Embodiment of Spirit

About us

Dean and Michelle both started working with medicine 14 years ago and facilitating spaces for healing and growth in Peru for the last 8 years. Between the two of them, their skill sets and expertise range from extensive dietas, meditation, embodied movement and yoga. 

It is their understanding that thorough healing and transformation happen in an embodied fashion. Dissociation, or separating the mind from the body, is one of the results of trauma. Synchronizing ones body and mind is a movement towards integration and health.  The subconscious mind lives throughout the body, it is centralized in the nervous system but also lives as the collective intelligence of every cell in the body. We need to move in to the body to heal and to evolve. Awakening this vessel to its immensely transpersonal potential. Activating our biological technologies.

 The evolution that is happening on a material level is experienced less directly if we are not fully embodied. The body houses the spirit, it is the seat of the unconditioned Self, it is the playground of awakened awareness. 

 The body, alive to presence in its myriad processes, then can whisper to us what past weights it carries still, what hidden vast expanses it can open to, what illuminated intelligences it can house within it and what secrets it can sing to us in our enraptured receptivity. 

 Whether spirit is heard, seen, smelt or felt it is done so through the body. Our bodies are comprised of Earthly matter and fuelled by light from the star(s). So it is through matter that we experience the celestial. The way out is to dive deep within.

Our retreat will include Yoga, Medicine ceremonies, meditation, breathwork and expressive movement to facilitate this inward journey towards wholeness.

Facilitator Biographies:

Dean:

My name is Dean. My spiritual path began in 2002 when I was 16 through Buddhism, meditation and consciousness exploration and expansion. In 2004 I went to Peru and drank the Medicine for the first time. The blessings and wisdom bestowed upon me were deep enough that, from that moment, I wanted to return to study the healing science that she is at the centre of. 

    In 2011 I moved to Peru and have been studying Traditional Amazonian Plant Medicine with a Shipibo family full time since. I have done extensive plant Dietas (the principle training practice within the tradition), facilitated in over 500 ceremonies and assisted over 400 people though intensive plant medicine retreats. The plants are an inextricable part of my life and my work with people. They come through in many different ways depending on the circumstance. I also have extensive experience and training in various meditation methods, both still and dynamic and embodied movement practices.

   It is my observation that deep and lasting change comes from accessing the subconscious mind. This is where the root of trauma lives. One of the reasons the medicine is so effective is that it penetrates into this deeper layer of (Body/)Mind where it does its healing work. Ones conscious mind expands into the subconscious where unique healing opportunities can occur, all guided by the vast intelligence of the medicine. I use other tools in conjunction with the medicine, that also reach this subconscious layer, which greatly enhance the ceremonial experience and solidify the transformations that can occur. They can also provide deep healing in and of themselves. The tools I use mainly are Meditation, Transformational Breathwork and Psych-K. 

    I view healing as a progressive process of recognizing ourselves as source; recognizing and  seeing through all the obscurations that cover this essential truth. The most conceivable quality that source has and emits is love. So immersing ones self in source is immersing one self in love. The plants I work with are deeply seated in this understanding. They, like all plants, live on light. Some even produce their own light. Light is the manifestation of the universes love for itself, hence it creates, in co-operation with the receptive Earth body, all life on this planet.  Thus they help us to align with this.

Michelle:

I am a yoga teacher, lover of movement, a devotee of the natural world and a passionate creative. Originally from South Africa I have had a calling and dedicated practice in yogic forms for the past 18 years. I believe in the power of movement as medicine. I believe in the wisdom of nature and the healing truth present in the world around us. I believe that through the connection to our bodies and natural environment, deep healing and authenticity can emerge, and it is with this approach that I seek to share my love with the world.  My teaching and practice is inspired at the intersection where movement, nature and discernment meet and draw from a wide range of traditions inspired by travels and studies in India, North and South America. 

I have been drinking medicine since 2004, and have intensive experience within the framework of classical dietas. I am currently living in Iquitos Peru studying in the Shipibo tradition.

I encourage the practice of movement to become a playground for us to understand how our creativity and life force can be directly embodied through specific physical movements and intentional invocations of spirit into our busy and sometimes city-orientated lifestyles. I emphasise acknowledging all aspects of the human experience into my teaching as I believe illness, suffering and disconnection are tools to bring us closer to our creative well, through engaging with dedicated mindful movement, mantra, breath and music.



Event Highlights

  • - 3 Ayahuasca ceremonies
  • - 2 Yoga Classes
  • - 1 Embodied movement Session
  • - 2 Breathwork sessions
  • - Daily Lectures and meditations
  • - Vegan Meals

Venue Highlights

19 acre secluded jungle property. 24 hour care. Vegan food. Nature Immersion.

Schedule

Thorough healing and transformation happen in an embodied fashion. Dissociation, or separating the mind from the body, is one of the results of trauma. Synchronizing ones body and mind is a movement towards integration and health. The subconscious mind lives throughout the body, it is centralized in the nervous system but also lives as the collective intelligence of every cell in the body. We need to move in to the body to heal and to evolve. Awakening this vessel to its immensely transpersonal potential. Activating our biological technologies.

The evolution that is happening on a material level is experienced less directly if we are not fully embodied. The body houses the spirit, it is the seat of the unconditioned Self, it is the playground of awakened awareness.

The body, alive to presence in its myriad processes, then can whisper to us what past weights it carries still, what hidden vast expanses it can open to, what illuminated intelligences it can house within it and what secrets it can sing to us in our enraptured receptivity.

Whether spirit is heard, seen, smelt or felt it is done so through the body. Our bodies are comprised of Earthly matter and fuelled by light from the star(s). So it is through matter that we experience the celestial. The way out is to dive deep within.

Our retreat will include Yoga, Medicine ceremonies, meditation, breathwork and expressive movement to facilitate this inward journey towards wholeness.

Accommodations

We have five casitas to choose from, two with full kitchen, three with partial kitchen. All Casitas have private bathroom and hot-shower. we also offer dorm style accommodations with shared bathroom and showers at the main house, and camping locations with outdoor shower and toilet. No matter which accommodation you choose, you are guaranteed spectacular views of the jungle.

Single ($ 1550)
Double ($ 1450)
Triple/quad ($ 1350)

Directions

GETTING HERE

Alya retreat Center is located 1 kilometer South of San Juanillo and then 1.8 kilometers to the east, on the Northern Pacific Coast of Costa Rica. Depending at which airport you have arrived in Costa Rica, there are different options to travel.
If you need personal recommendations for arranging your travel, send us an email at alyaretreatcenter@gmail.com.
If you need more information about taxi and shuttle we recommend to visit the Gypsy Cab Nosara web site.

FLYING IN & OUT OF COSTA RICA

There are two international airports in Costa Rica:
Liberia International Airport (LIR) is a 2 hour drive to Alya Retreat Center
San Jose International Airport (SJO) is a 4 1/2 hour drive to Alya Retreat Center
Nosara is a 30 minute drive to Alya Retreat Center.

Tags: ayahuasca breathwork dance healing medicine meditation sacred medicine yoga

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Why Retreat?

We asked people why they go on retreat, here's what they said:

To drop deep into the practices and connect with my true nature. Rubin
 

Retreat Guru's Vision

We believe human beings are innately wise, strong and kind. This wisdom, although not always experienced, is always present. Going on retreat is a beautiful way to reconnect to our basic sanity and health. Our aspiration at Retreat Guru is to inspire people to experience authentic retreats and reconnect with their innate wisdom, strength and kindness.

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