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STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART, A 7-day retreat with Saki Santorelli


We are very happy to announce an exclusive 7-day retreat with Saki Santorelli, co-founder of the Center for Mindfulness (cfm) in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Medical School, where the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction programm (MBSR) was developed.


This retreat is organized by the the European Center for Mindfulness, Freiburg, in collaboration with the MBSR Verband Schweiz and the Landguet Ried, Center for mindful living


This retreat requires no adherence to a particular faith tradition. It is suitable for those seeking an in-depth immersion in silence and mindfulness that is supported by a community of practice, as well as anyone teaching or aspiring to teach MBSR other MBP’s and/or mindfulness. It fulfills one of the silent retreat requirements for becoming a Certified MBSR Teacher through Oasis Institute at the University of Massachusetts Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society.

Embedded in silence and infused with the spirit of befriending, we’ll:

  • explore the foundational principles and practice of MBSR and the sources from which emerge

  • attune to the insight of the heart-broken-open and its transformative power within the MBSR classroom

  • taste our innate stability, buoyancy and openness when facing difficult times in our own lives and in the lives of those with whom we work, and

  • inhabit the self-revealing nature of the awakened heart as the intoxicating forces of self centeredness begin to dissolve and the sun of beneficence shines forth as care and kindness for others and our wholehearted commitment to affectionately accompany program participants into the unfolding of their lives.

Thirty-five years into the adventure of integrating mindfulness and MBSR into mainstream medicine, healthcare, and the broader society, experience makes resoundingly clear to me that the most vital teacher competency is the cultivation of the heart. Such a living reality will not be found in treatment manuals or protocols. Such development requires opening the book of the heart and experientially entering this “city” through a daily schedule of sitting and walking meditation, yoga and movement, poetry and story, group and individual practice meetings, evening talks and structured periods of dialogue and inquiry. — Saki Santorelli

About MBSR

Since its inception, more than 24’000 people have completed the cfm’s MBSR Program and learned how to use their innate resources and abilities to respond more effectively to stress, pain, and illness.


MBSR was founded by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn (right) in 1979.

MBSR is the subject of Jon Kabat-Zinn’s best selling book, “Full Catastrophe Living“ and Saki Santorelli’s book, “Heal Thy Self“.

MBSR Principles: MBSR spans a confluence of epistemologies and practices from two very distinct and until recently, divergent lineages, both committed to empirical investigation, albeit utilizing very different methodologies: that of science, medicine, and psychology, on the one hand, and that of Buddhist meditative traditions and their teachings and practices, known collectively as the Dharma, on the other. One reason MBSR proved viable in mainstream clinical settings is that the Dharma is in essence universal. Mindfulness, often being spoken of as "the heart of Buddhist meditation," and being primarily about the systematic training and refinement of attention and awareness, compassion and wisdom, is a manifestation of its universal applicability. […] (source :

About Saki Santorelli

Saki F. Santorelli, EdD, MA is an educator, meditation teacher, and author. A professor of medicine, who held the position (2001–2017) of executive director of the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts (UMass) Medical School as well as director of its internationally-acclaimed Stress Reduction Clinic – the place of origin of MBSR.

The Center for Mindfulness, founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn, Saki Santorelli, and colleagues at the UMass Medical School, created the MBSR program and coordinates a wide range of clinical research on mindfulness-based interventions.

Santorelli’s entire career in academic medicine has been oriented around the integration of mindfulness into clinical care and public health fueled by an abiding trust in the innate brilliance and nobility of human beings. In 2001, he founded Oasis Institute, the first comprehensive professional education and training program in the world to leading healthcare professionals to become MBSR teachers. 

He has been active in the emerging fields of mind-body and integrative medicine for more than 20 years and is engaged in the development of a range of experiential, mindfulness-based professional education and development programs and in pioneering initiatives in medical education.

Santorelli has more than 30 000 hours of clinical experience in MBSR and has trained thousands of people, including patients, physicians, nurses, teachers, clergy, business executives, inmates, and correctional staff. For more than a decade, he also has taught a program for medical students that explores the role of the mindfulness in medicine and health care.

For 12 years, he chaired annual scientific conferences on mindfulness, and pioneered mindfulness retreats and worksite programs at more than 30 Fortune 100 and 500 companies and non-profit organizations. 

Saki is a Senior Fellow of the Mind and Life Institute, Fellow of the Fetzer Institute and founding member of the Consortium of Academic Health Science Centers for Integrative Medicine. He teaches and presents internationally and is the author of Heal Thy Self: Lessons on Mindfulness in Medicine now translated into nine languages.

Administrative Appointments
Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society University of Massachusetts Medical School:

  • Executive Director,  2001–2017

  • Founding Member and UMMS Representative Consortium of Academic Health Centers for Integrative Medicine (A consortium of 47 US and Canadian Medical Schools), 1999-present

  • Director, Stress Reduction Clinic, 1996–2017

  • Director, Professional Education and Training, Stress Reduction Clinic and Center for Mindfulness, 1993–2000

  • Training Director, UMMS/Massachusetts Department of Corrections Prison Project, 1992–1996

  • Clinical Training Director, City Campus Stress Reduction Clinic (free clinic) Worcester City Hospital Campus, 1992–2000

  • Associate Director, Stress Reduction Clinic, 1990–1996

  • Assistant Director, Stress Reduction Clinic, 1983–1990

"Who and What Am I?"
Watch Saki Santorelli in an exploration of the Center for Mindfulness’ inaugural Fall Teaching Institute (FTI), a 40-minute Webinar. May 2015

About the Center for MIndfulness in Medicine, Health care and Society (cfm)

Inspiring generations of scientists, clinicians, and educators, for thirty-three years the Center has taken a leadership role in pioneering the integration of mindfulness meditation and other mindfulness-based practices into mainstream medicine through clinical care, rigorous research, academic medical and professional education, and into the larger society through leading edge "crossover" initiatives and outreach to schools and corporations, public institutions and governmental agencies.

Watch «Widening the Circle: Mindfulness in the World», a film produced by the Center for Mindfulness, MA, in celebration of its first 30 years.