Awakening Mindfulness & Compassion:

A Five-Night Hybrid Silent Meditation Retreat 
in Collaboration with Big Bear Retreat Center


October 1 - October 6, 2024

Join us for a five-night silent retreat in the beautiful natural setting of the Big Bear Retreat Center, only two hours from Los Angeles. We will spend our days deepening our meditation practice in the service of cultivating wisdom and compassion needed to transfer out to our lives.  As we settle our minds, supported by nature, we can see ourselves and the world with deeper clarity and allow our inner wisdom to emerge. 

The retreat will include sitting and walking meditation with ongoing guidance, lecture and instruction from the teachers. We will also have an opportunity to practice cultivating positive emotions, mindful speaking and listening, mindful eating, as well as experience the depth of stillness that can come through an extended period of practice. Daily movement practice will be led during this retreat. 

This silent retreat is suitable for beginning or experienced students. 

Big Bear Retreat Center



  • Single Room, Private Bathroom – $2,225.00
  • Single Room, Shared Bathroom – $1,925.00
  • Double Shared Room, Shared Bathroom – $1,425.00

Register for In-Person Retreat

Sliding Scale Rates

  • $250.00 Minimum – Accessible Rate
  • $450.00 Minimum – Sustainer Rate
  • $650.00 Minimum – Benefactor Rate

Register for Online Retreat

Retreat Schedule:

Oct 1: 2-4pm Registration and Arrivals

Oct 6: 12pm Checkout and Retreat Closing


The Center consists of several single-story buildings and cabins for dining, meditation and sleeping. Our residence cabins are large furnished and comfortable with 3-4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, living rooms, a full kitchen and decks outside in nature for shared use. Our residential cabins and rooms are simply furnished with a balance of comfort and simplicity. All beds are twin, and all bedding is provided by the center.

Big Bear Accommodations

The Meditation Hall

Our beautiful meditation hall is a large room that accommodates most meditation and movement retreats. We have supplies for most participants, but guests are always welcome to bring their own supplies (not required). Guests can typically expect to have access to a zabutan (large cushion), zafu (small cushion), yoga mat, blocks, a meditation chair, a blanket and a selection of other yoga and meditation props with limited supplies. If you’re unsure, please contact us or visit our welcome guide for more details.

Big Bear Meditation Hall


The Center provides fresh, healthy meals made with seasonal and organic ingredients to support a nourishing time in retreat. Meals begin with dinner on arrival evening through to breakfast on departure morning. For this retreat, meals will be offered to support meditation retreat practice with a simple medium breakfast, hearty lunch, and light dinner (typically soup and salad). All meals will be vegetarian, and we accommodate most major dietary restrictions. Snacks will be available in the dining hall 24/7, including teas and coffees. The Center has refrigerators in the cabins and dining area for guests to store their own snacks – please bring any foods that might support your time here.

Big Bear Meals

Work Meditation

This retreat will include a daily work meditation service period, or “yogi jobs”, around 30-minutes a day. This is an opportunity to practice in service of community and bring your practice into daily roles at the center. More details and a sign up sheet will be shared at registration.


For this retreat we have set up a self-organized rideshare page that you can visit at anytime before. We will send email reminders closer to the retreat. We encourage ridesharing when possible.

Covid Policy

For this retreat we are requiring a proof of a negative rapid test on arrival day for all yogis, teachers and staff. A re-test will be required on the third day by dinner. Masking and vaccines are optional. Guests are asked, when possible, to bring their own rapid tests or test before travel on arrival day. Tests will be provided by the center by request only.

For any questions please contact [email protected] or visit the website


Diana Winston

Diana Winston
Diana Winston, Director of Mindfulness Education Email: [email protected] Diana Winston is the Director of Mindfulness Education at MARC, the author of The Little Book of Being: Practices and Guidance for Uncovering your Natural Awareness, and the co-author, with Susan Smalley PhD, of Fully Present, the Science, Art and Practice of Mindfulness. She has taught mindfulness for health and well-being since 1993 in a variety of settings including the medical and mental health field, and in universities, businesses, non-profits, and schools. At UCLA she has developed the evidence-based Mindful Awareness Practices (MAPs) curriculum and the Training in Mindfulness Facilitation (TMF), which trains mindfulness teachers worldwide.


Leslie Booker


Leslie Booker
Booker brings her heart to the intersection of Dharma, Embodied Wisdom, and Liberation; using this framework to support folks in creating a culture of belonging. She shares her offerings as a university lecturer, public speaker, and Buddhist philosophy and meditation teacher. Booker began training at Spirit Rock through the Mindful Yoga and Meditation training (2012), and supported by her teacher Gina Sharpe, continued her formal Dharma teacher training in the Community Dharma Leaders Training (2017), and the 4 year Retreat Teacher training (2020). Throughout these years, she has worked as the Director of Teacher Trainings for Lineage Project.


vadan ritter

Vadan Ritter
Vadan teaches Yoga and Qi Gong through the San Francisco Public Health Department, and focuses on the healing power of Mindful Movement. She is also a UCLA trained Mindfulness facilitator and Licensed Acupuncturist. Her background includes over 30 years of teaching Tai Qi, Qi Gong and Yoga and 4 years Instructing Mindfulness and Awakening Joy classes. She also facilitates groups for the Integrative Pain Management Program. In my classes we will explore Mindful Movement as a sacred practice that invites integration and supports the body in finding more ease and comfort during sitting practice.