Yoga Vacation Program
January 26 — 28, 2025

Yoga Nidra for Self-Healing

Marc Halpern (Siva) and Andrea Deerheart PhD

Program Description

In this program, you will explore the topic of Yoga Nidra as a guided practice for deep relaxation by Dr. Marc Halpern, an expert in the field with more than 30 years of experience in both personal practice and teaching others, and Dr. Deerheart, who works to bring Yoga Nidra to the end-of-life community. You will be given the tools to unlock immense healing potential by naturally restoring the flow of prana (life energy) through your subtle body.

In the evening Satsang* lectures, you will discover the history, philosophy, and science behind yoga Nidra. In the yoga Nidra workshops, you will be guided into a deeply relaxed state while remaining completely awake and aware. You will release the effects of past trauma and circumstances and open the door to a profound long-term self-healing journey. Best of all, you will leave the program equipped with the toolkit necessary to bring the benefits of a yoga Nidra practice home with you.

Offered as 2 satsangs and 2 workshops (subject to change)

The presentations associated with this Yoga Vacation Program begin with an 8pm satsang on the first day of the program and conclude with a 90-minute noon workshop on the last day of the program.  Click here to read more about the Yoga Vacation Program details and view the ashram schedule for yoga classes and meals during your stay. We suggest you arrive at least one day prior to the start of your program for the optimal experience.

Program Toolkit

This 3-day retreat won’t just relax, renew, replenish your body… it will also rewire your mind with new knowledge concerning:

  • Yoga Nidra as a practice for self-healing
  • The practical applications of yoga Nidra for daily stress management, deep relaxation, psychological restoration and physical rejuvenation
  • Why, when, and how one should practice yoga Nidra at home
  • The lineages, history, and philosophy behind yoga Nidra
  • Scientific studies concerning yoga Nidra, its applications and uses in the modern world

What is Yoga Nidra?

Yoga Nidra is much more than a relaxation practice. Sometimes thought of as yogic sleep, yoga Nidra is a state of consciousness between waking and sleeping. Imagine the relaxation you feel in the “going-to-sleep” stage, when your body has prepared itself for deep slumber but your consciousness remains aware, awake, and semi-alert. Yoga Nidra is a practice that brings you to this stage at will, typically via a guided meditation.

Both the Upanishads and the Mahabharata, ancient Indian scriptures with thousands of years of wisdom for life, spirit, and body, mention a state called yoga Nidra. The effects of yoga Nidra have been studied in scientific studies and the practice is used as a treatment for PTSD, anxiety, depression, and numerous dependencies.

What are the benefits of Yoga Nidra?

Yoga Nidra works with the autonomic nervous system by calming the sympathetic nervous system and activating the parasympathetic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system is responsible for automatic, typically unconscious processes such as our heartbeat, breathing, digestion, and blood flow.

Deep relaxation practices such as yoga Nidra show demonstrated effectiveness in managing anxiety and stress by lowering the fight or flight response, a main component of the sympathetic nervous system. Lowering the fight or flight response stimulates the parasympathetic nervous system, a huge promoter of homeostasis in the body, or the maintenance of balance in digestion, immunity, and stress management. Yoga Nidra activates the pineal gland which in turn releases melatonin, a powerful antioxidant that regulates immune function, cortisol levels, blood pressure, and the quality of sleep.

Dr. Marc Halpern is the founder and President of the California College of Ayurveda. An Ayurvedic Doctor, Doctor of Chiropractic and a Sivananda Yoga Teacher, he is a leader in the development of Ayurveda in the West. His efforts toward building the profession in the United States have earned him awards in both the United States and India. In 1998, he co-founded the National Ayurvedic Medical Association and the California Association of Ayurvedic Medicine and was instrumental in establishing the standards for Ayurvedic Education. Dr. Halpern has written five textbooks plus the popular book, Healing Your Life; Lessons on the Path of Ayurveda. His newest textbook released in 2023 is Classical Yoga Therapy. Dr. Halpern is also the creator of the #1 best-selling meditation recording the United States; Yoga Nidra and Self-Healing.

Dr. Andrea Deerheart, founder of The HeartWay, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, dedicates her life to embracing living and honoring death. With extensive experience in guiding individuals through the complexities of life and death both physically and spiritually, she has become a beacon of care and healing. Her teachings delve into aging, well-being, cultural mythology, death and dying, along with compassionate care, grief, and loss. Dr. Deerheart is also celebrated for her innovative use of Yoga Nidra in end-of-life care, a technique fostering deep relaxation and self-awareness. As a 500-hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) and certified End-of-Life Practitioner/Death Doula, she is the acclaimed author of “Yoga Nidra: Graceful Transitions” and “Elli’s Ride: Death beyond Imagination,” and has crafted textbooks for End-of-Life Practitioner Training. Her expertise is further enriched by her role as a Mythologist and Certified Classical Yoga Nidra Instructor.


January 16

Evening Satsang: Yoga Nidra and Self-Healing

January 17

2pm Workshop: Yoga Nidra Practice led by Dr. Andrea Deerheart

Evening Satsang: Yoga Nidra: Science of Yoga Nidra

January 18

2pm Workshop: Yoga Nidra Practice led by Dr. Andrea Deerheart



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