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Abiding with a Heart Imbued with Love

Online retreat with Catherine McGee assisted by Gail Aylward

Friday, 30 April – Monday, 3 May 2021


For anybody who feels a connection to Gaia House and/or the Insight Meditation tradition. Some previous experience of meditation will be helpful.


CATHERINE McGEE has been teaching Insight Meditation at Gaia House and internationally since 1997. Her teaching emphasises working with perceptions of the body on the path of awakening and in the healing of the individual and collective crises of our times. She is an advisor to One Earth Sangha. Between 2014 and 2020 Catherine collaborated with Rob Burbea in shaping and teaching a Soulmaking Dharma.

Here is a link to Catherine’s reflection on the third foundation of mindfulness - mindfulness of mind, on day five of a meditation retreat.

Third foundation of mindfulness – mindfulness of mind (Duration 51:21).

Assisted by:

GAIL AYLWARD. Gail began her Insight Meditation practice in1994 in Bodhgaya, India. She has attended many silent Insight Meditation retreats since, in India and Europe, integrating her practice with parenting and family life. In 2005 she co-founded Moulin de Chaves meditation centre in SW France. Gail has recently been invited to train as a teacher in the Buddhist Insight Tradition. She also teaches yoga and is a long term student and teacher in training of the Diamond approach, founded by AH Almaas.

Retreat description

In this online retreat we will explore ways of practising with the body to cultivate restfulness, steadiness, nourishment and a coming home with our body. As we learn to ‘abide’ more deeply we will explore the beautiful qualities of heart; loving-kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity. Recognising both what impedes these natural attributes of the heart and what supports them to emerge, gives us more freedom to find and wholeheartedly take our place in the world.


Please intend to come to all of the practice periods named as 1. 2. and 3 on each of the days.
If you need to miss one, the recordings will be uploaded for you to listen to and catch up.

Please come to the opening session on Friday 30 April where more details of the structure and schedule will be given during the first part of the meeting.

All times shown are in British Summer Time (BST, GMT+1)

Friday, 30 April

9.00am Log in for 9.15am start

       9.15am-12.30pm Opening session and whole morning practice period

(with sitting, walking, lying and movement meditations and instructions – walking meditation periods off line or on line for support if you wish and optional short sangha inquiry)

2         3.30pm-4.30pm   Practice period

3         6.30pm-8.00pm   Practice period

Saturday and Sunday, 1-2 May

Morning sitting 7.15-7.45am

       9.15am-12.30pm  Whole morning practice period

(with sitting, walking, lying and movement meditations and instructions – walking meditation periods off line or on line for support if you wish – Optional groups for practice questions and exploration)

2         3.30pm-4.30pm   Practice period

3         6.30pm-8.00pm   Practice period

Evening Sit 8.30-9.00pm

Monday, 3 May

Morning sitting 7.15-7.45 am

1         9.15am-2.30pm  Sustained practice period with breaks, interweaving sitting, walking, lying and  movement meditation,  reflections, optional groups Andclosing reflections together in community.


Using Zoom

This online retreat will use the Zoom platform. For support with learning how to use Zoom, please click here to read the guidance we’ve put together on our website. Please read the first section, ‘Using Zoom’, before registering.


If you have any questions regarding the retreat, you can send an email to info@gaiahouse.co.uk We will respond as quickly as possible, but we have a reduced team at this time so we apologise if you have to wait longer than usual:


None of your registration fee goes to the teacher. Gaia House teachers rely on the generosity of students for their livelihood. There will be an opportunity to make a dana offering to your teacher at the end of the event.

Click here to read more about the practice of dana.

Dana can be offered to the teacher by clicking here –  referencing your dana “Catherine-GH retreat

Dana can also be offered to Catherine through the Gaia House website. Please choose Teacher and then specify that your donation is for ‘Abiding with a Heart – Catherine’, in the notes section on the checkout page.

Dana can also be offered to Gaia House’s residential service team via our website here: https://gaiahouse.co.uk/support-us/.

Whilst our retreat centre remains closed, this team is taking care of Gaia House on the ground, as well as offering tech support for online retreats and responding to email and telephone enquiries.

With deep appreciation for your generosity and support.


Well-being guidelines - please click here to read before booking

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

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 participate in a retreat. 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.
  • If you have any questions about this, please contact Susanne using the email address, retreatmanager@gaiahouse.co.uk


Registrations for this retreat have now closed