Meditate, Breath, Dance and Enjoy in the Sea Retreat
September 26-29, 2019
It was exactly October 2010 when our Precious Master Chögyal Namkhai Norbu, came to a small beach in the south Caribbean coast of Costa Rica; he approached the marvelous turquoise waters and said ¨Optimo¨.
This moment, this moment in space and time, has remain cherished in my heart for nine years. Meditate,Breath, Dance and Enjoy in the sea was born as a spark of this memory. On September 27th, on Rinpoche’s Anniversary, an International Sangha, came together as a Family singing, trying our best to integrate inner and outer experience with the sound of the Song of Vajra.
Participants came from all over, new people and old practitioners came to enjoy four days of togetherness. In honor of our Precious Master, we tried to deliver the experience of what he taught us during his lifetime. We started the day with Yantra Yoga for beginners with Nataly Nitsche and advanced Yantra Yoga with Maxim Leschenko. Simultaneously Ricky Sued gave a short intro of Mindful meditation to the kids. We continued with Mindful meditation for adults while the kids learned Kumar Kumari followed by Vajra Dance, bagchen, relaxing and enjoying on the beach and finishing up with Khaita Joyful Dances after dinner. Laughter and joy were experienced throughout the whole retreat bringing everyone closer as a big family, honoring its name; Dekyitling ¨Place of Joy¨.
Rozanne from Puerto Viejo
The retreat’s name promised an experience encompassing different ways to connect – through the mind, the body, and the spirit, working with the energies around us and within us. Each aspect, while powerful on its own, were integrated beautifully with loving intention on this retreat.
We began by the sea with confident teenagers from the local community facilitating activities to “break the ice.” We learned each other’s names, laughed, shared a light meal, and enjoyed the turquoise still waters of the Caribbean Sea. After returning to the retreat facility adorned with peace flags made by local children and teens, which was the anchor for all formal and informal activities, we were introduced to some of the retreat’s offerings through a gentle demonstration of yantra yoga and dancing – a relaxed beginning to a retreat filled with opportunity to learn individually and cooperatively with other participants and teachers.
The inhale and exhale rhythm of the retreat allowed perfect flow between the tools and practices of yantra yoga, conscious meditation, mandala dance, and the pagchen play and joyful dance. As we repeated the rhythm daily, I was able to integrate the practices at a deeper level as the retreat progressed. I loved that there were both experienced practitioners and beginners in the workshops, sitting beside each other during meals, and dancing together.
In the morning, I began my day with Nataly and Yantra Yoga – an introduction to the breath and the body. After there was the meditation workshop with Ricky – an introduction to the breath and the mind. In the afternoon, I enjoyed the Mandala Dance with Gloriana – an introduction to the breath and the movement of energy and sound. In between these formal workshops, there were different types of breathing – the slowed breath while understanding strategy learning bagchen and the joyful breath of laughter during Khaita dancing where we danced into the night for hours.
One of my favorite things about the retreat was that my family could participate in all the activities. My teenagers came to the meditation workshops and my younger children participated in kids yoga classes Kumar Kumari. We all enjoyed the community and connection in-between activities.
We ended the retreat as we started – relaxed and all together. We had a last trip to the beach and shared our final dinner. As we ended with toasts of gratitude and appreciation of our time together, I realized that this was more than a retreat by the sea, it was an opportunity to connect on more levels than I could have ever anticipated. As I completely exhaled after the toast, I smiled as I became aware of the greatest lesson and gift from the retreat – even as I emptied, I was full.
Ruben from Mexico
The Caribbean was a perfect spot to have this retreat in Playa Chiquita, Costa Rica, celebrating the anniversary of our beloved teacher passing into parinirvana. Led by instructors Maxim, Nataly, Ricky and Gloriana, I felt the fresh brilliance of the practice in their transmission of the yantra teachings as if Namkhai Norbu himself was there. It was special, magical to spend time in such a marvelous place. Teachings always happen in places that are not easy to get to, and it takes effort to reach these places, but the connection with our vajra family is priceless, and precious without measure. I plan to return for the next event.
In between the retreats we had a trip day, we enjoyed a boat trip to Punta Mona, visited an organic farm, tried snorkeling and surrendering to the beautiful nature!
October 1-3, 2019
The ¨Living Guruyoga¨ retreat was Dekyitling’s 13 year anniversary, where practitioners came together to work with our Transmission.
Ricky guided us from the essence of ¨Guru Yoga of White A¨ to how to simply relax in our daily life. Titi thought us Khalong Dorje Khar, also known as The Dance of the 12 A’s. We then practiced the dance on top of a cliff over viewing where the sky met the sea, experiencing as if we were dancing in space combined with vertigo. Khaitas were present everyday. Some days we sang together and shared our memories of the beginning of Khaita…we even practiced Kongpo, since we had the male experts Richard, Maxim and Thinley!!
Then we had the cherry on the cake practice…everyday, for sunset time, we would all go and take a dip in the lukewarm waters of the caribbean sea, enjoying and connecting with that very same place where once Our Precious Master enjoyed and said ¨Öptimo¨.
Janina from San Jose
For me, the retreat was a wonderful experience in many aspects. The jungle environment, the Caribbean sea, the contact with nature, was an incredible support to the different practices contemplated in the program; which resulted in great wealth, we had the opportunity to have the participation of excellent instructors in Yantra Yoga, Vajra Dance and Santi Maha Sangha. With them we share both the moments of formal practice, as particular reflections in relation to practices. Dancing the Dance of 3 Vajras, in the mandala extended to the moonlight, was wonderful; the practice of Yantra Yoga, the Pranayamas, with the support of instructors of a level of knowledge and ability to convey the essence of the meaning of practices within the context of meaning of what the Dzogchen is, it was an opportunity that I value very much.
Living Guruyoga, meant to me, to reconnect with the essence of what Dzogchen is. The instructor, in a very simple, experiential way, invited us, through the realization of some introductory practices to the state of contemplation, to reconnect with the experience of direct introduction that in his opportunity each had lived with the Master. The ability of the instructor to direct the practices so experientially, naked of concepts, but very rich in terms of the experience transmitted, the jungle environment within which they were carried out, the group support, were elements that as a whole facilitated us to advance in contemplation practices. A deep thanks to the Sangha of Costa Rica for their effort in organizing this activity and waiting for it to be repeated.
Dekyitling would like to thank all the International Sangha for making the effort to come together, thank you to our instructors Ricky Sued, Nataly Nitsche, Maxim Leschenko and Gloriana Brenes (Titti). Thank you Alix DeFermor for teaching us the ethics and life lessons of bagchen.
In honor of our Precious Master, Chögyal Namkhai Norbu – Infinite Gratitude from Dekyitling. See you again September 24th-27th, 2020 for Meditate, Breath, Dance and Enjoy in the sea retreat followed by the ¨Living Guruyoga¨ retreat October 1st-3rd, 2020.