Hosted at the Finca Luna Nueva Lodge
, True Nature Education co-owners Joshua Canter and Kristin Luna Ray
will be alongside yoga instructor and nutritionist, Shayna Hiller
, in the mountain Costa Rica jungles with views of Mount Arenal. Within the lush surroundings of Finca Luna amidst thriving gardens, a sustainable farm, and secluded jungle hiking trails, the week-long retreat will foster an illumination of heart, mind, and soul through the practices of Hatha and Bhakti yoga, meditation, and mindfulness.
Following her yoga certification at the Nosara Yoga Institute
, Shayna hosts yoga and nutrition retreats in Costa Rica each year, and we are so grateful to have her along with us for this unique program. She is also a Board Certified Holistic Health Practitioner through the American Association of Drugless Practitioners
, with a mission to share the benefits of a steady yoga practice and healthy lifestyle with people from around the world.
We were lucky to catch up with Shayna as the momentum for the retreat builds, to tap into her thoughts, insights, and expectations for the upcoming program.
True Nature Education: Greetings, Shayna, and thank you for taking the time to interview with us. We are looking forward to this retreat and having you join us to host a new Costa Rica retreat through TNE. How did your relationship with Joshua and Luna and the inspiration for this program first arise?
Shayna: I met Joshua and Luna in Nosara, Costa Rica, this past Winter. I was teaching yoga there, and Luna had come to a few of my classes and one day offered to play music during shavasana. The intertwining of her sweet, devotional music and my teachings are very compatible, and we planned to expand that unique connection in the form of retreat. It was meant to be!
TNE: Indeed, it was meant to be. Tell us, what is your intention for the Where Heaven Meets the Earth retreat?
Shayna: My intention is to tap into a place within ourselves that is always calm, grounded, and at peace. I have led and been on numerous retreats, especially to destinations immersed in natural surroundings. This particular retreat is nestled within a pristine environment in the depths of the Costa Rican jungle. A great teacher of mine once said, “You are what you surround yourself with.”
I intend for all participants to feel grounded in nature by being surrounded by it, as well as through a variety of introspective practices, such as yoga, meditation, and group sharing. Connecting with others is always condusive to connecting with ourselves, and I feel that the retreat will serve as a sacred space to find community and comfort which can be brought back into our daily lives.
TNE: As a health practitioner in conjunction with your yoga practice and teaching, how do you envision the natural environment as most favorable for nutrition and overall wellness?
Being in Costa Rica is vital for mental and physical health in that it has been minimally manipulated by man. The atmosphere is rich in oxygen, which is the number one nutrient needed by our cells. Being in the flow
with nature, without loud city noises, bustling cars, and daily stresses, serves as a gentle reminder of our true, undisturbed nature. On the retreat we will be practicing mindfulness activities such as yoga and meditation, which have been proven to reduce stress, soothe the nervous system, and tone the body.
The food grown in Costa Rica, additionally, is extremely nutritious, whole, and fresh. “You are what you eat,” and the organic, local food served on the retreat will help all participants feel energized, clear-minded, and light.
There is just so much I can say about Costa Rica, nature, organic food, yoga and health….it is all a necessity, in my opinion. Taking care of yourself through the retreat experience is much different than that of the typical vacation. This is a time to nourish your body, mind, and soul, so that you will move with grace and peace throughout the ebb and flow of your daily life. Self-care through retreats is crucial to overall well-being.