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Insight Meditation and Yoga Retreat

Online retreat with Yanai Postelnik and Helen Stephenson

Thursday, 11 March – Sunday, 14 March 2021

 

This retreat is open to all, including beginners and those with experience. Please join us.

You will not have to look at your screen for all the time we are together: at times you may only want to listen in.

The teachers:

YANAI POSTELNIK has practised and studied Insight Meditation and Buddhism since 1990 and has been teaching internationally for over 25 years. He is much inspired by the Thai forest tradition and the transformative power of the natural world. Yanai is a Core Faculty member of Insight Meditation Society, Massachusetts, and he lives with his wife Catherine McGee in Devon, England.

Listen to one of Yanai Postelnik's Talks given at Gaia House on 02.09.2013: The Art of Unknowing (Duration 61:05)

 

 

HELEN STEPHENSON has practised Hatha Yoga and Insight Meditation since 1979. Initially she was taught by the late Robert van Heeckeren and in 1981 she began to study classical yoga with the Indian Yogateacher Sri. S. Rajagopalan. Her movement work is influenced by the work of the late Moshe Feldenkrais "awareness through movement" and her training in body centred therapy with the late Ron Kurtz. Having lived most of her life in a communal setting she and her family now share a home with another family in Newport Pagnell.

Listen to one of Helen Stephenson's Talks given at Gaia House on 01.05.2012: The Texture of Being (Duration 37:59)

 

Retreat description

Meditation and yoga are natural partners in the spiritual life. Drawing on the Buddha’s teachings of mindfulness and awakening, and the yoga teachings of Patanjali, this retreat will combine the practices of hatha yoga and Insight Meditation.

The yoga is offered as a spiritual path rather than simply an exercise system. Slow, precise movement attuned with the flow of breath enables practitioners to move safely into and out of posture. Through the practice of meditative awareness the body becomes a gateway to inner peace and understanding, enabling us to open into an intimate connection with life.

Please have a yoga mat or blanket ready to use if you have one.

The yoga movements taught on this online retreat are basic and simple, but not all movements are suitable for pregnant women. If you are pregnant, please consult with your healthcare professional before participating in this online retreat.

Format

This online retreat in your home will include periods of instruction, guided meditation practice, silence, Dharma reflections, yoga, sharing together as sangha/community and optional sharing meetings.

The format will support all who wish to attend the scheduled group sessions while continuing to be quite fully engaged with your ongoing life at home, and also those wishing to practise formally in a sustained way throughout the days.

Key teachings will be recorded and made available to participants as we go along in case you have to miss a session or are joining from another time zone.

Joining this retreat will require your commitment to attending or listening to the first and final sessions:

Schedule

All times shown are in Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)

Thursday

7:15 – 8:45pm                       Opening talk*

Friday and Saturday

7:30 – 8:30am                        Yoga and breath-work

10:00 – 11:30am                   Insight meditation reflections, instructions and practice*

12:00 – 12:45pm                   Optional group meeting

3:00 – 5:15pm                       Yoga and inquiry*

7:15 – 8:30pm                       Meditation and Dharma talk*

9:00 – 9:30pm                       Meditation

Sunday

7:30 – 8:30am                        Yoga and breath-work

10:00 – 11:30am                   Insight meditation reflections, instructions and practice*

12:00 – 12:45pm                   Optional group meeting

3:00 – 5:15pm                        Yoga and inquiry*

7:15 – 8:45pm                       Closing session and sharing*

*These sessions will be recorded and made available on the retreat noticeboard.

Using Zoom

This online retreat will use the Zoom platform. For support with learning how to use Zoom, please click here to read the guidance we’ve put together on our website. Please read the first section, ‘Using Zoom’, before registering.

Enquiries

If you have any questions regarding the retreat, you can send an email to info@gaiahouse.co.uk We will respond as quickly as possible, but we have a reduced team at this time so we apologise if you have to wait longer than usual.

Dana/generosity

None of your registration fee goes to the teachers. Gaia House teachers rely on the generosity of students for their livelihood. There will be an opportunity to make a dana offering to your teachers at the end of the event.

Click here to read more about the practice of dana.

Dana can be offered to the teachers via PayPal by clicking here all teacher dana payments will be shared between Helen and Yanai, please reference your dana ‘GH retreat

Dana can also be offered via the Gaia House website by clicking here. Please click on Teacher and then specify that your donation is for ‘Yanai and Helen’ in the notes section on the checkout page.

With deep appreciation for your generosity.

 

Well-being guidelines - please click here to read before booking

Before you book, please read these guidelines about mental well-being and silent retreats:

Meditation retreats can be very nourishing; however, as they require sustained meditation practice, they also need some stability of psychological health. If you have recently (within the past year or so) experienced significant trauma or psychiatric illness, or if you are currently experiencing acute emotional distress such as serious depression or anxiety, it may not be the best time for you to participate in a retreat. The teachers might not be able to give you the kind of individual psychological care you need at this time. A setting with more opportunities for interpersonal engagement may be more appropriate.

  • If you are currently under the care of a mental health professional, please discuss your attendance with them. You should be in a relatively stable period of mental well-being and have adequate psychological resilience.
  • If you have any questions about this, please contact Susanne using the email address, retreatmanager@gaiahouse.co.uk