A unique opportunity to listen to the thoughts of the retreatants themselves after more than two years in deep retreat. In these talks, participants share their beautiful experiences and wisdom of either serving the retreat in a support role or actually being in a deep meditation retreat.
Karen discovered Buddhism in 1997 while trekking with her husband in Nepal. They came out of retirement to become caretakers for a remote retreat center in California, and during that time she completed the ACI courses and learned to love being in retreat herself. She plans to become a teacher after the retreat.
John has practiced Buddhist meditation for over twenty years, in both Japanese Zen and Tibetan Buddhist traditions. He is currently undertaking a three-year meditation retreat at Diamond Mountain Retreat Center in Southern Arizona and serving as the retreat director. Prior to entering retreat he was the Executive Director of the Asian Classics Input Project from 1999-2010, and had a successful career as Director of Special Markets for the Lillian Vernon Corporation.
John has also spent many years teaching Buddhist philosophy and practice at Diamond Mountain University in Arizona, as well as at Asian Classics Institute (ACI) in New York. John has also served as a director of the Yoga Studies Institute, a non-profit educational institute that grounds students in the classical tradition of yoga.
Nicole is currently the Operations Manager of Diamond Mountain University and Retreat Center.
Ven. Lobsang Gyelse
Ven. Gyelse is currently undertaking a three-year meditation retreat at Diamond Mountain Retreat Center. She went to Tibet in 1986 and met Geshe Michael ten years later. Reading The Diamond Cutter totally changed her life. She formed an Asian Classics Institute study group in California and then moved to New York City to study in 1998. In 2000, she moved to Arizona to support the first three-year retreat and stayed to attend Diamond Mountain University.
Ben is currently undertaking a three-year meditation retreat at Diamond Mountain Retreat Center. He came to Diamond Mountain from Cincinnati to become a star on the debate ground, and entered retreat in order to change the world by mastering “the game of making situations joyous, holy, and divine.” He is in retreat with his wife, Kendra Rickert.
Kendra is currently undertaking a three-year meditation retreat at Diamond Mountain Retreat Center. She studied yoga with Bikram Choudhary and Dharmamitra and has a background in theater. She has said that she wants to apply what she has learned in retreat to teaching through the arts and through yoga.
Rob is currently the President of Diamond Mountain University and Retreat Center.