Online: Three Doorways to the Sensible and the Sacred

A Gaia House Insight Dialogue online retreat with Gregory Kramer

Friday, 19 November – Sunday, 21 November 2021



Open to all — beginner and experienced practitioners of Insight Dialogue.  Prior experience with meditation/mindfulness is supportive.


GREGORY KRAMER teaches meditation, writes, and is the founding teacher of the Insight Dialogue Community. His most recent book is Whole-Life Path: A Lay Buddhist’s Guide to Crafting a Dhamma-Infused Life. He is also the author of Insight Dialogue: The Interpersonal Path to Freedom, Dharma Contemplation: Meditating Together with Wisdom Texts, Seeding the Heart: Practicing Lovingkindness with Children, and other books and articles. His primary focuses are sharing a relational understanding of the Dhamma and teaching Insight Dialogue, an interpersonal form of Buddhist insight meditation. He has been teaching worldwide since 1980. For more, visit

Listen to one of Gregory Kramer's Talks given at Gaia House on 04.10.2010: Retreat is Part of Life: What Now? (42:02)

Retreat description

The Buddha’s teachings make sense. We can understand the suffering of aging, illness and impermanence. We can see how our hungers keep us mired in suffering. We observe clinging in ourselves and others, and we readily understand how less clinging will lead to a life that is more skillful and free. We believe we understand the power of mindfulness and samadhi.

But is this all of it? Are there layers to the Dhamma, or more importantly, layers to this sensitive, human life, that whisper outside our rational paddock? Can such apparently common sense teachings as the six sense bases lead us to a subtler understanding of being alive in the world? Is mindfulness not only a forum for the display of our clunky and driven thoughts, or can it also be developed as a refining process for how we experience the world? Are relationships always just two or more individuals triggering each other and living out their conditioned reactions, or are there subtle aspects of relationship that can be experienced when samadhi ripens?

In this short retreat, we will explore three of the gateways to the sacred that run through our lives: aging, illness and death; nature; and relationship.  We will learn and practice Insight Dialogue, and apply the power of silent and relational meditation practices to investigate qualities of experience that subtly saturate our apparently rational lives and Buddhist practices.


Please come prepared to participate in relational meditation in breakout rooms, and to devote as much time as possible this weekend to quietude and inquiry.

We highly encourage participants to schedule time for silent practice before the live sessions. Additionally, you might do whatever else you need to settle the body and mind.  Full engagement during our online sessions, and participation in breakout practice, is essential to this offering.  Teaching and instruction sessions will be recorded but these will not be available until after the retreat.


5.00 pm – 8.00 pm (Greenwich Mean Time)

9.00 am -12.00pm (Pacific Time)

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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 We will respond as quickly as possible, but we have a reduced team during 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.

If you would like to offer dana to Gregory, the following methods are available:

Dana can also be offered to Gaia House’s residential service team via our website here:  This team is responding to email and telephone enquiries for both our online and residential retreats, alongside supporting our retreatants during their stay at Gaia House.

With deep appreciation for your generosity.


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,

Registrations for this retreat are now closed