Sangha Retreat at Aryaloka

Sangha Retreat: For all the North East Triratna Sangha

October 20 @ 7:00 pm – October 22 @ 2:00 pm  2017


Meditation is one of the important tools and practices in spiritual life. Through inward attention the light of our awareness gets brighter and the beam becomes wider so that we see more of what is going on inside us and around us. Seeing more, understanding develops. Understanding more, peacefulness can arise. Many of us started our journey with meditation; others have learned to appreciate its value along the way. But here are the questions: why DO we meditate? What is the bigger context for our practice? Where do we think we are going with it?

Meditation is a powerful ‘positive karma’ – an act of intention that has profound positive effects on us. We’ll look at the forces at work when we meditate (intention, awareness, energy). We’ll look at different kinds of meditation, and finally, how the practice helps us live more effectively and easily in alignment with the Dharma. Initially the effort is great, as we enter the mandala or begin the spiraling path. However as our experience deepens, a momentum carries us along. Skillful and beneficial actions and states of mind become more spontaneous. Through the journey of spiritual practice we can ‘catch’ the Dharma, like catching a wind in our sails. We can break out of limiting self-interest and be a force for good, for peace.

There are many helpful ‘maps’ or guides to spiritual life – the many familiar lists in Buddhism (such as the Noble Eightfold Path or Six Perfections) help us aim in the right direction. On this retreat we will use as our guide the ‘System of Practice’ that has five aspects: integration; positive emotion and skillful action; receptivity; wisdom or spiritual death; and freedom or spiritual rebirth. On the retreat we’ll meditate and we’ll look at our experience and where we are going in terms of a path that spirals and in terms of entering a mandala, or a palace, of increasing awareness, contentment, energy, wisdom and compassion.

The retreat will include five intensive meditation sessions and three ‘mapping’ sessions. Suitable for people just getting their feet on a path and for people who’ve been walking for ages, the retreat aims to ‘inspire and guide’ through collective practice. Prior experience with meditation will be very helpful, though some of the meditations will be guided.
Come be part of the expedition. We’ll help each other chart the inner way.

Led by: Amala, longtime practitioner and meditation and Dharma teacher at Aryaloka. Amala is fond of maps in all forms but when out on her own, she invariably finds herself bushwhacking off the trail at some point. A few scratches and twigs caught in her hair mean it was a good journey
Times: October 20 @ 7:00 pm – October 22 @ 2:00 pm
Venue: Aryaloka
Fee: Sliding Scale $275/220/170
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