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Upcoming Events

100 Hour (Level I & II) Meditation Teacher Training (Annapolis, MD)

Ten Month Program Begins August 31, 2019

Our 100 Hour Meditation Teacher Training Program (Level I & II) will be offered at Ruah Yoga Studio in Annapolis, MD. The class will meet one or two weekends per month for ten months, beginning August 2019 and continuing through April 2020.

  

Schedule 

10:00 am to 4:00 pm


Dates

  Aug. 31 – Introduction to Meditation; Subtle Body Theory

Sept. 7 – Lesson One (Basic Sitting Meditation) 

Oct. 12 – Lesson Two (Calm Abiding Meditation)

Nov. 2 – Lesson Three (Arriving at Clarity) 

Nov. 23 – Lesson Four (Insight Meditation) 

Dec. 7 – Lesson Five (Open Heart-Mind Meditation)

Dec. 21 – Advanced Pranayama

Jan. 4 – Lesson Six (Pure Mind Meditation) 

Jan. 18 – Lesson Seven (Non-Conceptual Meditation)

Feb., March & April 2020 – Dates TBD based on how our schedule is progressing


Special Topics

Research into the Benefits of Meditation

Education: Children & Teens 

Business of Meditation

History & Philosophy

Prisons Environments

Corporate Wellness

Trauma & PTSD

Ethics


Cost

Regular Price: $1,700.  $500 deposit and six monthly payments of $200; or 

Early Bird Special: $1,500.  Payment in full is due 30 days before class. 

Location & Registration

 Ruah Yoga Studio 

Clock Tower Place

1410 Forest Drive

Annapolis, MD 21403


(410) 216-7838

www.ruahstudio.com

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Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness

Sunday, December 8, 2019 - 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

 Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness:
--- The Pinnacle Practice of Dzogchen


$45 per person

 

This workshop experience will be a small intimate living room gathering.  Michael will talk about his meditation training and solitary retreat experiences in the Himalayas of Tibet, Nepal and northern India.  We will learn his progressive approach for mastering meditation.  Michael will lead us in an authentic experience of the pinnacle practice of Dzogchen: resting the mind in spacious, non-dual awareness. You will leave with the tools and understanding needed to create or deepen your own meditation practice.
 

If we find interest, we want to offer a course.
 

We will begin with 15 minutes each of meet & greet, and there will be plenty of time for questions throughout. Tea will be served.
 

ALL LEVELS
 

Michael Hess lives in Annapolis when not in retreat or wandering the Himalayas. His 25-year long meditation passion and practice includes a one-year solitary meditation retreat at a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in the Himalayas. Michael has taught meditation, pranayama and tsa lung (internal yogic practices) internationally.  When he's in the US, he leads classes, workshops and meditation teacher training programs in the Baltimore/Washington, DC metro area. 

Location & Registration

2325 15th Street, NW 

Washington, DC  20009


Overlooking Meridian Hill Park


RSVP & prepay at evespotofgold@gmail.com 

Limited to 15 people. 


PLEASE Post any questions you may have in the discussion. 


Meetup Link for future events

https://www.meetup.com/Readings/events/266340352/


Open Teacher Training Workshops

Working with the Subtle Body - $30.00

Friday December 13, 2019 - 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm 

  

In this workshop we learn the basics of Subtle Body Theory from the Hatha Yoga and Tibetan Buddhist perspectives. The subtle body provides the foundation for all Pranayama and Meditation practices and integrates the study of the eight limbs, five koshas and five vayus. Workshop topics include the energetic physiology of the channels, winds, chakras and internal energies.  

Seven Step Approach to Meditation - $30.00

Sunday December 15, 2019  - 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm


In this workshop we learn a seven-step progressive approach to meditation including theory and practices appropriate for all levels of experience.  We learn how meditation builds upon Pranayama, and practice specific techniques including Calm Abiding, Insight, Mahamudra and Nature of Mind meditations.  We learn the benefits of the "outer, inner, secret" approach, important terminology, and useful metaphors for explaining subtle states of mind.

Adding Pranayama to your Yoga Practice - $30.00

Saturday Dec. 14, 2019 - 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm


In this workshop we learn how Pranayama links asana practice and meditation within the progressive approach of working with body, breath, energy and mind. We learn nine pranayama exercises including the eight postures, three bandhas, two mudras and four stages of breath.  Additional material includes the benefits of pranayama, hints and cautions for safe practice.

Location & Registration

 Ruah Yoga Studio

Clock Tower Place

1410 Forest Drive

Annapolis, MD 21403 


(410) 216-7838

www.ruahstudio.com

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Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness

Wednesday, January 22, 2020 - 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM

 Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness:
--- The Pinnacle Practice of Dzogchen


$45 per person

  

Hacking consciousness means changing our relationship to the world, rather than changing the world itself. We want to hack consciousness to discover who we really are, to explore and ultimately to raise our consciousness. Of course, as we raise our individual consciousness, the world collectively follows suit.


In Tibetan Buddhism, the most profound mediation is called Dzogchen, often translated as the Great Natural Perfection. To accomplish Dzogchen meditation is to simply rest in Awareness itself. We call this Awareness our natural state or the Nature of Mind. It is our true condition, primordially present and spontaneously arising, without manipulation or fabrication of any sort. To simply rest in the freshness of this present moment experience, in a state of luminous and clear non-conceptual Awareness is the pinnacle of meditation practice. This the Great Natural Perfection.


During this workshop we will discuss mind and meditation from the perspective of the Dzogchen tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. We will discuss a progressive approach to practicing Dzogchen that ties together all of the meditation practices of the hatha yoga and Buddhist spiritual traditions. This approach begins with outer practices of the body and progresses inwards through practices of breath and subtle energies. Ultimately, we reach the most profound experience of simply resting the mind in Awareness itself.


Experienced practitioners as well as beginning meditators will benefit from this opportunity to discover what is possible when we release tension on every level—from the physical body and breath to the subtlest energies of mind itself--and rest with stability in this natural state.

Location & Registration

The Yoga Foundation of Fredericksburg

1403 Franklin Street 

Fredericksburg, Virginia 22401

(540) 368-3079


www.yogaforeveryone.org 

info@yogaforeveryone.org

Winter Retreat - Cali, Colombia

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January 24 - 26, 2020

Seven Step Approach to Mastering Meditation

A Meditation Retreat with Michael Hess


Happy Yoga Cali

http://happyyogacolombia.com


Friday January 24, 2020

6:00 pm to 9:00 pm

Introduction to Meditation

Subtle Body Theory


In this introductory session, we learn the terminology, metaphors and theory of the "outer, inner, secret" approach to explore the art and science of meditation. We explore the basics of subtle body theory from both the Hatha Yoga and Tibetan Buddhist perspectives. The subtle body provides the foundation for all Pranayama and Meditation practices and integrates the yogic study of the eight limbs, five koshas and five vayus. This session explores the detailed energetic physiology of the channels, winds, chakras and internal energies. 


Saturday January 25, 2020

9:00 am to 12:00 pm

Lesson 1: Linking Body, Energy and Mind Through Breath


In this workshop session, we develop a foundation for the outer and inner practices of body and breath. We learn how pranayama and tsa lung practices link yoga asana practice and meditation within the progressive approach of working with body, breath, energy and mind. We learn nine pranayama and tsa lung exercises including the eight postures, three bandhas, two mudras and four stages of breath. Additional material includes the use of energy scans, the benefits of pranayama, and hints and cautions for safe practice.


2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Lesson 2: Calm Abiding Meditation


In this session we discover the importance of working with objects of meditation to cultivate a calm, relaxed focus. We learn the various types of objects utilized in the "outer, inner, secret" approach, as well as four basic meditation practices using breath and objects of the senses. We learn the benefits of working with mantra and the visualization techniques used in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition.


Sunday January 26, 2020

9:00 am to 12:00 pm

Lesson Three: Arriving at Clarity

Lesson Four: Insight Meditation


In this session we discover how the relaxed focus developed through calm-abiding meditation leads to a profound experience of stillness. From this stillness, we discover the innate qualities which naturally arise within the stable, relaxed mind. We learn to distinguish the qualities of mind from the qualities of experience that arise within the three stages of stability. We begin to explore the mind at rest and are introduced to the qualities of mind's true nature. We learn how to identify and maintain the optimal energy level for meditation.


2:00 pm to 5:00 pm

Lesson Five: Open Heart-Mind Meditation

Lesson Six: Pure Mind Meditation

Lesson Seven: Non-Conceptual Meditation


In this session, we begin to re-integrate the stable, stillness of our inward focus with the realities of the external world. We practice Tibetan Buddhist techniques for cultivating a heart-level connection grounded in unbiased compassion, leading to boundless equanimity and an expanded experience of wide-open, spacious mind. We explore objectless meditation to cultivate a vast and uncontrived awareness, free of thoughts and worries, from which arises the deepest qualities of mind itself. Ultimately, we allow the mind to simply rest with effortless ease in this non-dual state which is our true natural condition. 


Locaton & Registration 

Happy Yoga Cali

c/o Angela Mazuera

Cra. 2 #7O-130

Cali, Valle del Cauca, Colombia

http://happyyogacolombia

Spring Retreat - San Isidro, Costa Rica

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March 29 - April 5, 2020

Linking Body, Breath, Energy & Mind

A Yoga & Meditation Retreat with Michael Hess & Laura Flanagan


I will be leading this retreat together with Laura Flanagan, the founder of the Socrates Center (www.socratescenter.com) and a spectacular western yogi.  Since the Socrates Center retreat facilities are currently under construction, the majority of retreat activities will take place at Kinkara, a nearby luxury mountain resort and retreat center (www.kinkara.com). Tucked away at the foot of Mt. Chirripó in Costa Rica's biodiverse Southern Zone, Kinkara is an experiential luxury resort for one-of-a-kind activities, personal relaxation, and collective group adventures.  Whether swimming in a jungle waterfall, savoring exquisite farm-to-table cuisine, or finding inner peace through yoga and meditation, Kinkara provides not only the physical container for our retreat experience, but offers moments of self-discovery, a path to renewed ideas, and amazing connections with nature.


Our retreat was created to introduce a unique approach to integrating physical, mental and spiritual health and wellness based on a progressive approach designed for westerners but adapted from the Eastern spiritual traditions.


Our progressive approach begins by working with outer phenomena and gradually moves inward, exploring increasingly subtle and ultimately the most profound experiences available.  We begin our work with practices of the body, progressing and integrating the breath, energy work and ultimately the most profound meditation practices from the Hatha Yoga and Tibetan Buddhism traditions.


Laura will be guiding our participants in daily Yamuna Body Rolling, a revolutionary body practice designed to re-educate muscles, stimulate bone, release tension, increase blood flow and promote healing--all of which create positive, permanent changes in the body.


In addition to the Yamuna Body Rolling, Laura will be leading us in daily yoga asana practice to promote strength, flexibility, balance and cardiovascular endurance which links the outer body practices with the inner breath and energy practices of pranayama and tsa lung.


Then, I will be leading you in daily pranayama or breath practices, along with the Tibetan Buddhist tsa lung or energy techniques and a seven-step progressive approach to learning meditation. 


We begin by exploring the basics of the subtle body or energetic physiology system from both the Hatha Yoga and Tibetan Buddhist perspectives. The subtle body provides the foundation for all pranayama, energy and meditation practices and teaches us to work directly with the energy systems of the channels, winds, chakras and internal energies. 


By working with the subtle body, we can develop a foundation for the outer and inner practices of body and breath. We learn how pranayama and tsa lung practices link yoga asana practice and meditation within the progressive approach of working with body, breath, energy and mind. We will learn nine pranayama and tsa lung exercises along with the relevant postures, gazes, bandhas, mudras and stages of breath that constitute a complete pranayama practice. 


After learning and practicing the various breath and energy practices, we begin to work directly with the mind in mediation. First, we discover the importance of working with objects of meditation to cultivate a calm, relaxed focus. We learn the various types of objects utilized in the "outer, inner, secret" approach, as well as basic meditation practices using breath and objects of the senses. We learn the benefits of working with mantra and the visualization techniques used in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition.


Then, we begin to discover how the relaxed focus developed through calm-abiding meditation leads to a profound experience of stillness. From this stillness, we discover the innate qualities which naturally arise within the stable, relaxed mind. We learn to distinguish the qualities of mind from the qualities of experience that arise within the various stages of stability. We begin to explore the mind at rest and are introduced to the qualities of mind's true nature. We learn how to identify and maintain the optimal energy level for meditation.


Finally, we begin to re-integrate the stable, stillness of our inward focus with the realities of the external world. We practice Tibetan Buddhist techniques for cultivating a heart-level connection grounded in unbiased compassion, leading to boundless equanimity and an expanded experience of wide-open, spacious mind. We explore objectless meditation to cultivate a vast and uncontrived awareness, free of thoughts and worries, from which arises the deepest qualities of mind itself. Ultimately, we allow the mind to simply rest with effortless ease in this non-dual state which is our true natural condition. 


Registration Information:

Socrates Center 

c/o Laura Flanagan

laura@socratescenter.com

www.socratescenter.com

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The Seven Step Approach for Mastering Meditation

Saturday, April 18, 2020 - 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM

Relax. Release. Rest.

The Seven Step Approach for Mastering Meditation


$45 per person


Busy people in the modern world face a unique set of obstacles when walking the path of meditation.  Our fast‐paced, high‐pressure lifestyle carries over into the way we approach meditation practice, and we often have difficulty achieving genuine relaxation of body and mind.  Deep, sustained relaxation is not only the basis for mental and physical health and well-being, but the foundation for spiritual awakening.


This three-hour workshop will introduce you to a seven-step method for mastering meditation. We will learn a progressive approach to developing authentic calm, clarity, and wisdom; and to achieve deep, sustained states of relaxation. By working with each of the seven-steps, we will:

  

   · Learn conscious breathing to link body, energy and mind 

   · Explore postures and gazes appropriate for different body types and energy levels 

   · Practice calm abiding meditation with techniques that anchor the wandering mind 

   · Develop clarity, equanimity and non-conceptuality through the practice of insight meditation

   · Cultivate the heart of compassion to radiate kindness and inspiration 

   · Relax into a deep sense of harmony with your innermost mind

   · Transcend dualistic fixation to merge in union with the flow of existence 

   · Rest in a fully integrative experience of natural awareness


Experienced practitioners as well as beginning meditators will benefit from this opportunity to discover what is possible when we release tension on every level—from the physical body and breath to the subtlest energies of mind itself--and rest with stability in this natural state.

Location & Registration

The Yoga Foundation of Fredericksburg

1403 Franklin Street 

Fredericksburg, Virginia 22401

(540) 368-3079


www.yogaforeveryone.org 

info@yogaforeveryone.org

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The Seven Step Approach for Mastering Meditation

Saturday, April 25, 2020 - 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Relax. Release. Rest.

The Seven Step Approach for Mastering Meditation


$30 per person


Busy people in the modern world face a unique set of obstacles when walking the path of meditation.  Our fast‐paced, high‐pressure lifestyle carries over into the way we approach meditation practice, and we often have difficulty achieving genuine relaxation of body and mind.  Deep, sustained relaxation is not only the basis for mental and physical health and well-being, but the foundation for spiritual awakening.


This two-hour workshop will introduce you to a seven-step method for mastering meditation. We will learn a progressive approach to developing authentic calm, clarity, and wisdom; and to achieve deep, sustained states of relaxation. By working with each of the seven-steps, we will:

  

   · Learn conscious breathing to link body, energy and mind 

   · Explore postures and gazes appropriate for different body types and energy levels 

   · Practice calm abiding meditation with techniques that anchor the wandering mind 

   · Develop clarity, equanimity and non-conceptuality through the practice of insight meditation

   · Cultivate the heart of compassion to radiate kindness and inspiration 

   · Relax into a deep sense of harmony with your innermost mind

   · Transcend dualistic fixation to merge in union with the flow of existence 

   · Rest in a fully integrative experience of natural awareness


Experienced practitioners as well as beginning meditators will benefit from this opportunity to discover what is possible when we release tension on every level—from the physical body and breath to the subtlest energies of mind itself--and rest with stability in this natural state.

Location & Registration

recharj downtown

1445 New York Ave NW #130

Washington, DC 20005

(202) 347-4595 call

(571) 488-7461 text


mhttps://recharj.co

info@recharj.com


Current Clients & Recent Events

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Private Clients (Baltimore/Washington DC area)

Teaching meditation, pranayama and yoga to private clients and small groups throughout the Baltimore and Washington, DC metro area.  Clients range from complete beginners through experienced practitioners, and from both Tibetan Buddhist as well as secular perspectives. Clients have ranged in age from children (around age 10) through teenagers, college students, adults and senior citizens (2014 to present). 

Ruah Yoga (Annapolis, MD)

Teaching subtle body, pranayama and meditation "open teacher training" workshops for 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training programs (ongoing)

Hannon Armstrong (Annapolis, MD)

Leading weekly classes focused on meditation in the workplace for the employees of Hannon Armstrong at their corporate headquarters location (ongoing).

Socrates Center (San Isirdo, Costa Rica)

Co-leading a seven day yoga and meditation retreat called "Linking Body, Breath, Energy & Mind" that includes daily Yamuna Body Rolling, yoga, pranayama and meditation.  (March/April 2020)

Happy Yoga Cali (Cali, Colombia)

Leading a three day workshop on the "Seven Step Approach to Mastering Meditation" including the detailed approach of linking body, breath, mind and energy. (January 2020)

recharj downtown (Washington, DC)

Upcoming workshops in 2020 will include:

- April 25 – The Seven Step Approach to Mastering Meditation

- June 27 –  Adding Pranayama to your Yoga & Meditation Practice

- October 31 – Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness: The Pinnacle Practice of Dzogchen 

Yoga Foundation of Fredericksburg (Fredericksburg, VA)

- Leading a half-day meditation workshop called "Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness: The Pinnacle Practice of Dzogchen." (January 2020)

- Leading a half-day meditation workshop called "Relax. Release. Rest.  The Seven Step Approach for Mastering Meditation." (April 2020)

DC Meditation Meetup Group (Washington, DC)

Leading a half-day meditation workshop called "Hacking Consciousness by Resting in Awareness: The Pinnacle Practice of Dzogchen." (December 2019)

Amobee, Inc. (Baltimore, MD)

Led an on-site corporate meditation workshop for the Baltimore employees of Amobee focused on reducing job-related stress and tension and preventing burnout (October 2019).   

Prior Clients & Events

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Abhibindu Wellness Foundation (Delhi, India)

Led a half-day workshop entitled "Relax, Release, Rest: An Introduction to Meditation" for the clients of Sarathi Wellness and the Abhibindu Wellness Foundation (May 2019).   

Micah Ecumenical Ministries (Fredericksburg, VA)

Led a 90 minute workshop for the staff of Micah Ecumenical Ministries called "Meditation for Stress Management" focused on reducing job-related stress and tension and preventing burnout (June 2019).   

Pema Karpo Centre (Vienna, Austria)

Led workshops and classes and provided private instruction for clients of this Tibetan healing center during a week-long teaching tour in Vienna, Austria.  The half-day workshops and classes covered the Seven-Step Approach (2018).

Arlington County Government (Arlington, VA)

Led a corporate workshop for employees at the county government's headquarters location.  The workshop was entitled "The Heart of the Matter: Deepening our Relationship to Mindfulness Practice" and covered meditation techniques from a corporate wellness perspective (2018).

North Star Therapy (Fredericksburg, VA)

- Worked with individual clients and weekly group meditation classes at North Star Therapy's office (2019). 

- Led a full day workshop for North Star Therapy clients and friends in Stafford, VA.  The workshop was entitled "Discovering the Relaxed Mind: A Day Long Immersion into Deepening Meditation Practice" and covered the first four lessons of the Seven-Step Approach (2018).

Ruah Yoga (Annapolis, MD)

- Led weekly drop-in meditation classes (2019). 

- Led four different pranayama and meditation workshops for yoga practitioners including a series of three 90 minute workshops that covered the first four lessons of the Seven Step Approach (2017 - 2018). 

Gampopa Center (Annapolis, MD)

Taught general Tibetan Buddhism and Mahamudra meditation classes during the four to six months each year that Lama Phurbu Tashi Rinpoche travels overseas. For several years, I led a weekly Monday evening meditation class on a year-round basis. I also taught a smaller group of more experienced meditation students for several years (2008 through 2016).

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