ONLINE • Living in the Challenge Zone: An Insight Meditation Retreat

David Chernikoff

October 30–November 1, 2020

  • $50.00 – Subsidized Tuition
  • $100.00 – Standard Tuition
  • $150.00 – Supporting Tuition
There’s a saying in India that “The world is like a grinding stone. It will either grind you up, or it will turn you into something beautiful.” In this unprecedented time generated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the many other powerful changes we’ve recently experienced, this aphorism takes on an entirely new level of meaning.
This online retreat is an invitation to quiet your mind, open your heart, and explore the ways in which the difficulties in our lives can become a curriculum for awakening when met with wisdom and compassion. Sitting and walking meditation practice will be the centerpiece of this weekend. There will be meditation instruction, dharma talks, experiential exercises, and opportunities for discussion. At this retreat, you will learn to turn disheartening “problems” into enlivening “challenges” and to celebrate the blessings of our imperfect lives.

Daily Schedule

  • Friday, October 30: 7 – 9 pm Mountain Time (6-8 pm PT, 8-10 pm CT, 9-11 pm ET)
  • Saturday, October 31:  9 am – 5 pm Mountain Time (8 am – 4 pm PT, 10 am – 6 pm CT, 11 am – 7 pm ET)
  • Sunday, November 1:  9 am – 12:30 pm Mountain Time (8 – 11:30 am PT, 10 am – 1:30 CT, 11 am – 2:30 pm ET)

Of course, you may join from any timezone.

Tiered Pricing & Scholarships

This program offers tiered pricing to accommodate most instances of financial need. If you would be unable to attend at the subsidized tuition rate, we do have scholarships available. Deadline for scholarship applications is Thursday, October 22. Please apply here.

If you are able to register at the “Supporter” level, thank you for supporting the ability for others to attend this retreat.

Teacher Payment and the Practice of Dāna

As a teacher in the Insight Meditation tradition, David is accustomed to being paid in accordance with the traditional Buddhist practice of dāna, a Pali term meaning “generosity freely given.” His intention is for all registration income for this retreat to go to Shambhala Mountain Center, which is currently in great need of financial support. At the end of the retreat, participants will be invited to offer a free-will financial contribution to David as an expression of appreciation for the teachings and to support the teacher. In that every participant’s situation is unique, there is no suggested amount, and offerings of any size will be gratefully accepted. SMC understands that dharma teachers in the West need to make a living, and that these are difficult times for many of us. SMC has therefore offered to supplement David’s compensation if it doesn’t reach an agreed upon minimum, so that he can continue offering the dharma for all of us. To make your dāna offering, please click here:


The dharma talk on Saturday will be recorded and will be posted on David’s website after the program.

Registration Deadline

Registration will close at 12pm on Friday Oct 30th.

About the Teacher

David Chernikoff

David Chernikoff began the study and practice of meditation in 1971 and started teaching insight meditation in 1988. His teaching has been influenced by senior teachers from the Insight Meditation Society and Spirit Rock, Tibetan teachers with whom he studied during a 3-year stay in Nepal, and spiritual guides from other contemplative traditions, most notably Ram Dass, Father Thomas Keating, Zen teacher Yvonne Rand, and Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi. David taught psychology and meditation for many years at Naropa University. He currently serves as one of the guiding teachers of the Insight Meditation Community of Colorado and has a private practice in Boulder, Colorado. David teaches retreats and workshops throughout the U.S. Learn more at

Program Details

This virtual retreat will be conducted on Zoom. After registration, you will receive an email with simple instructions for downloading and using Zoom on your computer, laptop, or other device. At least 24 hours before the start time, a link to join the retreat will be sent to you via email.