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All posts tagged “retreat”

2

Retreats!
fredclaymeyer — 5 years ago — in What works for me
I just did a several-day meditation retreat. It was wonderful, and I came out of it completely energized to practice. I would absolutely recommend taking any amount of retreat time you can manage--it's one of the best things you can do for yourself.
I'm back in a fairly stressful situation now, and I can see those stresses gnawing away at my practice. So (for my own benefit and everyone else's) here are a few thoughts on doing a post-retreat correctly:
• When you get out of it, continue to sit twice a day, morning and evening. It's really important to carry forward the practice momentum you've had.
• As a way to keep it a priority in a busy schedule: Notice how you feel during and immediately after a retreat, and think of that as being the result of meditation (which it is!). So, if after the retreat something comes up that threatens to interrupt your practice schedule, ask whether the thing is worth risking the benefits of practice for. Maybe it is, but at least you'll recognize the tradeoff you may be making.
• Don't worry too much about "holding on" to whatever benefits you feel in retreat. Some of these are just temporary excitements that only exist in a retreat environment and are bound to wash away anyway; and the things that really are lasting, valid insights will be difficult to access if you're worried about clinging to (your idea of) them. What you should hold onto is the practice itself.
Hope that's helpful! I better go practice soon...

1

Question for July 21, 2013: Meditation Retreat
Medivate — 4 years ago — in Question of the Week
Have you ever completed a meditation retreat? What was that experience like?

1

Question for September 7, 2014: Surprises of Retreat
Medivate — 3 years ago — in Question of the Week
Have you ever completed a meditation retreat? If so, what part of that experience most surprised you?

1

gordon — 3 years ago — permalink
What surprised me the most was the intensity of the feeling or impulse to share a joke and yet knowing I could not, because we are in silence, and finding that quite funny.

1

davidbhayes — 3 years ago — permalink
I think I'd probably really struggle with that silence aspect too. I'm generally a pretty quiet and reserved person, but I think a hard barrier of "always refrain from speaking" would be kind of jarring to me as well.

1

Lullabyehaze — 3 years ago — permalink
On two or three occasions, I have done a 2.5-day personal meditation retreat. I reserved a small cabin at a nearby Buddhist retreat center and planned my own time. These are some of the best days that I have spent in terms of relaxation, figuring things out, dealing with crises and re-setting my habits. 
I would plan a tentative schedule for the time beforehand but be open to changes that might need to happen. My schedule includes the following:
Sitting meditation
Walking meditation
Yoga/stretching
Journaling
Coloring mandalas
Reading spiritual or meditative books
Walking/hiking
I think what surprised me was that I would go through a time of feeling bored and questioning why I would spend time and money to do this., after being so excited about it. This was on the first night, I think. By the end, the benefits were clear and I wished for another day!

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patricia1958 — 3 years ago — permalink
I participated in  a 3 month Tsongkhapa retreat recommended by my Gelugpa Teacher.
At the end of this month I will engage in the next segment of my Ganglognma retreat (Manjushri) for ten days. This retreat will last three years three months and an odd number of days, practicing for ten days every other month and collecting seven malas per session. The Ganglongma retreats are much less elaborate than the Tsongkhapa one that I did this past summer. But both are great for removing mental and spiritual obstacles. The thing that surprised me the most was that I was sad that it ended.

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Question for February 28, 2016: Meditation Retreat
Medivate — 2 years ago — in Question of the Week
Have you ever completed a meditation retreat? What was that experience like?

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Question for August 21, 2016: Surprises of Retreat
Medivate — 1 year ago — in Question of the Week
Have you ever completed a meditation retreat? If so, what part of that experience most surprised you?