August 4 - 8, 2021
According to yogic and Buddhist philosophy, there are four noble qualities, known in the Buddhist tradition as the Four Immeasurables or Four Limitless Ones: loving kindness, compassion, equanimity, and sympathetic joy. We are all born with the seeds of these traits, and with practice we can cultivate them to develop strength, steadiness, and openness in any situation—independent of external conditions.
Although these four qualities are inter-related, in this workshop we will explore Equanimity as a means to remain openhearted during times of tension and strife, whether personal or global. Equanimity is freedom from powerful reactions, positive or negative, to another person or an event—the ability to be even- and open-minded toward everyone, no matter how they behave. This practice brings clarity to situations where we may be moved to react from passion or bias. Expanding our view to one of engaged impartiality allows us to respond to life’s challenges with wisdom—even at times with a sense of humor.
We will explore Equanimity through yoga poses, meditations, mindfulness exercises, and breath awareness. Yoga poses help us move into our bodies, sit still, feel, and regulate the breath. The poses build flexibility, endurance, and balance that allows us more ease in sitting meditation and in life. Just as we observe our body in poses from the front, back, sides, and inside, we can move to a broader perspective in observing the world around us, too. When you move into a yoga pose, can you find mental and physical ease? Can you move your attention throughout your entire body to discover the places where you hold dissatisfaction? By honing and practicing these qualities on the yoga mat, you learn to transfer them to daily life to become more peaceful and accepting—intentionally nonreactive and non-biased to external circumstances.
Each day will include periods of silent and guided meditation, mindfulness exercises, and the practice of hatha yoga postures and breath awareness. Depending on your situation, you can participate in all the sessions, much as you would at a residential retreat, or you can adjust the schedule to work with your “life” activities and responsibilities. For everyone, the intention we set will be to practice self-awareness during our time together and our time away from the group. Ideally, you will have a yoga mat, a long strap, belt, or tie, 2-3 firm blankets, 2 blocks (or a stack of books or small stool), wall space (a closed door is fine) 1 bolster (couch cushion, firm pillows, or blanket stack work, too), and a washcloth or bandana. If you don’t have all these items, we will improvise.No previous experience with meditation or yoga is required.
Cindy Dollar will be assisted on this retreat by Tammy Kaousias.
The price and preliminary retreat schedule are for the at home version of this retreat. In the event that Southern Dharma resumes on site programs, we will update the price, schedule, and the program description to reflect these changes, prior to registration opening.
For our 2021 at home retreats, three fee tiers are offered. Please choose the option that best fits your ability to give in this time. Any amount paid above the Base rate is a tax deductible contribution to Southern Dharma Retreat Center. Your confirmation email is your receipt for tax purposes.
We are deeply grateful for your support.
Registration fees do not include dana for the teacher. In the Buddhist tradition the teachings are offered freely and teachers are not paid for their offerings. They rely on dana contributions from students. Similarly, Southern Dharma keeps registration fees low to ensure the Dharma is accessible to all. Fees cover only a fraction of Southern Dharma’s operating expenses. We appreciate your practice of generosity to continue the dissemination of the Dharma!
Southern Dharma is now offering 50% scholarship awards for BIPOC and young adults in addition to those with financial need. Indicate your interest in a scholarship during the registration process. More information available here.