Zvi Bellin, PhD, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor Rotating Header Image

2017 Sit n’ Schmooze Jewish Meditation Retreat

Sit n’ Schmooze Jewish Meditation Retreat

March 24 – 26, 2017

Vajrapani Institute in Boulder Creek, CA

“Behold you are beautiful my friend.” – Song of Songs

An affordable soulful weekend get-a-way with a fabulous community. From start to finish, a mindful journey to cultivate presence and compassion. Accessible spiritually-focused Jewish practice held in the container of mindfulness.


Our schedule will follow the flow of a traditional Shabbat though will aim specifically at spiritual renewal and connection with each other and nature. Prayer and study are held with a creative and experiential flavor to access the meaning behind these ancient practices. We will be holding a general container of silence during the weekend, though there will be ample chanting, contemplative study, and mindful sharing.  See our tentative schedule posted below.

The Vajrapani Institute is a Tibetan Buddhist center that is excited about welcoming all traditions to practice in their beautiful space. Get ready for a colorful Buddha-filled room that will support our Jewish Shabbat practice.


E-mail Zvi (z.bellinlpcc@gmail.com) with any questions or concerns you might have. When you are ready to register, please fill out this survey. The survey contains information about payment.


Zvi Bellin is an Assistant Professor  of Holistic Counseling Psychology at John F. Kennedy University, and the Jewish Education Specialist for Moishe House. He directs intimate retreats and workshops for the Jewish community that are both spiritually uplifting and intellectually stimulating. He is an international Jewish educator, a licensed professional counselor, and a teacher of Jewish mindfulness practice. Find out more at www.meaningthroughbeing.com

Mia Cohen is serving the B’nai Israel Jewish Center as the Rabbinic Associate. She grew umia-picture-2015p in Nashville, TN and did her undergraduate work in Asheville, North Carolina at Warren Wilson College. She has ordination as a Jewish Spiritual Director through the Aleph Alliance for Jewish Renewal and has been a Talmidah Chachamah, student of Jewish Wisdom for more than 15 years.  Mia has led numerous retreats, kids & family programs, Shabbat & Holiday services, and interfaith events.  She is a facilitator of life cycle ceremonies, a Yoga teacher, Herbalist, and a Doula. Mia may be reached at 707-326-7853 or mia@bnaiisrael.net

PRICING (Includes weekend housing and 5 delicious vegetarian meals)

Camping – $144

Dorm-style – $196

Quads  – $216

All rooms are shared bathrooms. Single and double rooms are available upon request. Please inquire for more information. 

*At the close of the retreat, participants will be asked to make a gift offering to the retreat facilitator.*


Our goal is to keep this retreat as affordable as possible. If you are in need of financial assistance to attend, please fill out the registration form and answer the question about scholarships. You will be contacted for further information.


If you are able to pay more in order to increase the pool of scholarship funds, please include that information on the registration form, under the scholarship question, and you will be contacted for further information. Your generosity is greatly appreciated! 



Friday, March 24th (Shabbat Candle Lighting is 7:05)

Arrival – 3:00pm (Settle in to rooms and get comfy)

5:00pm – Welcome and Orientation with Vajrapani Staff

5:30pm – Entering into Shabbat Consciousness

6:30pm – 7:30pm Mindful Shabbat Dinner

7:45pm – Mindfulness Practice Basic Instructions

8:30pm – Sitting Meditation and Bedtime Prayer

Shabbat,  March 25th

8:15am – Sitting Meditation

9:00am – 9:45am Silent Breakfast

10:00am – Movement & Chanting Service

11:15am – Contemplative Study with Mindful Sharing

12:15pm – Silent Shabbat Lunch (Individual Meetings @ 1:15 – 1:45pm)

2:00pm – Meditation Hike to Castle Rock State Park (Individual Meetings @ 4:30 – 4:50pm)

5:00pm – Shabbat Afternoon Practice

6:00pm – 7:00pm Silent Shabbat Dinner

7:15pm – Transcending Shabbat Consciousness

8:00pm – Havdallah (Shabbat ends 8:04pm)

8:15pm – Hitbodedut & Mindful Sharing

9:00pm – Sitting Meditation and Bedtime Prayer

Sunday, March 26th  

7:45am – Sitting and Movement Meditation

8:30am – Silent Breakfast

9:30am – Morning Practice

10:30am – Closing Circle with Vajrapani Staff

11:30am – Lunch and Farewell


For further information and to inquire about scholarships e-mail z.bellinlpcc@gmail.com or call  510-292-4002.

We are grateful for the support of Moishe House Without Walls.

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