Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Robin Wilner Leads New Guided Program
Category:
Healing
"Esalen is a place to turn inward and reconnect with Spirit. It’s in a remote locale, separated from the pressures to over-produce and move quickly, to be ‘plugged in.’ One of the best ways to unplug is to immerse ourselves in nature, to live and breathe with the rhythms of the earth and the tides. Without requirements, life simplifies. The mind quiets and suffering lessens. When we ease our suffering, the potential to grow, learn and change amplifies." —Robin Wilner

Yoga instructor and holistic nutritionist Robin Wilner facilitates our Guided Program in Creating Connection through the Rituals of Esalen. Our new Teacher-in-Residence brings a winning trifecta of accessibility, warmth and humor to the ritual construct.

“Rituals can help us develop daily habits rooted in discipline and commitment,” Robin says. “We keep coming back to a ritual practice (or sādhanā) even when we don’t want to because we know it has a lasting, healing effect. What I hope to offer guests on this journey are practical healing solutions to bring the body, mind and spirit back into a state of harmony."

Over the next month, Robin will lead guests through a Guided Program called “Journey Through the Chakras.” In addition to a welcoming circle, it features a variety of classes—from “Reclaim Your Roots” and “Stoke the Fire” to “Communication and Integration” and “Liberate the Mind”—all of which invite guests to explore their fullest potential through the lens of the subtle energy body with movement, breath and ritual practices.

“The chakras are our body’s energy centers, or what I like to think of as information channels,” Robin says. “They govern the mind/body connection, our behaviors, intellect, desires and our potential for transformation. When we feel an imbalance of any kind, whether it’s physical or emotional discomfort or disease, we can turn to the chakras as sources of healing by gathering information.”

Inquiry comes into play here: Where in the body do we feel disconnect or deficiency? How does that relate to our emotional experience at the moment?

“Working with the chakras takes us into the metaphysical, intellectual and spiritual realms,” she adds.

Originally from Chicago, Robin comes from a “very musical” family. She began dancing at the age of 3 and by the time she was 8, she was training to be in a dance company and already performing professionally. As she gained experience over the years, her natural music skills led her towards a musical theatre career.

“The dream of performing on Broadway was my motivation to keep training intensely and keep working while in school,” she says.

After college, Robin purchased a one-way ticket to New York City and stayed for the next 14 years. During her career, she traveled the country with prominent national touring shows—Cats, Evita, Sweet Charity, Mamma Mia. Her six-year experience in the Broadway cast of Wicked was a “real dream” come true and a remarkable time to truly hone the ritual of performing daily.

“I learned about discipline and commitment,” she says of her time in Wicked. “I learned how to keep showing up even on those days when my body ached and I was exhausted. It’s so parallel to the yoga practice. We keep showing up, knowing that some days it’s downright hard.

But it’s the healing we’re ultimately after. Whenever I thought about a young girl in the audience coming to see this beautiful spectacle of a show for the first time, I could muster the strength and energy to perform like it was opening night, even after more than 2,000 performances.”

As Robin continued to evolve personally and professionally, she realized how much yoga had become a significant part of her life, keeping her body healthy and free from injury as well as helping ease anxiety, especially through the tragedy of 9/11.

“The more I practiced, the more I fell in love with how I felt connected to Spirit,” she says. “Living and working in a highly-charged city, I needed to find balance and quiet. And yoga was how I found that. I knew I wanted to study the practice and philosophy for life, and I’d already been teaching dance for decades. So teaching yoga was the natural next step. And after 10 years, it continues to be my passion.”

Robin has lived in San Francisco since 2014. While several of her friends have shared what a magical place Esalen has been for them, this is her first time on campus.

“By design, Esalen is a place to turn inward and reconnect with Spirit,” she shares. “It’s in a remote locale, separated from the pressures to over-produce and move quickly, to be ‘plugged in.’ One of the best ways to unplug is to immerse ourselves in nature, to live and breathe with the rhythms of the earth and the tides.

Without requirements, life simplifies. The mind quiets and suffering lessens. And when we ease our suffering, the potential to grow, learn and change amplifies.”

When asked about what truly stands out in the new Guided Program she oversees, Robin sees a powerful opportunity for awakening and a deeper connection to the self.

“I believe that our body is a vessel for connecting to spiritual practice,” she explains. “Dropping into the energy centers helps us to feel more embodied. When we feel embodied, then we’re functioning beyond the status quo. We’re more awake, alive, conscious of our actions, mindful of our words and engaged in our relationships.

When we shift our nervous system from spending overtime in fight or flight to softening into a rest-and-digest mode, we simply feel better. We also discover new potential within the mind/body channel, more steadiness and ease. And eventually, stress can be replaced by untethered joy.”

Learn more about Robin and her work here.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

Robin Wilner Leads New Guided Program

About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Category:
Healing
"Esalen is a place to turn inward and reconnect with Spirit. It’s in a remote locale, separated from the pressures to over-produce and move quickly, to be ‘plugged in.’ One of the best ways to unplug is to immerse ourselves in nature, to live and breathe with the rhythms of the earth and the tides. Without requirements, life simplifies. The mind quiets and suffering lessens. When we ease our suffering, the potential to grow, learn and change amplifies." —Robin Wilner

Yoga instructor and holistic nutritionist Robin Wilner facilitates our Guided Program in Creating Connection through the Rituals of Esalen. Our new Teacher-in-Residence brings a winning trifecta of accessibility, warmth and humor to the ritual construct.

“Rituals can help us develop daily habits rooted in discipline and commitment,” Robin says. “We keep coming back to a ritual practice (or sādhanā) even when we don’t want to because we know it has a lasting, healing effect. What I hope to offer guests on this journey are practical healing solutions to bring the body, mind and spirit back into a state of harmony."

Over the next month, Robin will lead guests through a Guided Program called “Journey Through the Chakras.” In addition to a welcoming circle, it features a variety of classes—from “Reclaim Your Roots” and “Stoke the Fire” to “Communication and Integration” and “Liberate the Mind”—all of which invite guests to explore their fullest potential through the lens of the subtle energy body with movement, breath and ritual practices.

“The chakras are our body’s energy centers, or what I like to think of as information channels,” Robin says. “They govern the mind/body connection, our behaviors, intellect, desires and our potential for transformation. When we feel an imbalance of any kind, whether it’s physical or emotional discomfort or disease, we can turn to the chakras as sources of healing by gathering information.”

Inquiry comes into play here: Where in the body do we feel disconnect or deficiency? How does that relate to our emotional experience at the moment?

“Working with the chakras takes us into the metaphysical, intellectual and spiritual realms,” she adds.

Originally from Chicago, Robin comes from a “very musical” family. She began dancing at the age of 3 and by the time she was 8, she was training to be in a dance company and already performing professionally. As she gained experience over the years, her natural music skills led her towards a musical theatre career.

“The dream of performing on Broadway was my motivation to keep training intensely and keep working while in school,” she says.

After college, Robin purchased a one-way ticket to New York City and stayed for the next 14 years. During her career, she traveled the country with prominent national touring shows—Cats, Evita, Sweet Charity, Mamma Mia. Her six-year experience in the Broadway cast of Wicked was a “real dream” come true and a remarkable time to truly hone the ritual of performing daily.

“I learned about discipline and commitment,” she says of her time in Wicked. “I learned how to keep showing up even on those days when my body ached and I was exhausted. It’s so parallel to the yoga practice. We keep showing up, knowing that some days it’s downright hard.

But it’s the healing we’re ultimately after. Whenever I thought about a young girl in the audience coming to see this beautiful spectacle of a show for the first time, I could muster the strength and energy to perform like it was opening night, even after more than 2,000 performances.”

As Robin continued to evolve personally and professionally, she realized how much yoga had become a significant part of her life, keeping her body healthy and free from injury as well as helping ease anxiety, especially through the tragedy of 9/11.

“The more I practiced, the more I fell in love with how I felt connected to Spirit,” she says. “Living and working in a highly-charged city, I needed to find balance and quiet. And yoga was how I found that. I knew I wanted to study the practice and philosophy for life, and I’d already been teaching dance for decades. So teaching yoga was the natural next step. And after 10 years, it continues to be my passion.”

Robin has lived in San Francisco since 2014. While several of her friends have shared what a magical place Esalen has been for them, this is her first time on campus.

“By design, Esalen is a place to turn inward and reconnect with Spirit,” she shares. “It’s in a remote locale, separated from the pressures to over-produce and move quickly, to be ‘plugged in.’ One of the best ways to unplug is to immerse ourselves in nature, to live and breathe with the rhythms of the earth and the tides.

Without requirements, life simplifies. The mind quiets and suffering lessens. And when we ease our suffering, the potential to grow, learn and change amplifies.”

When asked about what truly stands out in the new Guided Program she oversees, Robin sees a powerful opportunity for awakening and a deeper connection to the self.

“I believe that our body is a vessel for connecting to spiritual practice,” she explains. “Dropping into the energy centers helps us to feel more embodied. When we feel embodied, then we’re functioning beyond the status quo. We’re more awake, alive, conscious of our actions, mindful of our words and engaged in our relationships.

When we shift our nervous system from spending overtime in fight or flight to softening into a rest-and-digest mode, we simply feel better. We also discover new potential within the mind/body channel, more steadiness and ease. And eventually, stress can be replaced by untethered joy.”

Learn more about Robin and her work here.

“Remembering to be as self compassionate as I can and praying to the divine that we're all a part of.” 
–Aaron

“Prayer, reading, meditation, walking.”
–Karen
“Erratically — which is an ongoing stream of practice to find peace.”
–Charles
“Try on a daily basis to be kind to myself and to realize that making mistakes is a part of the human condition. Learning from our mistakes is a journey. But it starts with compassion and caring. First for oneself.”
–Steve

“Physically: aerobic exercise, volleyball, ice hockey, cycling, sailing. Emotionally: unfortunately I have to work to ‘not care’ about people or situations which may end painfully. Along the lines of ‘attachment is the source of suffering’, so best to avoid it or limit its scope. Sad though because it could also be the source of great joy. Is it worth the risk?“
–Rainer

“It's time for my heart to be nurtured on one level yet contained on another. To go easy on me and to allow my feelings to be validated, not judged harshly. On the other hand, to let the heart rule with equanimity and not lead the mind and body around like a master.”
–Suzanne

“I spend time thinking of everything I am grateful for, and I try to develop my ability to express compassion for myself and others without reservation. I take time to do the things I need to do to keep myself healthy and happy. This includes taking experiential workshops, fostering relationships, and participating within groups which have a similar interest to become a more compassionate and fulfilled being.“
–Peter

“Self-forgiveness for my own judgments. And oh yeah, coming to Esalen.”
–David B.

“Hmm, this is a tough one! I guess I take care of my heart through fostering relationships with people I feel connected to. Spending quality time with them (whether we're on the phone, through messages/letters, on Zoom, or in-person). Being there for them, listening to them, sharing what's going on with me, my struggles and my successes... like we do in the Esalen weekly Friends of Esalen Zoom sessions!”
–Lori

“I remind myself in many ways of the fact that " Love is all there is!" LOVE is the prize and this one precious life is the stage we get to learn our lessons. I get out into nature, hike, camp, river kayak, fly fish, garden, I create, I dance (not enough!), and I remain grateful for each day, each breath, each moment. Being in the moment, awake, and remembering the gift of life and my feeling of gratitude for all of creation.”
–Steven
“My physical heart by limiting stress and eating a heart-healthy diet. My emotional heart by staying in love with the world and by knowing that all disappointment and loss will pass.“
–David Z.


Today, September 29, is World Heart Day. Strike up a conversation with your own heart and as you feel comfortable, encourage others to do the same. As part of our own transformations and self-care, we sometimes ask for others to illuminate and enliven our hearts or speak our love language.

What if we could do this for ourselves too, even if just for today… or to start a heart practice, forever?



About

Esalen Team

Darnell Lamont Walker leading Rituals Writing Workshop
Robin Wilner Leads New Guided Program
Category:
Healing

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About

Esalen Team

Robin Wilner Leads New Guided Program

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Esalen Team

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