In a World of Technological Chaos, Human Connection is Essential

Photo of author at Cathedral Rock in Sedona

Skift Take

A humanist movement is growing to counterbalance the prevalence of artificial intelligence and corporate groups are heeding the call.

Collaboration and connectedness are two overarching characteristics of effective teams. But this type of empowerment doesn’t happen organically. It takes nurturing. Plus, it’s more relevant than ever in a world where artificial intelligence is exploding. Human ingenuity and emotional intelligence are paramount.

Sedona Mago Center for Well-being and Retreat focuses on this and is becoming increasingly popular for corporate groups to expand and connect. It is also being used to build camaraderie amongst incentive groups.

Tucked away from Sedona’s main thoroughfares, 11 miles down a dirt road, the retreat center is surrounded by crimson-colored mountains and fragrant green junipers that make this area unique.

There is more here than meets the eye, as the center’s grounds are dotted by energy-exuding vortexes. Even skeptics can’t deny the twisting and bending of the trunks of juniper trees in these energetic epicenters.

Ilchi Lee, president of the Earth Citizens Organization and the International Brain Education Association, discovered this property. He shares his discovery in his New York Times best-seller, “The Call of Sedona: Journey of the Heart.”

In addition to Sedona, Body and Brain has offered programs in Ellenville, NY, New Zealand, Korea, the Canary Islands, and Japan. 

Sedona Mago Center Helps Create Human Connection

Set on 173 acres, the resort offers various spots for outdoor gatherings and activities. A meticulously manicured lake is circled by a sanded meditation path that many walk barefoot to connect with the Earth. Other meditation practices abound, focused on helping quiet and focus the mind.

“We help groups do things they couldn’t do before without a human, heart-level connection,” says Dami Kim, director of Body & Brain Wellness, the group behind the retreat center. “The true source of DEI is empathy, and that is what we focus on.”

Kim was part of Skift Meetings Future of the Events Industry virtual summit. Click here to see how she uses brain tapping to start her sessions.

Sedona Mago is not only a place of discovery for teams but for the self as well.  Miles of walking paths, 120 casitas and suites, a healing lake, and a dining hall that serves delicious vegetarian fare are features. Outdoor dining areas abound as hummingbirds scurry to and fro.

When it’s time to get down to business, five meeting rooms are onsite. The largest is nearly 5,000 sq. ft., and there are also 180 acres of outdoor gathering space.

Teambuilding With a Twist

Another highlight is a ropes course that takes team building to another level. Your group will try to balance a larger-than-life seesaw and shimmy through a spider web. An on-site facilitator asks questions to ignite self-discovery about why the group did what it did.

“What could you have done differently to have spurred more collaboration?” Steve Kim, head of organizational wellness and team building at Body & Brain Wellness, asked our group. “Was there anything you could have done to help your teammates accomplish the goal more efficiently?” These simple questions ignite self-analysis of your inner workings and those of your teammates.

One evening ended with sound healing, a deeply immersive, full-body experience led by Ilchibuko Todd, CEO of Body & Brain Yoga & Tai Chi. Todd leads group experiences at Sedona Mago and is an industry facilitator who speaks about the benefits of mindfulness utilizing Qi energy.

​​An afternoon was spent outside the retreat center at both Bell and Cathedral Rocks, where Todd led the group in guided meditation.

Kim also brings some of the Sedona Mago magic to corporate events. Caesars Entertainment Meetings & Events has incorporated her into several of its internal gatherings, and she is now part of the Caesars menu of wellness options for meetings and conferences, spearheaded by Reina Herschdorfer, director of marketing for national meetings and events for Caesars Entertainment Meetings & Events.

The last day of our retreat kicked off with a sunrise meditation. A labyrinth walk followed. There, in the distance, hot air balloons dotted the morning sky. As these colorful orbs rose into orbit, so did group wellness, focusing on human connection.