In-City Supported Personal Retreat (July 12-14, 2019)

Posted by on May 17, 2019 in Meditation Retreat | Comments Off on In-City Supported Personal Retreat (July 12-14, 2019)

With Madelon Bolling and Lee Shields

Many of us have regimented lives, with infrequent opportunities to ask, with an open mind, how we might deepen practice. Traditionally, Zen training included disciplined training periods alternating with periods of greater free time or travel, even as the spirit and dedication of practice continued.

A personal retreat has potential for profound richness that can be taken home thereafter. And a personal retreat has its own practice challenges: how will you express your practice if you are released from aspects of form? Separate from good and bad student, beginner or seasoned, dedicated or slacker – what action reflects the hunger that inspired your interest in retreat, sitting?

Three Treasures is sponsoring a retreat intended to support your practice, and you finding your way. Meals, chanting, formal practice periods, talks, and meetings with teachers are provided. Some participation will still be asked as a minimum joint practice. Beyond that, it is up to you to try things and see for yourself what brings depth.

Interviews: Madelon and Lee will be available during interviews to collaborate or guide. To maintain some connection to the group we ask that participants attend a meeting with a teacher the first day and at least once a day thereafter. The meeting can be a short check-in, or an engaged encounter.

Zazen Formal and Informal: There are some periods we will ask all to join in formal sitting (practice in the dojo with bells and leaders). At other times participants are invited to practice as moved, while careful not to disturb the practice of others. A list of examples includes formally, sitting on one’s own, walking, gardening, Yoga or Tai Chi (in library or outside), napping. If your practice at the time is writing, on paper or computer, do it.

Practice in collaboration: If your practice includes a form with others, there will be a board on which you can post an offer for participants to see if there are others for whom your form is a fit. For example, reading poetry, exploring a sutra or reading.

In our first trial of this approach we have chosen a schedule intended to offer a foundation, upon which you can build your retreat. Here is the daily schedule:

Friday, July 12

6:30 AM: Open Dojo, Five Remembrances, Zazen

7:30 AM: Tea, informal breakfast provided, and practice-related discussion

9:00 AM: Dojo available for stretching, Yoga, Tai-Chi, and informal sitting

9:30 AM: Sutra service

10:00 AM: Remarks on engagement with the retreat. Zazen, interviews

12:00 PM: Lunch and lunch cleanup (silent, in kitchen, food provided)

1:30 PM: Dojo available for stretching, Yoga, Tai-Chi, and informal sitting

2:00-5:30 PM: Informal practice

(Leader ring bell at 5:20, please be in your seat by 5:25)

5:30 PM: Zazen (participation requested for evening)

6:00 PM: Dinner and dinner cleanup (silent, in kitchen, food provided)

7:00 PM: Zazen, interviews

8:30 PM: Closing

 

Saturday, July 13

9:00 AM: Opening ceremony/ Sutras (participation requested for morning)

9:30 AM: Zazen

10:00 AM: Dharma Talk

11:00 AM: Interviews

12:00 PM: Formal lunch (food provided)

12:30 PM Work period, rest

2:00 PM: Zazen, interviews

3:00 PM Long walking meditation, informal meditation (dojo and library open for practice)

5:30 PM: Closing ceremony

Sunday, July 14

9:00 AM: Opening ceremony/ Sutras (participation requested for morning)

9:30 AM: Zazen

10:00 AM: Dharma Talk

11:00 AM: Interviews

12:00 PM: Formal lunch (food provided)

12:30 PM Work period, rest

2:00 PM: Zazen, interviews

3:00 PM Informal meditation (dojo and library open for practice, walking meditation)

3:50 PM: Closing ceremony

4:00 PM: After light cleanup, optional and informal sharing circle – what served you and didn’t serve you in the format of this retreat?