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Thu, Jul 13


Vallecitos Mountain Retreat Center

[7 nights] Cultivating Joy: An Intensive Retreat for Mental Health Professionals

July 13-20 with Bill and Susan Morgan, and Ron Siegel

[7 nights] Cultivating Joy: An Intensive Retreat for Mental Health Professionals
[7 nights] Cultivating Joy: An Intensive Retreat for Mental Health Professionals

Time & Location

Jul 13, 2023, 3:00 PM MDT – Jul 20, 2023, 11:00 AM MDT

Vallecitos Mountain Retreat Center, Durango, CO, USA

About The Event

"Without gladdening the mind when it needs to be gladdened, realization will not be possible,

-- Bhikkhu Analayo

Cultivating Joy: An Intensive Retreat for Mental Health Professionals

with Bill Morgan PsyD, Susan Morgan, MSN, RN, CS, and Ron Siegel, Psy.D.

July 13-20

Vallecitos Mountain Retreat Center

Durango, CO

Program full. All Details and join Waitlist on Vallecitos website.

These have been challenging years for many of us, from which we’re just beginning to recover.

Might some joy, as well as peace and tranquility, be welcome right now?

In the West, we often focus on the dukkha aspect of the Buddha’s teaching. We notice all the ways that

our difficulties accepting reality create suffering. But we often neglect the experience of sukka—joy or

happiness. Without joy, well-being eludes us and our practices—both clinical and meditative—can bog


Too often joy is underappreciated, or seen as frivolous, rather than prioritized as a vital quality that can

be cultivated. But it’s joy that enables our meditation and clinical practices to grow, deepen, and


Joy has long been recognized as an essential ingredient in spiritual awakening as well as psychological

healing. Featured in two traditional guidelines in Buddhist Psychology, the Bojjhanga or Awakening

Factors and the Brahmaviharas, joy gives the uplift necessary to skillfully work with the hindrances that

we inevitably encounter.

So how can we cultivate, and sustain joy in our meditative and clinical practices?

This intensive residential retreat, set in the wild mountains of New Mexico, will offer methods to not

only soothe and heal our nervous systems, but to cultivate this vital resource of joy.

We will study varied meditative postures, breathing practices, exploratory exercises, and both stillness

and movement techniques designed to investigate challenging emotions and integrate difficult

experiences, as well as to cultivate sukka.

We’ll work to create a safe, nurturing container in which to explore these practices with colleagues. The

teaching is experience-near, focusing on the development of mindfulness and compassion practices and

their relevance in our work with others. There will be daily mindfulness meditation instruction and three

to four hours of structured practice each day, plus study modules most afternoons in combination with

dyadic or small group discussion and ample opportunities to explore personal practice questions. 

The rest of the time we will observe silence, including during meals, to facilitate a deeper contemplative


Throughout the retreat, we’ll explore how to use meditative practices ourselves to be more present and

responsive in our personal lives and clinical work, as well as how to share them with our clients to help

them work creatively with distress while living richer, more joyous lives.

Let’s gather together and support one another as a community of spiritual friends!

20 CEs will be offered for psychologists, social workers and mental health counselors.

Program full. All Details and join Waitlist on Vallecitos website.

The Tradition of Dana: Mindfulness and related teachings have traditionally been sustained by the 2,600 year-old tradition of dana, which literally means “generosity.” We follow this tradition by inviting participants to offer donations to the retreat leaders, who receive only reimbursement for travel expenses.


CONTINUING EDUCATION (CE): 20 CEs will be offered for psychologists, social workers and mental health counselors.

CONTACT for CE related questions: Rene Fay,

Bill and Susan Morgan are able to offer continuing education credits through the Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy

Psychologists: The Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy is approved by the AMERICAN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. The Institute of Meditation and Psychotherapy maintains responsibility for the program and its content. This course offers 20 hours of credit.

Social Workers: This program is pending approval by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF SOCIAL WORKERS for 20.0 continuing education contact hours.

Nurses:  This program carries 20 Contact Hours and meets the specifications of the MASSACHUSETTS BOARD OF REGISTRATION OF NURSING (244 CMR).

Licensed Mental Health Counselors: The Institute for Meditation and Psychotherapy is recognized by the NATIONAL BOARD FOR CERTIFIED COUNSELORS to sponsor continuing education for National Certified Counselors. We adhere to NBCC Continuing Education Guidelines. This course is approved for 20 contact hours, Provider #6048 and is applicable for Commonwealth of Massachusetts Counseling/Allied Mental Health and PDP accreditation.



Upon completion of the program, participants will be able to:

1.  Describe the three core components of mindfulness practice.

2.  Identify the evolutionary roots and mechanisms of compassion toward self and others.

3.  Specify how positive emotions, such as joy, can be cultivated.

4.  Describe the use of joy as a resource to work with painful emotions.

5.  Demonstrate an experiential understanding of mindfulness and compassion interventions

      through personal practice.

6.  Specify how a therapist can best choose which mindfulness exercises are most appropriate for

      different arousal states.

7.   Describe how to use mindful movement to release anxiety-related tension and cultivate joy

       through the body.

8.   Identify how mindfulness and compassion practices can enhance emotional regulation.

9.   Discuss ways to assist clients to integrate mindfulness and compassion practices in their lives.

10. Describe the use of mindfulness and compassion practices to support parasympathetic

       activation and calm sympathetic activation.

11.  Specify contraindications for various mindfulness and compassion practices.


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