Finding the Way Home to Kind Awareness: An IMS Urban Retreat

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Finding the Way Home to Kind Awareness: An IMS Urban Retreat

with Bart van Melik and Leslie Booker

Saturday, January 25th, 2020 | 9:30am – 6:00pm
Sunday, January 26th, 2020 | 9:30am – 4:00pm

Insight Meditation Society (IMS) is pleased to present this weekend urban retreat at New York Insight (NYI). During this retreat, we will explore the heart of the Buddha’s teaching: suffering and its causes and freedom from its causes. With the help and cultivation of our kind and natural awareness, we can become intimate with what it is to be human.

We will train our ability to bear witness to our personal and social pains and will immerse ourselves in timeless teachings to incline our heart-minds towards appreciating the joy of living. By taking refuge in the heart of kind awareness we will slow down and listen to the truths of the present moment and find peace in our own awakened heart.

This retreat is open to everyone. We will honor and abide in noble silence including the periods of silent sitting, mindful movement practice and group inquiry. There will be group meetings with the teachers and plenty of time for Q&A.

NYI will provide vegan lunch with gluten free options for these two days as well as Masala Chai and nutritious snacks.

IMS Urban Retreats at New York Insight: These non-residential retreats are a great opportunity to deepen and integrate our mindfulness meditation practice into our daily lives within the urban environment and within the container of noble silence. While this weekend retreat is suitable for beginners through experienced meditators, some meditation exposure is helpful.

Learn more about IMS Urban Retreats here.

This program is made possible with major support from the Laura S. Rodgers Fund of the Community Foundation of New Jersey.


Please note that consistent with IMS practice, teachers for IMS Urban Retreats offer their talents and services to our community through the practice of dana, the generosity of donations from participants which are collected at the end of the retreat. The registration fees listed below only cover NYI’s direct costs for presenting these programs such as rent, staffing, registration processing, volunteer management, etc.

This event is sold out and the waiting list is closed. We will not be accepting walk-in registrations on the day of. Please check out the upcoming IMS Urban Retreats at New York Insight HERE.

Registration Fees

New York Insight Meditation Center has streamlined the registration fee levels. Members of our Circle of Friends are eligible to receive 20% off of the Sustaining Rate via a code provided in the email confirming membership, which you can enter after clicking the Sustaining Level registration.

*Benefactor Level: Supports NYI’s ability to offer the Subsidized Base.

**Sustaining Level: This level reflects the actual costs to support this program. Circle of Friends members eligible for 20% discount with code. Click here to join.

***Subsidized Base: Made possible by the generosity of Benefactor Level above and other donations to ensure participation by those requiring financial assistance.

If you have questions about your registration (cancellation policy, membership discount, email confirmation, etc.), please read our FAQs. If your question is not addressed in the FAQs, please email



Bart van Melik

Bart van Melik found meditation in 2003 and has been teaching meditation since 2009, bringing the practice to diverse communities like juvenile detention centers, homeless shelters and NYC public schools. He is passionate about supporting people to discover how they can find new ways to relate to life’s stresses. Bart graduated from the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training.

“Whatever one frequently thinks and ponders upon, that will become the inclination of one’s mind.” Buddha

Leslie Booker

Booker brings her heart and wisdom to the intersection of Dharma + Embodied Wisdom + Activism. She shares her expertise nationally as a guest lecturer at conferences and universities, regarding the need to expand our vision around culturally responsive teachings, and changing the paradigm of self and community care. Booker shared practice with the most vulnerable populations in NYC for over a decade, and has contributed to several books and academic papers. She has trained at Spirit Rock in their Mindful Yoga and Meditation training (2012), Community Dharma Leaders’ Training (2017), and will complete the Spirit Rock 4 year Residential Retreat Teacher Training in 2020. She is committed to working with folks to find a sense of freedom and liberation, in a world that is held captive by greed, hatred and delusion.