Mysteries of the Heart: An Ojai Foundation Experience in Collaboration with SMBI Institute of Columbia University


Thu, 09/08/2016 - 4:00pm to Sun, 09/11/2016 - 2:00pm
The Ojai Foundation is delighted to collaborate with Professor Lisa Miller and Columbia University’s Spirituality Mind Body Institute to offer an extraordinary retreat in our beautiful nature setting to learn about spiritual, heart-centered practices related to the land and seasons. Our site has been carefully selected by the Institute, and we are thrilled to welcome participants to our Land Sanctuary.
The students will engage with practices that nurture connection to self, others, and nature, as well as explore what it means to live sustainably.
This collaboration is based upon the unique offerings of The Ojai Foundation, a non-profit retreat center and Land Sanctuary dedicated to the intersection of spirituality and nature.  The participants will live on the land and sleep in yurts or domes, immersed in beauty and the deep silence and sounds of nature. Students will engage in council practices, nature-based ceremonies, and teachings from the rich history of The Ojai Foundation. 
The primary Teachers College, Columbia University professor on-site will be Lisa Miller, Ph.D., Professor, Director of Clinical Psychology & Executive Director of the Spirituality Mind Body Institute at Teachers College, Columbia University. There will be a series of student-led practices and talks by fellow contributors and adjunct faculty with visiting scholars chosen from The Ojai Foundation community: Joe Provisor (Founder, Council in Schools) and Judy Piazza (recent Program Director and Music Therapist). Following the retreat there will be an additional series of follow up sessions (and accompanying reading) for interested students offered online to integrate the experience into ongoing personal and professional life.
This field trip course welcomes people from many professions, with an emphasis on supporting people in careers of service. As a workshop-based class, interactive small group is a vital component of our retreat.

Retreat gathering begins with lunch on Friday and ends with lunch on Sunday. All participants are urged to arrive Thursday between 3 and 5 pm to settle in before the scheduled retreat time, allowing time for jet lag and travel unknowns as well as traffic from the airports.

Two separate registrations are required.  Registration and matriculation through Columbia University is required before reserving your accommodations below.

  • Option 1: Thursday, September 8 afternoon arrival between 3 and 5 pm
    • $660 includes shared accommodations for Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, 9 vegetarian meals (Thursday dinner through Sunday lunch), and bedding set if necessary. 
    • Questions? Call 805-646-8343 ext. 123 or email
  • Option 2: Friday morning arrival between 10 and noon
    • $565 includes shared accommodations for Friday and Saturday nights, 7 vegetarian meals (Friday lunch through Sunday lunch), and bedding set if necessary. 
    • Questions? Call 805-646-8343 ext. 123, or email
  • Offsite Option(s)
    • This retreat is intended to be a full immersion in the natural beauty of the land and there will be several evening sessions.
    • If you are unable to stay onsite for whatever reason, you may choose to stay in town. Your fee will be reduced by $175 for option or $125 for option 2. 
    • Please be aware that TOF does not provide transportation.

Prospective students/participants are required to complete two registration processes: one through TOF (below) and one through Columbia University. 

For more information on Columbia University's Teacher College Spirituality Mind Body Institute West eligibility, click here.

TOF fees are non-refundable. If you cancel 4 weeks prior to the retreat, you may apply your money towards another TOF offering through September 2018, minus an administrative fee of $100.