The Path of Beauty, The Refuge of Placelessness

Sep 27-29/30 2024, St Francis Retreat Center, San Juan Bautista, California
Kabir and Camille Helminski
with Amir Etemadzadeh, Sufi musician, percussionist, and composer, accompanied by Narin Etemadzadeh, percussionist and vocalist

A retreat can be a time of healing, a reset, a vibrational shift. This is a time to experience the knowledge and practice of awakening spiritual perception, purifying the self, understanding the cosmic nature of Love, living with humility and inner freedom.

Our souls long for a deep shift… through sacred music and movement, through practices of silence, stillness, and remembrance, through contemplating the jewels of wisdom in Rumi and Sufism, and near the day of Rumi’s birth, September 30th.

In the blessed atmosphere of Saint Francis Retreat Center, in San Bautista, California, we will explore the possibility of bringing beauty into our lives and into the world. At the same time, in the midst of today’s overload of images, impressions, and information, the heart longs to experience the refuge of holy placelessness. As Rumi says: “My place is the placeless, my trace is the traceless.”

Join us for these days of spiritual practice, dialog, music, and a heart connection with other sincere seekers.


Camille Hamilton Adams Helminski has been a student of the Quran and the traditions of the Prophets for more than 40 years. She works to provide more in depth understanding of the Mevlevi tradition, and has produced some of the first modern English translations of Jalaluddin Rumi, rendered a significant portion of the Qur’an into English, compiled the wisdom of female Muslim saints in the now classic guide, Women of Sufism, and offered poetic reflections on the Divine Attributes in Ninety-Nine Names of the Beloved, Intimations of the Beauty and Power of the Divine. Her lastest offering on The Way of Mary, Maryam, Beloved of God, highlights the twelve stations of Mary and her weaving through the Abrahamic faiths.

Shaikh Kabir Helminski is the co-director of The Threshold Society, a non-profit educational foundation rooted within the traditions of Sufism and inspired by the life and work of Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi. He is an author, a translator of the works of Rumi and others, and a shaikh of the Mevlevi Order which traces back to Rumi. His books on spirituality have been published in at least twelve languages. Kabir is especially interested in finding a contemporary, creative approach to Sufism without compromising the authenticity of tradition. He has toured as shaikh with the Whirling Dervishes of Turkiye bringing Sufi culture to more than 100,000 people. See more about Kabir and Camille’s work here.

Amir Etemadzadeh is a Middle Eastern musician, instructor, performer, and composer. Born and raised in Iran, he received extensive musical education throughout his youth. After arriving in the U.S. in 2003, he expanded his instrumental repertoire, learning a variety of percussion traditions from around the world. Amir believes in the healing and expressive power of music for students and masters alike. Through this dedication to the holistic power of musical education, Amir strives and continues to build a loving community of innovative and empowered artists. See more about his work here.


St. Francis Retreat Center, a ministry of the Franciscan Friars of the St. Barbara Province, located in historic San Juan Bautista, California, provides a peaceful and contemplative environment conducive for renewal of mind, body and soul. See more about the venue here.


3 nights
Friday afternoon until Monday lunchtime:
$800 single ensuite (all inclusive, limited)
$700 double/twin ensuite (all inclusive)
$360 Commuter (meals only)

2 nights
Friday afternoon until Sunday lunchtime:
$550 single ensuite (all inclusive, limited)
$500 double/twin ensuite (all inclusive)
$240 Commuter (meals only)