‘Path of the Urban Yogi: Training for Daily Life Dharma’
June 7th – June 11th, 2018

How do we transform our daily life into a path of spiritual practice? Recognizing the Indian tradition of the ‘Grihastha’, the householder practitioner, the Buddha taught many methods to help us accomplish the dharma while fulfilling life’s many ambitions and challenges.

This 3-day retreat, plus a day each for arrival and departure, focuses on equipping the “urban yogi” with creative ways to integrate mindfulness and awareness into everyday circumstances. Drawing inspirations from Theravāda, Mahāyāna, Zen and Tantra, three long-time lay students of the dharma share techniques on how to bring the view, meditation, and action of the Buddhist path into work, love, relationship, and personal development.

The retreat days are structured around four relaxed sessions of walking and sitting meditation, alternating with practical Q&A, and functional stretching designed by Vana’s wellness team. Participants will also experience contemplative meditation or “meditation in action”, through flower arrangement and other art forms inspired by the Shambhala and Buddhist Lineage of the Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche.

Each day will begin with a brief session of stretching, breathing and meditation, followed by breakfast together. The main morning session will include talks, dialogues and Q&A interspersed with meditation practice, followed by lunch at noon. After a couple of hours of mindful rest, we will begin the afternoon session with a conversation between our retreat leaders – sharing life experiences and managing spiritual practice. This will lead us into a unique session of mindfulness-through-activity each day, curated by June and inspired by the great Chogyam Trungpa, based on Haiku, Ikebana and ‘Discovering Elegance’. Our day will include planned interruptions where we work with our senses as a method to watch our emotions. We will conclude our day with a final session of walking and sitting meditation before dinner.

In the spirit of the ‘kalyanamitratā’, the spiritual friendship, Vanavasis will have a chance to explore issues as diverse as stress and emotions, choosing a spiritual path and guru, invoking wisdom from confusion, and a CEO’s guide to doing a 30-day retreat.


Albert Paravi Wongchirachai is a Thai concept strategist specializing in cultural enterprise startups and experience design. One of the founders of Thailand’s national design center, his portfolio includes projects for Asian Civilizations Museum Singapore, Dean & DeLuca, the Observation Deck at MahaNakhon, and the upcoming Rivermuseum Bangkok. After a short stint of Buddhist Studies at University of Oxford, Paravi began exploring Buddhist practice traditions with many masters of the Theravada and the Vajrayana, notably Buddhadasa Bhikkhu, HH Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Chogyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche, and his main teacher Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche.


June Crow is a senior Ikebana teacher and student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. As a member of Kalapa Ikebana, a flower arranging school founded by Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, June Crow has brought her knowledge of Shambhala principles and Buddhist meditation to the artistic expression of Ikebana, Japanese art of flower arranging. The ultimate purpose in Ikebana is not only to make harmonious and pleasant flower arrangements, but to discover joyfulness, work with obstacles and develop respect for all things, animate or inanimate.


Kris Yao is an award-winning Taiwanese architect, and the Founder and Head Architect of KRIS YAO | ARTECH. The firm currently employs more than 160 professionals in Taipei and Shanghai. His architecture has been praised to have a poetic nature, using his native eastern aesthetic and spirituality with a sense of natural light, interplay of surfaces and forms and executing all with a high level of innovation and professionalism. Kris also supports the Dharma through his tireless work on behalf of Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche and Khyentse Foundation.

Practical information:

  • This Short Retreat is open to Vanavasis and Vana Foundation & Vidyaloke Shishyas. If you wish to nominate someone who isn’t a Vanavasi or Shishya, please write to us and we will try our best to consider your request.
  • Please arrive at Vana after lunch on Thursday, 7th June but before 5:00 pm, for the opening session at 6:00 pm. You can depart on Monday, 11th June after lunch.
  • Our fee for Short Retreats is more accessible, with an option of up to three shishyas sharing a room. It includes your stay, attire, meals and transfers from Dehradun airport/train station and is inclusive of all taxes/charges. Let us know if you have someone to share a room with or you may leave it to us to mindfully assign you a room partner.
    Single Occupancy INR 20,000 per person a night
    Double Occupancy INR 12,500 per person a night
    Triple Occupancy INR 10,000 per person a night

    There is also an option of making your own stay arrangements outside Vana and attending sessions. You would be charged a flat fee of Rs 15,000 per person, including lunch and chai breaks, for attending this retreat.

  • If you wish to stay for a longer duration, before or after the Short Retreat, our regular Retreat prices will be applicable for the rest of your stay.
  • Treatments will not be available for those participating in the Short Retreat. They continue to be available for non-participating Vanavasis on retreat at Vana. Treatments for Vanavasis on longer retreats, that are also part of the Short Retreat, will be accommodated.

To book your place and your stay at Vana, please write to Retreat Reservations at retreat@vana.co.in or call us at +91 135 3911114.