Co-founders of Human Sun Institute, Saniel and Linda have made it their life’s work to bring embodied awakening to a global audience. Their breakthrough approach has taken enlightenment from remote temples of the spiritual elites to the towns, households, and workplaces of people around the world.
And, through their long-term marriage and their teaching and coaching partnership, they model a relationship of awakened mutuality between equals that is rare and much-needed in our time.
This orientation of equality pervades their lives and work. They naturally relate to everyone, including those they coach and teach and other living beings, in a spirit of simple, essential peership.
In addition to endorsements and personal support from Ken Wilber, Saniel and Linda’s highly original work has received strong appreciations from Rick Hanson, Ph.D., the late Terry Patten, Peter Russell, Larry Dossey, M.D., Jean Houston, Stephen Dinan and Devaa Haley-Mitchell, Roger Walsh, M.D., John Dupuy, and other teachers, authors, and thought leaders.
Saniel Bonder was an Honorary National Scholar at Harvard, earning a B.A. in Social Relations. He has devoted his adult life first to a 20+ year spiritual quest and then to "democratizing enlightenment" by transmitting and teaching this work for more than three decades.
As a prolific author, teacher, and coach, Saniel has helped high-performing teams and hundreds of individuals achieve their greatest potential. His books include Waking Down, Healing the Spirit/Matter Split, Great Relief, and The White-Hot Yoga of the Heart. He’s on LinkedIn and Facebook. He plays flutes, loves golf (though he doesn’t get to play enough), and has recently gotten passionate about weight training.
The process of awakening, growth, and ongoing integration that Saniel founded and he and Linda have developed together, with others’ help, is best known as Waking Down in Mutuality®, also Waking Down®. Now its overall name is the Human Sun HEART Work. Along with Waking Down, it includes other specific trainings such as The White-Hot Yoga of the Heart, The Tantra of Trust, and The HEART-Force of Destiny. All of these contribute to Saniel and Linda’s renown as among the earliest and still quite active pioneers in the emergent field of embodied awakening.
Leading a Waking Down workshop in the UK, 2009
"Congratulations, Saniel, on your 30th awakening anniversary at the end of 2022. It was 25 years for me as of that Thanksgiving, and it still astonishes me. Hard to believe that it’s been that long. Talk about well-marinated. I still smile when I hear people going on these days about embodiment this and embodiment that. I’m proud that we were instrumental in seeding that word into the modern ecosystem, no less for publishing Waking Down and helping to get that expression out into the world. I’ve always been honored to have been a part of that, and to have been with you all then."
— Jon Mattingly was an early Waking Down student and teacher and the former Chief Operating Officer at Mt. Tam Awakenings, then Saniel and Linda's publishing company
Described by Ken Wilber as “a brilliant teacher in her own right,” Linda Groves-Bonder has personally assisted many individuals into stable whole-being awakeness. She is Saniel’s wife and sole co-founder and partner in their Human Sun Institute and its current publishing and outreach division, Human Sun Media. An awakened co-creator of their offerings since the mid 1990s, Linda has contributed central expressions of the teachings. These include Six-Step Recognition Yoga, Active Conscious Dreaming, and Conscious Skillful Will.
A former professional artist, singer/songwriter, and actress, Linda holds a B.S. in Art Education from Ball State University. Her solo albums as a singer are I’m Here, featuring jazz standards and her own original songs, and Joy of Being, her original non-verbal vocal toning.
As a child Linda cared deeply for all life and creation. Since her awakening in 1996, her HEART-realization has become an existential empathic immediacy, moving her to serve the hungry or hurting hearts of all creatures. As the mother in so many ways of Waking Down in Mutuality and the other trainings in the Human Sun HEART Work, Linda exemplifies and uniquely radiates the HEART-current of conscious love.
In all its expressions, the Human Sun HEART approach conveys a remarkable capacity to “greenlight,” recognize, and integrate both our shadow and our light. And it prompts us to further unify and developmentally refine how we show up in all the material and psycho-spiritual, internal and external, and personal and collective dimensions of our lives.
Like any other democratic initiative, Saniel and Linda’s work has had its challenges and difficulties. Even so, its overall impact for so many people has been wonderfully empowering and liberating.
Working both together and individually, Saniel and Linda have eased the hearts and brightened the souls of many thousands. They've helped hundreds of people worldwide realize boundless Spirit in unshakable, natural unity with their everyday, material lives and relationships. And they've taught and mentored dozens who've gone on to become potent independent teacher-transmitters, inspired artists, scientists, academics, leaders, activists, and other tireless workers for the greater good.
Our 2018 White-Hot Yoga Heart Team
Yet Saniel and Linda both feel that their greatest contribution is only now taking shape — through their “A Million Hearts Illumined — 10 Year Vision.” (See Vision page.) As improvisational artists of transformation, they are natural collaborators in what they invoke and see as an emergent age of the HEART now germinating around the world.
Both Saniel and Linda are Founding Members of Ken Wilber’s Integral Institute and Charter Members of his Integral Spiritual Center. They were featured teachers and speakers at all three Integral Spiritual Experience events in 2008-10 and at various conferences on consciousness, nonduality, and healing, and are faculty members of The Shift Network. They are now increasingly sought-after guests on leading-edge podcasts.
They enjoy close relationships with both their families and are proud of their seven nephews and nieces. They’re also Hunka (adopted relative) sister and brother to members of the Crow Creek tribe of the Lakota Nation based in South Dakota.
Saniel and Linda live outside Sonoma, CA, in a home surrounded by corrals, pastures, and vineyards, near beautiful rolling hillsides. They have two beloved cats (their “feline felons, convicted on multiple counts of criminal cuteness”), dozens of plants, and most every day Linda feeds hundreds of birds.
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