Pilgrimage to Sri Lanka
THIS TRIP IS SOLD OUT
December 21, 2013-January 4, 2014
This tour will be lead by Andrew Harlem and Kapila Wewegama. CEUs Available.
Join us on this unforgettable two-week travel study program held at various locations in Sri Lanka. Described by Marco Polo as the most beautiful island in the world, Sri Lanka is breathtaking and remarkably diverse, stretching from idyllic white beaches and the clear blue waters of the Indian Ocean, to dense inland tropical rain forests teeming with wildlife, to mountain highlands dotted with spectacular tea plantations.
Sri Lanka is the oldest continually Buddhist country. It is known as a world center for the Theravada tradition. In addition to visiting Sri Lanka’s ancient cities, sacred pilgrimage sites, enchanting temples, wildlife parks, top-rated beaches, and an Ayurvedic health resort, course participants will have cultural experiences not available to the casual traveler. These include a retreat at a remote meditation center in the misty central highlands, and a village homestay with a Sri Lankan family.
This program utilizes an experiential learning model. Participants will learn from local cultural experts, including Ayurvedic physicians, astrologers, village matchmakers, and Buddhist monks. We also meet with a Western-trained Sri Lankan psychologist, visit a local mental health hospital, and visit with staff and children at a rehabilitation center.
Nestled in the verdant central highlands, Kandy was the capital of the last Sinhalese kingdom. Renew your soul at its world-class religious shrines, wander its vibrant markets, and dazzle your senses in its colorful urban landscape set among tea-covered hills.
A spectacular rock citadel reaching toward the sky, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is an unforgettable archeological wonder. Hike to its summit, marvel at the vast rainforest below, and contemplate ancient civilization at the top of the world.
Another UNESCO World Heritage Site, Polonnaruwa is the most magnificent of Sri Lanka’s ancient Buddhist capitals. Walk with the local monks, and take an expert-guided tour of this well-preserved twelfth century metropolis’s giant dagobas (stupas) and monuments.
This remote and rustic oasis is situated high in the misty hills of the central highlands. Meditate, walk, do yoga, and learn about “metta” (loving kindness) and other Buddhist teachings.
Originating over 5,000 years ago, Ayurveda is the traditional medicine of South Asia. Concerned with mind, body, and spirit, it emphasizes the importance of balance through diet, lifestyle, exercise, and ritual. Consult with the Ayurvedic physician or receive an Ayurvedic massage (not included in cost).
Host Family Stay
Despite the Westernization of Asia’s urban centers, Sri Lanka remains a country of idyllic traditional villages. Experience village life firsthand during a two-day homestay with a (pre-screened) local family. The course highlight for many students, this opportunity provides unique insights into everyday family life and Buddhist ritual in a traditional cultural setting.
Sacred to Buddhists, Hindus, and Muslims alike, this small town is one of the most venerated religious sites in South Asia. Join us for the colorful nightly temple ceremonies among the crowd of pilgrims.
Yala National Park
View elephants, water buffalo, flamingos, crocodiles, and maybe even a rare leopard in these beautiful open grasslands and lagoons. Grab your camera, hop on the jeep, and get ready for some adventure.
Considered among the finest beaches in the world, this crescent-shaped tropical patch of white sand is set among coconut trees, a timeless hilltop dagoba, and an intact Sri Lankan village. We will relax together at the conclusion of the course, swim in the moonstone blue Indian Ocean, and savor delicious Sri Lankan vegetable curries and fruit.
Andrew Harlem, PhD
Andrew is associate professor of clinical psychology at CIIS. Professor Harlem has a longstanding interest in the culture, politics, and history of Sri Lanka that began with twenty-seven months as a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in a remote Sinhalese Buddhist village.
Kapila served as the associate director (director of program and training) with the Peace Corps in Sri Lanka for eight years. He now provides training consultancy to the Corporation for National and Community Service, the Peace Corps, and other nonprofit organizations.
“This trip has been the most eye-opening, mind-altering, life-changing experience that I’ve gone though in my short twenty-five years.”
“The community that was built with all of us … goes beyond a classroom and will forever remain a unique and profound connection.”
“This trip was truly one of the most fruitful experiences of my entire life on a variety of levels: spiritually, culturally, educationally. The…living and learning in a culture will be with me forever, and will influence my work as a clinician.”
“I got to really experience Sri Lanka in a way that I would not have been able to on my own.”
Licensed mental health practitioners may receive up to 12 continuing education credits for an additional fee of $240.00.*
Fee: $2,250.00 (double occupancy) Fee includes study program, accommodations, entrance fees, all meals, and transportation within Sri Lanka.
International airfare, Sri Lanka visa, travel insurance (recommended), and registration fee not included.
*Course meets the qualifications for continuing education credit for MFTs and or LCSWs as required by the California Board of Behavioral Sciences. California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS) is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. CIIS maintains responsibility for this program and its contents.