Training the Vipassana Heart/Mind: A Women's Retreat

with Jill Rayna

April 24 - May 1, 2019

Training the Vipassana Heart/Mind is open to all women students, beginners to advanced.

The ability to meet life with an open receptive and responsive heart/mind is the goal of our spiritual journey. This is understood by neuroscience to be a function of the brain operating at it's highest evolutionary potential, which is in fact our human birthright. The Buddha's teachings and path to overcome suffering are completely aligned with the building of new neural networks in the brain that support the factors of awakening.

This course will focus on mindfulness exercises to reconnect the mind-body-heart split that is the cause for so much personal and societal suffering. When the heart/mind/body field is unified, the capacity to more rapidly develop new neural pathways connecting our highest brain centers to each other is enhanced, and the dharma can be more readily embodied for oneself. Even a training of one week can produce tangible results. Due to the nature of the training, all those wishing to attend less than the full retreat should plan to come at the beginning. Late arrivals will only be accepted with permission of the teacher.

Costs & Fees

Residential sliding scale: $315 - $455 for full retreat

Non-residential sliding scale: $210 - $315 for full retreat

Includes accommodation and three vegetarian meals daily

Housing is simple, most in double-occupancy rooms; all meals are vegetarian with vegan & gluten-free options.

Dhamma Dena is committed to building accessibility by supporting all those who want to come to the center, no matter what their economic status.

According to the ancient tradition of dana, those who carry on the teachings of the Buddha are supported through the generosity of the community; thus dana to support the teachers, manager and cook at Dhamma Dena may be offered at the conclusion of the retreat.

Work exchange & scholarships available according to need, upon request. Due to our current focus on overdue repair and maintenance we ask those who need financial assistance pay at least $10 per day to cover our food costs. A deposit is required to reserve your spot. If this is a hardship please contact us.

If you are able to pay more in order to cover the costs of someone who is not able to, this is very much appreciated. Payment can come in as many installments as is necessary.


  1. Register using the button to the right.
  2. Pay for retreat using the button to the right (PayPal) or send a check to the address below.

The registration form AND the PayPal (or check) must BOTH be filled out for your registration to be processed. If you have not done both then you are not registered.

Dhamma Dena, PO Box 183, Joshua Tree, CA 92252.

Your Registration is not confirmed until we receive your $100 deposit.

Upon receipt of the deposit you will be sent a confirmation letter containing all the essential details about the retreat.


Dāna (दान) is a Sanskrit and Pali word connoting the virtue of generosity, charity or giving of alms. The teachings, valuable beyond measure, are offered out of generosity.

Your registration cost covers food and lodging only. According to the ancient tradition of dana those who carry on the teachings of the Buddha are supported through the generosity of the community; thus dana to support the teachings may be offered at the conclusion of the retreat.

Dāna offerings to teachers and staff are gratefully received.

About the Instructor

Jill Rayna

Jill Rayna began meditating in college, then attended Ruth Denison's first Dhamma Dena Women's Retreat in 1979, where she embraced Ruth as her root teacher. She attended most of Ruth's Spring and Fall Women's Retreats from then on. In 1991, Ruth ceremoniously initiated Jill as a Vipassana teacher in her lineage. Jill established DharmaCreek Sangha on her coastal canyon in Sonoma County, where she did Mindfulness in Nature weekend retreats for many years until taking on organizational responsibilities at Dhamma Dena, where she served as President of the Board of Directors and Retreat Coordinator until stepping down earlier this year.