Program Listings

  • Lodge: Single Occupancy Room (13+ nights) – CAD $590.00
  • Lodge: Double Occupancy – CAD $440.00
  • Drala Cabin: Single Occupancy – CAD $560.00
  • Drala Cabin: Double Occupancy – CAD $425.00
  • Live or Staying Locally – CAD $260.00

Date & Time Details: Arrival afternoon, October 12 in time for dinner at 6:30. Departure October 15 after lunch (around 2pm).

Location: Dorje Denma Ling

Address: 2280 Balmoral Road, The Falls, NS B0K 1V0, Canada

Contact: Karen Porterfield
[email protected]
902-657-9085 ext 14

Email us about program

Joining Ancestral Inheritance with our Spiritual Path

with Ellen Korman Mains

October 12 - 15, 2023


“With the tender blade of sadness, my heart opened and an ancestral presence surrounded me. I felt the two lineage streams converge inside of me—as if my body were witness to a mysterious blessing from the meeting of my ancestors with the lineage of my unconventional Buddhist teacher. I felt its force, like the suction of a cosmic magnet connecting two worlds together through the gate of my heart.”

~ Ellen Korman Mains, “Buried Rivers: A Spiritual Journey into the Holocaust,” pages 261-261



A dimension of our lives that often goes unrecognized is the ancestral inheritance we each carry – its karmic burdens as well as its strength. Ellen Korman Mains, teacher and author of Buried Rivers: A Spiritual Journey into the Holocaustjoins us to share insights from her journey as the daughter of Holocaust survivors, of joining spiritual practice with one’s ancestral karma.

As humans, we tend to turn away from the parts of ourselves that feel uncomfortable or confusing. But as we travel along the spiritual path, we realize the importance of including all of ourselves on the journey of becoming more sane, compassionate and awake.

Instead of being a problem to be fixed, opening to our ancestral heritage can connect us with a deeper sense of our humanity, revealing resources we haven’t appreciated, and helping us to heal deep wounds.

What to Expect

Through embodied mindfulness and awareness practices, deep listening, and sharing, we will access the felt sense of our ancestral inheritance to better understand its karmic burdens as well as its gifts.

From the beginning, we will acknowledge the field of our ancestors within a larger sense of nowness, including historical and collective harms that may have been experienced, to create a space where transformation and healing are possible.

When we open to the ground of our humanity with honesty, courage, and compassion, we may naturally find ourselves touching into a realm of sacredness that can support and strengthen our journey forward as well as our relations with others.

Who Should Attend

Everyone is welcome to attend. If you are new to meditation, instruction will be provided.


Arrival Day, Thursday October 12
Please arrive sometime in the afternoon, preferably by 5 pm to get settled in. Dinner is at 6:30. Program Orientation will begin sometime between 7:30 and 7:45 pm.

October 13-15*
8:30 – 9:30: Breakfast
9:30 – 12:30: Morning Session
12:30 -2:30: Lunch & Mid-Day Break
2:30 – 6:00: Afternoon Session
6:30 -7:30: Dinner
7:30 – 9:00: Optional evening activities

* Sessions include talks, meditation, discussion, and tea breaks.
Sunday, October 15 will end with lunch and departure.
Times are approximate, and may vary slightly. A more detailed schedule will posted on arrival. 


Tuition: $200
Meal Service: $60
Accommodations: Varies by Type of Accommodation ($15 – $90 per night).

To view pricing by lodging type, visit this page.

Scholarships are available for those with financial need. Please complete the Financial Aid Form and submit to [email protected].

Useful Links

What to Bring & Expect at DDL
How to Get Here
Financial Aid Form



Ellen Korman Mains
Ellen Korman Mains is a practitioner of Inner Relationship Focusing and has been a senior teacher in the Shambhala Buddhist lineage for over four decades. A close student of Chögyam Trungpa, Rinpoche and Kanjuro Shibata Sensei XX, she has taught the Japanese art of Kyudo (Zen Archery) at Naropa University and internationally. In 2006, Ellen began traveling to Poland to explore basic goodness in the context of Holocaust. How could these co-exist? Her award-winning memoir, Buried Rivers: A Spiritual Journey into the Holocaust; (2018) explores family and religious boundaries, the impact of trauma on basic goodness, and the unexpected blessing…
Learn more about Ellen Korman Mains