Mahasi Retreat (9 nights)

Residential retreat

 

Friday, 6 May – Sunday, 15 May 2022 (9 nights)

With Bhante Bodhidhamma and Carl Fooks, assisted by Hui Hui Ng


Retreat fullThis retreat is full

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Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to register your interest and complete the checkout process. No payment is required for joining the list. We will then contact you if a place becomes available.

To find out more about how we operate our waiting lists please click here.

Teachers

Photo of teacherBHANTE BODHIDHAMMA started training in Soto Zen in 1977, then in the Mahasi Theravada Tradition with Sayadaws U Rewata Dhamma, U Janaka and U Pandita. In 1986 he ordained, subsequently spending eight years at Kanduboda Mahasi Meditation Centre in Sri Lanka. He has been teaching in England, Ireland and internationally since 1998. From 2001- 2005, he was the Resident Teacher at Gaia House. He founded the Satipanya Buddhist Retreat in Wales, a meditation centre devoted to the Mahasi tradition.

Listen to one of Bhante Bodhidhamma's Talks: Mae Chee Kaew: Awakened! (Duration 41:40.        More talks are available on Dharma Seed and Satipanya.

 

Carl FooksCARL FOOKS has been practising in Mahāyāna and Theravāda traditions since the late 1980’s, starting with Rinzai Zen before settling on the Mahasi tradition in 2007. He has been leading groups since 2011 and teaching retreats at Satipanya and Gaia House since 2014. He has an MA in Buddhist Studies.

 

Assisted by:

HUI HUI NG has been meditating since 2003. After practising Metta for some years, she met Bhante Bodhidhamma with whom she started practising Vipassana in the Mahasi tradition. She usually spends 3-4 months a year on intensive retreat either at Satipanya Buddhist Retreat Centre, or in Nepal with Sayadaw U Vivekananda at the Panditarama Lumbini Meditation Centre. She has also been teaching Hatha Yoga since 2006, incorporating aspects of the Vipassana practise and energetic awareness.

Please note

It is likely that this retreat will not be advisable if you have a history of any of the following:
– Severe psychotic interludes or psychosis (even if controlled with medication)
– An active addiction to drugs or alcohol.

A person with at least one year of recovery and abstinence is welcome.

If you have any history in relation to a suicide attempt or if you have questions or concerns about the above, please contact our Retreat Manager, by email, to arrange a suitable time to have a conversation retreatmanager@gaiahouse.co.uk.

Retreat description

Vipassana Insight Meditation in the Mahasi Tradition.The Mahasi Sayadaw of Burma, one of the most influential meditation teachers of the last century, developed a combination of techniques – a robust schedule, noting, noting intentions and going slow – to develop the steadiness of attention needed for insight into the impermanence, unsatisfactoriness and not-self. Understanding these Three Existential Characteristics leads to liberation, peace and happiness. Metta/Goodwill and body care are also developed. Time also for daily practice and questions.

Rates

Please consider paying at the highest rate that you are able to. Your generosity is vital in supporting Gaia House to sustain its Dharma offerings for the benefit of all.

We are committed to ensuring that our programme is available to everyone who wishes to participate. If our rates are too high for you, we invite you to apply for support from our Financial Assistance and Bursaries Fund (FAB Fund).

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Standard Rate:£711Includes a donation to the General Fund, which will help sustain Gaia House into the future
Basic Rate:£540Covers the very basic costs of running the retreat
Supported Rate:£450A subsidised rate to support practice
Young Persons Rate:£162For more details please see the Financial Assistance page
FAB Fund Rate:£270For more details please see the Financial Assistance page
Camping£405Limited places are available, please ring to book

 

Camping

In addition to our in-house accommodation, we can offer a few camping places during the warmer months.

  • Limited number of camping places available, please call to check availability and to book (booking is not possible online).
  • Each retreatant needs to bring their own tent (small one/two person tents only).
  • Toilet and bathroom facilities are shared with the in-house occupants.
  • Please note: In poor weather we cannot accommodate campers in the house.

Dana/generosity

None of your registration fee goes to the teachers. Gaia House teachers rely on the generosity of students for their livelihood.

At the end of the retreat, there is an opportunity to make a dana offering to Bhante and Carl, the residential service team and Gaia House’s General and FAB Funds.

We are deeply grateful for your generosity.

Click here to read more about the practice of dana.

Gaia House and covid-19

We hope to make everyone's retreat at Gaia House as supportive as possible.

Many aspects of the retreat set-up and retreat environment will be familiar and well-known, and others may be new. As the conditions and guidelines are constantly changing, we are remaining flexible and will be reviewing what is needed at the time of each retreat. Prior to your retreat, we will send some more information about what to expect whilst at Gaia House.

From 22nd April 2022 onwards we plan to offer shared rooms again, the exact configuration of rooms will depend on the covid situation and the government guidelines at the time.

A limited number of single rooms will be available. Requests for single rooms must be made at the time of booking and cannot be guaranteed. Priority is given to those with specific medical needs and age considerations.

Please click here for more detailed information on how we are creating as supportive and safe a retreat environment as possible under the covid regulations that may still be in place.

Please note:
  • If you have covid-19 symptoms during your retreat you will be able to stay in isolation for a limited period. However, we need you to have a plan in place to enable you to continue your isolation away from Gaia House, if you have travelled by public transport you will need a friend or family member to collect you.

Arrival and departure times

  • Arrive for registration between 2.00pm-4.45pm on the opening day.
  • Depart after 12.30pm on the final day (or 1.30pm if staying for lunch).
Please note:
  • We will need everyone to commit to the full duration of their retreat; early or late arrivals won’t be possible at this time. Extra nights will also not be possible.

Building work during 2022

To support more socially-distanced retreats in the short term and our development into the future, we are excited to have completed our new shower block, while work on our new Dartmoor Wing is progressing well. These two new buildings will double the number of single rooms and shower/toilet spaces we can offer to group retreatants, enabling our site to catch up with the vast numbers of people now visiting Gaia House each year, and help us increase accessibility. We will take all possible care to minimise disruption by scheduling noisier work to take place between retreats. However, there may be some noise at Gaia House during this time.

Cancellation terms & conditions

If you find it necessary to cancel your booking because of a positive covid-19 test, a full refund will be available. Please note this does not include any travel costs you may have incurred. In all other circumstances, our standard cancellation terms and conditions apply. If there is an outbreak of covid within the residential staff community, the retreat may be closed early, however, a refund will be offered for the remaining days of the retreat if this occurs.

 

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