Embodied Community Retreat Course Descriptions 2017


Principles for Safe and Functional Human Relating

The principles arose from decades of facilitation and observation of families and small groups working together to support each other in navigating the integration of complex pre-verbal trauma imprints from conception to post-birth by Ray Castellino. These principles will be laid out and demonstrated as a common foundation for relating and give us something clear and simple to guide our presence with each other. They inform what we do with our attention, intention, eye contact and touch and help ignite the experience of group oxytocin and support the co-regulation of the autonomic and social nervous systems.
Facilitated by: Elan Freydenson

Connect & Ground: Yin Yoga Massage

Deepen your energetic awareness through breath connection, partner yin yoga and Thai Yoga massage. Experience the bliss of being in service through the healing act of conscious contact.  Join James & KristaLove to confidently and intuitively connect with other through witnessing, compassionate touch and active listening. Together we co-create a safe environment and cultivate trust to experience playfulness and healing, by seeing and supporting the goodness in one another.
Facilitated by: KristaLove and James Kapicka

Intimacy Embodied: An Exploration in Sovereignty and Connection

Intimacy Embodied is an experience of profound simplicity and potent connection. Based on the work of David Cates and his Belly-to-Belly practice, we explore what it is to establish and experience intimacy within our ownselves and what happens as we share intimately with another. Throughout the session we'll alternate between being in sovereign space as well as working with several partners to share some of the most fundamental facets of our being - breath, touch, eye contact, conversation - in meaningful ways. Our focus will be establishing a foundation of deep relaxation and curious awareness of our felt experience, bridging the divides we so often use to separate ourselves and finding sameness, perhaps in the most unlikely of places. 
Facilitated by: Darshana Avila

Sensation Meditation

A pleasurable practice designed to ground your body, open your channels, and help you arrive into your day filled with appreciation for the brilliance of your body. Come attend to your body. Follow breath, follow impulse, follow sensation. Leave with a sense of ahhhhh...
Facilitated by: Devorah Bry

Dance & Live Music

Community Circle

Men's Circle

Women's Circle

The Dance of Boundary & Connection

A common trait of all living things is that we are contained within our own skins or cell walls. This essential boundary between "I" and "Other" represents the most basic aspect of cellular wisdom. Selective Permeability is the capacity to recognize what to keep out and what to allow in.  Without this defining boundary, the cell dissolves into the ocean around it. Without the ability to take in and pass outward, the cell perishes. We pulse and shimmer when another draws near, opening or closing as our deep cellular wisdom surfaces. Our needs to be both solitary and in communion drive the joys and the dramas of our daily lives.
Through simple somatic and relational explorations, we will take our time to drop into a felt sense of these core motivations. Dance, play, and ritual will be our landscapes. Safety and a patient cultivation of mutual respect will be our guides. 
Facilitated by: Stephanie Meux

Community Conversation: Baring Witness, Listening from the Heart

This community conversation may very well be the heart of what we have come together at CommonRoot to do. This will be a time for the women to be witnessed by the men and for the men to be witnessed by the women. Our intention is to speak and listen from the courageous heart, to express our longings, experiences, similarities and differences and to be received with openness and compassion.
Facilitated by: Jim Matto-Shepard

Touched: The Art of Embodied Connection

Let us gather to touch and be touched; inside and out; heart and body. We’ll shine some illuminating love light on the intimate, connecting and vulnerable terrain of giving and receiving. Whether you are a professional “toucher” or a novice in the world of touch you’ll be given a safe space to receive nourishment and guidance on how to lean into your ever deepening edges of conscious touch skillfulness and mastery. Anticipate walking away from our time together more connected, open hearted and touched on all levels.

Community Check-in: Deepening as Allies

We will gather again as community to integrate all that has been stirred and enlivened during our time together. We will speak about what has heart and meaning as we reflect on what can support us as allies, as individuals and as world citizens. In this alchemical vessel, we hope to inform and evolve the story of what it means to cocreate as embodied members of community.


Cocréa: Crafting Kinetic Dialogues

Harnessing the power of Presence in movement, this kinetic awareness practice will serve as a means to take your dance to a new level of intimacy, connection and authentic relating. Building on the foundational elements of social partner dance technique, we'll learn how to wield creative expression with consideration to another body and practice nuanced responsiveness to one another.
How can we access more vulnerability in the embodiment of our dance to elevate our co-creation to extraordinary moments of presence? How are we leading and inquiring from our hearts? How can we get out of our own way and embrace childlike flow in our connection with one another? Using techniques from social partner dance as our common language, our intention is to explore form and craft containers with such great integrity, that our ability to request and receive consent and play from our heart, body and spirit emanates in
our every movement and action. 
Facilitated by: Wren LaFeet

Feeding the Soul of Community: A Movement Ritual