Omega Costa Rica • Week 1

with Joan Halifax Roshi, Elissa Epel, Jai Uttal, Nubia Teixeira, Mark Matousek, David Nichtern, Stephan Rechtschaffen, and Steven Michael Pague

January 6-13, 2018

In Week 1 of Omega Costa Rica, you can explore a contemporary approach to Buddhism, learn to awaken love through chant and yoga, or experience memoir as a healing path. You also can use meditation to release patterns that hold you back, practice rejuvenating qigong, or learn the fundamentals of longevity. 

Throughout the week, enjoy a workshop in the morning, try another in the afternoon, or abandon your schedule and head to the beach.


Giving Life to Life
Exploring Compassion Inside & Out
Joan Halifax Roshi

In this contemporary approach to the teachings of Buddhism, we explore compassion as an internal process and as an engaged practice. Learn about the latest research on compassion taking place in the fields of social psychology and neuroscience, along with practices that engender compassion. Zen teacher and social activist Joan Halifax Roshi has a unique style of teaching—using story, koans, science, history, contemporary events, interaction, and she provides the opportunity for a plunge into meditation practice.

Your Vibrant Healthspan
Stress Resiliency, Cell Renewal & the Telomere Effect
Elissa Epel, PhD

Most of us have gotten so used to living in a matrix of stress—with constant demands on our time and attention—that we don’t even notice how stressed our body really is. But our cells are paying attention to stress levels. Learn the fascinating science behind how our cells age, and how simple, small choices and mindful attention during our day can promote psychological resilience and slow cell aging (telomeres). Discover fresh approaches, mind states, nutrition, aspects of sleep, and stress management practices you can take home. Elissa Epel also talks with Joan Halifax Roshi and Stephan Rechtschaffen about contemplative science and practices that promote a vital healthspan.

Awakening Bhakti Workshop
A Celebration of Divine & Human Love
Jai Uttal

Celebrate and connect with the divine through bhakti yoga—the yoga of divine love. In the practice of bhakti yoga, devotional chanting (kirtan) becomes our teacher, reconnecting us with spirit and helping us find healing and wholeness within ourselves. Guided by Grammy Award-nominated kirtan artist Jai Uttal, we explore, express, and share the deepest caverns of our souls, and ultimately find the eternal spring of love, service, and surrender.

Bhakti Nova Yoga
A Healing Practice for Daily Life
Nubia Teixeira

Explore accessible yogic techniques and bring healing into your life through mindful movement, breathwork, and prayer. Pranayama (breathwork) and bhakti yoga (spiritual devotion) are two profound ways to connect with the divine source. While our breath connects our “inner and outer” environments, Bhakti Nova Yoga creates an inseparable link with spirit throughout our daily life. Breathing, singing, praying, and moving our bodies through asana, we learn to cultivate a nurturing practice to help navigate our everyday life.

Writing to Awaken
Spiritual Memoir as a Healing Path
Mark Matousek, MA

When you learn to write truthfully about life experiences and discern your soul’s journey, you come to understand the mythic dimension of struggles, triumphs, confusions, and so-called mistakes. This comes as an awakening. When you tell the truth, your story changes. When your story changes, your life is transformed. Discover spiritual memoir as a path to self-knowledge and take a literary pilgrimage within, using writing exercises, group dialogue, and one-on-one time with Mark Matousek.

Moving Beyond Habits
Recognizing & Releasing Habitual Patterns
David Nichtern

Do you feel stuck in patterns that keep you from living the life you want? Come explore the habitual mental states we create and get mired in, and discover how meditation holds the key to freeing yourself to live the life you’ve longed for. Based on an ancient Buddhist painting called The Wheel of Life, this up-to-date exploration reveals the six realms that keep us feeling trapped in our lives: gods (fixation on pleasure), jealous gods (competition), humans (hope and fear), animals (thick habits) hungry ghosts (addiction), and hell (rage and depression). Unlock the prison of the six realms and free yourself from habits that hold you back.

The Path to Longevity
Create More Time for Life
Stephan Rechtschaffen, MD

Physician, author, and cofounder of Omega, Stephan Rechtschaffen, teaches integrative approaches to longevity, time, stress reduction, and well-being. Learn the fundamental basis to attain and maintain greater vitality and long life. Through inspiring lectures, guided visualizations, and meditation practices, the author of Timeshifting and coauthor of Vitality and Wellness, shows you how to lead a more balanced and integrative life while coming deeper into the present moment.

Cultivate Your Life Force
Find the Extraordinary in the Ordinary With Waterfall Qigong
Steven Michael Pague

"Qi" is life force and "gong" is cultivation. Through one of the most eloquent and powerful methods of exercise and moving meditation, we delve into the mysteries and practicality of qigong. We easily learn and practice movements that enhance balance, flexibility, vitality, creativity, and more, while strengthening immune function and resilience. We also play and transform ourselves with unique and quite enjoyable forms called “Animal Frolics.” Join in and kindle the fire of your inner smile, align yourself between Heaven and Earth, and find the extraordinary in the ordinary.

Plus, you can add an optional cleanse to any week (additional charge)
Blue Spirit Longevity Program
7-Day Detox & Revitalizing Cleanse
Stephan Rechtschaffen, MD
Add this special weeklong cleanse program to enhance your health, longevity, and vitality during your stay at Blue Spirit. Guided by Stephan Rechtschaffen, physician, author, and cofounder of Omega, this longevity program focuses on revitalizing your body through a nutritious cleanse diet, along with detox herbs, supplements, superfood smoothies, and yoga and qigong practices, plus daily check-ins. Return home rejuvenated, relaxed, and revitalized. There is an additional $200 charge for this program

Teacher Bio

Give your health a boost during your next retreat, and enroll Blue Spirit’s Longevity Program, a 7-day, optional protocol designed by owner Stephan Rechtschaffen, MD. Discover the program inclusions.

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