Natural movement and stillness - with Jess Stein
Natural Movement and Stillness
This retreat follows the usual Barn schedule with extra time for movement practices such as yoga, qi gong, walking meditation. Through these practices we will explore how a mindfulness practice which emphasises both movement and stillness can awaken our creative potential to engage with ourselves, each other and the world.
During this midsummer retreat we will take these practices off the cushion and out into nature (as much as the weather allows). We will take advantage of the Barn’s beautiful setting and the long midsummer days to explore how practicing movement and meditation in nature can enrich our practice and lead us into a greater awareness of our human place in the world.
There will be a variety of creative movement practices offered. Traditional practices such as yoga will be offered in a way which emphasises fluidity and awareness over achievement of particular postures. All activities will be accessible and adaptable to any body type and level of experience and there will always be an invitation to participate in a way that is nourishing to your own body and mind. The only prerequisite is a curiosity for how movement and mindfulness work together.
This themed retreat has a similar schedule to our standard six night retreat.
The weekly schedule provides opportunities for both individual reflection and group meditation.
It is important that you are willing to participate in working on the land as part of your mindfulness practice (we can easily find suitable tasks for people with health difficulties) and that you can commit to all the scheduled activities during the week. This includes three 30-40 minute meditation sittings each day.
Note that we hold silence from 9pm to 9am each day, and all day Wednesday.
General retreat schedule
Sunday: Arrive between 2pm and 4pm
4.30pm - Welcome talk, introductions and tour
5.30pm - Guided meditation
6.30pm - Light evening meal. Then settling in.
9.00pm - Silence starts
Monday to Friday:
|6.20am – Wake up||1.00pm – Lunch|
|6.50am – Meditation||2.00pm – Personal practice time|
|7.30am – Household tasks||Optional afternoon activities include yoga, therapies (shiatsu, etc), reading, walking|
|8.00am – Breakfast||5.00pm – Teaching session lead by visiting teachers|
|9.00am – Silence ends with house meeting (except Wednesday)||6.00pm – Supper prepared individually or in groups|
|10.00am – Mindful gardening||8.20pm – Meditation (guided Tuesday & Friday)|
|12.20pm – Meditation (guided on Monday and Tuesday)||9.00pm – Silence until 9.00am the next day|
Saturday: As above until 8.00am - silence ends at breakfast.
Then clear rooms and depart between 9.00am and 12.00noon
Cost: £285 plus dana*
*Dana is the Pali word for generousity or donation. The teachers are receiving only a small payment for teaching at The Barn and are generously giving their energy and understanding to us all. Please consider giving a donation to teachers for themed retreats.
Limited bursaries are available for those experiencing financial hardship. Please contact the Barn team for more details at least 4 weeks in advance if you wish to apply - [email protected], 01803 732661.
The retreat will be lead by Jess Stein with support from local Buddhist teachers
Jess has been practicing yoga all her life and teaching since 2010. Her practice is based in the Scaravelli approach as taught by Christine Borg. This yoga is playful, attentive and curious. It encourages fluidity and flexibility by working with the natural lines and curves of the body rather than forcing it into uncomfortable shapes. Her teaching also draws on her training in Dru Yoga, qigong and other movement practices.
Jess' mindfulness practice began in 2008 when she took a year out to 'find herself'. She's still working on finding herself but she did come across the teachings of Thich Nhat Hanh. This lead to an involvement with Wake Up London, a group of young people interested in creating social change through personal peace. She spent several years facilitating Wake Up events and projects and in 2015 moved to the Barn to spend a year as a Retreat Coordinator. Since then she has lead a series of retreats exploring this line between movement and stillness and is fascinated by the process of creating spaces where people can find freedom in their bodies and peace in their minds and hearts. Alongside this work Jess a palliative care nurse working in a hospice.