“Can I invite another center to join us for the Gathering at Hollyhock?” asked Swami Dhumavati while I was at Kashi Ashram earlier this year. “Absolutely!” I replied, always curious to discover new places. “I met Swami Lalitananda last November when we attended the Parliament of World Religions in Toronto,” she continued. “She’s from Yasodhara Ashram in B.C. Canada.” The Parliament had a powerful theme and these two ashrams were clearly aligned. Several lineage centers joined the Gathering and later formed a strong focus group to support each other in their similarities and challenges. [Read more…]
Holistic Living & Residential Community Programs: Omega, Findhorn, & Sirius
By Samantha Halitzer
Holistic centers are not only places of learning, but more essentially, they offer sustenance to the curious soul. If you’re someone who has pursued interests in spirituality, environmentalism, meditation & yoga, healthy living, and the creative arts, holistic centers offer rich resources & opportunities for skill development, self-exploration, and meaningful connections with other inquiring minds.
My personal journey with education has been dynamic, and I found myself feeling that my academic career was not substantial in supporting my growth as a whole person. When I discovered holistic centers and ecovillages, they fed something in me that I had not found in other academic arenas and workplaces. [Read more…]
Residential Program at Clear Sky, BC, Canada
3 Month Residential Intensive: Farm & Food Forest Caretaker
Clear Sky Farm is a pioneer of Food Forest agriculture in Canada. They offer annual food forest, grasslands and permaculture courses and are currently establishing a one acre demonstration food forest model on-site at Clear Sky Centre in the East Kootenay, BC.
What is the residential intensive program?
A 3 month residential program consisting of daily karma yoga activities (or selfless service) done with mindfulness, while living and communicating with a conscious awakening community in a strong spiritual container. [Read more…]
Top Ten Holistic Centers
I googled “How many holistic centers exist in the world?” not really expecting to find an answer. It was a great surprise to see the top three posts all featured HCN. Scrolling further down the search engine page other listings included: Top Ten Wellness Retreats and The 15 Best Wellness Retreats in the World – Condé Nast Traveler. Hence the inspiration to create our list of holistic centers. [Read more…]
Reflections from Esalen
It’s stunningly beautiful here at Esalen in Big Sur, California. As I gaze out over the gardens and the expansive blue sea, admiring the waves sparking in the sunlight, I breathe in the gift of being immersed here for the month. Weaving connections, bathing under the stars, being here is nourishing for the body, mind and soul. Conversing with staff and seminarians, there’s a shared sense of gratitude and wonder. The power of place is something holistic centers share, each one emerging from their unique land and culture. [Read more…]
Network Weaving with Kashi Ashram
By the Kashi Community
Findhorn in the north of Scotland and Kashi in central Florida are over 4,000 miles apart. Yet they are closely connected now since Findhorn resident and Holistic Centers Network Executive Director, Christine Lines, enjoyed a recent stay at Kashi Ashram. She arrived in early December, initially for one month, and then extended into February before returning to Findhorn for the spring. [Read more…]
Creating a Successful Resident Service Program
Managing Possibility: Creating a Successful Resident Service Program
By Carmen Mills at Hollyhock
When I stepped into the role of Manager of the Resident Service Program (volunteers) at Hollyhock last season, I soon realized that my job title could be “Manager of Possibility.”
Each individual arrives with some kind of expectation about what their Hollyhock volunteer experience will look like. Those who have visited Hollyhock as guests may hold a fantasy of an inexpensive month-long vacation spent lounging on the beach. Others imagine themselves stepping into the role of presenter, meeting their guru, or being struck by a spiritual lightning bolt to emerge glowing with heavenly light. It isn’t that intimate connections and epiphanies won’t happen—they can, and they very often do—but it is dangerous to be overly attached to such outcomes. It is my job to do what I can to help manage residents’ expectations, so that they can be free to step into boundless possibility. [Read more…]