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April 13, 2024

LOVE is the Most Powerful Force in the Universe



Mindfulness teacher Sharon Salzberg joins with Atman Smith, Ali Smith, and Andres Gonzalez of the Holistic Life Foundation (HLF) to offer a program exploring the depths, capacity, and meaning of love. Love is the most powerful force in the universe. Love is cohesive and attracting, and is not bound by space or time. Learn to get in touch with and share the infinite love inside of you with meditation, yoga, and additional contemplative practices.

In a world where division and polarization prevail, can love be known not as giving in, but as transformative? If conventionally, love is seen as weakness, can we come to understand it as a powerful force in seeking change?

How do we find balance in love amidst all of our relationships? How do we love in a way where we feel that we are not being taken advantage of? How do we know when to be compassionate and when tough love is needed? How do we love from our higher selves? How do we unconditionally love ourselves?

We will explore a myriad of practical tools to promote greater love in your inner and outer life:

• Connect with the reservoir of love within you

• Learn greater self-love and self-acceptance

• Meditation techniques to better understand the love we share in relationships

• Learning to love with boundaries

• Cultivating greater love through loving kindness practice

• Yoga and breathwork to ground ourselves and reduce stress, to better receive love from others

Join us for this virtual retreat to develop the skills needed to cultivate love within ourselves, to better love ourselves, the people in our lives, and the world. No prior meditation experience is necessary to attend.



This virtual retreat will be conducted through Zoom on Saturday April 13, from 12:30 PM – 6:00 PM EST. The virtual retreat link will be emailed to participants within twenty-four hours of your registration. Please email us at events@garrisoninstitute.org with questions.



a person in a black suitSharon Salzberg is a meditation pioneer, world-renowned teacher, and New York Times bestselling author. She is one of the first to bring mindfulness and lovingkindness meditation to mainstream American culture over 45 years ago, inspiring generations of meditation teachers and wellness influencers. Sharon is co-founder of The Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA, and the author of twelve books, including the New York Times bestseller, Real Happiness, now in its second edition, and her seminal work, Lovingkindness. Her latest release, Finding Your Way, from Workman Publishing is being released in October 2023. Her podcast, The Metta Hour, has amassed six million downloads and features interviews with thought leaders from the mindfulness movement and beyond. www.sharonsalzberg.com

a person in a black suitAli Smith was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. He is a graduate of the Friends School of Baltimore and the University of Maryland, College Park. Ali started his journey with contemplative practices as a small child, learning meditation from his father and attending the Divine Life Church of Absolute Oneness, run by Swami Shankarananda. He deepened his practice and learned the art of teaching as a young adult, studying many forms of yoga, meditation, mindfulness, and breathwork from his teacher and godfather Will Joyner. Ali has almost 20 years’ experience teaching these practices to a broad demographic spectrum, internationally. He is a published author, and is a pioneer in the fields of yoga and mindfulness in education, as well as trauma informed yoga and mindfulness, developing best practices that are used around the world. He co-founded the Holistic Life Foundation in 2001 and The Involution Group in 2019. Ali is also a co-host of the Look Again Podcast which you can find at www.theinvolutiongroup.com


a person in a black suitAtman Smith is a Co-founder of the Holistic Life Foundation, where he served as Director of Youth Programming for ten years Director of Fundraising for five years and currently serves as the Director of Development. Since 2001, he has been teaching yoga and mindfulness to a diverse population including underserved and high-risk youth in Baltimore City Public Schools, drug treatment centers, wellness centers, and colleges. A native of Baltimore, Atman attended the University of Maryland, College Park where he was a letter award winner for the University’s men’s basketball team. He graduated with a B.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice. His work with the Holistic Life Foundation has been featured on Making a Difference on the NBC Nightly News, CNN, and CBS, as well as O the Oprah Magazine, The Washington Post, Upworthy, Mindful Magazine, Yoga Journal, Shambala Sun, and many other publications. https://www.theinvolutiongroup.com/


a person in a black suitAndres Gonzalez is one of the Co-Founders of the Holistic Life Foundation. For eighteen years, Andres has taught yoga to diverse populations throughout the world, including Baltimore City Public School students, drug treatment centers, mental crisis facilities, homeless shelters, wellness centers, colleges, private schools and other various venues throughout the nation and throughout the world. He has partnered with John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health and the Penn State’s Prevention Research Center on a Stress and Relaxation Study and is a published author in the Journal of Children’s Services. His work with the Holistic Life Foundation has been featured on Making a Difference on the NBC Nightly News, CNN, and CBS, as well as O the Oprah Magazine, The Washington Post, Upworthy, Mindful Magazine, Yoga Journal, Shambala Sun, and many other publications. He is a certified Health Coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, maintains a B.S. in Marketing from University of Maryland, College Park and an MBA from the University of Maryland, University College. https://holisticlifefoundation.org/



Please note that all scholarships have been awarded at this time. We have had an overwhelming number of applications, and have tried to help as many candidates as possible. Thank you for interest and support.