Rocky Mountain

Ecodharma Retreat Center

A Home for Meditation in Nature


2023 Retreat Leaders

Select a Leader to see the Events that they are guiding this summer!

Asia Dorsey

Asia Dorsey is at home in her body. She deepened her practice as a Kingian Nonviolence facilitator at Navdanya International studying with the great Gandhian Satish Kumar and the earth warrior Vandana Shiva. Asia completed her first Yoga Teacher Training in Denver with Lakshmi Nair in 2016. They later collectively organized the Satya Yoga Cooperative, an organization that empowers people of color to use yoga as a tool for personal liberation and social transformation. Asia’s tantric style of teaching cultivates the seeds of collective creativity and play, seeing the goal of any practice as coming home to the divinity that lives in our bodies. To this end, Asia has over 600 hours of embodied practice of Yoga Nidra and is skilled at fostering spontaneous regeneration in others. She has trained in the Bihar School style with Lakshmi, and received certification from the Amrit School of Yoga Nidra with Kamini Desai. Join in her creations @bonesbugsandbotany and

Asia Whitlock

Asia Whitlock is passionate about building and sustaining people of color (POC) communities, decolonizing our minds, reparations by any means necessary, and growing her own foods. After several years in real estate, Asia co-founded Southwest Van Builders where she converts vans into tiny homes as an alternative housing solution. She currently lives in New Mexico. Asia is a two year alumni of People of Color Ecodharma Retreat and in summer 2022 stepped into the retreat manager role for these retreats which are co-hosted at least once a year by Boundless in Motion sangha and the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center. Asia can be reached at pocretreats AT gmail DOT com.

Barry Gillespie

Barry Gillespie was introduced to meditation practice in 1978, through the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Ashram. In 2003 he began exploring Theravada Buddhist practice, sitting many long retreats at the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA and Spirit Rock in Woodacre, CA. His principal teacher is Guy Armstrong. Barry is an affiliated teacher with the Insight Meditation Community of Colorado (IMCC). He teaches mainly in Boulder and at the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center.

Bridget Blomfield

Bridget Blomfield has had a life-long interest in mysticism, leading her to pursue a PhD in Religious Studies where she focused on Islamic Studies. She has had a forty-year meditation practice and has studied and taught Buddhism and Sufism in the United States, India, Taiwan, Thailand, Morocco and Turkey. Her master’s thesis, “Dance as a Body-Centered Psycho/Spiritual Practice” was written while she attended Pacifica Graduate School. Bridget has studied and developed somatic movement practices for 30 years and has offered movement and meditation workshops globally. Her work stresses intimacy and relatedness with all things. Supposedly retired, Bridget currently teaches adjunct at DU and CU and offers teacher training at her daughter’s Montessori school. She continues to study Persian and African dance and loves to eat almost anything.

Carla Brennan

Carla Brennan, M.Ed., has trained in the Zen, Insight Meditation and Tibetan Buddhist traditions since 1975 and is an authorized Spirit Rock Teacher. She founded Bloom of the Present Insight Meditation ( in 2014. Carla also taught Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for 18 years and is a former transpersonal psychotherapist. Currently, she teaches with Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach in the Mindfulness Meditation Teachers Certification Program (MMTCP) and with Cloud Sangha. Carla has spent many months in silent retreat including two monthlong solos in the wilderness. Her dharma approach emphasizes integrating wisdom into everyday life, releasing the qualities of the awakened heart and abiding in the openness of presence. Her work also includes guiding people to the direct experience of our indivisibility from the living world, thus uniting our inner and outer nature to discover our true nature. As a photographer, she is dedicated to documenting the disappearing beauty and wonder of the natural world. Carla believes that we now must mobilize all of our wisdom and compassion to respond to the dire consequences of climate collapse and social injustice. Dedicated to spending as much time outdoors as possible, Carla is a nomad, exploring the world along side her partner of…

Carol Kortsch

Carol was born in Africa, educated in Canada, and then worked internationally building community in different forms. After 25 years in psychotherapy and group practice at Stonehaven Commons in Radnor, PA., she now offers nature-based retreats in Colorado as a Courage & Renewal group facilitator, trained by Parker J. Palmer. She is now blending the Earth-based practices of Animas Valley Institute (Bill Plotkin) and other local organizations in a visionary program called ElderSoul.  As a life adventurer and Earth listener, she recognizes our essential and critical human need to stop, slow down, and listen to our lives and all our relations speak.

Catherine Marquez

Cat’s indigenous heritage is native to the San Luis Valley of southern Colorado.  Her soul’s journey began with answering a subtle call to learn the healing arts.  Since then, she has contributed to the healing and education of humanity as a Curandera/healer and teacher.  She integrates her training at the Four Winds  with shamanic teachings from Aztec, Incan, Mayan and many other spiritual traditions; encouraging and empowering others to heal and find the path of their Divine Destiny.  She is passionate about inspiring others and resurrecting ancient wisdom to address contemporary issues facing Earth and humanity.  She founded worldwide “Eternal Bond” Gatherings to assist humanity with re-establishing their sacred bond with Spirit and now blends ageless wisdom with innovative techniques in the “Medicine Wheel Retreat” to help us reconnect with our True Identity through integration of ancient rituals and shamanic journeying.

Caverly Morgan

Caverly Morgan is a meditation teacher, author, speaker, and nonprofit founder. Her new book, The Heart of Who We Are: Realizing Freedom Together through Sounds True is available here. She is the founder and Lead Contemplative of Peace in Schools—a nonprofit which created the nation’s first for-credit mindfulness class in public high schools. She is also the founder of Presence Collective, a community of cross-cultural contemplatives committed to personal and collective transformation. Caverly blends the original spirit of Zen with a modern nondual approach. Her practice began in 1995 and has included eight years of training in a silent Zen monastery. She has been teaching contemplative practice since 2001 and leads meditation retreats, workshops and online classes internationally.

Cornelia Santschi

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.  

David Chernikoff

David Chernikoff is a meditation teacher, spiritual counselor, and life coach who taught psychology and meditation at Naropa University for many years. A student of meditation since 1971, David completed the inaugural Community Dharma Leader Training at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and began teaching Insight Meditation in 1988. His teaching has been influenced by senior teachers from the Insight Meditation Society and Spirit Rock, Zen teacher Yvonne Rand, and spiritual guides from other contemplative traditions, most notably Ram Dass, Father Thomas Keating, and Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi. In the early 1980s, he worked at Ram Dass’s Hanuman Foundation Dying Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico and then became the director of Mesilla Valley Hospice in Las Cruces, N.M. He later spent three years in Nepal doing public health development work for the Seva Foundation and studying with Tibetan Buddhist teachers. After returning to the U.S., he became the education and training director for the Spiritual Eldering Institute, now called Sage-ing International. In that role, he taught conscious aging programs throughout the U.S., in Canada, and in Ireland. David is currently one of the guiding teachers of the Insight Meditation Community of Colorado and teaches retreats and workshops throughout the U.S. He is the author of Life, Part…

David Loy

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,…

Donna Roe Daniell LCSW

Donna Roe Daniell LCSW brings over 35 years of experience as a family therapist, trauma therapist, Zen and Vipassana meditation practitioner and Ecodharma teacher, MBSR teacher, Certified IFS therapist, Mindful Self Compassion teacher, retreat leader and climate activist. Her unique retreat offers women in major transitions in their lives a mindful path through grief to true authenticity and fierce compassion. She has received training in The Work that Reconnects and has completed trainings with Deborah Eden Tull, bringing her facilitation tools more specifically focused on bringing women through their personal and global darkness safely to an emerging role in the transition. She has written a personal memoir of her own midlife struggles, “A Midlife Voyage to Transformation” published in 2021, which shows how these tools have guided her own personal transformation, and how this work has become her emerging contribution to global healing.

Frederic Wiedemann

Frederic is an elder sage … and renaissance kind-of-guy. He “downloaded” his life/soul mission in his 30’s. The essence hasn’t changed in these 40 years since: “to explore, embody, and share paradoxical Wholeness.” His 50 years of journeying with this mission –and catalyzing others to find theirs — has led him to: founding and directing two educational  nonprofits; local community activist for Dharma’s Garden — a 5 acre, educational farm in the heart of Boulder living abroad for total of five years; Human Resources VP for an entrepreneurial start-up rocketing to $50,000,000 sales; poet of over 200 poems; two year “walk-about” in Kashmir, India and Maui; total psycholgical crash and burn in mid-life: sleepless, homeless, penniless, suicidal; scholar and published author of Between Two Worlds: The Riddle of Wholeness; active coaching and mentoring practice for those wanting clarity and connection with their deeper soul. delving into extraordinary teachings, healings and soul medicine coming from entheogens; deliberately synthesizing his background in PhD clinical psychology, spirituality, meditation, mindfulness, energy medicine, somatic experience, neuroscience, wisdom traditions, evolutionary psychology, yoga, solo vision quests, professional dance and world travel adventures — into practical and loving teachings. More at his elder sage website:

Gregory Crespo

Gregory Crespo is an Awake in the Wild nature meditation teacher, having trained with Mark Coleman to learn to foster a rich sensitivity and connection to the natural world through mindfulness and contemplative practices. He has led weekend retreats and workshops and finds sharing mindfulness and nature practices with others to be a rewarding and inspiring part of life. He believes deeply that nature can be a healing and supportive element of meditation practice and that—for our own health and for the health of our planet—we as a species desperately need to reconnect with nature.  Gregory is also a husband, father, veteran, and attorney. He lives in Washington, D.C., where he works in civil rights enforcement and compliance.

Gulwinder “Gullu” Singh

Gulwinder “Gullu” Singh is a corporate real estate attorney who regularly teaches both secular and Buddhist classes, groups and retreats at Insight LA and at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, including Mindful-Based Stress Reduction.  He has taught mindfulness at the University of Southern California and has been a guest lecturer on mindfulness at UCLA Law School. Although he was exposed to meditation as a child, he found his own practice when he started his legal career, working at firms where the job was extremely stressful. Gullu is deeply inspired to share meditation as an antidote to stress, a way to cope more effectively with the challenges of work and life and to inject more sanity, compassion and wisdom into this world,

Imtiaz Rangwala

Imtiaz Rangwala

Imtiaz Rangwala has been practicing meditation for ~20 years and is a lay meditation teacher in the lineage of Cold Mountain Zen. He is also one of the founding members of Boulder Ecodharma Sangha. Professionally, he is a Climate Scientist at the University of Colorado in Boulder where he provides climate science support to people managing our land, water and wildlife. He loves to nurture community through his love for cooking, gardening and sharing of songs and stories. He also greatly loves the outdoors and considers nature to be a very important teacher. Imtiaz was raised in the Islamic tradition of progressive Dawoodi Bohras and remained influenced by Sufism. He will primarily serve as the chef and kitchen logistics manager for this retreat.

Janet Surrey

Janet Surrey, PhD is an Insight Dialogue Teacher. She teaches Insight Dialogue retreats worldwide and leads a longstanding practice group in the Boston area.  Her first meditation  teacher was Vimala Thakar . She has practiced in the Insight tradition  for over 30 years, and trained as a Community Dharma Leader at Spirit Rock. Since 2007, Jan has worked intensively with Gregory Kramer and is currently serving on the Teachers Council of the Insight Dialogue Community. Jan is a practicing clinical psychologist and founding scholar of the Jean Baker Miller Training Institute at the Wellesley Centers for Women. She is on the faculty and board of the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy. She is the author of The Buddha’s Wife: The Path of Awakening Together.

Jean Leonard

Jean Leonard, Ph.D. is a licensed psychologist and a certified Mindful Self-Compassion teacher in private practice in Louisville, Colorado with 27 years clinical experience.  She teaches Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) classes and other mindfulness classes and workshops throughout Colorado, and virtually nationwide, and is a mentor for Jack Kornfield’s and Tara Brach’s Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program, supporting students’ development as meditation teachers. She has practiced yoga for over 30 years and vipassana meditation since 2003, and holds the Dharma as a sacred compass that guides her personal and professional life, and is currently in training as an Insight teacher with James Baraz.  She has completed the Mindfulness Yoga and Meditation Training (MYMT), the Dedicated Practitioner Program (DPP), the Heavenly Messengers (HM) Program, and the Advanced Practitioners’ Program (APP) through Spirit Rock Meditation Center and feels deeply nourished by many years of long retreat practice.   In February 2022 she completed a one-year Buddhist Eco-Chaplaincy Program through the Sati Center with Gil Fronsdal, Susie Harrington, and Kirstin Rudestam, and is trained to offer emotional and spiritual support to individuals and communities impacted by the environmental and ecological crises of our times.  She has a particular passion in supporting women…

Johann Robbins

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).

Jon Aaron

A Dharma and Mindfulness teacher at New York Insight Meditation Center Jon first came across meditation in the 1970s, and then became interested in Insight and Mindfulness practices in the late 1990s, studying mindfulness meditation and Buddhism, which have since become central to his life.  A Certified MBSR Teacher and Teacher Trainer, Jon trained in Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction with the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center and Brown University. In 2016 he completed his training with Breathworks in the UK and has integrated many of these techniques and modalities into all his teaching.  He is a co-founding member of New York Mindfulness Meditation Collaborative and founding member of the Global Mindfulness Collaborative.  In addition to his work in these communities and following an interest in working with people struggling with trauma, Jon studied with the Somatic Experiencing Trauma Institute, which qualified him as a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner®, having completed the 3-year professional training.  Most recently he started teaching mindfulness for the New York Police Department.  Growing up in New Hampshire wilderness activities have been part of his life since he was a teenager.  He participated in one of the first retreats at  RMERC and last taught there…

Joshua Ellis

Josh Ellis is a mindfulness teacher, wilderness guide, and the former Resident Manager of RMERC. He is certified to teach mindfulness through Jack Kornfield and Tara Brach’s Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Training Program. He is the founder and lead guide of Maui Mindful Adventures, a group dedicated to practicing mindfulness in motion in nature.

Kaira Jewel Lingo

Kaira Jewel Lingo is a Dharma teacher who has a lifelong interest in blending spirituality and meditation with social justice. Having grown up in an ecumenical Christian community where families practiced a new kind of monasticism and worked with the poor, at the age of twenty-five she entered a Buddhist monastery in the Plum Village tradition and spent fifteen years living as a nun under the guidance of Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh. She received Lamp Transmission from Thich Nhat Hanh and became a Zen teacher in 2007, and is also a teacher in the Vipassana Insight lineage through Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Today she sees her work as a continuation of the Engaged Buddhism developed by Thich Nhat Hanh as well as the work of her parents, inspired by their stories and her dad’s work with Martin Luther King Jr. on desegregating the South. In addition to writing We Were Made for These Times: Ten Lessons in Moving through Change, Loss and Disruption, she is also the editor of Thich Nhat Hanh’s Planting Seeds: Practicing Mindfulness with Children. Now based in New York, she teaches and leads retreats internationally, provides spiritual mentoring, and interweaves art, play, nature, racial and…

Kritee (Kanko)

Kritee (Kanko)

Kritee (dharma name Kanko) is a Zen teacher, scientist, activist, dancer, and permaculture designer. She directs and teaches Boundless in Motion Sangha in Boulder in the Rinzai-Obaku Buddhist lineage of Cold Mountain and is a Co-Founder and Executive Director of Boulder Eco-Dharma Sangha. She is also a co-founding teacher of Earthlovego, a community of meditation practitioners, teachers/professors & environmental advocates from different backgrounds seek ways to deepen synergy between their spiritual practices and their activism through workshops at Lama Foundation in New Mexico. Kritee trained as an environmental microbiologist and biogeochemist at Rutgers and Princeton Universities, and has done over ten years of research on mercury pollution. She currently works as a senior scientist in the Global Climate Program at Environmental Defense Fund and is helping implement environment and climate-friendly methods of farming at large scales in Asia with a. three-fold goal of poverty alleviation, food security and climate mitigation and adaptation among small scale farms. She places deep importance on the need of diversity, and the alignment of climate advocacy with social justice movements.

Lakshmi Nair

Lakshmi Nair: Lakshmi Nair is a yoga educator, engaged in reclaiming the pre-patriarchal, non-hierarchical indigenous resilience and resistance of her ancestral tradition of yoga and creating spaces for herself and others to authentically engage with the practices of yoga for self and collective healing and liberation. In 2014, Lakshmi created a yoga immersion and teacher training program exclusively for BIPOC which has since grown into Satya Yoga Cooperative, one of the first BIPOC owned and operated yoga cooperatives in the country.

Laurie Adams

Laurie was raised among mountains and rivers of Idaho and lives with a felt sense of the sacred threads that weave through this wild world.  She longs to hear the thrum of soul’s truth and guides humans on the journey home to intimacy with the world’s sovereign aliveness, and their own, in this cosmic web.   She is part of the Animas Valley Institute Soul Initiation and Apprenticeship program. Laurie has a passion for nature based, soul-connected ancestral work and intergenerational ceremony and journeys in which humans of many ages find themselves longing for and risking stepping through thresholds of becoming.  Once an ordained clergy and hospice chaplain, she is steeped in Joanna Macy’s The Work that Reconnects, Permaculture, and Bill Plotkin’s Soulcraft work, among other embodied, earth based wisdom practices.

Liz Reynolds

Liz Reynolds (she/her) Originally from east Tennessee, Liz began her meditation practice in 2010 while living and working in the Russian Far East. Her practice has accompanied her through living and working in Russia, Japan, Greece, Germany, several US states and through several Dharma study and leadership programs. In 2020, Liz became a teacher with the Insight Meditation Community of Charlottesville, in central Virginia. She is currently in Upaya Zen Center’s two-year Buddhist chaplaincy training program and volunteers as a chaplain intern at UVA hospital, and is also a certified teacher of the Alexander Technique. Liz believes that the dharma can inform a socially engaged life, and feels passionately about justice (and fun!) in all forms. She is grateful to the Mother trees, mountain streams and mossy rocks for supporting her life and spirit each day!

Mark Coleman

Mark Coleman is an inner and outer explorer, who has devotedly studied mindfulness meditation practices for three decades and has taught mindfulness workshops and meditation retreats on six continents for the past twenty years.  Mark is a senior meditation teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and cofounder of the Mindfulness Training Institute. Mark is an unabashed nature lover and, through his organization Awake in the Wild, he leads wilderness meditation retreats integrating meditation and nature. Based on his book, Awake in the Wild, Mark leads year-long meditation-in-nature teacher training programs in the US. Mark also holds a MA in Clinical Psychology and draws on his extensive experience in working with people as a therapist and coach. Mark is the author of From Suffering to Peace: The True Promise of Mindfulness, Make Peace with Your Mind: How Mindfulness and Compassion Can Help Free You from the Inner Critic and Awake in the Wild: Mindfulness in Nature as a Path of Self-Discovery.

Peter Williams

Peter has practiced meditation for 29 years in the Theravada and Tibetan Buddhist traditions. He has done more than 31 months of silent retreat. He has taught insight meditation (mindfulness) since 2003 and has completed the Community Dharma Leader training through Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Peter teaches retreats and dedicated practitioner groups based in Longmont, CO. He has taught mindfulness to diverse audiences, from Colorado juvenile justices to school teachers to environmentalists. He is one of the founders of the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center in the mountains near Boulder, CO. Peter has been practicing as a transpersonal psychotherapist since 2007, using mindfulness and spirituality to heal emotional distress. In an 18-year career in the environmental field, Peter worked as an environmental educator for Massachusetts Audubon Society, as a wildlife biologist and lecturer at the University of Vermont, and as a consulting ecologist for groups such as the Nature Conservancy and the U. S. Forest Service. Peter enjoys playing piano, golfing, bird watching, hiking and being outdoors as much as possible.

Ramon Gabrieloff-Parish

Ramon Gabrieloff-Parish has developed a pedagogy that synthesizes ritual and ceremony, embodied imagination, social justice, and environment for over a decade. As an Assistant Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies at Naropa University he teaches foundations in contemplative learning and theory, diversity and social identity and sustainability. He also focuses on the equity dimensions of the environment through courses in food and environmental justice. He serves as a freelance educator, lecturer and consultant on the links between social justice, sustainability and mindfulness for universities, businesses, outdoor organizations, non-profits and government. Ramon is a certified practitioner of SomaSource and longtime leader/facilitator in the Surfing The Creative®International Youth Leadership Camps, having helped usher hundreds of young people through contemporary threshold experiences. As a previous board member of Youth Passageways and a current board chair for Frontline Farming, Ramon is committed to the revival of rites of passage, community regeneration and imaginal renaissance. He will lead a weekend session at this retreat.

Rochelle Calvert

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.

Sarah Heffron

Sarah Heffron, LSCSW is a licensed clinical therapist and began sharing insight meditation in 1999.  Her first degree was in environmental studies and her first refuge was in the natural world.  It was in the whirlwind of defending the natural world, that she attended her first Vipassana retreat and then dove deeply into the Dharma, with the blessing of many longer retreats.  Since becoming a mother 14 years ago, she has practiced the more worldly and often messy Dharma of a parent-householder.  Participation in the Community Dharma Leader program and Dedicated Practitioner Program through Spirit Rock Meditation Center greatly contributed to finding grace amidst the grit whether in parenting, work, or activism.  In the past two decades, she has taught Dharma class series, daylong and weekend retreats (Utah, Colorado, and Kathmandu), as well as teaching mindfulness and yoga in schools for five years.  She is currently in the Buddhist Eco-Chaplaincy Program where she feels called to support the great transformation from the current paradigm of social and ecological injustice to a paradigm that respects and nourishes all beings.  

Satya Larrea

Satya discovered yoga and meditation in 1993 out of her need to be happy. She was desperate to heal from the depression and anxiety she felt in her mind/body.  She was a work study student at an ashram for many years and while “chopping wood and carrying water” she underwent a rigorous training to teach yoga, starting in 1997. Satya currently owns the Whole Yoga Center in Denver and has led numerous yoga teacher training‘s and daylong meditation retreats there, since 2004.   Her calling in life is in the healing arts, she’s a body worker with an emphasis on somatics and she’s earned multiple certifications in ayurvedic and yogic studies, massage therapy and Qigong.  Satya specializes in teaching embodiment and mindfulness to  people who are in recovery from eating disorders and mood and anxiety disorders in a hospital setting. She started sitting with Johann Robbins’s meditation group in 2016 and was introduced to Vipassana Meditation, the Eco Dharma Center and nature practice, she is immensely grateful for RMERC and her deepening relationship to the land.  Satya enjoy’s practicing mindfulness in nature while cross country skiing, paddle boarding, and hiking with her dog. She is learning how to lift weights safely. Satya resides in Louisville, CO and aside from being a yogini, she is also a mother and a wife.   

Shinei Sara Monial & Soten Danney Lynch

Shinei Sara Monial and Soten Danney Lynch are ordained Soto Zen Priests. They lived and practiced full-time at Great Vow Zen Monastery with Chozen and Hogen Bays for a decade ( Shinei is a yoga teacher and Soten is a long distance ultra-runner and musician. Together they have been leading annual backpacking meditation retreats in the wilderness of the Pacific Northwest since 2016. Recently they embarked upon a pilgrimage through Mexico and Central America, covering 3,000 miles purely on foot. Back from this journey they each seek to merge their passions for Embodiment, Nature and Dharma and share this unique offering with others.

Susie Harrington

Susie Harrington teaches meditation nationwide and is the guiding teacher for Desert Dharma, which serves many communities in the Southwest near her home in Moab, Utah. She has trained in the Insight tradition since 1989, and in 2005 was invited into teaching by Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein, and Guy Armstrong. In 2016 she formally received lineage transmission in the Thai Forest and Burmese Mahasi lineages. She has also received teachings from many others, including Tory Capron, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Lama Drimed, and Lama P.S. Dorji Rinpoche in Bhutan. She loves offering retreats outside, believing nature to be a profound teacher, and a gateway to our true self. Her teaching is deeply grounded in the body and often emphasizes the expression of mindfulness in speech and daily life. Susie brings the skills of inquiry, relational dharma, and the psychological/spiritual interface to her teaching, informed by her ongoing study of the Diamond Approach by A.H.Almaas and as a graduate of Hakomi Therapy (a somatic psychotherapy modality). She delights in mentoring the innate qualities of heart and wisdom in everyday practice. She teaches regularly at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and co-leads the advanced student LEAP program as well as being a member of their…

Sylvie Rokab

Sylvie is a certified nature-therapy guide, mindfulness teacher in the Vipassana tradition, and an Emmy-nominated filmmaker. By blending these three disciplines, Sylvie offers simple but powerful techniques that help participants find freedom from suffering, to access the healing, wisdom, and wonder that can only be found in mindful relationship with nature. Narrated by Liam Neeson, her film Love Thy Nature earned 27 awards and has helped viewers realize that the illusion of separation from the natural world is at the root cause of our dire human condition. Through her teaching, Sylvie helps participants rekindle mindful loving awareness, awakening to the power of nature to help transform their lives. They often share that they take home a renewed sense of belonging, joy, aliveness, and a desire to protect our spellbinding world.

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