.

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    Ken Holmes' adult life was spent studying, practising and transmitting Dharma. He comes to us rich in 50 years’ experience of being trained by some of Tibet’s finest lamas, in particular those of Milarepa’s Kagyu tradition. He is internationally known as a translator of key Buddhist works and as a respected scholar able to present deeper topics clearly and accessibly. He is also an accredited teacher for many areas of meditation. As their Director of Studies, his life is mainly spent teaching in the European and African monasteries and Dharma Centres affiliated to the Samye Ling organisation in Scotland.

27 October 2019
  • Peace Through Wisdom

    Teacher: Ken Holmes
    Cost: 3 day's accommodation + R200 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 27 October 2019 - Wednesday 30 October 2019

    ken holmesThis three-day retreat with Ken will take a deeper dive into the topics of voidness ("emptiness") as being the ultimate truth of everyone and everything and how learning to become "that" (also known as our Buddha Nature) is the most transcendent peace, full of spontaneous wonder.

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    Ken Holmes' adult life was spent studying, practising and transmitting Dharma. He comes to us rich in 50 years’ experience of being trained by some of Tibet’s finest lamas, in particular those of Milarepa’s Kagyu tradition. He is internationally known as a translator of key Buddhist works and as a respected scholar able to present deeper topics clearly and accessibly. He is also an accredited teacher for many areas of meditation. As their Director of Studies, his life is mainly spent teaching in the European and African monasteries and Dharma Centres affiliated to the Samye Ling organisation in Scotland.

     
01 November 2019
  • If The Buddha Found His Soulmate: Finding a loving relationship on a spiritual path

    Teacher: Natascha Prussen and Warren Shaw
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 01 November 2019 - Sunday 03 November 2019

    natascha prussenwarren shawBeyond ideas, there is a field,
    Will you meet me there?
    Will you see me - without filters or fixations or illusions?
    Don’t make me special, Just see me, understand me, be with me.
    Experience the passing moments by my side.
    Rumi

    The Buddhist teachings provide a wonderful foundation to understand why relationships work - and why they don’t. This helps us to develop an ability to live in the present moment - because only then can we truly flourish. Our exploration of vital, loving relationships will include Buddhist insights into how compassion, impermanence and loving-kindness are key in the way we relate to others. We will explore the role attachment and craving plays and the suffering these cause. Because if we were fully awake and present, we would know that to harm another is to harm ourselves, and that to harm ourselves is to harm another. As we come to fully understand this, we will become less reactive to others and will respond with loving-kindness. Some of the fundamental traits of a loving relationship that we will explore are: a deep commitment to being a couple and yet separate individuals; the ability to resolve conflict; having shared values, dreams and life-style; showing appreciation, respect and care and sharing a strong connection to community and being of service to others; having a sense of humour and being able to laugh at ourselves. Natascha and Warren are able to speak from their own experience and how Buddhism triggered a deeper understanding of the subtle issues involved in maintaining a healthy relationship.

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    Natascha Prussen believes that when you do what you love and love what you do, you attract people into your life who help you grow your contribution in this world. She has been in IT and the learning and development space for more than 20 years and started an independent Microsoft Learning Centre in South Africa, LGIT Smart Solutions in 2000 which offers both technical and leadership skills to businesses and communities. She is an ILS accredited coach and a trained Demartini Method and Values facilitator. Her passion is to help people understand what drives them intrinsically to build relationships, to deal with conflict and to enhance communication. She has helped to address the unemployment and IT literacy gap in South Africa since 2001, providing affordable, accessible computer literacy training to individuals in impoverished communities at Siyakhula. This project won the Microsoft Corporate Responsibility Partner Award in 2011, and continues to upskill more than 1500 learners per annum across all community centres. Her journey has helped her realise the importance of knowing yourself first before you can create healthy relationships. Human behaviour, and the way we show up in the world, continues to fascinate her.

    Warren Shaw has enjoyed a successful twenty-five year career in information technology. He has had some rich life experiences, including 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 deep curiosity about recovery, from personal to business, which has become his main passion.

04 November 2019
  • A Pilates Retreat: Moving with agility

    Teacher: Kim McCusker-Bartlett
    Cost: 3 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Monday 04 November 2019 - Thursday 07 November 2019

    kim mccusker bartlettThis retreat will incorporate a series of core-strengthening movements. The Pilates methodology helps to stabilise your spine, improving posture and balance. Enjoy learning our Mat routine, using your body weight as a tool and specific breathing patterns to encourage efficient movement, core stability and flexibility within the body. Included in the workshop are the Advanced Mat exercises to accommodate both beginners and experienced students. There will be an evening discussion on how Pilates can thread through your daily life. Moving with agility helps you to deal with life’s stresses and to discover your best self.

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    Kim McCusker-Bartlett is a dancer with a passion for Pilates. She qualified as a Pilates instructor in 2011 and set up the Agility Studio, a private Pilates space, where she taught  for over four years. She currently resides in Johannesburg, with her family of three. Her goal is to help students of movement to find mind and body harmony.

08 November 2019
  • Eyes Horizontal, Nose Vertical: A weekend of meditation practice

    Teacher: Stephen Coan
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R250 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 08 November 2019 - Sunday 10 November 2019

    stephen coanOn returning from an extended pilgrimage to China, the 14th century Japanese Zen master, Dogen, greeted his followers with these words: I have returned home with empty hands... I say only this: my eyes are horizontal, my nose vertical - their position in meditation. Thereafter Dogen spent the rest of his life teaching the merits of zazen (sitting meditation), the practice which lies at the very heart of the Buddhist experience. Simply being attentive, moment to moment, can have profound consequences: reconnecting us with our deepest selves, to others and the natural world around us. Experience this intimate connection supported by a programme of sitting and walking meditation. There will also be time to enjoy the beautiful grounds 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 has been involved with Buddhism for three decades. Inspired and informed by the Theravada and Zen Buddhist traditions, his retreats place an emphasis on the centrality of practice in living a skilful and enlightened life while also exploring the interface between poetry and silence and the profound benefits of doing nothing, seriously. In addition, Stephen draws on his own life experience of moving between being and doing as a film and theatre director, writer, journalist, and poet. His collection of poems Chant of the Doves (2008), inspired by time spent at the Buddhist Retreat Centre over the years, is featured in A Literary Guide to Kwazulu-Natal (2017).

10 November 2019
  • Playing A Lute With No String: A meditation practice retreat

    Teacher: Stephen Coan
    Cost: 4 day's accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Sunday 10 November 2019 - Thursday 14 November 2019

    stephen coanOn a quiet evening in my thatch-roofed hut, I play a lute with no string. Its melody enters the wind and cloud, mingles deeply with a flowing stream, fills out the dark valley, blows through the vast forest, then disappears. Other than those who hear emptiness, who will capture this rare sound? - Ryokan (tr. Kazuaki Tanahashi)

    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 surroundings of the Buddhist Retreat Centre while capturing the rare sound of a lute played with no string. Held in the supportive space of Noble Silence, this retreat presents an ideal opportunity to extend and deepen your meditation practice.

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    Stephen Coan has been involved with Buddhism for three decades. Inspired and informed by the Theravada and Zen Buddhist traditions, his retreats place an emphasis on the centrality of practice in living a skilful and enlightened life while also exploring the interface between poetry and silence and the profound benefits of doing nothing, seriously. In addition, Stephen draws on his own life experience of moving between being and doing as a film and theatre director, writer, journalist, and poet. His collection of poems Chant of the Doves (2008), inspired by time spent at the Buddhist Retreat Centre over the years, is featured in A Literary Guide to Kwazulu-Natal (2017).

15 November 2019
  • An Introduction To Chi Kung: Boost your health and longevity

    Teacher: Paul Dorrian
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 15 November 2019 - Sunday 17 November 2019

    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 also 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 incorporates sounds to cleanse and heal our major organs. In addition, it 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.

22 November 2019
  • Being Our Own Best Friend In This Crazy World

    Teacher: Chandasara
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 22 November 2019 - Sunday 24 November 2019

    chandasara smlThis is a silent meditation retreat focusing 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 after which she 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 forms of life and nature, intuitive sensitivity, spontaneity, play, creativity and freedom. She currently resides at Dharmagiri Insight Meditation Centre where she teaches meditation and mindfulness.

29 November 2019
  • Going With The Flow: Integrating yoga into daily life as a mindfulness practice

    Teacher: Bruce van Dongen
    Cost: 2 day's accommodation + R150 surcharge
    Dates: Friday 29 November 2019 - Sunday 01 December 2019

    bruce van dongenThe aim of this workshop is to develop the tools that make us aware of the ebb and flow of our moods and emotions and to learn to be mindful instead of reactive in our interactions with others. Using the techniques presented, we will learn to train our minds to be centred on the present so that we can flow with the river of life. We will explore Kundalini yoga, which is a combination of stationary and dynamic poses that include chanting, yogic breathing and chi kung techniques. These practices develop the ability to be fully present and integrated in our bodies and minds. The workshop will be varied to allow retreatants of all ages and levels of experience to derive great benefit from this very old tradition. Bring comfortable clothing and a sun hat.

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    Bruce van Dongen is a mechanical engineer. He has been practising yoga for many years and is a qualified  teacher  in the Hatha and Kundalini disciplines. He is a Director of The Waterfall Retreat and Environmental Centre and uses both nature and yoga as his soothing systems to balance the pressures of the corporate world.