Sedona Mago Retreat is a place for spiritual awakening and holistic healing, operated by Tao Fellowship, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is “Love Humanity, Love the Earth.”
Tao Fellowship was established in 1998 to promote the spirit of Tao as universal principles of harmonious living and a peaceful world. The tradition of Taoism that Tao Fellowship represents is Sun Tao (仙道), the Korean Taoist tradition with 10,000-year history. Sun (仙) is the combination of human (人) and mountain (山), meaning a human being living in harmony with nature. Sedona Mago Retreat is its primary means of educating the public about the principles and practices of Sun Tao.
As a spiritual organization seeking interfaith friendship, we believe that peace and harmony can be realized through our connection with Earth; without which, humanity cannot survive. Our common goal is sustainability of earth and all of its inhabitants, now and for future generations.
Founder Ilchi Lee
Ilchi Lee initiated the spiritual movement of enlightenment that eventually contributed to the formation of Tao Fellowship. Since its establishment, Ilchi Lee also helped the organization as a member of its board of directors. Currently he doesn’t have any position or title in the organization. However, he still loves to meet members of Tao Fellowship and gives lectures occasionally. This is part of his life-long endeavor to encourage world peace by helping people develop the positive potentials of their brains.
For years, Ilchi Lee has strived to help thousands of people worldwide enhance their physical, mental, and spiritual capacity by honoring and harnessing the energy of their brains. His efforts started in the early 1980’s, with the creation of the first Dahn Yoga studio in Seoul. Since then, he has formed several non-profit and for-profit organizations, authored over 30 books, including New York Times Bestseller “The Call of Sedona,” and organized numerous events to help bring that vision to fruition.
Born in Korea in 1950, Ilchi Lee struggled through school until he started asking the questions that most mattered to him: who am I, and what is my purpose here?
His inquiry led him down a path of study that included spiritual practices of Tao, clinical pathology, physical education, and oriental medicine. Ilchi Lee was fascinated with the interaction between the human body and the psyche, and focused his attention on both Western and Eastern medicinal wisdom. Through intense personal training and hours of study, he started to see a glimmer of the philosophy that would later form the basis of the Tao Fellowship, among his other endeavors.
For Ilchi Lee, the true potential of humanity is intimately linked to the potential of the human brain. Tao Fellowship seeks to help develop and amplify the spiritual and peaceful nature of the human brain.
President Steve Kim
Steve Kim, is the president of Tao Fellowship and Executive Director of Earth Citizens Organization (ECO).
When asked why the organization is named the Earth Citizens Organization, Steve responds that everyone on the planet naturally identifies themselves as an Earth Citizen. By doing so, each person accepts the whole planet as his or her personal concern. The Earth Citizen Leadership program was established to help people practice mindful living. When people awaken to individual and mindful choices that are good for one another and our beautiful planet, Steve explains that it will eventually lead to improved sustainability on a global scale.
Sayong Kim, COO of Sedona Mago Retreat
Sayong Kim became the COO of Sedona Mago Retreat in 2002. Earlier in his life, Sayong developed sciatic neuralgia and suffered with back pain for over ten years. While various Western and Eastern healing modalities helped, they could not cure his pain. He started practicing Dahn Yoga in Korea, (now called Body and Brain Yoga), and his back healed in less than three months. This changed the course of his life. He quit the Ph.D. course he was enrolled in and set out to become an instructor of the Tao Healing Practice. While practicing Body and Brain Yoga in Korea, he heard about Sedona and came to Sedona Mago Retreat for the first time in 1996. Ilchi Lee, Dahn Yoga founder and the author of The Call of Sedona
, was his guide at the time and Sayong was very impressed with his teachings. He worked for Body and Brain Yoga as a Dahn master and program trainer in Phoenix before accepting the position as COO of Sedona Mago Retreat. Sayong understood that the activities of this non-profit organization could help people to live happier and healthier lives.
Sayong’s goal is to share Tao principles and practices and to develop Sedona Mago Retreat into the top retreat center in the country.
A Note from Sayong:
After becoming COO of Sedona Mago Retreat, I felt a huge weight on my shoulders as I contemplated the enormity of the job I had undertaken. One day, I climbed to the top of a small mountain overlooking our retreat center. I looked down on our beautiful land and spontaneously raised my hands between my eyes to gaze down on the land. From this vantage point, I could cover the entire property with my small hands! In that moment, I realized that this organization is not a burden and that I could manage it well. I made up my mind to grow this organization and to take good care of its sacred land. Now, 13 years have passed and I am more committed than ever to our beautiful mission to Love Humanity, Love the Earth.
Every morning I look out my window at the surrounding mountains and realize that I am in one of the most beautiful places in the world. I feel very grateful for the circumstances and surroundings around me. I am aware that all our activities are for the grand vision of Sedona Mago Retreat. This awareness helps me come out of my small ego-box and live moment to moment. The place where I am and the vision that I focus on are a lighthouse for my journey.
I do many hours of office work every day, have numerous meetings each week and offer several different types of programs, depending on the schedule. Like any other COO of an organization, I can experience a lot of stress. Whenever I feel stressful and negative emotions, I try to smile for a few seconds to release the heavy energy and practice the simple Solar Body exercises that Ilchi Lee teaches. While I am doing these exercises, I feel the energy of Sedona helps me to awaken more deeply. Every day can be stressful but as long as I do Solar Body exercises and am in Sedona, I am sure that I can manage myself better than in any other location.
“Enlightenment is a choice.” This is a message I received from my teacher. Everything is a choice. My life is also my choice and the responsibilities I have are a result of that choice.
I urge you to come to Sedona at least one time in your life, especially when you feel down because of your life’s issues. For me, the nature of Sedona is special. Here, I release my worries and concerns easily and regain my inner power for my vision and goals.
I want to recover my true nature with and within the work I am doing every day. Whatever I do here, whatever we do here, I want it to help people, the Earth, and future generations. Living in Sedona, I feel my true instinct to benefit all. Sedona helps me to connect more deeply to my true nature.
Every morning I pray for my soul, my family, my community, our supporters and our grand vision. And together, all Tao masters at Sedona Mago Retreat offer our prayer every morning: “May all people, all life forms, and all beings be well.”