New Year Online Retreat

Join us for our annual New Year’s Retreat

Bringing Our Innate Goodness into the New Year

Online Retreat

January 1-3, 2021

Facilitated by John Bruna and Laura Bartels

A new year brings the opportunity to begin anew, and it is with such joy that John Bruna and Laura Bartels will offer this new year’s retreat with the focus of bringing our innate goodness into this new year. This online retreat will include a a focus on establishing and cultivating the foundational meditation practice of shamatha (calm abiding) meditation and taking time to reflect and clarify intentions for the new year.

Discovering or rediscovering our innate goodness is one of the most essential contemplations to attend to. It is easy to lose sight of this reality. We often have more good than we recognize and our self critical voice can often dominate our thoughts. Bringing awareness of the goodness in ourselves and others into 2021 provides a basis for clarity and an opportunity to begin anew with wisdom and with an open heart.

Shamatha is the practice of developing single-pointed concentration, helping you develop a calm, clear and focused mind. It helps you establish the ability to consciously attend to what you choose to attend to instead of being a prisoner of every thought, impulse, worry, or emotion that arises in your mind.  Shamatha is a universal practice that can be applied to any spiritual or religious practice or simply used to become more mindful and present in your life. It improves any other meditation practice and is foundational to establishing mental and emotional balance.

This retreat is beginner friendly and also beneficial for seasoned meditators. We will focus on developing the building blocks of shamatha and bring this meditative clarity to attend to innate goodness, and setting intentions for the new year. This is a silent retreat with multiple short meditation sessions and plenty of breaks, quiet reflection time and guidance in the group teachings.

About the Facilitators
John Bruna
John Bruna


John Bruna is a former Buddhist monk, an author, and a mindfulness teacher and trainer. John is also the co-founder of the Mindful Life Program™ and of Mindfulness in Recovery®. Drawing from his extensive training and rich personal experiences over three decades, John has lead retreats and facilitated trainings throughout the country, becoming a leading voice in the field of mindfulness. He is the author of The Wisdom of a Meaningful Life: The Essence of Mindfulness and The Essential Guidebook to Mindfulness in Recovery and has presented at TEDx and other conferences throughout the country. John is known for his warmth, humor, and ability to make teachings practical and accessible.




Laura Bartels

Laura Bartels helped to create the Mindful Life Program and regularly teaches mindfulness courses, facilitates mindfulness groups and gives public talks on living mindfully. She is one of the instructors for the year-long MLP Teacher Training and Personal Development program. She also serves as the Executive Director of the Mindful Life Program. Laura’s professional path of 20 years brought her to be a leader in the field of sustainable building and community development. This provided a unique and valuable perspective on the need for “inner sustainability.” As Laura’s path has been one of navigating what it means to live consciously and meaningfully, it’s been a natural transition to move from outer sustainability to inner sustainability; when we are not in balance, we cannot be of benefit to ourselves or others.

Dates: January 1-3, 2021

Location: Online

Cost: $125 (Scholarships available – email

Register:Click here

Limited to the first 100 registrants.

The retreat will be recorded and will be accessible after the retreat along with additional guided meditations.

The retreat will be both beginner-friendly and provide support for those with a meditation practice to deepen it. We will guide everyone on the basics of establishing a sound and beneficial meditation practice. The meditation sessions will not exceed 24 minutes in length and we will have multiple sessions with short breaks.

With the exception of our question and answer times, the retreat is silent. The time in between sessions are personal time for reflection, study, and practice.

Retreat Schedule (all times listed are Mountain Time Zone US)

January 1

• 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm: Opening Gathering

January 2

• 8:00 am to 8:30 am: Morning Meditation

• Contemplative time/breakfast

• 10:00 am to 11:30 am: Morning Gathering – meditation sessions, guidance, and discussion

• Contemplative time/lunch break

• 2:30 pm to 4:00 pm: Afternoon Gathering- meditation sessions, guidance, and discussion

• Contemplative time/dinner

• 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm Evening Gathering – meditation sessions, guidance, and discussion

January 3rd

• 8:00 am to 8:30 am: Morning Meditation

• ·Contemplative time/breakfast

• ·10:00 am to 11:30 am: Final Gathering – meditation sessions, guidance, and discussion

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