Finding the Richness of Mayan Culture on Lake Atitlán, Guatemala

In Western Guatemala, small pueblos hug the green slopes of volcanic mountainsides. They each look out over the gorgeous crater lake, the very source of what keeps the villages alive: Lago Atitlan. The landscape keeps these places remote as many of them accessible only by boat. This geographical aspect has meant the preservation of something very precious in today’s quickly advancing world... More..

5 common myths about ayahuasca

Ayahuasca and shamanic practices have been all over our news feed lately. With big-name celebrities like Michael Pollan, Sting, and Russell Brand touting the life-changing possibilities of medicine work, more people are doing their research and - surprise surprise - there are a LOT of opinions out there. Many of them? Myths, misconceptions, and misinformation... More..

The journey of shamanic permaculture

It brings such joy to witness the permaculture movement becoming more and more popular with new projects emerging all over the globe. Many, including myself, found this science through the desire to return to a natural and holistic lifestyle, integrating self-sustaining organic food production and natural building. This, of course, makes sense as Permaculture is, in essence, a design science supporting us to live and interact with nature and our communities in harmonious and lasting ways... More..

A meeting with San Pedro

Sitting in the dark of the forest, eyes focused intently on the fire blazing in the middle of the circle, you hear the familiar-but-ethereal sound of the healer’s rattle. Pungent smoke fills your nostrils as tobacco is offered with other herbs - cedar, sage, Agua de Florida - and the ceremony has begun. Once you drink the bitter tea, where this journey will take you is now in the hands of the healer and the sacred Huachuma plant spirit... More..

The life-changing dieta: plant medicine at Rainforest Healing Center

What is a Master Plant Dieta, anyway? As with yoga, meditation, or other forms of spiritual practice, the conversation around working with plant medicine has somewhat oversimplified what truly goes into the work. To fully honor the Shamanic lineage, one doesn’t just fly to the jungle, drink Ayahuasca, and then go home. We spoke with Omer Gomez, Founder of the Rainforest Healing Center... More..

Two reasons to fall in love with yin yoga

Yin Yoga is still somewhat of a mystery to many yogis. The ancient practice embodies the wisdom from Eastern Medicine with classic Hatha yoga poses. Under the guidance of notable teachers such as Paul Grilley and Sarah Powers, it’s a teacher training I wish I would have done sooner. I’m always promoting Yin Yoga at my studio, but when I describe Yin Yoga and all the wonderful benefits, I hear a lot of people saying, “What’s Yin? I don’t think I’ve practiced that before. Would I be able to do that?”. My answer the majority of the time is an overwhelming YES... More..

How do monasteries fit into modern Western culture? Zen Community of Oregon

In the bustle of modern Western life, it can seem difficult to imagine how living in a monastery, spending one’s days deep in contemplation and study, would even be possible. What role do monasteries play in the modern world? Are they still thriving, still needed? We spoke with Jogen Salzberg, Sensei, of Zen Community of Oregon to learn more about life in the monastic setting and how he sees monasteries serving the needs of our world... More..

Tibetan Buddhism 101: A primer with the Nyingma Institute

The practice of Buddhism has become widely understood through popular media and literature as an oversimplified spiritual path of asceticism and non-doing. Though these could be elements of Buddhism, they aren’t the whole picture. We spoke with Pauline Yu, who has been studying and living at the Nyingma Institute in Berkeley, CA since 2007, to deconstruct some of the elements of Buddhism that are most commonly misunderstood... More..

The best kind of retreat comes with puppies: Bela Natureza, Brazil

So let’s imagine the beautiful,  lush landscape of Bahia, Brazil. Hear the birds? Feel the humid warmth? Now, add some arts -- mosaics, painting, dreamcatchers. Weave in the sounds of singing bowls and surround yourself with meditation cushions. Then? Add in 13 resident healing dogs... More..

 

Retreat Guru's Vision

We believe human beings are innately wise and kind. But this wisdom, although always present, can be covered up. Going on retreat is a beautiful way to reconnect to basic sanity and health. Our aspiration at Retreat Guru is to inspire people to experience authentic retreats and reconnect with their innate wisdom.