Sitting Circle at the Lost Coast
Desert Dharma provides Buddhist insight meditation programs and retreats with guiding teacher Susie Harrington, with an emphasis on retreats in nature. Desert Dharma also supports other Buddhist Insight Meditation groups and teachers in Utah, and western Colorado. The programs, classes, retreats, and weekly groups presented here are the result of the collaboration of many people and area meditation groups. If you are new to meditation or experienced, we hope you will find something in the programs, retreats, and resources that will support your journey. We hope to see you along the way!

You will find in the retreat schedule a variety of retreats located in wild and wonderful places throughout the west. Susie's particular passion is to share with participants her love of the dharma as it expresses itself in the natural world. By combining meditation practice with time in nature we can engage, with intention, the inherent silence, aliveness and intimacy of the natural world, and may discover new depths of beauty and truth in ourselves and the world we live in. Please come join us - in the desert, in the mountains or at the ocean.

Insight Meditation is a branch of Vipassana meditation, offered throughout the United States, best known for the large centers on the East (IMS- Insight Meditation Center) and West (Spirit Rock Meditation Center) coasts. Susie Harrington and the other co-teachers on retreats listed here have primarily been trained and are supported through the Insight Meditation lineage.

Sky Mind Retreats (SMR) is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting retreats and programs in the Buddhist Insight Meditation tradition. SMR is a sister organization to Desert Dharma and a primary sponsor of retreats and programs. A primary intention of SMR is to provide support for wilderness meditation retreats. SMR also supports Mindfulness in Education, which provides mindfulness and yoga instruction to Grand County UT students. SMR provides scholarships for most SMR sponsored retreats. One of the missions of SMR is to understand, reduce, and mitigate the inevitable environmental impacts of running retreats.

Collared lizard

Upcoming Online Retreats

The Grand Embrace: a blossoming of the heart

An online meditation retreat with personal exploration through writing.

Sept. 13 10:00 - 4:30 MDT
Susie Harrington and Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer
Registration and more info on Retreats Page

We live in a time of great upheaval. It is a time to look more closely. What is really here in this world when we look underneath our longing for orderliness and certainty? What would happen if we could really rest in uncertainty? We’ll read poems that don’t bring answers, poems that lead us deeper into paradox. We’ll meditate in the midst of the not-knowing, sit with our joys, our challenges, the what is here of each moment. We’ll write our own explorations of what if and what else and see what even a small bit of wonder might do … if you’re willing to risk a little, meditation and writing can open doors where before you didn’t even realize a door existed. No previous writing or meditation experience required. For those who have attended before, this will be a new exploration.

The ultimate measure of a person is not where one stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where one stands in times of challenge and controversy. Martin Luther King

From Compassion to Action

a day of meditation and wise response

June 28, 9:00 - 4:00 MDT
Teachers: Susie Harrington and Kirsten Rudestam
Cost: $40 - $100 No one will be turned away for lack of funds.

Registration and more info on Retreats Page

Our hearts are moved. Compassion is the expression of the tender and open heart when it meets the suffering of our world. To know compassion is to care – to feel our connection with other people and with the more than human world. In this daylong retreat, we will explore through meditation, dharma talks, connection with others and engaged practice, how to know and allow the natural movement of our hearts. Through mindfulness, we will explore the emotions, resistances, hindrances, and wholesome qualities that arise in considering and enacting compassionate response.