SF Bay Area Holistic Calendar

International Zorba the Buddha Festival in Israel

April 26 – 30, 2016

Shitim, Route 40, Israel

It is the 27 time that Zorba the Buddha International Festival is happening in the Desert Ashram in Israel. This is a festival where all the edges meet - the great celebration of life, dancing, movement, music, deep yoga, the spirit of meditation, and the silence of the desert. Between total ecstasy and therapy, that is where the magic happens. Healing and meeting with amazing people from all over the World, openhearted encounters, connecting with oneself and with nature.

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In five days of a great variety of workshops, live music concerts, meaningful socializing, and the vast desert around, you will have no other option rather than to simply surrender to the endless beauty around you, to meet your true nature, which is nothing else than endless silence, joy, and bliss. Yes, when we are courageous enough to free our mind and spirit - the magic reveals itself.

We invite you to open up your hearts, to really hug one another, touch and be touched on physical, emotional, and spiritual levels, to let go and dance until your body is falling apart. To be the dance, and not the dancer.

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We are so used to believing that materialism stands opposed to spirituality, that the Zorba contradicts the Buddha. Let yourself prove it is wrong and fall in love with life again. When you are not afraid to shout as you never have before, to walk up to that sexy lady, you just saw dancing on the dance floor, to dive into the deep dimensions of existence, you become a whole person – Zorba the Buddha.

Zorba the Buddha festival is a celebration of the complete being. Osho, the teacher who defined the term Zorba the Buddha, determined that the new human being is one who knows how to go deep into meditation, but does not forget about celebrating life, and the joy within it. It is this combination, which makes him a whole human being, a new one, with a message.

This great idea was the source and the reason of the festival, you may become a part of.

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Now, imagine an open, wild desert landscape and a green magical oasis in its heart. Imagine a place where everything is possible: you can go to a deep mediation inside the outside of the desert, to give in to a live-trance dance, you can get inside a breathing workshop, discover how it is to get inside someone else's skin in theater workshop, or shake your body to the sounds of high-quality live concert. And if suddenly what you crave for is tea and home-made cake or cookie, there is an open seat for you in the colorful chai-shop. There is also a variety of treatments, you can choose from in the therapy area, if relaxing your body is what you wish for.

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Zorba the Buddha festival combines all of the worlds to a one whole wonderful experience. The workshops, the parties, the live concerts, the wild desert, live energies, the ultimate freedom atmosphere and the beautiful people makes this festival a one time, MUST event.

The spiritual journey begins…

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Cost:  Starting with $97/festival, camping, and parking. Tickets will be available from 01-26-16.

Questions and Answers

1. Q: Is the festival schedule April 26 - 30, 2016 final?
A: Yes, the announced dates are final.

2. Q: Do you have the preliminary program outline? The 2015 program looks very interesting and versatile, covering a wide spectrum of interests.
A: The program is now on the final development stage. We will publish the line up around the end of February.

3. Q: How many of the workshops will have English language support? How many of them will not require the verbal comprehension?
A: Zorba Festival is very friendly towards English speaking participants. Every year, we have non-Hebrew speakers coming to the festival. You may get the detailed information on the festival on our website, professionally translated to English; the featured lineup will also published in English, as available. We routinely ask our workshop leaders to provide the necessary guidance in English in case the participants require it. Most of the people, who provide support during the festival in all functional areas, speak English. In addition, as you mentioned, some of the festivals content does not require any verbal communication. Frankly, looking through the list of musicians that we are planning to host this year, we were amused ourselves to notice that only one of the bands has Hebrew language songs in their repertoire. All the rest write their songs in English.

4. Q: Do you plan workshops on the following topics: contact improvisation, free-style dance (Ecstatic, 5-rhythms, Biodanza, Dance Elementals, etc.)?
A: There are many movements & dancing workshops in the festival. Actually, there is a whole area "world", of hip-hop, contact improvisation, free movements etc. And, of course, the Four Elements dancing meditation, which is considered as one of the main events of the festival.

5. Q: What is the cost structure (early bird prices, living accommodation packages, part-time, etc.) Do you have group discounts?
A: The starting price  is 389 shekels for a ticket, and it will go up to 539 shekels at the gate (probably we will be sold out by then and will not sell tickets at the gate). There are no group discounts available. The ticket includes sleeping at the camping area. From the 26-th of January, the rooms will be available for renting. The prices will go from 1,060 shekels for a bed in a dormitory room, and up to 4,680 shekels for a 4 people private room onsite. The conversion to dollar is very simple now – just divide all the prices in shekels by 4 to get price in dollars.

6. Q: Transportation from Airport, Tel Aviv, and Beer Sheva), parking onsite (cost and availability).
A: There will be an organized bus to and from the festival; it will go through Tel Aviv and Beer Sheva.
If you want to use public transportation, there is a bus from Beer Sheva going straight to the Ashram. It is recommended to book tickets to this bus in advance. Getting to Beer Sheva from the airport is simple, as there is well developed public transportation - buses and trains. If you prefer to rent a car, there is a free parking area for the festivals participants. The no-traffic drive from the International Airport Ben-Gurion to the festival grounds is less than 3 hours.

7. Q: How hot it can be during the day, and how cold during the night?
A: The festival is on April, it is spring in the desert. Can be pretty hot, but we do not expect any extreme weather. It is always good also to have something warm to wear in case it gets colder at night.

8. Q: Can the tents and/or sleeping bags be rented onsite?
A: There are no tents or sleeping bags for rent. You have to bring your own camping equipment.

9. Q: Is the activities schedule goes around the clock?
A: The activity starts at around 7:00-8:00 o'clock in the morning, and goes late into the night.