Overview of the 2017 SOARING Mindfulness Experience

From the moment you arrive, be ready for lift off; in fact, you are likely to begin SOARING as you cross the Bridge of the Gods into Stevenson, Washington. Its not simply the name, there's a shift that takes place at that historic crossing...and the shifting continues as you land at the Skamania Lodge. The retreat schedule is rich with content, yet intentionally designed with enough space for you to create your own experience. Each experience will be woven with the culture of the Pacific Northwest through music, ritual and ceremony. Every day will take you on a soaring journey through the lens of mindfulness. And your free time can be Sacred, Open, Adventurous, or a Renewal.

This is your time to SOAR!

We encourage you to keep checking back as more experiences will be announced and added to the schedule in the coming weeks! 

Thursday, August 17, 2017: Setting Your Intention

6:00pm - 7:30pm         Community Dinner

8:00pm - 10:00pm      Opening Night Experience 

This evening will feature a trio of power talk speakers that will address the topic of mindfulness from three different perspectives - personal, intellectual, and faith - body, mind, and spirit. A shared spiritual practice will open and close the evening, leaving you inspired to set your own personal intention for the weekend. Each of the following TED talk style wisdom will be intermixed with beautiful music to kick off our weekend together.    

Following the Golden Thread Home with Jeffon Seely

We all have those times in our experience when we think we are lost, unaware of the path to take. There are people in our lives who cause us to overlook our greatness and hang onto every mistake. There are situations that shatter our dreams and make the future seem like it is hopeless. But in the midst of walking through these storms, there is an internal compass that guides us if we can remain focused. By shifting our attention to the present, moving our awareness into our hearts and out of our heads, we see that wherever we may be there is something to hold onto, The Golden Thread. 

Grasp, Connect, Be. 

Mindfulness, Spirituality, and the Brain with Mark Waldman

By simply spending a few minutes several times a day, a person can permanently alter the functioning of the brain by as much as 25%. The result: Greater work productivity with less stress, decreased anxiety and depression, and enhanced memory, cognition, and empathy. The experience includes animated videos of the human brain, interactive slides of Newberg and Waldman’s brainscan studies, and demonstrations of simple techniques that you can experience – exercises that have been documented to improve neural functioning, generate personal happiness, and improve social interactions in the workplace and at home.

The Faith to Doubt with Rev. Dr. David Alexander 

To close out the evening, Rev. Dr. David will explore how we can navigate the waters from Blind Faith to Blinding Doubt and how we can regain peace of mind in a troubled world.

Friday, August 18, 2017: Opening to Awareness

7:00am - 8:00am        Early Morning Activities

  • Yoga
  • Tai-Chi
  • Poetry as a Spiritual Practice

8:00am - 9:00am        Breakfast (On Own)

9:00am - 10:30am       Workshop Experiences Session I

Option 1:

Spiritually Speaking: Bringing Mindfulness and Compassionate Communication into Your Life. with Mark Waldman

In this experiential workshop, participants will practice, with each other, a unique form dialogue where you remain in a deeply relaxed and nonjudgmental state of heightened awareness. You’ll learn how to turn on the empathy and compassion circuits in your brain, and you’ll discover how to use 10 words and 10 fingers to communicate better and listen more deeply, creating greater intimacy with anyone, even strangers. Mark will also show you the latest neuroscientific research showing how a pleasant memory evokes a unique smile that stimulates a feeling of trust in other people’s brains. It even eliminates conflicts before they begin.  These Compassionate Communication strategies are now being taught to ministers, teachers, and corporate leaders throughout the world. 

Option 2:

Sacred Breathing and Sound Bath Healing Circle  with John Rosenberg & Kelly Corsino

Join us for a Profound Healing Experience...

Shamanic Practitioner John Rozenberg leads the group through Pranayama Breathing while Kelly Corsino creates a glorious Sound Bath using singing bowls, chimes, vocal toning, and chanting. The combination of breath and sound fosters a deep awakening of your subconscious channels. In this awakened state you are reconnected to your own Spirit-guided intuition.

10:45am - 12:15pm      Workshop Experiences Session II

Option 1:

Grace & Grit - Vulnerability, Mindfulness and Grit in today's world with Coach Barb Beck

In this powerful workshop, Barb focuses on how to balance keeping your heart open, staying mindful and connected through strong daily spiritual practices and how to still anchor in a kind of "grit" that keeps inner resilience alive!  It can be easy, especially in spiritual communities, to remain committed to kindness and principles such as "compassion" and "acceptance" and not understand how to also take the necessary actions that are needed to keep a person strong from the inside out.  Many times during a week, we are faced with using our "wise discernment" and need a wide range of tools and skills to act with integrity, yet learn how to say a firm "No" when it's being called for.  This is a rich topic and always sparks thought provoking questions and meaningful conversations, which Barb makes sure to leave time for.  Come enjoy this intriguing dialogue around "Grace & Grit!" 

Option 2:

Who Do You Think You Are? with Rev. Dr. Kenn Gordon

WHO do you think you are? Who DO you think you are? Who do YOU think you are? Who do you THINK you are? Who do you think you ARE?

This workshop will offer discussion around our multi-faceted natures and delve into the many opportunities to examine who and how we are in the world. This will be a chance to have deep conversations about how to bring the best of all of these aspects of ourselves into our lives.

12:15pm - 1:30pm       Community Lunch

1:30pm - 6:00pm        Free Time to SOAR (Self-Guided) 

  • Take a hike on one of the many trails located at the resort
  • Meditate or journal in the meadow overlooking the Columbia Gorge
  • Connect with other retreat members about their experience
  • Take a ride on the zip-line course at the hotel (additional charges apply)
  • Grab some friends and play a round of golf (additional charges apply)
  • Relax in the outdoor salt water jacuzzi, take a swim in the indoor pool, or book a treatment in the world class spa

1:45pm - 2:30pm         Bonus Optional Workshop I

                                            A Call to Consciousness - Embracing the Path of Mindfulness with Jeffon Seely

In this interactive spiritual workshop, participants will move from the intellectual wisdom of spirituality towards  embodying the universal principles that govern their experience. Each participant will leave with a deeper awareness of the unique energy that fills their body, their one-of-a-kind gifts and tools to make those gifts blossom into reality. The workshop will create an inclusive gathering where the participants can walk the inner path towards deep mindfulness and unity. Participants will:

  • Create an inner environment of intense mindfulness through interactive meditations
  • Help one another walk down the path of mindfulness through group activities
  • Identify the areas in their lives where mindfulness overflows and create channels that can influence the areas where mindfulness is low
  • Learn spiritual practices that can magnify mindfulness and oneness
  • Move through the world from an awakened and empowered state
  • Begin constructing immaculate inner temples with their storehouse of intellectual knowledge
  • Allow mindfulness and spiritual connection to fuel the creation and sharing of their gifts
  • Build self-discipline towards the attainment of their highest and best

2:45pm - 3:45pm        Bonus Optional Workshop II

Spirit Dance & the Four Elements with Suzanne Grace

A movement workshop exploring the body as a creative instrument of expression - using the inspiration of the elements of nature: earth, air, fire, and water. Through vibrant rhythmic world music, organic movement, visualization, breath work, and spontaneous creativity - we joyously dance/move with our inner spirit. Absolutely no dance experience is necessary, just a desire to be free! Move it! 

4:00pm - 5:00pm       Bonus Optional Workshop III

Mindful Intention with Charles Gehrke

  • Discover the practice of Mindfulness.   Mindfulness is defined by Jon Kabat Zinn as “Paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.” 
  • Mindfulness is good for: Our bodies, our minds, our brains, helps us focus, fosters compassion, enhances relationships and our health.
  • Discover how your brain works and learn tools in order to use it effectively.  When you develop and strengthen your brain you are increasing your ability to focus, recognize and manage emotions, make better decisions, and empathize in your relationships.
  • Mindful Intention will show you how to manage difficult emotions, and improve your physical and mental health.
  • Mindful Intention will provide you with a step by step process to allow your brain to manifest   whatever you put your intention on. This retreat is a perfect place to begin using brain friendly techniques to begin to manifest your every intention. 

6:00pm - 7:30pm        Community Dinner

8:00pm - 10:00pm     Evening Experience

Keys to Becoming a Problem-Free Zone So You Can SOAR!  with Coach Barb Beck

All the spiritual principals in the world won't allow you to truly "Soar" in life if you have a weak "personal foundation!"  Learning how to show up with Authenticity + Boundaries + Releasing The Need for Approval = A Problem-Free Zone, which results in a greater sense of freedom.  By laying the groundwork in these 3 key areas, committing to take 100 percent responsibility for your life and how you are showing up, and anchoring in a strong morning practice, the door is then kicked wide open to embracing spiritual practices that allow for an empowered and joyful life!

Soaring Empowered and Joyful with Dr. Matti Dobbs

Soaring is living a life of joy and meaning in conscious connection with Spirit.  In this interactive session, Dr. Matti Dobbs, shares "Flight Lessons," transformational tools and spiritual practices, to live your purpose and achieve your dreams....to SOAR.

Saturday, August 19, 2017: Ascending in Spirit 

7:00am - 8:00am        Early Morning Activities

  • Yoga
  • Tai-Chi
  • Poetry as a Spiritual Practice

8:00am - 9:00am        Breakfast (On Own)

9:00am - 12:15pm       Free Time to SOAR

  • Take a hike on one of the many trails located at the resort
  • Meditate or journal in the meadow overlooking the Columbia Gorge
  • Connect with other retreat members about their experience
  • Take a ride on the zip-line course at the hotel (additional charges apply)
  • Grab some friends and play a round of golf (additional charges apply) 
  • Relax in the outdoor salt water jacuzzi, take a swim in the indoor pool, or book a treatment in the world class spa

12:15pm - 1:30pm       Community Lunch

2:00pm - 3:30pm        Workshop Experiences Session I

Option 1:

Change Your Brain and Change Your Life…in 60 Seconds or Less! with Mark Waldman

In this experiential workshop, Mark will guide you through a unique series of experiential exercises that will teach you how to master the practice of mindfulness in less than an hour – and then, how to integrate 60-second mindfulness strategies into your workday to instantly lower stress, increase productivity and performance, and tap into the creative problem-solving circuits of the brain. He’ll show you how to find and use a single word that will turn on 1200 stress reducing genes, how a mindful yawn eliminates neurological stress, how a single super-slow movement causes the brain to release tension and pain, and to eliminate worries, fears, and doubts with a single sheet of paper (The C.R.A.P. Board meditation exercise).   

Option 2:

Sacred Breathing and Sound Bath Healing Circle  with John Rosenberg & Kelly Corsino

Join us for a Profound Healing Experience...

Shamanic Practitioner John Rozenberg leads the group through Pranayama Breathing while Kelly Corsino creates a glorious Sound Bath using singing bowls, chimes, vocal toning, and chanting. The combination of breath and sound fosters a deep awakening of your subconscious channels. In this awakened state you are reconnected to your own Spirit-guided intuition.

3:45pm - 5:15pm         Workshop Experiences Session II (2 options) 

Option 1:

Grace & Grit - Vulnerability, Mindfulness and Grit in today's world with Coach Barb Beck

In this powerful workshop, Barb focuses on how to balance keeping your heart open, staying mindful and connected through strong daily spiritual practices and how to still anchor in a kind of "grit" that keeps inner resilience alive!  It can be easy, especially in spiritual communities, to remain committed to kindness and principles such as "compassion" and "acceptance" and not understand how to also take the necessary actions that are needed to keep a person strong from the inside out.  Many times during a week, we are faced with using our "wise discernment" and need a wide range of tools and skills to act with integrity, yet learn how to say a firm "No" when it's being called for.  This is a rich topic and always sparks thought provoking questions and meaningful conversations, which Barb makes sure to leave time for.  Come enjoy this intriguing dialogue around "Grace & Grit!" 

Option 2:

Who Do You Think You Are? with Rev. Dr. Kenn Gordon

WHO do you think you are? Who DO you think you are? Who do YOU think you are? Who do you THINK you are? Who do you think you ARE?

This workshop will offer discussion around our multi-faceted natures and delve into the many opportunities to examine who and how we are in the world. This will be a chance to have deep conversations about how to bring the best of all of these aspects of ourselves into our lives.

6:00pm - 7:30pm        Community Dinner

8:00pm - 10:00pm     Evening Concert Experience Under the Stars 

Sunday, August 20, 2017: Returning Renewed

7:00am - 8:00am        Early Morning Activities

  • Yoga
  • Tai-Chi
  • Poetry as a Spiritual Practice

8:00am - 9:00am       Breakfast (On Own)

9:00am - 11:00am      Morning Closing Taize Service

We celebrate our time together with a morning service that combines a powerful and sacred Taize service with a profound ritual of completion and release. After soaring high together, this service will heighten our connection and ground us as a group.  Guided by our stellar music team, and featuring a variety of presenters, the Taize service invites us to enter the depths of our being with reflective music and chants, readings, and times of silence for quiet contemplation and prayer, as we open to Spirit. Our closing ritual allows us to joyfully release our retreat experience by returning to the source and receiving affirmations, created by spirit, to guide us on our way. We know that there is no coming and no going, for having taken this part of the journey together, we are always present in this place. When we return home, we will carry a part of this experience with us always, knowing that we have expanded our ability to SOAR.

12:00pm - 1:30pm      Community Lunch      

 

*Schedule subject to change without notice. All "Community Meals" are included in your retreat registration.