Activities

In the tradition of Anagarika Dhammadina, our original teacher, the Society seeks to bring the teachings of the Buddha to life, through direct experience. This is done primarily through hosting residential Vipassana meditation retreats (from beginner to advanced), guided by skillful teachers. We emphasize providing for the needs of meditators (e.g., accommodation and nutritious vegetarian meals) so that meditators can pursue their practice without concern for attending to basic necessities. Our inclination is to organize smaller retreats, in order to enable individual guidance from teachers. Occasional non-residential retreats, talks and opportunities for meditation sittings and Dhamma study are also offered.

2020 Residential Retreats

April 24 – 26, 2020 Weekend Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Dr. Christopher Robinson
Halfmoon Haven Beachfront Retreats, Halfmoon Bay, BC

THIS RETREAT HAS BEEN CANCELLED due to COVID-19. May we all be wise and take good care of ourselves and each other. With much Metta.

Dr. Christopher Robinson has been engaged in Buddhist meditation practice and has facilitated meditation retreats in Canada and the USA for over 35 years. He feels this is more a testament to persistence and a natural affinity for the practical utility of the methods of Mindfulness and Loving Kindness in daily life, as opposed to any assumed development or progress. Christopher is a lay-person who remains engaged in an enriching and fulfilling family and professional life. Consequently, his manner of sharing at retreat is practical, forgiving and experience focused. He gives credit for this approach to the good fortune of many gentle and wise instructors, ranging from his dear mentor and friend, Anagarika Dhamma Dinna, to the Venerable Balangoda Anandamaitreya Mahanayaka Thera, Venerable Piyadassi Mahanayaka Thera, Achan Sobin S. Namto, Venerable Henepola Gunaratana Mahanayaka Thera, Venerable Dr. Madewela Punnaji Maha Thera, Venerable Madawala Seelawimila, Venerable Olande Ananda Thera, and Ajahn Pavaro. He returns to the Sunshine Coast with appreciation for the opportunity to engage the practice with both old and new friends.

Oct 1 – 8, 2020 Week Long Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Jayantā (Shirley) Johannesen
Edenvale Retreat Centre, Abbotsford, BC

Registration opens May 4 (members) & May 11 (non-members)

Jayantā, founder and president of Stretch Awareness, is an acknowledged and respected teacher of yoga and meditation. For over 45 years, she has studied and practised with a wide range of internationally known yoga and meditation teachers. Her first introduction to Buddhism was in 1974 when she met and studied with the late Anagarika Dhammadinna, and under Anagarika’s guidance she began a weekly sitting/study group, teaching meditation classes and leading Vipassana retreats.

Jayantā has studied and practiced extensively in the Theravada Forest tradition and is a lay Buddhist minister, trained at Abhayagiri Monastery in California, USA (a branch monastery of the Ajahn Chah tradition.) Jayantā is a founding member of the Calgary Theravada Meditation Society, the Light of the Dhamma, the International Buddhist Foundation of Canada, and Sakyadhita Canada. (For more information: www.stretchawareness.com)

2020 Non-Residential Retreats

May 30, 2020 Day Long Vipassana Meditation Retreat & Talk
With Ajahn Pavaro
Vancouver, BC (location to be confirmed)

Ajahn Pavaro left an academic career to take up Theravada Buddhist monastic life in 2001. He ordained at Birken Monastery near Kamloops, BC, and trained for 6 years with Ajahn Sona before spending a year at Abhayagiri in California with his preceptor, Luang Por Pasanno. Since late 2010, he has practised in Thailand – first in a remote hermitage along the Thai-Myanmar border, and in recent years with Ajahn Achalo at Anandagiri, a small monastery in north-central Thailand. During his Bhikkhu life, Ajahn Pavaro has been invited to speak and lead meditation sessions in Canada as well as Australia and Malaysia. He is now returning to Canada to take up residence with Luand Por Viradhammo and the Sangha at Tisarana Monstery near Ottawa.

Talks

Meditation with Yoga:  Integration of Body & Mind
by
Bhante Yogavacara Rahula
October 11, 2019, 7:00 – 9:00 pm
UBC Asian Centre Auditorium
1871 West Mall, Vancouver, BC

This talk focused on how the practice of deeper yoga breathing and exercises can aid in deepening the Buddhist mindfulness/ concentration/vipassana practice.

THE TEACHER: Yogavacara Rahula was born as Scott Joseph DuPrez in Southern California in 1948 and ordained as a Buddhist monk in Sri Lanka in 1975. He lived there ten years studying and practicing mindfulness/vipassana meditation with different teachers and living alone in secluded hermitages. He also studied yoga with Swami Gitananda in South India. His teaching integrates the practice of yoga and meditation. From 1987 until 2010, Bhante Rahula resided at the Bhavana Society Forest Monastery in West Virginia with Bhante H. Gunaratana. Currently he is the principle teacher at the new Lion Of Wisdom Meditation center in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

2019 Residential Retreats

October 4 – 10, 2019 Week-long Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Bhante Yogavacara Rahula
http://bhanterahula.blogspot.com/
Halfmoon Haven Beachfront Retreat Halfmoon Bay, BC

Registration opened May 19 (members) & May 26 (non-members)
Thank you all for a very successful retreat.

Mindfulness Meditation with Yoga
This retreat will emphasize mindful attention to the body and breathing as the foundation for cultivating awareness and insight into the deeper nature of our body and mental process. Slow deep breathing coordinated with mindful bending and stretching exercises are done to help this process. Periods of sitting, standing and walking will aid in cultivating a continuity of awareness of the present moment. The goal of mindfulness/insight practice is to become aware of our intentions which precede activity of body, speech, and thought in order to transform harmful habits which bring suffering into wholesome ones which conduce to peace, happiness, and wisdom. The Buddha’s teachings of the Four Noble Truths inform the practice. How to carry this practice into daily life is given importance.

April 26 – 28, 2019 Weekend Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Dr. Christopher Robinson
Halfmoon Haven Beachfront Retreat, Halfmoon Bay, BC

Registration opened January 7 (members) & January 14 (non-members)
Thank you all for a very successful retreat.

2018 Residential Retreats

May 4 – 6, 2018 Weekend Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Dr. Christopher Robinson
Cascadia House Retreat Centre, Robert’s Creek, BC

Thanks to all for a successful retreat!

Oct 29 – Nov 4, 2018 Week Long Vipassana Meditation Retreat
With Jayantā (Shirley) Johannesen
Edenvale Retreat Centre, Abbotsford, BC

Thanks to all for a beautiful and successful retreat!