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Spring 2020 Meditation & Yoga Retreat

April 1-5, 2020 | Home retreat "immersion in daily life"
come back
to your body
you are allowed
to rest
this very moment
is the field of merit

The world as we know it has been turned upside down. Many of us all around the world are "sheltering in place," barely leaving our homes, trying to figure out what we — and everyone else — will do to ride out the Coronavirus emergency. Work, money, school, childcare, relationships, politics... everything has changed. Let's take this moment, with all the skills and perspective we can gather, to recommit to our path. This is a beautiful time to pause, to restore our strength, release into our tenderness, and renew our skills for practice in daily life. This is a moment for home retreat. Join us.

Immersion in Daily Life

Like everyone this spring, we’ve had to cancel our planned retreat in the redwoods in response to the still-accelerating Coronavirus pandemic. We will retreat at Camp Double Bear this October, conditions willing, with the theme we were planning for the spring: mettā & samādhi. For now, in response to conditions being what they are, our focus must be on practice and wise action in daily life.

We are doing the April 1-5 retreat now as a “home retreat” conducted entirely online. The retreat will be mostly self-paced, with meditations and practice instructions to work with on your own, plus 2-3 daily group calls on the Zoom video platform. It will be structured as an online course through our website, and you’ll receive full details on how to participate when you register.

The retreat will work best for experienced practitioners of Yoga and meditation, meaning that students should be able to take themselves through simple practices of both meditation and postural Yoga without external guidance. Students will be encouraged to make as much space for being on retreat as possible, given the conditions, but everyone’s situation is different, and the various elements of the retreat can be done in any schedule that works for you. There will be a mix of live sessions on Zoom and pre-recorded practices, mostly just on audio so you’re not on your screen all day.

The focus of the retreat will be on centering, orientation, and cultivating resilience and ease of heart in challenging circumstances. We will ground our practice in the method of mindfulness of breathing known as the full-body breath, supported by somatic movement practice and gentle energy work with the Haṭha Yoga disciplines of prānāyāma and bandha.

These approaches weave into each other beautifully, joining together to unwind energy and breath through the body. We will invoke the circle of benevolent community even through the virtual space, and practice radiating the divine states of universal love (mettā), compassion (karuṇā), appreciation (muditā), and equanimity (upekkhā).

Join us for a long weekend in sacred community. We can call it “taking refuge in place.”

For details on the retreat structure we’ll use, including how we work with silence, self-guided practice, chanting, and movement, see below. And please reach out if you have questions about any aspect of the retreat or practice.

Retreat Schedule

Wed-Sun, April 1-5, 2020

All times are Pacific Daylight Time (UTC-7). Live calls in bold.

Wed 7-9pm: opening session on Zoom

Thu-Sat: daily home retreat schedule

early morning — meditation & yoga (self-guided, with optional audio)

7-8am — morning chanting & brahmavihāra practice (Zoom)

9:30-10:30am — meditation with instructions, Q & A (Zoom)

mid-morning — somatic movement & yoga (audio or video)

late morning — meditation (self-guided, with optional audio)

afternoon — self-guided practice (including doing whatever else you need to do)

7-9pm — evening chanting, talk, & discussion (Zoom)

late night — meditation (self-guided, with optional audio)

 

Sunday 9-11am: closing session on Zoom

Registration & Cost

Sliding scale: $100 – $500, with scholarships available

The retreat is priced on a wide sliding scale based on self-assessment of your income and ability to offer your resources in a way that supports those with lesser resources to participate. Please offer the highest level you can on the sliding scale (or beyond it). Your sincerity and generosity in this process directly enable us to offer the teachings of the Buddha and these beautiful traditions to everyone who might benefit from them regardless of access to wealth. If you need a scholarship or payment plan, see below.

$100 (base price): this is our break even cost
$200-500: supports others to participate
over $500: supports our sustainability in this precarious time
Payment Plans

We have pre-designed a 3 month payment plan option for you here. You will enter an amount to be charged 3 times, once per month. If you would like to further customize your installments, please email us and we can arrange that for you.

Scholarships

No one turned anyone away for lack of resources, both for this retreat and future retreats. Please complete the application below to request a scholarship. 

Cancellation

Email us here if you register then need to cancel.

Testimonials from past retreats

Scholarship Support for the 2020 Retreats

We’re grateful to be able to offer all of our teaching events in a full Gift Economy model, with scholarships available for all who need them. The Gift Economy structure, which you can read more about here, depends completely on the generosity of the community to be sustainable. And when community comes together, it works! The system of   giving called dāna has sustained the Buddhist monastic Saṅgha for millenia.

We need your help to continue offering teachings in this radically open way, particularly to be able to offer scholarships for retreat practice. Click the link below (or here) to offer your support, and to build a strong and sustainable foundation as we grow into a vibrant community of engaged practitioners.

Gifts from students and community members in 2019 made it possible for us to plan two retreats this year, and continue to build an online resource for dedicated students around the world. Practitioners on every continent except Antarctica (as far as I know) have joined our Tuesday night Satsang livestreams, listened to talks and meditations, and taken the History of Yoga course. It’s been such a pleasure to make connections with dedicated students in all these places, and discuss together the teachings of the Buddha around how to meet our communal moment with wisdom and grace.

Supporting students to attend retreat affordably can be deeply satisfying and an integral part of your own practice. As the Buddha said in the Dhammapada, “The gift of dhamma exceeds all other gifts” (Dhp 354). Generosity is a transformative discipline in our own practice which bears fruit even more powerfully when it supports practice for others.

We’re now set up to accept both one-time and ongoing monthly gifts, which help tremendously in guaranteeing a base of support through the year. Thank you so much for your practice, and for your generosity that makes teaching in this way possible.

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