• Deluxe Queen – $938.00
  • Private Queen – $872.00
  • Deluxe Double - Shared bath (Shared Room) – $698.00
  • MENLA Standard Single – $678.00
  • MENLA Standard Triple (Shared Room) – $578.00
  • Commuter – $450.00

Pricing includes Accommodations, Meals and Tuition

Location: Menla Mountain Retreat

Address: 375 Pantherkill Rd, Phoenicia NY 12464

[email protected]
(845) 688-6897

Email us about program

Sufi Dance of Oneness

With Banafsheh Sayyad

November 2 - 4, 2018

Listen… and allow this listening to lead you into movement and a dance that opens your whole being and rouses your creative fire from the depths of peace.

If you long to meditate with movement and feel drawn to truly ground your spirituality in your body and gain practical tools for living a more energized, peaceful and lucidly creative life, this workshop is for you.
Guided by the teachings of Rumi, delve into grounding and centering techniques that awaken your body, re-connect you with the Earth and your core, so you can open your central channel, your heart and align with Spirit.

Journey into ancient and contemporary ceremonies from high energy movement to stillness and silence in preparation for Sama–deep listening with the heart.

This workshop demystifies turning, offering access to Sufi whirling meditation in a few simple steps. This method allows people of all experience levels to turn for a sustained period with ease. One enters the Sama, pure listening, and ‘is danced’. An age-old practice of the legendary Sufi masters Rumi and Shams, the Sama is an inner journey and a direct path to creativity. It dissolves mental chatter into the vast ocean of presence, and we begin to simply be…unchained, free, present, and wildly inspired.

We will also explore the love poems that poured forth from Rumi as he whirled, and the symbolism and philosophy of the Sama as a complete spiritual path, one of the clearest ways to “embody the transcendent:, which H.H. the Dalai Lama calls, ‘the true meaning of life’.

Like the ground turning green in a spring wind,
Like birdsong beginning inside the egg,
Like the universe coming into existence,
The lover wakes and whirls
In a dancing joy that kneels down in praise.
— Rumi

You will learn:
The movement meditation of Sama or whirling
The philosophy, history, symbolism, and inner meaning of the Sama as a complete spiritual path
Zikr or chanting
The philosophy of the zikr
All levels welcome. Please dress comfortably and bring a yoga mat, socks or soft-soled shoes. White garments for whirling are encouraged.

This workshop is on the beautiful sacred grounds of Menla Mountain Retreat with full accommodation. You can choose to sleep at the Center or commute.
Our days are a balance between movement, chanting, wisdom teachings, ceremony, exploring the gorgeous sacred land where Menla is located and nurturing our bodies with delicious organic meals and healing body work.



Friday, November 2nd         

  • 3 – 8pm Check-In
  • 6 – 7pm Dinner
  • 7:30pm Welcome and Evening Program

Saturday, November 3rd        

  • 8 – 9am Breakfast
  • 9:30am Morning Program
  • 12 – 1pm Lunch
  • 1 – 4pm Free Time for Spa Treatments, Swimming, etc
  • 4 – 6pm Afternoon Program
  • 6 – 7pm Dinner
  • 7:30pm Evening Program

Sunday, November 4th

  • 8 – 9am Breakfast & Check-Out
  • 9:30am Morning Program
  • 11am Check-out of Rooms
  • 12 – 1pm Lunch and Departure



Banafsheh Sayyad
As a Persian Sufi dance artist and transformational teacher, Banafsheh Sayyad is an innovator of Sufi dance previously only performed by men. A pioneer in a style, she has created Dance of Oneness, which fuses rigorous dance technique with spiritual embodiment. Banafsheh has blazed a unique trail in contemporary dance, being one of the few dance artists in the world who has mastered combining high level dance techniques with spiritual awareness. Her work has been presented extensively in festivals and by presenters in North America, Europe, and Australia, where she has gained tremendous acclaim.
Learn more about Banafsheh Sayyad