Program and Guidelines

Hariharalaya Retreat Guidelines

Over the years we have found these guidelines helpful to creating and maintaining a safe,
dynamic and focused learning environment for Yoga, Meditation, Creativity and Self Discovery.

Wake Up Gong is at 6 am to allow time for personal practice of yoga, meditation, quiet walks in nature, journaling, bathing, sun gazing, chanting, etc. We will ring the gong 12 times at 6 am every morning.

Morning Practice is from 7 am until 9 am. Morning practice consists of 75 mins of Asana followed by 45 minutes of Breathing and Meditation.

Evening Practice is from 5:30 pm until 6:30 pm (sunset). Evening practice consists of the 20 minute Hariharalaya Asana Sequence followed by 40 minutes of Breathing and Meditation.

Ten minutes before every class, meal and activity we will ring the 10 minute gong all around the property.

Joel (the founder/director of Hariharalaya) gives 1 dharma talk each week. During the talks, Joel answers questions about yoga, meditation and the path. This is a key part of our learning program and everyone is required to attend.

The Morning Practice and Evening Practice are both essential elements in our program and the rhythm of the day. To start the day in mindfulness and to wind down the day with presence. Both of these practices are mandatory.

Make sure to arrive a few minutes before the class starts in order to maintain a focused and respectful learning environment.

Please be sure to use the bathroom before practice so as not to disturb the flow of the group.

There is no lying down in the yoga hall during meditation. We offer meditation cushions, sezai meditation benches and chairs. If you do lie down then we will come and gently tap you on your shoulder and help you to find a stable meditation seat.

We maintain silence in the Yoga Hall before and after class in order to maintain a focused and respectful learning environment, to stay present and centered.

Please avoid using any perfume or strong smelling mosquito repellent in general and maintain a high degree of personal hygiene, as we are in close quarters and some people have sensitive smell.

Bring all of the toiletries that you will need during your stay (deodorant, soap, toothpaste, shampoo, mosquito repellant). We encourage people to use natural deodorants and natural soaps.

Please do not leave your towels lying around the pool area.

Please dress modestly to be sensitive to Cambodian culture and respect the community learning environment. It is okay for women to wear a sports bra during yoga class or in the Pool Area, but not in other public spaces. For men it is okay to go shirtless during yoga class and at the pool, but you must wear a shirt at all other times. Be especially mindful when you go out to explore the village or visit the local Pagodas.

Throughout the week, we will be offering additional workshops and activities to complement the community learning process. We will be announcing throughout the week during meal circles.

We observe general silence from 10 pm every night until 9 am every morning. Day 4 is a full day of silence. The silence is essential for cultivating wisdom, inner strength, focus and creativity. The silence is an invitation to a deeper listening to ourselves and to life. A day of silence, or even a hour of silence, can be a wild adventure of discovery. Through the silence we open ourselves to the flow of life. Even if you have a roommate or a partner, we request that you also maintain the silence during time for the benefit of yourselves and the community. Whispering does not count a silence – the key is not engaging the language mind.

It is strongly recommended to stay on Campus during your retreat in order to get the most out of the program. Hariharalaya is a tropical oasis, giving you the space to breathe, to establish a healthy rhythm, to explore your creativity, and childlike playfulness. Leaving the centre to can disrupt the process and there will be plenty of time on the weekend to explore Siem Reap and the Angkor Temples.

We do not provide or allow for the consumption of coffee at the retreat center. We provide fresh ginger and local herbs for tea. We also have homemade Kambocha, local Kefir, natural aloe juice and coconuts for sale during retreat.

We have a strict Digital Detox Policy and it has been at the core of our program and approach to learning and reconnecting with the creativity of the present moment. In order to reconnect with ourselves, with our hearts, with our breath, with our creativity, with our essence, it is so important to disconnect from all the fear, distraction and over stimulation coming from the digital noise.

We will collect your phone and digital devices and lock them up in our safe.

Before breakfast, lunch and dinner we gather for a meal circle around the table to share poetry and inspiration, honor the cycle of life and to make announcements. The lunch circle starts directly after Fitness Class and the dinner starts directly after evening meditation. Please come straight to the circle so we don’t have to wait for you. There will be time after to wash your hands and use the toilet.

Our food is vegan, gluten free and prepared with love from fresh products from the local market. There is plenty of food – enough for seconds or thirds

Breakfast 9 am 
Lunch 1 pm
Dinner 6:30 pm

We also offer the following healthy treats:

  • Homemade Vegan Gluten-Free Cakes
    (Pumpkin Spice, Double Chocolate, Banana Choco and Carrot Raisin)
  • Locally made Vegan Coconut Cream Ice-Cream
  • Fresh Cold Coconuts
  • Homemade Kombucha
  • Local Kefir
  • Natural Aloe Vera Juice

We offer healing and massage sessions at our Garden Spa and Wellness Center. Currently we have Traditional Khmer Massage and Coconut Oil Massage and Blind Shiatsu Massage. We often have guest healers such as acupuncture, cranio sacral, reiki, etc.

We offer Private Yoga Consultations for $30 USD. During your session you can get support setting up a personalized sequence of yoga postures, hands-on feedback on your alignment, and learning about your body’s strengths and weaknesses.

We have 2 Fitness Classes each retreat to get your heart pumping and blood flowing. The class is from 12:00-12:30. These classes are optional, but highly recommended.

Be sure to bring a reusable water bottle. We offer purified drinking water for filling your bottle. We have glass cups for tea and water. Please do not remove cups from the dining area. Cups are not allowed in the Yoga Hall – water bottles only.

Please be sure to turn off lights, A/C and fans in your room as well as in the common spaces when not in use.

We provide yoga mats. You are welcome to bring your own mat if you like.

Be mindful and clean up after yourself. Don’t leave cups, plates, books or other belongings lying around.

We do not allow any drugs or alcohol at the center during retreat.

Avoid keeping snacks in your rooms. They will attract unwanted visitors.

Since we are sharing community space, it is important to maintain a high level of hygiene and awareness. Be sure to wash your hands before meals and before using serving utensils. When refilling your water bottle, do not touch the mouth of your water bottle to the nozzle.

We look forward to welcoming you into our Hariharalaya Retreat Community for learning, laughter, love, silence, practice and creativity!