Yoga Vacation Program
March 29 — 31, 2022

Yoga Nidra for Self-Healing

Marc Halpern (Siva) and Andrea Deerheart PhD

Program Description

In this program, you will be taught 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 3 evening satsangs* and 2 workshops (subject to change)

* Satsangs happen daily at the ashram. The evening satsangs start at 8 PM ET and typically conclude somewhere between 9:30 – 10 PM ET. The evening satsangs consist of a 30-minute guided meditation; 15 minutes of kirtan (joyous chanting accompanied by various musical instruments), 45 minutes – 1 hour of lecture or presentation with time for Q & A and discussion; final prayers and the Arati (a beautiful ceremony that involves the waving of a lighted lamp).


Program Toolkit

This 4-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.

Marc Halpern (Siva), AyD. DC, is an Ayurvedic Doctor, Chiropractor, and Sivananda Yoga teacher. Founder and President of the California College of Ayurveda, he is the author of the popular book Healing Your Life: Lessons on the Path of Ayurveda and the creator of the bestselling recording Yoga Nidra and Self-Healing. A leader in the field, Dr. Halpern is also co-founder of the National Ayurvedic Medical Association and President of the National Council on Ayurvedic Education. He authored three textbooks and co-authored several published research papers, receiving numerous awards for his service in Ayurveda in both India and the United States.

Andrea Deerheart is a doctor of mythology with an emphasis in depth psychology. She is the founder and president of the HeartWay, a nonprofit dedicated to providing psychological, physical, and spiritual care to the dying. An experienced yoga practitioner and teacher of Yoga Nidra, Andrea is dedicated to providing integrative care and wisdom to help others embrace life and honor death. She is the author of Elli’s Ride: Death Beyond Imagination and Yoga Nidra: Graceful Transitions.

March 29 Evening Satsang: Yoga Nidra and Self-Healing

March 30 Noon Workshop: Yoga Nidra Practice

March 30 Evening Satsang: Yoga Nidra: Lineages, History, and Philosophy

March 31 Noon Workshop: Yoga Nidra Practice

March 31 Evening Satsang: Science of Yoga Nidra

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