Freedom & the Nervous System

with Karin Ritchie & Rhianne van der Linde

Dates: 5 – 12 June 2024
Venue: Kamala Karoo Sanctuary, Barrydale, South Africa

The time for finding our freedom is NOW.

The traumatic event is over, let us do the work and reclaim our right to choice.

In this retreat for women & men, we invite you into a gentle and profound experiential exploration of safe ways for releasing the memory of and response to trauma, whereby we reclaim renewed freedom to live fully embodied lives… personally, professionally and intimately.

The inability to be fully present where we are, is one of the symptoms of trauma.

How do we move from dissociation, over association and hyper vigilance into gentle presence exactly as and where we are?

It is remarkable how many people have had some traumatic experiences in their lives which have left them stuck in some form of incomplete defense response – whether conscious and/or unconscious. Experiences ranging from falls, accidents, neglect, direct sexual invasion to emotional incest or sexual innuendo can be too much for us to process at the time they occur.

As we’re unable to defend ourselves, we often find ourselves stuck in fight, flight or freeze. We find ourselves fixed in repeated emotional or physical responses, which leave us feeling helpless and stuck.

It is clear that the time has come to take radical responsibility for everything in our experience. To ask ourselves honestly, “Where do I not feel that I am free?”

Kamala Karoo Sanctuary - Barrydale

Situated in the quaint Klein Karoo village of Barrydale (approximately 3 hours drive from Cape Town), Kamala House Karoo Retreat is the vision and dream of owner Terry de Vries, who is best known for her labyrinth work. Designed by architect Johann Slee of Stellenbosch, every possible need has been carefully considered and his fine attention to detail invokes a calmness encouraging relaxation and reset. The buildings are surrounded by an exquisite garden designed almost from scratch by Rene Slee with meandering pathways inviting visitors to become quiet with nature. Other features include a huge deck, a rose quartz labyrinth, yoga studio, library, saltwater pool, infrared outdoor sauna, fire pit, kitchen garden and an abundant bird life.

Kamala House offers an intimate retreat space where people can rest, heal, refresh and simply be in the beauty and tranquility of nature. The luxury accommodation consists of 5 en-suite rooms in the main house, 2 en-suite garden units as well as a private garden cottage with an outside bath. French linen and silver cutlery add the finishing touches and the interiors by Terry, reflect her own unique use of colour and her special, spiritual way of seeing this world.

Visitors are invited to exhale – to release and let go – into the ground of being.

" The greatest wisdom of all lies in our body"
~Richard Rudd

“Our beautiful bodies of love carry the keys to our freedom, they are the portals to our ancient remembering of the truth of who we really are.”

~ Rhianne van der Linde

Feedback from past attendees

Your Facilitators

Karin Ritchie

Karin is a business woman, an Indian trained Kundalini yoga teacher and a practicing Trauma Healing practitioner (SEP), a subtle healing modality that focuses on the science of the nervous system and the unlocking and releasing of trauma held in the body, mind and spirit.

Based in the Garden Route of South Africa, Karin is a lover of life, a gentle warrior woman, passionate about growth and well-being.

Drawing on her journey of transformation from a traumatic life to one of grace, she seeks to create a conscious authentic life for herself and her clients. She embraces freedom from past patterns that no longer serve. Through gratitude, presence, curiosity and compassion, she witnesses and celebrates the miracles of healing.

Karin is an Indian trained practising Kundalini yoga teacher and a Trauma Healing Practitioner (SEP), a subtle healing modality that focuses on the science of the nervous system and the unlocking and releasing of trauma held in the body, mind and spirit.

As a life-long student, her studies include sexual trauma, global high, eye of the needle 1 & 2, Authentic Relationships, Conscious Communication, Mind and Meditation and Beyond Addiction. Her extensive travels include assisting in training somatic experiencing practitioners in Hong Kong and assisting a Somatic Experiencing Workshop at Omega Institute in New York with Dr Peter Levine.

In partnership with Shakti Shiva Academy, Karin facilitates an experiential retreat, Freedom & The Nervous System, which is an exploration of safe ways for releasing the memory and response to trauma.

Specialities: Trauma including Sexual Trauma, Authentic Relationships, Conscious Communication, Addictions, Somatic Experiencing.

Learn more about Karin at

Rhianne van der Linde

An avid alchemist and a dedicated dreamer with a depth of knowledge and experience of transforming the mundane into the magical, my personal explorations have led me into working with dreams, as a companion to those busy with their journey of dying, exploring the breath as a thread connecting us directly to source & processing and ritual with groups in wild nature.

Rhianne walked alongside Shakti managing all of her in-person workshops and retreats from 2010 until her death in 2017.

Being in Shakti’s flight path has been one of the greatest gifts in my life and as principal and senior faculty at the Shakti Shiva Academy, I remain totally in-service to the co-creation of intimate online and retreat spaces for vulnerable & embodied sharing.

Truth as emptiness and Truth as embodiment – as consciousness expressing in form, in beautiful breathing bodies of love…it is this language of the heart, this feminine language of embodiment & feeling that I am most interested in learning and sharing.

Specialities: Breathwork, Dreamwork, Shadow Exploration & Integration, Sexual Awakening for Women, Embodiment and Somatic practices, Body De-armouring.

Learn more about Rhianne at

During this retreat you will...

  • Get a basic experiential understanding of how the nervous system processes traumatic experiences
  • Experience and witness individual sessions within the group which will demonstrate the theory that we’ve discussed leading to an experiential healing and understanding – because our nervous systems are highly social, we will experience co regulation towards more resilience and freedom and connection to our own bodies
  • Enjoy deeper connection with yourself and an expanded capacity for deeper intimacy with others
  • Open to a deeper level of energetic experience
  • Experience a natural expansion of consciousness

Retreat Details

Dates & Times:

Starting with dinner @ 6pm on 5 June 2024.
We’ll enjoy a brunch followed by a closing session to complete by 1pm on 12 June 2024.


Our menu will be vegetarian (gluten and sugar-free). Our chef Lolla Odendaal has a reputation for delicious, nurturing & nourishing home cooked country food using organic, seasonal and locally sourced fresh ingredients. Vegan diets are easily catered for.


A shuttle bus from Cape Town to Kamala House Karoo Retreat (return) can be arranged at an additional cost depending on how many participants require this service.

“The body always attempts to show us what we haven’t fully felt.”

~ Shakti Malan


Prices include all accommodation, meals & facilitation || Prices are per person (sharing or single) All accommodation is en suite

From: R7,739 / month for 3 months

  • Participation is limited to 14 people
  • Payment is required to secure your place. (Choose single payment, 2 x payments or 3 x payments)
  • We require a minimum number of 8 people participating to host the retreat.
  • If the minimum number of people required do not sign up, then all payments will be refunded in full.
  • Completion of payment is due by: 31 May 2024
  • You can read our full terms & conditions here.

If you have any questions, we invite you to schedule a discovery call with us.

“Trauma is not what happens to us, but what we hold inside in the absence of an empathetic witness.”

~ Peter A. Levine

Additional activities included in the retreat program:

Terry de Vries – our retreat venue host – will share the following with us:

  • a guided labyrinth walk

  • two yin yoga classes

  • group sound healing session

Additional treatments available for your own account:

Sound healing with Terry de Vries

Terry is a powerful sound healer. Using Tibetan and crystal singing bowls, shanti chimes, a drum, monochord bed and her incredible voice, she offers one-on-one sound healing sessions and is available for anyone wanting to book a session in their free time.

Myo-facial Release with Tina-Marie

Tina-Marie Harsant, is a myo-fascial practitioner using the Lyno Method working with clients to restore freedom of movement & resolve chronic pain & injuries, and supporting them to live life to its fullest capacity. Her outlook on all pain and injury, is that all things psychological, physical and spiritual are linked. She has a background in TSR- Therapeutic Stress Release, is a certified Touch For Health practitioner and is currently in the process of completing her studies in Kinesiology.

Freedom & The Nervous System


Who is this retreat for?

This retreat is for people who wish to enter more deeply into their own healing process and also for practitioners who are interested in deepening their skills and understanding of the nervous system and it’s innate capacity to support our wellness. This retreat is open to both male and female bodied beings. Single or partnered. Whatever your relationship status, and however your sexuality expresses, you’re welcome just as you are. 

Yes, you’re welcome to participate on your own.  Whether you’re single or in partnership / relationship, this retreat is designed as a solo experience alongside and together with others.  You will have the opportunity to deepen in intimacy with yourself and with others. There are solo, partner, small group and whole group practices included in the retreat program.

Yes, please take your time to complete the application form as it is of great support in enabling us to co-create a powerful and rich experience for all of us.  We hugely appreciate your care & consideration with this.

  • Travel to and from Kamala Karoo Sanctuary, Barrydale, South Africa
  • VISA fees if applicable
  • Additional Treatments
  • Gratuities
  • Gifts, curio’s & items of a personal nature
  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Fully facilitated retreat programme including individual sessions within the group context, guided and spontaneous movement meditations, yin yoga, awakened breath, group sound healing session and a guided labyrinth walk

  • Accommodation of your choice (single or shared)

  • All meals (vegetarian)

  • The closest airport is Cape Town International.
  • The drive from Cape Town to Kamala Karoo Sanctuary is approx. 3hrs.
  • We will connect all participants for lift sharing purposes.
  • A shuttle bus from Cape Town to Kamala Karoo Sanctuary (return) can be arranged at an additional cost depending on how many participants require this service.
  • Cancellation up to and inc. 29 February 2024: Full refund (less 5% admin/banking fees)
  • Cancellation up to and inc. 31 March 2024: 50% refund
  • Cancellation up to and inc. 30 April 2024: 25% refund
  • Should you cancel after 30 April 2024: no refund will be due to you and you will forfeit any payment made
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