Included in the program are meditation practice sessions, question and answer periods, practice information periods and interviews. In India and Burma many people who live typical daily lives might practice for several hours during the day, or in the evening after work and in this way, lead practiced-based lives. Accommodation:  There are many accommodation possibilities in Ubud and close to Santra Putra itself. Use the form below if you wish to lodge an expression of interest for my upcoming Bali retreats.
This time round we will travel to Rayong on a Thursday morning so we have a full 2 days at the beach. It is really nice to invite a qualified and effective female teacher – it gives the meditation a different perspective and dynamic! Leading the meditation will be Austrian Mae Chee Brigitte (That’s Austrian, not Australian!). We will be at 3 very pleasant houses, located in a gated community on a quiet beach on the South coast of Rayong province. We will be experimenting with the schedule somewhat to balance the meditation time with some free time to enjoy the beach at this great time of the year.
There will be chance for Q&A and interaction with the teacher, dhamma talk, and practical meditation exercises. We aim to be back in Bangkok before 5 pm, with a drop off point at one of the BTS stations. The cost will be 3,300 baht per person, which should include everything, with something left over. It’s a great privilege to be offered these houses to use, so we must ensure we leave them in perfect condition. You’ll be asked to keep to the schedule of group meetings and free time, as it maintains the group energy and focus.
Please be sure that you wish to join the retreat – always so many people book, and then mysteriously fall ill on the day! I hope you will be able to join and share in this experience with this meditation teacher who really impresses. If you find it hard to keep up - you can get an automatic email for new announcements. It is totally anonymous and each notice includes an option to unsubscribe with a single click. This ten day silent retreat offers an overview and instruction for accessing the Jhanas, deep meditative altered states of consciousness, as well as instruction in Insight Meditation. Moving from an experience of all pervasive dukkha to an experience of all pervasive sukkha, (happiness). How can we live, wisely, with compassion, in harmony with all life in the face of our struggles, highs and lows in life? Deep meditative absorption conditions clarity of the mind to see more deeply into the nature of life.
The silent retreat format consists of alternating periods of sitting and walking meditation.  There will be periods of instruction, with Q and A in the morning, Dharma talks in the evening followed by a guided Loving-Kindness meditation every evening. The retreatants will also be supported by the beautiful environment, sumptuous vegetarian meals and the generous service of Sunrise Ranch. A minimum of three years of consistent Vipassana Meditation practice is recommended for this retreat, as well as reading Ayya Khema’s book on the jhanas prior to the retreat:  Who Is My Self,,Wisdom Publications, Boston 1997.
The teachers: With a combined meditation experience of 144 years, the five Dharma teachers of Rocky Mountain Insight are delighted to offer these profound teachings. The retreat begins with dinner on Friday June 14th and ends with lunch on Sunday June 23rd.
Given these contradictions, how do I summarise my Vipassana experience into a pithy blog post? If she is reading mine, she’s seeing a circus of bouncing ideas and somersaulting worries. I observe the tingle in my nose, which is now intense and violating. I’m 100% sure that a spider is trying to burrow into my face and lay eggs! Only when I look up do I notice three other meditators standing still, staring into the bush, giggling.
While walking to the meditation hall, a bone-chilling wind gains momentum on the hills and smacks me head-on. My impulse is to gasp, to cover up, to run for shelter, to complain to anyone within earshot. I’ve been deprived of distractions for eight days and my body is becoming hyperaware. We reach to scratch our noses, run to escape the cold, or open our mouths to spew disapproval before we stop and observe without judgement, and ask: What am I really feeling right now?
When I walked out of the retreat and into the car park (or heel-clicked to be specific), I was perplexed about what, exactly, I’d learned from doing a whole lot of nothing. I don’t really know what happened to me in the meditation retreat, or why sitting for days on end has led to this new mindset. I found what was really interesting about your experience was in fact – what you learnt during that time, seemed to happen in tiny little moments and I think that is so like life don’t you? I can totally relate to being hyper-aware of every thought, sound, grumble, etc during meditation.
But I thought your final take-away was most poignant…life is a series of moments, which good, bad or indifferent, are all fleeting. I’m glad I found your site when I was trying to figure out what a blogger was a year and a half ago.

My mom was in Hospice a couple of years ago…and my grandpa was in a couple of years before that. I’ve endured worse things that the retreat, like 26 days of open ocean, sailing between Mexico and French Polynesia.
I’ve read a couple of blog posts of post-meditation retreats but this was the only one that actually gave me an idea of what it was like to be there.
I’ve toyed with the IDEA of Vipassana for so long, but have never had the guts to do it. For our retreat on the beach we will limit the numbers to around 30, so that we have space to rest and time for closer interaction. She has been a nun for nearly 30 years in Thailand and is fluent in English, German and Thai. Rotating postures between sitting, walking, lying meditation, talk, Q&A and free time helps to keep the body from getting fatigued.
One lesson from monastic living: you can actually live very well just on what people offer. You will need to take your own sheet and pillow cover (if that is not practical, for instance if you are touring, let us know and we’ll work something out).
Right Concentration, is one aspect of the Noble Eightfold Path, the way leading to Enlightenment. The teachings provide the means to living a life of freedom, joy, love, compassion, peace and wisdom. Numerous meditators report an exponential increase in insight, when coupling jhana practice with insight practice. Every retreatant will have the opportunity for individual interviews, to support this deep practice. Having lived and studied in India and Sri Lanka, she first formally studied the jhanas as a monastic in Sri Lanka in 1985, under the tutelage of the late Venerable Ayya Khema. Michelle Sneath, a physical therapist, and dedicated cyclist, has been a Vipassana practitioner since 1998, receiving transmission in 2005. The course rules stated that all distractions and sources of entertainment were forbidden, including computers, books, paints, writing materials, or anything else that one might feel inclined to pack in a weekend getaway bag—practical or kinky.
A carpeted walkway up the centre of the room divides the men from the women, and all is silent apart from distant birds and rustling gumtrees. The distractions of real life—friends, jobs, TV, music—are already a hazy memory. Until this retreat, I had no idea that so many people are perfectly comfortable with letting one rip in a silent hall. Seven minutes have ticked over, seven of the six thousand minutes required to get through this course.
What the hell is going on with the grass? I notice that it’s not one shade of green, but a full spectrum of vibrant greens!
I’d eaten twice-daily meals of delicious vegetarian food, I had slept soundly in a comfortable bed, I had discovered an incredible new ability to sleep upright against my will, and I had meditated. Anxiety used to be a huge part of my life, and I dealt with it in the way that someone who lives by a freeway deals with the constant racket of traffic. I suggest that all of you befriend her on Twitter and Facebook, then head over to her blog. I wrote entire stories in my head, and since there are no distractions, the ideas don’t get lost. Sailing as a lifestyle is full of intense emotions: the highest of joys, the lowest of lows. That 20% of stuff that can go really, really wrong when sailing is what worries me the most.
Thank you for the reminder that everything is temporary, my head is so full of extraneous noise at the moment, I need to make the effort to be still and detach from the barrage of thoughts which threaten to unhinge me. I’ve never considered a meditation retreat, but your post is making me think I may need to change that. But accepting it for what it is without judgement, including all the anxious chatter, is liberating.
I must say that my relationship to nature has improved significantly since doing the retreat. Your blog posts remain one of the very few I can read from start to finish as I would do a book, without scanning through them instead. I was totally transfixed reading every word of your experience and felt I could relate in parts. It’s actually kind of relaxing to be looked after, fed, etc, and not have to worry about other people or daily obligations. Your paragraph about life being an ongoing series of painful moments and happy ones is so TRUE. I just have so much trouble setting the time aside for it, I know it would be great but still I struggle, there’s always so much to do day to day.
It’s something I vowed never to subject myself to although I love meditation and have been doing yoga for thirty years now. Many regulars here will have met her before, and she has a great reputation for teaching meditation. And sharing is good for mindfulness – monks usually share for several years when they ordain for this reason! We have had good experience with the restaurant we use by the beach, and no one has died on us yet (not due to the food anyway). Attaining Enlightenment means sustaining an awareness of the Unconditioned, a reality not  encumbered by the limits of time and space, not encumbered by the force of duality and a sense of a separate solid self.

Victor Bradford, a retired dentist, has been meditating since 1970, received his Master’s Degree in Asian Philosophy from the University of Hawaii in 1972, has been with RMI since 2002 and received transmission in 2007.
You will be given an opportunity to express your gratitude for the teachings and support of the teachers by offering dana at the end of the retreat. How can I tell you, dear blog readers, why meditating for one hundred hours over ten straight days was the best thing I’ve ever done for myself? Where do I even begin? Our new norm is sitting upright for hours on end in a room full of strangers doing the same.
She reminds me of the preserved bodies of meditating monks that are often on display in Buddhist temples, long dead and dried up like beef jerky. My racing ideas and worries are occasionally interrupted by a ringmaster’s feeble attempts to assert discipline. As if to demonstrate these teachings, the temperature is constantly jumping between warm breezes and snap freezes, then back again. Our habits of reacting are automatic, carried over from moments in our past, from stale old memories. It was in the background, loud and obnoxious and invasive, but always there and unable to be silenced.
But whenever a worry comes into my head or a fear threatens to take over, I can pause the moment before the adrenalin kicks in, before I become lost in an automated reaction. Good and bad ebbs and flows like the tides, and trying to hold onto pleasure is as silly as trying to grasp the waves to stop them flowing back out to sea. There is absolutely no way I could manage more than a week with a blank mind and no way of acting on ideas. But most of the time we’re all too busy thinking about what is for lunch, how we f*$%ed up in a meeting, or what our best friend did to upset us. It took a little time but eventually I was content to spend hours in the hammock only tracking the moon and stars, my mind in a blissful state of quiet.
As a novice sailor I have some ideas, but I’d really like to read more about how this would have helped you. For me, having these skill taught in Vipassana would’ve allowed me to stay in control of my fear and anxiety during the trying times. Sounds like your new-found skills are serving you well and hopefully others around you gravitate toward this new calm (calm begets calm) during trying times. I struggle with anxiety quiet frequently and I find that meditating really helps with this but I don’t do it often enough for it to be 100% effective. I am amazed that you could endure the retreat, but obviously it was worth whatever discomfort it took.
They have these retreats all over the world, so I wouldn’t be surprised if your sister is doing the same one. I always worry these classes are a waste of time or money but it’s later on that I really feel the difference in my mind, my mood and my focus. I’m glad to see your perspective has changed and that the trip had a meaningful impact! We are glad to have her here in Bangkok as generally she is busy with students from around the world in the temple where she lives, or else she is travelling abroad.
We don’t have an exact plan of the many rooms and so cannot guarantee anything, except that the houses are very pleasant, clean, equipped with necessities, and that we are very fortunate the owners have given us permission to use their private houses for the purpose of a meditation retreat.
Experienced Yogis can continue with their own silent meditation practise, but we ask that everyone join in the group activities, and maintain the group harmony.
In Burmese retreats there is no evening meal at all, and this provides a lightness of the body and mind, as well as gaining insight and discipline into how we look to food and drink as a psychological prop.
Through deep meditative states, coupled with insight, the meditator has the possibility of directly experiencing the Unconditioned. In thinking about dana, you might consider what you would pay for a 10 day intensive training or workshop. The gardens are full aimless women, like someone has released a busload of Alzheimer’s patients at the park. You write them down at the end of the retreat and act on them once you’re out of jail. For the first time I saw my computer for what it really is: a cold piece of metal, a lifeless tool, a device for doing tasks. He also taught me how to meditate, so reading about your distracting thoughts (itchy nose, etc.) made me laugh so hard. My sister-in-law (lives in Spain) is going to a retreat that sounds just like this in Portugal. In Dec ’09 she was particularly honoured to receive an award for her contribution to Dhamma from HRH Princess of Thailand Prof. Males and females will be in separate areas, so we can’t give any couples rooms either. The only moving part of Buddhist Jerky is her eyeballs, which roam the room and penetrate each of us in turn with the intensity of a mind reader. But all he’s taught me has been so helpful even a year after especially the importance of a deep breath first when faced with any trigger of anxiety or stress.
But I realised in that moment I’d become attached to it as though it was an extension of myself.

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