Inner and Outer Nature: Ecodharma Training Retreat
July 19 @ 4:00 pm - July 28 @ 12:00 pm
LOCATION: Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center
8941 Overland Rd., Ward, CO
START: Friday, July 19: 4pm
END: Sunday, July 28: 12pM
PRICING: Details coming soon
This retreat is a deep dive into being, in nature, abiding silently, joining inner nature with outer nature, and dissolving separation. Each day includes plentiful time for sitting, hiking/walking meditation, as well as nature meditation instruction, dharma talks, and individual and group practice discussions. There will be an easy one night solo opportunity during the retreat, which is an incredible highlight.
The overall intention is for deep silence, practice, and the joy and healing that comes with a profound connection with nature, and then integrating that into one’s life. Spiritual practice will be supported by instruction in a variety of nature meditation practices. There will be nightly campfire dharma talks, exploring how being-in-nature can be an important part of our spiritual path by helping to ground us in personal experience of non-separation from the natural world. The emphasis is not on meditative technique so much as developing direct awareness that can lead to a new integration of the internal (spiritual) and external (activity).
Supported by the connection and joy that comes from being in nature, we will then begin to investigate and work with the emotions, anxieties or traumas we are all experiencing around the ecological and climate crises. As these are immense, planet-wide problems, created by and affecting everyone, dealing with them alone is impossible. While the retreat is predominantly silent, this will entail some conversation. Within a safe and supportive sangha we will be able to delve into Ecodharma together, with honesty, sincerity, shared pain, and courage. This leads to a deep healing, which makes possible more powerful and creative responses to our collective situation. Yes, we can face this together, and learn and grow from it.
There are no prerequisites for this retreat, and beginning meditators or first-time retreaters are welcome and will be fully supported, while those with more experience will find lots of opportunities for learning and growth as well. Our larger teaching team makes this possible.
This Retreat Includes
- Guidance and instruction for meditation in nature (both sitting and walking) to deepen our experience of connection with nature, while dissolving the sense of a fixed and separate self.
- Individual attention. Our large teaching team allows us to fully support beginners who attend the retreat, while not having to dilute anything for those more experienced.
- The joy and healing and connection that comes with sitting and walking in beautiful wild settings.
- Group exploration of Ecodharma, sharing, healing and empowerment in facing these multiple crises together. This will be done in several afternoon small group sessions.
- Free time for meditation and/or rest.
- Evening campfire dharma talks.
- One on one discussions with the teachers.
- Three wonderful vegetarian meals, including food for solos.
- Camp site or indoor lodging.
- Time for a two-day and night solo in a place of your choosing.
If you want to do this retreat and the one after it, please look at the information and register for both. The interim night is included and free.
About Immersion in Nature (Solo Time)
Being alone in nature is a rare opportunity for healing and connection. Abiding in a spot of your choosing for a day and a night is time to explore and relax: opening deeply to the power and beauty of the environment, with the freedom that solitude provides. Over time, the elements, plants and animals become our teachers, the land our home, and silence our cherished companion.
The solo does not require any intense physical exertion, or even backpacking, you can solo in our campground near the lodge if you prefer not to go far. It is not a survival course or an ordeal, and does not require anything particularly challenging, except to simply be in nature, with one’s self.
There is ample instruction, preparation, support, and flexibility for the solo, so each participant can benefit fully from their experience. All necessary food is provided, with no cooking or stove necessary. Everyone can do their solo in a variety of locations, anywhere from next to the lodge to deep in the wilderness. Most past participants have found the solo a highlight of their retreat. If you are are physically or medically unable to camp during the solo, you can continue sleeping in the lodge for the solo. Otherwise plan on bringing a tent, sleeping bag, pad, etc. so you can camp out.
General Retreat Guidelines
- The retreats are designed to be enjoyable, not rigorous, but participants are expected to have a willingness to maintain silence, to help with yogi jobs, and to cooperate with the group structure.
- Some camping experience (car camping or backpacking) is helpful for the solo, but not necessary.
- Being in good health, able to camp and hike (at least the easier) trails at the center.
- Having the necessary clothing and equipment to enjoy being outdoors in a variety of conditions. We will be living and practicing outdoors, under the barn or another shelter in case of bad weather, including meditating, eating and walking.
Rochelle Calvert has a devoted love to share the power and healing potential of mindfulness, somatic awareness, and nature. She has studied and taught mindfulness for the past 19 years and knows personally the transformational potential. Rochelle currently leads courses and retreats in mindfulness, somatic experiencing, and Awake in the Wild- nature-based mindfulness. She is also the Eco-Therapy director for Southwestern College and New Earth Institue. She is a certified mindfulness teacher with the Mindfulness Teaching Institute and the International Mindfulness Teachers Association. She has also trained and assisted with Mark Coleman and as an Awake in the Wild meditation teacher. She practices mindfulness-based meditation rooted in the Buddhist Theravada Tradition and practices meditation outside in nature daily.
David identifies his spiritual roots as primarily in the Japanese Zen tradition. His Zen practice began in Hawaii in 1971 with Yamada Koun and Robert Aitken, and continued with Koun-roshi in Japan, where he lived for almost twenty years. He was authorized to teach in 1988 and has led retreats and workshops nationally and internationally in places such as Spirit Rock, the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies, the Cambridge Insight Meditation Center, Terre d’Eveil in Paris, and Dharma Gate University in Budapest. In 2014 David received an honorary PhD from Carleton College, his alma mater, for his contributions to socially engaged Buddhism. (He returned it in 2016, to protest the decision of the Board of Trustees not to divest from fossil fuel corporations.) David’s spiritual journey began when he lived in a remote valley on Molokai, Hawaii. There he fell in love with backpacking, meditating in nature, and solo wilderness retreats. David is a well-known writer, whose books and articles have been translated into many languages. His latest book, Ecodharma: Buddhist teachings for the ecological crisis, was published in 2019. He is also co-editor of A Buddhist Response to the Climate Emergency and has written many articles and blogs on Buddhism,…
Learn more about David Loy
Johann started backpacking and meditating as a teenager, and deepened his spiritual journey on frequent solo wilderness trips. His passion is facilitating spiritual practice in nature: he has guided and taught wilderness retreats and workshops in various traditions for over 25 years, including as a Vision Quest guide in the late 1990s. Johann founded Impermanent Sangha in 2002 and has led dozens of Ecodharma and nature meditation retreats, including backpacking, camping, canoeing and rafting. Johann founded Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center in 2016 and is its Executive Director. Johann teaches Mindfulness Meditation, also known as Insight or Vipassana, with a modern secular approach. He has been meditating since 1974 and was asked to teach in 2008. He completed the two-year CDL teacher training program at Spirit Rock in 2012. His primary teachers include Shinzen Young and Eric Kolvig (who also helped found Impermanent Sangha and taught wilderness retreats for many years before his retirement).
Learn more about Johann Robbins
Cornelia (Punnya) Santschi is a neuropsychologist and meditation teacher. She is deeply committed to environmental conservation and social justice. At the RWJ Barnabas Health Institute of Neurology in NJ, she has specialized in brain-behavior relationships for over 20 years. Cornelia is a devoted student of Buddhism with a dedicated insight meditation practice since 2000. She completed yoga teacher training at Integral Yoga in NYC in 2001, and graduated from the Community Dharma Leader Program in 2017. As founder/president of non-profit Anatta World Health & Education Outreach, Cornelia has organized culturally sensitive health, education, and women’s empowerment programs in multiple countries, with local partners since 2006, and co-leads yearly meaningful travel tours in Nepal. Cornelia is co-founder/board member of Newark Center for Meditative Culture in NJ, where she serves as meditation teacher and insight community liaison; working to increase access to socially engaged programs within a diverse urban community. She is co-founder/vice-president of the Alegria Dharma Center, a meditation retreat center in Costa Rica, where she is developing a comprehensive EcoDharma retreat program.
Learn more about Cornelia Santschi
REGISTRATION & PRICING INFO COMING SOON