RETREATS AT DHAMMA DENA

Dhamma Dena offers 360 degree views of the mountains and high desert, unparalleled sunrises and sunsets, and vast black star-studded desert night skies. Its accommodations are charming yet rustic. All retreats are held in noble silence. It is possible to attend most retreats for any period of time, even as short as one day, although longer stays will yield more depth of understanding and mental and physical relaxation. Beginners and seasoned meditators are equally welcome at Dhamma Dena.

Dhamma Dena retreats are not strictly “meditation” retreats, but rather are aimed at cultivating mindfulness both on and off the cushion, throughout all the day's activities, with particular emphasis on sensing the inner body aliveness in the here and now. The purpose of the retreat is to investigate whether the truth of the dharma can be personally realized, not simply intellectually, but experientially in some meaningful way by each of the students. A wide and varied number of mindfulness practices are introduced to guide the students, in a gentle and relaxed manner, to discover for themselves the truth that is unchanging, and which leads to a reduction of self-created suffering, and ultimately to liberation.

A typical day in the tradition of this lineage begins in the meditation hall. Participants greet the day with simple mindful movements to cultivate inner body awareness, then chant the traditional refuge to the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha. A period of quiet meditation follows until the breakfast gong is sounded. There are late morning, afternoon, and evening practice periods as well, which may include along with silent meditation: guided meditation to explore the inner body, mindful movement to penetrate the aliveness within our bodies, sacred singing and chanting, walking meditation focused on the precise movements of each body part, meditation in a labyrinth, sacred dance, and mindfulness in Nature, with particular attention to the elemental energies both within and without. Mindfulness and gratitude practices are emphasized in all aspects of the day, including attention to eating and consumption, and to working meditation (mindfully sweeping floors or washing dishes). Dharma talks are offered on a daily basis, and there are frequent dharma discussions throughout the retreat. There are rest periods after all the meals to give students time to attend to their personal needs, nap, or explore the stark beauty of the surrounding desert.


                                            NOBLE SILENCE

Retreats are held in Noble Silence in order to create the space and inner stillness out of which insight can flourish. The vastness of the desert coupled with an inner stillness that is not stirred up by chitchat creates the ground within which the truth of the dharma can be directly experienced. The gift of silence is both a gift to yourself as well as to the sangha.

Holiday Meditation Retreat
Module #1: December15-20, 2017
Module #2:December 22-28, 2017
Module #3: Dec 29 -
January 1, 2018
          

with S'akti Rose, Nick Herzmark & Frank Leder


We are pleased to once again offer our Holiday Retreat in the tradition of our founder, Ruth Denison. It is a special time for old and new sangha to gather and to practice in the spirit of celebration of the Dharma and the holiday season.

The retreat will be co-taught by three of Ruth's senior teachers and students. All sessions will be conducted according to the unique methodology refined and perfected by Ruth herself, one that emphasizes attention to the inner life of the body and its ever-changing sensations.


This method of practice offers students an effective way to stay connected to the experiential truth of Anicca within each present moment. Ruth’s teacher, Sayagyi U Ba Khin, never stopped emphasizing this particular approach to the Buddha’s teachings.


This retreat offers three modules:

Module #1: 6 days, Friday, 12/15 – Wednesday, 12/20, taught by Nick Herzmark. This module will be a practice retreat on the Four Foundations of Mindfulness. The module will emphasize letting go and the spirit of the four foundations. There will be talks, guidance and Q&A each day. Module #1 is for those who want to deepen their practice. Cost:$270


Module #2: 7 days, Friday, 12/22 – Thursday, 12/28, taught by Sakti Rose, Nick Herzmark & Frank Leder. This module will be another phase of Satipaṭṭhāna practice including mindful movement and attention to the details of the four foundations. Cost:$315


Module #3: 3 days, Friday, 12/29 – New Year’s Eve, midnight, Monday, Jan 1, with Sakti Rose & Nick Herzmark. This module will be a further deepening of all aspects of Satipaṭṭhāna practice culminating in our traditional New Year’s Eve celebration. Cost:$180


This course is open to both new students and those experienced in meditation. The retreat will be held in Noble Silence, as a gift to yourself and others, supporting an atmosphere of deep practice.

Students may participate in any or all of the modules, but a student must attend at least one full module so as to allow students to deepen their practice. Students can sign up for all three modules or commit to any one or two from beginning to end.

Prices include accommodation and three delicious vegetarian meals per day. The teachings are offered by the teachers on a dāna basis.

Housing is simple, most in double-occupancy private rooms.
Work exchange & scholarships available depending upon need, upon request.

Teachers offer the teachings embracing the tradition of dāna.
Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are freely offered. Dāna offerings to teachers and staff are gratefully received.

REGISTER HERE for the Holiday Meditation Retreat

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit. 
Use the PayPal button below now, or send a check to: 
Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252. 

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.

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INSTRUCTORS:

Instructors are all long-time practitioners and students of Ruth Denison.

Nick Herzmark, MFT Nick was a close student and friend of Ruth Denison from 1977 until her death. He helped build Dhamma Dena. He traveled extensively with Ruth all over the world. In 1987, Ruth sent him to Sayadaw U. Pandita where he practiced until Ruth joined him to travel in SE Asia and China, studying and practicing together. As a licensed psychotherapist since 1994, he blends mindfulness with western methods. He is currently a student of Ven. Tsoknyi Rinpoche. www.nickherzmark.org

Sakti Rose, M.A., S.E.P. Sakti has studied and taught meditation under the guidance of Ruth Denison since 1995. As a senior Somatic Experiencing practitioner and teacher, Sakti helps individuals suffering from symptoms of stress and trauma. She has taught these skills joining healing and meditation at Spirit Rock since 2008. She is on the faculty of Karuna Training and has practiced Tibetan Buddhism since 1974 with many great masters in the U.S. and Asia. www.saktirose.org 

Frank B. Leder, Frankfurt/Germany. Massage therapist and instructor, Natural Health Educator, Co-Founder of the TouchLife Massage method in which mindfulness to the body/conscious touch plays an important role. Frank met Ruth Denison at age 19 and became her student. He teaches mindfulness meditation in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the U.S. since 1993 and is the author of two books: 'Goldene Massageregeln' and 'Achtsamkeitsmeditation und Wege zur Einsicht'. Frank co-teaches in this retreat from December 22-28.

www.touchlife.de  www.achtsamkeitsmeditation.net




CONNECTING THE DOTS

Awakening to Our Intimacy with All that Lives

February - March 2018 TBD

with Sandy Boucher & Martha Boesing

Join Sandy and Martha in slowing down, breathing and relaxing as we explore the joy of knowing our connectedness with all beings—our loved ones, our enemies, all who suffer, trees, birds, lions.

 We will ask: How can we heal our separation from all that breathes the same air as we? How can we experience our inter-existence with all that lives? In the cradle of meditation and silence, we will share through ritual, art, song, dance and writing.

All will be held in the warm supportive environment of Dhamma Dena, where the desert environment is appreciated and supported.

Cost:$45 per day + dana
including accommodation & three delicious vegetarian meals

Housing is simple, most in double-occupancy private rooms.

Work exchange & scholarships available according to need, upon request.

Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are freely offered.
Dāna 
offerings to teachers and staff are gratefully received.



Registration opening soon! for Connecting the Dots


PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit. 
Use the PayPal button below now, or send a check to: 
Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252. 

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL 

Select Amount
 

INSTRUCTORS:

 

Sandy Boucher, M.A., has practiced, written about and taught both Vipassana meditation and writing for 35 years. Her books focus particularly on women's contribution to Buddhism and participation in Buddhist institutions.
She leads retreats such as “Dharma and Writing, “ “A Celebration of the Feminine Divine,” and “Meditation and the Spirit of Creativity” in the Pacific Northwest and the San Francisco Bay Area. .
She has chronicled the contribution of women to American Buddhism through her six Dharma books. Her latest book is She Appears! Encounters with Kwan Yin Goddess of Compassion, a compendium of writings and artwork exploring a Western visioning of the Celestial Bodhisattva of Compassion Kwan Yin.
www.sandyboucher.info


Martha Boesing, in her three decades of Buddhist practice, has taken refuge with Pema Chodron at Gampo Abbey and has received lay ordination at Clouds in Water Zen Center in St. Paul, MN. She teaches with Sandy at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and Great Vow Zen Center.
Martha has written over forty produced plays, and led workshops and directed plays for theaters throughout the country. She was founder and Artistic Director of At the Foot of the Mountain theater in Minneapolis from 1973 to 1984.
She has won several national awards including an NEA, a Bush fellowship, and the Kennedy Center’s Fund for New American Playwrights. Currently she is creating theater at the Faithful Fools Street Ministry in the Tenderloin district of San Francisco.
www.marthaboesing.com



March Work Retreat

Sunday, March 11 - Friday, March 16

with Doshin Houtman

It is becoming a tradition for friends of Dhamma Dena to come together early in the year to work on needed upgrades to the center, and for Doshin Houtman to travel all the way from Holland to lead us.
This is a time for us to gather and give back to the center which has nurtured us.

Please join us as we bring joyous and mindful attention to various repair and renovation projects around our desert campus. Practice in this work retreat is very close to daily life practice: There will be time to investigate the body-mind process, to see what all is going on during work, and what is going on in the interactions with each other.

We will be working together throughout the day, punctuated by three daily sessions of meditation and mindful movement.
During the sittings, we will be asked to drop all attachments to the tasks of the day. There will be Dharma instruction and Dharma talks daily, with space for individual guidance.

Your participation is invited for however long or short a period you can offer: a day, a weekend, or the full period.

Accommodation, three simple meals per day and the daily meditation program are offered free of charge. Participants new to Dhamma Dena are welcome.

Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are freely offered.
Dāna 
offerings to the teacher and staff are gratefully received.

REGISTER HERE for the 2018 March Work Retreat

INSTRUCTOR:

Doshin Houtman is a dharma teacher in both Zen and Vipassana. She started her practice in the Zen tradition, and was ordained as a nun by Prabhasa Dharma Roshi. She found her heart teacher in Ruth and trained with her for many years. Doshin lives in Tilburg, the Netherlands, where she leads a Vipassana community, guiding people in embodied mindfulness.

www.inzichtenbevrijding.nl/begeleiding   


Embodied Awareness Retreat

Sunday, March 18 - Sunday, March 25

with Doshin Houtman


This Vipassana meditation retreat focuses on investigation of the body-mind process. During this retreat, there will be more formal practice than during the work period: Mindful movement, sitting and walking meditation, and mindful eating. Because now we are in silence, it is possible to discover subtler movements within the body and the mind. 


 There will be Dharma instruction and Dharma talks daily, with space for individual guidance. The retreat will be held in Noble Silence to support an atmosphere of deep practice.

Cost:$360

including accommodation and three delicious vegetarian meals

Housing is simple, most in double-occupancy private rooms.

Work exchange & scholarships available according to need, upon request.

Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are freely offered.
Dāna 
offerings to the teacher and staff are gratefully received.


REGISTER HERE for the 2018 Embodied Awareness Vipassana Retreat

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit. 
Use the PayPal button below now, or send a check to: 
Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252. 

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL 

Select Amount
 





Women's Spring Retreat

Friday, April 27 - Sunday, May 6 

with Jill Rayna & Shelley Hainer

Cultivating mindfulness of the inner body to strengthen our meditation and lead to insight, we practice mindfulness in every moment. As we discover there is nothing to attach to, nothing to cling to, nothing to judge or react to, and no ideas of self or others to constrict the mind/body. This is the liberating object of Vipassana meditation practice, in the tradition of Ruth Denison, our founder. The retreat is infused with lovingkindness practices to open the heart to its full potential. 
Open to all women & female-identified persons.

Cost:$45/day
including accommodation and three yummy vegetarian meals

Housing is simple, most in double-occupancy private rooms; meals are vegetarian.
Work exchange & scholarships available according to need, upon request.

Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are freely offered.
Dāna
offerings to teachers and staff are gratefully received.


for the 2018 Women's Spring Retreat

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit. 
Use the PayPal button below now, or send a check to: 
Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252. 

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL 

Select Amount
 

INSTRUCTORS:

Jill Rayna began meditating in college, then attended Ruth Denison's first Dhamma Dena Women's Retreat in 1979, where she embraced Ruth as her root teacher. She attended most of Ruth's Spring and Fall Women's Retreats from then on. In 1991, Ruth ceremoniously initiated Jill as a Vipassana teacher in her lineage. Jill established DharmaCreek Sangha on her coastal canyon in Sonoma County, where she did Mindfulness in Nature weekend retreats for many years until taking on organizational responsibilities at Dhamma Dena, where she presently serves as President of the Board of Directors and Retreat Coordinator.


Shelley Hainer discovered meditation in the late '80s as a student of Advaita Vedanta. When a friend suggested she check out Vipassana Meditation, Shelley found Ruth Denison at IMS. She was curious to see how Ruth would teach the Dharma since Shelley, like Ruth, had a connection to Charlotte Selver, author of "Sensory Awareness." Shelley is certified in the lineage of Elsa Gindler, Charlotte's teacher. Ruth's teaching style, its playful depth and focus in body-mind, somatic connections, and its practical application to daily living delighted Shelley and she continued practicing with Ruth over the years. The last time Ruth visited Shelley in New York, she insisted that Shelley should begin to teach, and we look forward to her ongoing participation in our Fall & Spring Retreats, in keeping with Ruth's wishes.

www.bamboojacket.com 

ABOUT THE COSTS

The teachings are freely given. Retreat participants are provided with rustic but comfortable lodging and three vegetarian meals a day, which is barely covered by the suggested donation of $45/day. No one is turned away if they cannot afford the retreat. Full scholarships are offered to those volunteering to prepare one of the three daily meals, and a partial work exchange is available to those who would be willing to come early, stay a day or two afterward to clean up, or to take on more work responsibilities during the retreat beyond ordinary service.

It is customary to offer dāna or generosity to the teachers in appreciation for receiving the priceless gift of the Dhamma.

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit. 
Use the PayPal button below now, or send a check to: 
Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252. 

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.

PAY RETREAT DEPOSIT USING PAYPAL 
               
Select Amount