is author of Awake in the Wild. He has studied Buddhist meditation since 1984. He is a Spirit Rock meditation teacher and has led wilderness meditation retreats from Alaska to Peru. Mark is also a coach and therapist.
Following ancient traditions on this winter solstice, we will take this poignant time to retreat, slow down, and enter stillness, silence, and inner exploration. While the natural world appears to be dormant, the inner realms are alive with transmuting the passage between the old and the new. The solstice asks how we stand open hearted in face of the darkest night while holding faith in the returning light. On a practical level it is a time of sorting what wants to be released that is no longer serving our potential, and what wants to be called in to help us fulfill that journey.
Come learn how to abide in the heart of loving presence. Awareness as developed through mindfulness practice, and the qualities of love developed through loving kindness (metta) meditation, are essential and beautiful aspects of living an awake life. During this course, we will explore the ways that mindfulness leads to clarity and insight and how love opens the heart and allows a kind embrace of ourselves and life. This fusion of love and mindfulness supports a compassionate response to the pain that we encounter in ourselves and in the world.
Following ancient spiritual traditions that value the transformative power of nature, this experiential workshop will be spent meditating outdoors in the natural beauty and mystery of Esalen. Whether it is during a sunset meditation, listening to the soothing sounds of the ocean, or sitting graced in the stillness of cypress trees, we will open to the profound serenity and wisdom of nature.