Writing/Yoga Retreat

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February 15, 2012 by WITS Editor

yoga on the beachAre you a teacher?  writer?  mom?  dad?  CEO?  Then you might be feeling the winter blues.  Here’s your chance to re-charge with a midwinter retreat where you will practice Forrest Yoga ®, Mondo Zen, and Creative Writing with a Zen practitioner and a teacher from Writers in the Schools (WITS).

Where: Blackwood Educational Land Institute (Hempstead, TX)

Instructors: Zenrin Jeff Goodman and MaryScott Hagle

When: February 11-12, 2012


This brief retreat is designed to “spark you up” and light your way through the last few weeks of winter. You’ll get tools for building physical and emotional health, a new approach to spirituality and opportunities and inspiration for creative expression.

Facilitators MaryScott Hagle, a WITS writer, and Zenrin Jeff Goodman, a Zen priest, will guide your journey through yoga practice, MondoZen sessions and writing exercises in the beautiful serenity of Blackwood Educational Land Institute.

About the practices

Forrest Yoga ® cultivates strength and flexibility through sequencing principles designed over three decades by Ana Forrest, who sees yoga as central to her mission of “mending the hoop of the people.” Forrest Yoga emphasizes breath, core work and hands-on assists from teachers to help students get maximum, stress-melting benefits from every pose.

Hollow Bones Zen/ Mondo Zen, developed by Jun Po Roshi, is a form of Zen Buddhist practice stripped of cultural and monastic confines that offers immediate and portable benefits after just three sessions. You’ll gain deep insight into the truth of who you are, enhancing your ability to transform your reactions and interactions and understand the purpose of your emotions. If you have been curious about meditation, or if you’re a failed or lapsed meditator, Mondo Zen will give you just the kick start you need to begin or revive your practice.

Field Writing is the working title for a group of creative writing practices MaryScott has developed through her work with students of all ages for Writers in the Schools (WITS) and as a consultant for HISD. Field Writing exercises cultivate introspection, reflection and invention across genres and in a variety of settings.

About the Setting

Blackwood Educational Land Institute is a non-profit organization dedicated to land-based learning that encourages the spirit and feeds the soul as it challenges and educates the mind. It inspires all of us to be complete, healthy and accountable to ourselves, our colleagues and our natural world as a whole. Located near Hempstead, Texas (about one hour from Houston), a formerly neglected tract of land has been turned into a living learning environment. There are many wooded acres, a pond fed by a natural spring, abundant plant and animal life, and more. Blackwood is an ecosystem and living classroom that inspires and teaches students of all ages to explore the natural web of life and to develop a healthy, respectful relationship with nature.

More information?
Email MaryScott at mshagle@gmail.com

Photo by patriziasoliani via Flickr


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Writers in the Schools (WITS)

Writers in the Schools (WITS) is the #1 arts education organization in Texas. With 80 writers and educators on staff, WITS reaches over 23,000 students a year in classrooms, community centers, museums, parks, and hospitals.

The glory of WITS is best expressed by the students--in their own words -- so this blog features essays, stories, and poems that were created by K-12 students in our program. All material (c) Writers in the Schools 2007-2013. If you wish to republish this work, please credit both the organization and the author and link back to this site. This material may not be used in commercial ventures of any kind.

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