The Meaningful Life

A Nine-Month Intensive Class

with George Haas

September 2016 – June 2017

(no class in February 2016)

2nd & 4th Sundays, 2-4pm

Starts September 11


“We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” ~ T.S. Eliot

“What makes life meaningful?” I would answer, “Being authentically yourself in your relationships with other people and in the pursuit of your life’s work.”

This course looks at using your meditation practice as a way to come into radical acceptance of yourself as you are now, and using John Bowlby’s Attachment Theory as a model of how we connect with other people, how we can be completely ourselves in our relationships with others and with our work – living a meaningful life.

The meditation techniques offered in this 9-month intensive will be specific, simple and easy-to-do, so whether you already have an established practice or are just beginning you can benefit.

The nine-month intensive will include two classes per month on the 2nd and 4th Sundays,  (20 total), from 2-4pm, at the Against The Stream Buddhist Mediation Society center in Hollywood, and two one-on-one interviews per month with a mentor via Skype, and Morning Meditation (a live guided-meditation six mornings a week via conference call).

So often with shorter class series, there comes a point where the training offered exceeds the mediation skills of the student, and the instruction becomes a seed for later exploration. With the ten-month intensive, the meditator will be able to develop the meditation skills needed to directly experience the insight offered as we move through the curriculum, so whether you already have an established practice or are just beginning you can benefit.

The classes are videotaped so if you miss a class you can keep up with the curriculum.

Class size is limited to 40 brick-and-mortar students. If you live outside the Los Angeles area, you can take the class remotely substituting the videotaped classes for the brick-and-mortar classes, meeting with your mentor via Skype and using Morning Meditation. We will accept 10 remote students.

The cost of the class is $2,700 (10% off if paid in full). The tuition can be paid monthly with $500 down and $245 per month for 9 months on a recurring charge on a credit or debit card. The cost for remote students is $2350 (10% off if paid in full). The remote tuition can be paid monthly with $500 down and $206 per month for 9 months on a recurring charge on a credit or debit card. People using a monthly payment plan are obligated to pay the full amount of the tuition whether the course is completed or not. Cost for current mentees is $1,350 (or $150 per month). No refunds after the first class.

The Meaningful Life – Intensive is a Theravada Buddhist meditation class and while we use psychology-based material in the class, TML is not a form of psychotherapy or a suitable substitute or alternative for psychotherapy.

The Meaningful Life – Intensive can bring up difficult intrapersonal material and you may find that the support offered in the class is not enough to keep you emotionally regulated, so for some people the additional support of an outside psychotherapist is recommended, and is the responsibility of the student to organize.



Some scholarship funds have become available. Please CLICK HERE to apply.


GeorgeGeorge Haas began his path with a period of light-weight spiritual seeking (and heavy-duty drug and alcohol use). In 1978, he began a serious exploration of the 11th step of the 12-Step tradition, working primarily with concentration to reduce the anxiety of living sober. In an effort to make sense out of, and live with, the mounting AIDS deaths of the 1980s, Mr. Haas began walking the Red Road (traditional Native American spiritual practices) and reading Buddhist texts. Moving to Los Angeles from Manhattan in 1992 to work in the film and photography trades, George began sitting Vipassana at Ordinary Dharma in Venice, and reading extensively. In 1998, he began study with his current teacher, Shinzen Young, and Vipassana Support International, where he is now a senior facilitator. George teaches regularly at ATS. He offers a guided-meditation via conference call Monday through Saturday mornings, 7:30-7:55am, and teaches privately via Skype, phone, email, text & IM, which Los Angeles Magazine included on its Best of LA 2011 list as “Best Online Buddhist Meditation.” For more information check out his website: or call him at 213-820-7800.


BarryJulia Barry received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University in 2013 and is a registered Marriage and Family Therapy Intern (Intern #79365) currently in practice at the Women’s Clinic and Family Counseling Center under the supervision of Angela Cordova Dunning, LMFT 46905. Julia works with both men and women with an emphasis on complex trauma as well as eating disorders and intimacy disorders utilizing a combination of psychodynamic and behavioral therapies as well as mindfulness and body based therapeutic techniques. Julia is a 500 hour Yogaworks certified yoga teacher and has been studying and practicing yoga and meditation for the past 12 years. Julia has been studying meditation exclusively with George Haas through the Meaningful Life Intensive for the past year and continues to be inspired by the intersection of attachment theory, neurobiology and mindfulness.


CrottyChris Crotty is a Buddhist teacher, Hatha yoga teacher, mentor, and adjunct professor in alternative medicine. He is dedicated to nurturing and sustaining the insight of contemplative practice in a way that is accessible to contemporary lifestyles, while honoring tradition. He offers classes, workshops and retreats, and one-to-one mentoring to individuals, young adults, and families motivated to understand how yoga and Buddhist practice can foster an awareness that serves both the reduction of suffering and the maturation of an authentic life.
Chris’s work focuses on the practical integration of Theravada Buddhism’s emphasis on awakening and ethics with the Mahayana ideal of compassion and service, and the synthesis of practice and study. He is also influenced by the fields of ecopsychology, attachment theory, and contemplative and palliative approaches to sickness, aging, and end-of-life care.
Chris has practiced meditation since 1998; his main practice is Vipassana (insight). He has trained with Burmese meditation masters, western monastics of the Zen and Thai Forest tradition, and senior western Vipassana teachers. He has received mentoring from Matthew Daniel, co-founder of Insight Meditation Center Newburyport and Noah Levine, founder of Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society, under whom he currently trains through a long-term teacher training program. Chris’s yoga combines yin, viniyoga, and kripalu, with trauma-sensitive methodologies and mindfulness. His classes blend slow vinyasa forms with long static holds, balancing physical strength and meditative awareness.
In 2013 Chris founded Harbor Yoga in Gloucester, MA, providing yoga and Buddhist practice for experienced students as well as beginners, and those with diverse learning goals and health challenges. Chris has taught at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health’s Institute for Integrated Leadership, the Trauma Center in Brookline, MA, and was active in yoga research with Kripalu Center’s Institute for Extraordinary Living. Chris is currently a Hospice volunteer.


RyterbandJason Ryterband is a mindfulness facilitator in Los Angeles. He provides practical, relationship-centric guidance, leveraging mindfulness tools to cultivate empathy and enrich interpersonal connections. Using a combination of traditional Vipassana meditation techniques and modern psychological research, Jason empowers people to move toward more secure, authentic ways of being in the world.

Jason’s offerings include ongoing classes and workshops around LA, one-on-one mentoring, and a growing body of free, online mindfulness resources.  He also provides support on silent retreats for Inward-Bound Mindfulness Education, Against The Stream Buddhist Meditation Society, and meditation teacher Shinzen Young.

Jason has completed a year-long certification in mindfulness facilitation under Noah Levine and JoAnna Harper at Against The Stream.  He has been training in meditation mentorship with George Haas since 2014.  Jason has received facilitation training from meditation teachers Shinzen Young and Deborah Eden Tull, and he has practiced 5Rhythms movement meditation with Kate Shela since 2011.  Jason has an extensive background in computer science, music, and the performing arts, with an engineering degree from the University of Pennsylvania.  Since 2008, he has logged over 2500 hours of formal practice and 92 days of silent retreat.  Feel free to visit his website for more information:


BlakeBlake Abramovitz has been teaching Vinyasa Flow Yoga in Venice, California for five years, and meditating most of his life in one form or another. In yoga he has trained extensively with Hala Khouri and Julian Walker in their psychology-informed Awakened Heart Embodied Mind training; with Saul David Raye in his devotional Atma Yoga style; and with Matthew Cohen, Brad Keimach and Jason Frahm. He has also practiced vipassana meditation for six years and attended over twenty silent retreats with George Haas, Shinzen Young, Jack Kornfield, Noah Levine, Wes Nisker and Trudy Goodman. He has trained closely for five years with George Haas and is currently honored to be working as a meditation mentor under his supervision. Blake believes passionately in the transformative power of spiritual practice, and as a longtime poet, playwright and actor, also remains fiercely devoted to creativity as a spiritual path. To learn more about Blake, visit