Meet Our Team

Our Team

Meet our team of dedicated and compassionate people who contribute their time, their knowledge and experience, and their administrative and organisational skills to look after our retreatants, our retreat space and who help Samadhi thrive.

David_johson

David Johnson

Co-Founder // Program Coordinator // Meditation Guide

David is our Founder. He is an experienced contemplative, meditator & meditation guide who has studied the mind, meditation, and Buddhism for several years. He is our primary meditation guide, podcast host, and looks after our program by organising and coordinating events.

Manuel Orozco Jimenez

Co-Founder // Retreat Coordinator // Green Lead // Yoga Teacher

He is the Co-Founder of Samadhi, a Mental Health First Aider and accredited yoga teacher. Manu’s laid-back approach and kind heart has a warming and inspiring impact on our retreatants and he is much loved by all. He is also our Green Lead, and will be the guiding force behind making Samadhi Retreat Centre sustainable and eco-friendly. 

manu_yoga_square
marie_vautravers

Marie Vautravers

Social Media Manager // Samadhi Volunteer

Marie has developed a real passion for Asian cultures through travels and readings. She enjoys long walks in the forest, practising yoga & meditation and painting. Marie is also a foodie who likes to cook and try new flavours. Born and raised in France, she is now based in the UK.

Olivia Carpenter

Content Creator // Samadhi Volunteer

Olivia is a 21 year old international business student from Kent with a passion for working out, traveling and developing new skills. On top of this working hard to get a job in marketing and working towards keeping her mental health and anxiety under control through the use of mediation and yoga.

olivia_carpenter
corby_smelt

Corby Smelt

Video Editor // Samadhi Volunteer

Hello! My name is Corby, I’m a Marketing student at the University of Kent who would love to work in Merchandising & Digital Marketing after my degree. I was born in Kent, but absolutely love to travel wherever & whenever I get the chance to. I’m a keen runner currently training for marathon to raise money for clean water

David Johnson (Dorje Gyalpo)

David is an experienced contemplative and meditation guide who has studied the mind, meditation, and Buddhism for several years. He is the Co-Founder of Samadhi, and is a qualified Mindfulness teacher, Mental Health First Aider, and an active member of the Association for Spiritual Integrity.

Background

Before discovering Buddhadharma, David recognised the unceasing suffering being experienced by himself, his family, friends, and colleagues, and the world around him. With a background in working for mental health services in the UK, he saw an issue with modern psychiatry (and to a lesser extent psychology) and its ability to actually cure mental disease and to not simply focus on suppressing symptoms. Seeing this, and with no real wisdom to find an answer or solution, he grew despondent and battled with his own depression. But, recognising that there must be answers to his own and others sufferings, he was motivated to seek out a solution or an answer, and from this he fortunately discovered Buddha’s teaching on the Four Noble Truths. He retrospectively identifies this experience as an expression of his ‘buddha nature’ or ‘primordial consciousness’ wanting to realise itself.  

David has been fortunate enough to encounter many skilled dharma teachers, and after some time studying and meditating under their guidance, he was requested to teach and share the dharma with others. Since this time, he has taught and received teachings, oral transmission, commentary, and instructions on the Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana traditions, most prominently from his primary teacher, Lama Alan Wallace.

In his own practise and teachings, David focusses on Early Buddhism and emphasises the practices of Shamatha (meditative quiescence), and it’s union with Vipassana on the Four Applications of Mindfulness and the Four Immeasurables – which presents a direct path leading to the realisation of our deepest nature and the potentials of consciousness, and closely follows how the Buddha himself attained enlightenment. He considers himself to be the fortunate student of many teachers, including his root lama, Lama Alan Wallace. Some of David’s other teachers are Drub-la Tsampa Karma, H.E. Garchen Rinpoche, Chamtrul Rinpoche,  Zopa Rinpoche, Lama Lena, Guy Armstrong, and Bhikkhu Kakmuk.

Teaching

David has taught classes and workshops internationally, and during the last few years in Spain has been focussing on his own study while engaging in retreat according to Lama Alan’s direction and instructions. In 2020, at the request of close friends, he decided to return to teaching and thus founded Samadhi, to bring these essential practices to as many people as possible. His teachings and retreats are clear & practical and he has a warm and pragmatic approach, coming from his own experience as a meditator in the 21st century. 

In an effort to help everyone uncover the pure, luminous, and peaceful nature of their mind, and discover the ancient wisdom of the Buddha, David is dedicating his life to spiritual development and his vision for The Samadhi Eco Retreat Centre, a place where people can come to engage in short and long-term retreat and live in community.