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UW Health SMPH
American Family Children's Hospital

Recognizing and Living Steps Toward Healing and Wholeness


Holy Wisdom Monastery, 4200 County Rd. M, Middleton, WI 53562


Registration is now closed.


Join us for this collaboration with James Finley, PhD, and the UW Health Mindfulness Program. The retreat begins at 3pm on Friday, Oct. 24 and concludes at 2pm on Sunday, Oct. 26.


View Retreat flyer (pdf)


About the Presenter: James Finley, PhD, lived as a Trappist monk at the Gethsemani Monastery in Kentucky, where the world-renowned monk and author Thomas Merton was his spiritual director. Currently, Dr. Finley is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Santa Monica, Calif.


About the Retreat: This retreat is intended for those interested in healing as a living process of body, mind

and spirit. It will explore healthy and destructive habits of mind, body and heart. Destructive habits manifest in unskillful and addictive behaviors that perpetuate suffering. Healthy habits lead to freedom from suffering and compassionate living with self and others. Each step will examine the external and internal dimensions that support self-awareness, compassionate acceptance, skillful actions, empathy and freedom. In this exploration, we will be contemplating and integrating writings of the mystical traditions of the world’s great religions, philosophers, poets, psychologists, artists and all awakened beings who give renewed hope to the world. Time will be provided for group meditation, personal reflection, silence and discussion of themes presented.


Topics will include:

  • Practicing simple methods of meditation that lead to inner peace and fulfillment in the midst of life as it is
  • Contemplating life as described in the Twelve Steps of AA, the Eightfold Path described in Buddhist practice and the Rule of St. Benedict
  • Distinguishing depression from the "dark night of the soul"
  • Exploring psychological terms such as attention, compassion, anxiety, relaxation, conflict
  • Exploring "spiritual terms" and forms of nondual states of consciousness as experiential metaphors of the endless potential of the human person to find abiding peace and fulfillment in the world as it is

Fee: $325/person, includes dinner Friday, lunch and dinner Saturday and lunch Sunday.


Lodging: Please make your own reservations. Some hotels to consider include:

Miscellaneous: Please dress in comfortable clothing as there will be opportunities to enjoy the outside environment.