Peter Hurst, A Happy Yogi
I have had a deep love of wilderness my whole life and did this wilderness retreat to see if that love could be brought into my spiritual practice. The program exceeded my expectations tenfold. I have never been this inspired to incorporate meditation into my daily life. Johann is an expert guide for navigating both the natural and spiritual wilderness. He initiated us into wondrous practices for a contemplative wilderness journey with a great assist from the river. Peter shares his love of the journey and provided wonderful talks and instructions as well as solid river teaching and support. The two of them are a great dynamic duo (and funny too).
What began as mediation in nature ended as meditation with nature. Flowing with the river, my inner being merged with the canyon of the river. Coalescing with the solo and reaching a kind of unity I had never experienced before. It turns out that a container formed in wilderness contains jewels that shine with clarity long after the retreat ends. Cathern Smith, Boulder, CO
Marvin Carter, Canyon City, CO
The instructions for meditating in nature were extremely helpful, and the canyon scenery was spectacular. We had wonderful Dharma talks around the campfire each night. We all pulled together to make the work of camping and canoeing easy and fun. I certainly recommend going.
Suzanne K., Washington, DC
Paulina M., Denver, CO
I love backcountry camping, but had hesitation about doing a 10-day silent retreat in nature. Happily this was the longest and best meditation retreat I’ve ever done. I highly recommend Impermanent Sangha for anyone wanting to deepen their practice.
I am so grateful for Johann's passion for taking people into the wilderness to meditate. I have always wanted do a nature retreat like this, and with Johann's support and the rest of his wonderful team, it was possible. I felt challenged in the best ways and totally taken care of throughout the trip. The combination of the unbelievable beauty and mystery of the wilderness, and the silence and deep contemplative work was life changing.
This is the whole deal! Magnificent canyons, mysterious river, brilliant leadership, nourishing food..and that's just the beginning. Johann and staff were completely competent; their outdoor living skills and steadfast concern for each individual were apparent throughout the trip. I had a certain medical condition that made me anxious about the environment but they were there by my side in every way. David and Johann's talks regarding the scope and view of Eco-Dharma themes were illuminating and gave me insights into how I can use Buddhist principles to become an active participant in today's environmental conversations. I highly recommend! Ron Davis, Bozeman Montana
My experience with Johann, David and staff was fantastic and life changing. I still carry the peace, teachings and a new found eco dharma in my heart. I totally recommend this to anybody. Kerstin, Boulder, CO
Deep bows, John Steele
Thank you Johann, Peter and the Colorado River for a profound and nourishing Vipassana retreat, and for your delightful, informal, teaching style. I particularly appreciated the instructions on nature -based mindfulness practice and the invitation to follow our bliss. The sense of community was very supportive, as was the container of silence we cultivated in our activities and formal sittings. Meditating by the river, gliding downstream, navigating the currents, listening to Dharma talks around the campfire, sleeping under the stars, and working together as a Sangha, I felt deeply connected to the stunning, wild beauty around and within us.
These retreats are a great innovation in Western Vipassana. I loved bringing mindfulness to daily life and building our Sangha. Johann is an expert leader and guide; I highly recommend the river meditation retreats!
Terry Kinsey, Chicago, IL
With a crown of columbines and daisies above me I meditated on a flat boulder. Following my breath while climbing up to 12,500 ft above an emerald green lake, which reflected the snowy, jagged peaks and wispy clouds. Doing yoga while watching the morning sunlight bathe the Continental Divide. Sangha members taking care of one another. Constant soothing sounds of a sparkling stream. A completely incredible and unforgettable wilderness retreat.
The retreat seamlessly wove together three deep experiences into one; being in sangha, receiving dharma teachings, and being in a magnificent wilderness. Each aspect of the trip powerfully enhanced the others as we were allowed to fully experience a profoundly beautiful but threatened land while receiving teachings that connected us more deeply to ourselves, and the earth.
The opportunity to do a solo held and organized by such a caring sangha allowed for a precious experience to unfold for me. I am so grateful for it, I just would not have had the confidence or sense of experience to do this were it not for the support of the teachers and sangha. I think some of the connection that I felt to the land that came from that solo has nourished and sustained me in a way that I was so desperate for but unaware of in my surface level existence. Thank you for this opportunity, it was such a deeply needed gift.
Michael Greenberg, New Hampshire
Jessica G., Los Angeles, CA
Impermanent Sangha created a sacred container which allowed my natural being to merge with the consciousness of the river. I was supported by our sangha, and canyon wrens, great blue herons, lizards, and the wind. Having practiced eleven days in the dharma as we camped and canoed, I felt more prepared than ever for living in my world! Thank you so much!
Dr. Robin Page, Durango, CO
Johann’s exceptional ability to lead nature meditation, back country camping and hiking created the space to fully experience the joy, peace and beauty of nature. Incredible mountain vistas, excellent food, the perfect stream side campsite, a fantastic sangha of like minded nature lovers with a skilled and dedicated wilderness guide and dharma teacher all made for one amazing awesome retreat. Can't wait to do it again!
Impermanent Sangha Retreats
Jeff J., Lafayette, CO
This was my first meditation retreat and it was an amazing experience. Johann is an outstanding backcountry guide and meditation teacher, and presented instruction appropriate for all levels of practice. The atmosphere was welcoming and relaxed, and there was a regular schedule of sitting meditation, hiking, talks and discussion. If you want a deeper experience of meditation practice in a beautiful natural setting, I highly recommend joining Johann on a wilderness retreat.
After the Green River Wilderness Retreat in silence with David and Johann I see how incredibly divorced we are from the Earth. No wonder we are in a global climate crisis. It is important to take time to experience and remember who we truly are by living under the rhythm of the sky and stars, float and paddle down a river in silence, meditate, and remember there is no "me" or "you" without the beauty, cycles, weather and abundance of nature. If Ecodharma is a place you want to explore, this retreat is well organized, safe, and the teachers clear and insightful.
Alice, Bozeman, MT
This was our second Green River canoe retreat with Johann. Was even grander than the first. Johann is a superb organizer/motivator/leader/teacher. And the river canyons are beautiful, beyond words. Without hesitation we recommend this experience!!!
With metta, Todd Tibbals and Andrea Escher
I felt embraced and welcomed by the canyons. The land and animals reminded me of just how deeply we all belong to this world.
The synthesis of meditation practice and nature is brilliant! This has changed my path significantly. You guys rock! Wow, the dharma under a tree—the dharma on the river—who would have thought it could be so good.
Paula Van Tassel, Canyon City, CO
With Johann and David’s steady hands at the helm, the group felt like an organism, supporting its members in a web of respect and compassion. When it came time for the solo, enough space had been created for me to enter fully into being at one with the Earth and all beings. Time was suspended. It was the high point of the retreat. The retreat opened me up to unabashed love of Earth in concrete terms because of the opportunity to engage in spiritual practices in a wilderness area of great beauty. The Dharma talks led the way, gently suggesting guidance for the journey. A feeling emerged that I could face into the harsh reality of climate change and environmental degradation, because I had touched base with my love of the Earth and all beings. When you love truly, madly, deeply, it is possible to be present and face into calamity and to take action. This retreat gave new purpose to my life, and I am so grateful to all who made it possible. Jody Hall, Ashfield, MA
Beth D., Boulder, CO
The retreat with Johann Robbins and David Loy was a remarkable experience. It was a remarkable meditation retreat, a remarkable wilderness experience, a remarkable dharma teaching and a remarkable way to build sangha. After returning I am quickly becoming an eco-sattva. Much love, Jon Aaron, New York, NY
Before this wilderness retreat I didn't have much camping experience. But due to the leaders I felt safe and comfortable with uncertainty, which made it easy for me to be astonished by the beauty, the stillness and the mystery of the wilderness. Even though I am a Mindfulness teacher and have been on and lead many meditation retreats, this particular retreat was very inspiring. Thank you very much to David, Johann and Alice for this beautiful learning experience and Thanks to all the participants, who contributed to make it all very loving and heart opening.
Nikolaj Flor Rotne, Denmark
The opportunity to enjoy the deep quiet of the desert and river wildernesses in silence, with a sangha of like minded spirits, was wonderful. Add dharma talks by wise teachers around a driftwood fire on warm Milky Way nights and I'm still smiling with contentment. Madeleine Landis
Johann and Impermanent Sangha are offering cutting edge Dharma through a form that feeds body and soul. They are taking mindfulness practice into a new era that is at once ground-breaking and timeless, heart opening and mind blowing. I am so grateful for those ten magical days; I'm looking forward to where Impermanent Sangha's wonderful approach to Dharma practice goes next. Lou Leonard, VP, World Wildlife Fund, Washington DC