Mindfulness and Nature Winter Renewal Weekend -Being in the Wild (Lin Gordon and Lee Steppacher)

Feb 15, 2019 - Feb 17, 2019

Every season has its unique gifts. As a season for deep rest and renewal, winter provides us a unique opportunity to step away from our active life and come into deep introspection and regenerate.

To help you come into a deeper rhythm with the natural world, Lin Gordon and Lee Steppacher will weave nature-based meditation practices throughout this silent weekend retreat. We will spend extended time outdoors and participate in guided meditation and mindful walks to open our sense of awareness, and sinking deeply into our connection to the world around us. Participants will learn to develop a receptive presence and contemplative relationship with nature, opening the possibility to experience beautiful states of joy, peace, wonder, love and connection with oneself, each other and the larger web of life.

Specific practices will be chosen based on weather, location and the group, but will include foundational mindfulness, movement and wisdom practices that are particularly aligned with being in nature.

The weekend will be held primarily in silence, allowing you to cultivate the capacity to be present. There will be opportunities for limited discussion and questions, and talks will be offered as guidance. Guided body movement will also be offered daily.

Activities will not be strenuous, but significant time will be spent outdoors. Appropriate outerwear will be needed. Below is a sample packing list for our time outside:

  • Bring layers
  • Warm hat
  • Warm gloves
  • Neck gaiter or scarf
  • Waterproof pants (ski or winter hiking pants)
  • Winter jacket
  • Winter/waterproof hiking boots (if possible)
  • Thermal long underwear shirts and pants
  • Wool socks
  • Headlamp
  • Sunscreen
  • Water bottle
  • Vacuum-insulated bottle for hot drinks
  • When outside cotton clothes are discouraged

Resources: Clothing and Gear Tips for Cold-Weather Hiking

https://www.rei.com/learn/expert-advice/cold-weather-hiking.html

This weekend is appropriate for people with all levels of experience. No prior meditation experience needed.

Tuition

Sliding Scale Tuition: $100, $150, or $200after you select room option, please select tuition to be added to your booking.

Schedule

Day
Time/Activity

February 15, 2019

Arrival Day

3:00pm Arrival

Days In Between

Full Day Schedule

Check Out Day

Noon check out

Teacher

Lin Gordon has been practicing insight meditation in the last eight years under the guidance of Jonathan Foust (a senior guiding teacher of the Insight Meditation Community of Washington), Mark Coleman from the Spirit Rock Meditation Center, as well as various teachers at the New York Insight Meditation Center.  In stillness and silence, she discovers the transformative power of mindfulness practices to help live a life of flow, joy, grace and gratitude.

In the last three years, Lin was particularly moved by the power of nature meditation practices to connect with a deep sense of well-being, love, resilience and connection with a larger world that we are part of.  Our human-centric worldview dissolves, and we realize we are but a small part of a greater intelligence and the universe.  She graduated from Mark Coleman’s Awake in the Wild Nature Meditation Teacher Training in 2017 and has since taught in New York Insight Meditation Center..

Besides meditation, Lin is a certified reiki practitioner and currently participating in a Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training.  She is certified in wilderness first aid.  Out in the world, she has been a digital marketer for the last 17 years, and currently serve as a board member of the New York Insight Meditation Center.

She holds a BA in East Asian Studies and Political Science from Barnard College, and an MBA from NYU.

Lee Steppacher has a deep meditation practice over 25 years, and has a combination of skills and interests that draw her to offering mindfulness in nature retreats .  She gravitated to the direct simplicity of the Vipassana (or Insight meditation practice) tradition, and was fortunate to live near Insight Meditation Society where she has been going to annual retreats.  She has been a long-time practitioner of the Cambridge Insight Meditation Center community.

She recently completed a two-year “Awake in the Wild” Nature Meditation Teacher Training program with Mark Coleman from the Spirit Rock Meditation Center, and continues to be inspired and guided by Mark’s work in bringing mindfulness into nature.   Lee had a fulfilling career in environmental planning and protection with both Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Park Service, where she was responsible for resource-based watershed protection for various locations in New England.  Since retirement, Awake in the Wild has enabled Lee to bring her meditation practice and environmental knowledge together in a meaningful way.

Lee lives in Vermont and enjoys guiding people through the woods and fields nearby, sharing these practices that help one to connect more deeply with themselves and the world of which we are all a part.  Lee also maintains a massage practice where she focuses on working with the elderly, ill and dying.

Food

Our menus are based on group preferences and budget. We offer delicious, balanced vegetarian and non-vegetarian meals which typically include raw salads and hot vegetable dishes. Upon request, we will gladly prepare unseasoned blanched or steamed dishes for lunch and dinner. We easily accommodate gluten/dairy free needs, and many of our seasonings and oils are provided on the side for guests to season meals to taste. Several rooms have refrigerators, so guests are welcome to bring food that suit their needs if they have issues we cannot accommodate. Please note that we are unable to reduce meal costs due to food allergies.

Payment Policy

A $50 non-refundable deposit is taken at the time registration occurs.
The full balance is collected 7 days prior to arrival.

Cancellation Policy

Other than the deposit, no fees are incurred if cancelled up to 7 days after reservation date.
50% of the total cost is retained if cancelled less than 4 days prior to event.
The $50 deposit given at registration is non-refundable.

Testimonials

1. “ For years I have walked my dog kind of mindlessly in the woods every day. On this weekend, I experienced nature in a completely different and wonderful way. Lee has a deep understanding of how we humans interconnect with the earth. The beautiful images and feelings that were evoked have stayed with me as wander in the woods being so much more present, Lee is a gifted teacher and this retreat is a gift that everyone should give to themselves.”

2. “I was looking for an interesting meditation event. I found the event arranged by Lin in Central Park. It was such a beautiful experience. I have been meditating for a few years. I thought I know a little bit about meditation, but I realized I know so very little about the different ways to meditate and experience and feel. We did some amazing practices which really made me present and allowed me to experience things in new ways. The whole program was spectacular with the unique practices combined with reading so many poems which helped evoke the experience.

After attending the Central Park meditation I saw the day hike to Lake Awosting.  As someone who can get anxious, all anxiety and tension released as I walked through the beautiful surroundings guided in special ways of seeing, hearing, feeling and sensing.  Lin’s depth of experience and the way she present everything allows for very special things to happen. She brought with her another senior meditation teacher who was also amazing. Lin combines her own years of deep practice with a thoughtful and inspiring guidance. It comes across as very simple because she has gone very deep and share that experience with others.” – Testimonial from a park event and a hike

3. It was lovely to be outside with two thoughtful people (Lin and Lee) guiding our experience.  The hikes were not strenuous but we were not strolling either.  Being at the pond, the river, woods and/or meadows made for a new appreciation of the environment around us.  There were many varied elements so that if one type of experience didn’t speak to you, another did!  Between moon-gazing, watching the sun rise, and having a dharma talk around the fire, it made for a truly engaging and thought-full experience with the outside.” – Testimonial from a weekend retreat

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