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Self-Compassion and the Courageous Heart

Self-Compassion and the Courageous Heart

All beings thrive on kindness and yet it is often something we struggle most to offer to ourselves.

We will use our meditation and contemplation to develop a genuine sense of self-compassion and the qualities that support it, and to see how paradoxically by being kinder to ourselves we can begin to dissolve the illusion of separation and discover the heart's innate capacity for freedom.


JAYA KAREN RUDGARD began meditating in the 1980s and practised for eight years as a nun in the Thai Forest tradition in England with Ven. Ajahn Sumedho as her teacher. She is a graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training and teaches Insight Meditation and mindfulness in the UK and internationally.

Listen to one of Jaya Karen Rudgard's Talks at Spirit Rock Meditation Center on 24.11.2015: Seeing Through the Net of Illusion (Duration 47:55)

YANAI POSTELNIK has practised and studied Insight Meditation and Buddhism since 1990 and has been teaching internationally for over 20 years. He is much inspired by the Thai forest tradition and the transformative power of the natural world. Yanai is a Core Faculty member of Insight Meditation Society, Massachusetts, and he lives with his wife Catherine McGee in Devon, England.

Listen to one of Yanai Postelnik's Talks given at Gaia House on 02.09.2013: The Art of Unknowing (Duration 61:05)


Retreat Code = 19143

A = suitable for all

Mental well-being guidelines - please click here to read before booking


Before you book, please read these guidelines about mental well-being and silent retreats:

Intensive silent meditation retreats can be very nourishing; however, as they require sustained meditation practice, they also need some stability of psychological health. If you have recently (within the past year or so) experienced significant trauma or psychiatric illness, or if you are currently experiencing acute emotional distress such as serious depression or anxiety, it may not be the best time for you to attend an intensive retreat in silence. The teachers might not be able to give you the kind of individual psychological care you need at this time. A setting with more opportunities for interpersonal engagement may be more appropriate.

  • If you are currently under the care of a mental health professional, please discuss your attendance with them. You should be in a relatively stable period of mental well-being and have adequate psychological resilience to attend an intensive silent retreat.
  • Please be prepared to offer your mental health professional's contact information to the teachers on the opening day if requested.
  • If you have any questions about this, please contact: retreatmanager@gaiahouse.co.uk


Friday 26 April 2019 - Tuesday 30 April 2019 (4 nights)

Standard Rate:    £236 - Please pay this rate if you can
Sponsor Rate:        £283 - A benefactor rate, which helps others to come here on the Supported Rate
Supported Rate:     £201 - Available if the Standard Rate is too high for you
FAB Fund Rate:       £118 - For more details please see the Financial Assistance page
Young Persons Rate: £71 - For more details please see the Financial Assistance page

Extending Your Retreat = £54 per night - Conditions apply - please see box

Arrival & Departure:
  • Arrive for registration between 2-5pm on the opening day.
  • Depart after 12.30pm on the final day (or 1.30pm if staying for lunch).
  • Please only make travel bookings to fit with these times.
  • These conditions apply even if you've been to Gaia House before.
Please only book if you are able to commit to the entire retreat:
  • The teachers and staff at Gaia House require this commitment in order to respect the retreat environment and minimise disruption to others.
  • We are not able to accept bookings from people who want to arrive and/or depart outside of these times.

Note: If you are booking for yourself and someone else -
you must make a separate booking for each person.

Spaces Available

Please make your selections below

Price: from £100.00

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