ONLINE RETREAT – POINTING AT THE MOON

Online Vajraloka retreat led by Tejananda

21 – 26 September

The well-known metaphor of ‘a finger pointing at the moon’ is itself a pointer to something essential in dharma practice. It suggests ‘don’t mistake the finger for the moon’.  But what is the moon, and what is the finger? The finger could be taken as whatever gets us looking and going in the ‘right’ direction. For example, the eight ‘right’ perspectives on dharma practice that the Buddha taught.

But neither these nor any other dharma practices are ‘right’ (or ‘wise’) if we’re relating to them literally, as ends in themselves. That would be ‘attachment to rules and religious practices’ – believing that it’s enough to do our practices by rote, and losing touch with that to which they are pointing us.

What they are pointing us to is ‘waking up’ – bodhi. Waking up from the delusions that give rise to suffering. Bodhi is the ‘moon’ of our true nature, which is always here, even when obscured by clouds.

In this retreat, we’ll focus on the ‘moon’ by addressing a core delusion – that “I am separate”. This is better known as anatta, ‘not-self’, but this core pointing-out on the Buddha’s part isn’t suggesting that we’re somehow non-existent! Rather, it is pointing us back to our essential non-dividedness.

We’ll approach this by first cultivating calm, embodied, aware presence and opening to unconditional love. With that as our ground, we’ll explore our experience directly and interactively, using pointers as to how we create and sustain the delusion of separation and a self-other dichotomy. Seeing through such delusions wakes us up from our self-view and to an essential truth of the dharma, the  ‘moon’ of our undivided nature here and now.

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This retreat is open to anyone who has been meditating for at least 3 years.

Please book by sending an email to vajraloka.online@gmail.com (not our usual email address). Your booking will be acknowledged and you’ll be emailed information for logging in to the Zoom sessions on the day before the online retreat starts.

This is a dana event – please give whatever you can afford via the donation button on any page of our website www.vajraloka.org. The principle of dana includes you being welcome to a free retreat – we don’t want anyone to be financially constrained from attending.

There will be two input and led practice sessions per day, one from 09.30 to 11.30 and the other from 20.00 to 21.00, UK time. There will also be an opportunity to join a meditation with Prajnapriya, with bells but no leading-through, from 16.00 to 16.45 each afternoon.

ONLINE RETREAT – THE ELIXIR OF LIFE

The Elixir of Life – Online retreat – we have had to cancel this retreat here due to the continuing lockdown restrictions. However, instead, this will be the first scheduled retreat that the Vajraloka team will be leading live, online (Zoom).
It is open to those who booked and anyone for whom it is suitable (see below). Please book through vajraloka.online@gmail.com (not our usual email address) and you’ll be sent information for logging in to the Zoom sessions.
This will be a dana event – please give whatever you can afford via the donation button on any page of our website www.vajraloka.org.
The Elixir of Life
Led by Rijumitra, Jinapalita and team
Only through coming into our bodies, firmly grounded, can we open up to the qualities of the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas and hear what they have to tell us. This is what “the elixir of life” evokes – the truth of the Dharma beyond words. It points to the ‘suchness’ or ‘thusness’ of this moment, when all of our conceptual projections drop away and there is ‘just this’.

We will explore the richness that comes from establishing a heartfelt seat in meditation. Through meditation and ritual we will be opening up to suchness and to the blessings of the Buddhas – which are not two different things.

This retreat is suitable for people who have been meditating for at least 3 years
The retreat will run from 25th July to 30th July
There will be two input and led practice sessions per day, one at 10.30 am and the other at 7.30 pm UK time.

ONLINE RETREAT – THE DYNAMIC MANDALA

Online retreat – The Dynamic Mandala – led by Tejananda
As we are unable to run this retreat at Vajraloka, due to lockdown restrictions in Wales, it will be offered as a Zoom retreat. It is open not only to those who booked, but to anyone who has been meditating for at least 3 years.
Please book by email on vajraloka.online@gmail.com (not our usual email address) Your booking will be acknowledged and you’ll be emailed information for logging in to the Zoom sessions on the day before the online retreat starts.
This will be a dana event – please give whatever you can afford via the donation button on any page of our website www.vajraloka.org.
This online retreat will run from 7th to 12th August 2020
There will be two input and led practice sessions per day, one from 10.00 to 12.00 am and the other from 7.30 to 8.30 pm, UK time.
The Dynamic Mandala
Dharma practice is transformative. This transformation lies in gradually discovering how both we and the world are not at all what we originally supposed. As a consequence, we begin to uproot the causes of dukkha. As Dharma practice deepens, the practices themselves are transformed. Indeed, unless this is happening, we can get stuck.
In Triratna, our system of practice is a dynamic mandala of five principles. We progressively integrate mind and body, samatha and vipassana, and discover the power of skilful and positive mental states. Then, directly penetrating and dispelling our delusions, we open ever-more to the wonder of what is. Thus, at last, we can wake up to and be who and what we truly are.
In this online retreat, we’ll take a somatic approach to these five principles, that is, one based in the living energy of our body and being. Through being open to the energy of the body, and by becoming attuned to its actual nature, we’ll discover ways to “integrate” all five principles experientially into a single, embodied ’non-practice’ of Simply Being.

The Awakening Heart and the Divine Abodes: Booklet and led sits – Revised Upload

Below you’ll find a booklet and a series of led sits around the theme of the Brahmaviharas and the Bodhicitta Practice. Tejananda and I have edited the talks from an Awakening Heart Retreat we ran together last year and have attached the led sits from the Retreat. We hope you enjoy it and find it helpful.

For the Booklet click here: Awakening Heart March 2020

To Download the Booklet and Meditations click here:  Awakening Upload 2 (250Mb zip file)

To listen to the led sits on the website click on the start button. (They are slightly in the wrong order so I have edited the listing on the website to reflect the numbering in the booklet, apologies for the confusion!! Love Rijumitra)

 

1. Introduction and a led Just Sitting – Tejananda

 

2. Whole Body Awareness Meditation – Tejananda

 

3. Whole Body Awareness – Rijumitra

 

4. Led Metta Bhavana – Rijumitra

 

5. Lying Down Body Awareness – Tejananda

 

6.  Body, Breath and the Heart – Tejananda

 

7. Led Karuna Bhavana – Rijumitra

 

8.The Heart Space and the Heart Wish – Tejananda

 

9. One Stage Metta Bhavana – Tejananda

 

10. Led Mudita Bhavana – Rijumitra

 

11. Led Tonglen Practice – Tejananda

 

12. Led Uppekha Bhavana Practice – Rijumitra

 

13. Led Short Tonglen Practice – Tejananda

 

14. Lying down Hara Breathing Meditation – Tejananda

 

15. Led Tonglen – Tejananda

 

 

Vajraloka’s response to the COVID-19 situation

From the Vajraloka team,
We hope and trust that you are well!
The Vajraloka team are discussing our response to government advice on containing COVID-19 ongoingly.
At this stage, we are keeping up to date with government guidelines and giving people who have booked notification of cancellation of future retreats at least six weeks in advance.
If you have booked on a cancelled retreat and you wish to keep your payment to use on the next retreat that you come on here, you are welcome to do so. Naturally, if you’d like a partial or full refund, this is no problem.
We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you at Vajraloka again in the future. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions (info@vajraloka.org)

Annex Build Completed!

Vajraloka is up and running again after our 3 month shut down to extend our facilities. Here are some photos of the finished project.

2020 FULL ILLUSTRATED PROGRAMME BROCHURE

Click on ‘Retreats’ to download the fully illustrated version of our 2020 programme. This marks our 40th anniversary, featuring archive photos from the early 80s through to recent times. The printed versions will be going out within a couple of weeks, we hope.

Annex Build update (Week 9)

Here are the latest pictures of our building project

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With the main structural work completed, focus has moved inside to the shower/toilet area.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Another project on going at Vajraloka during this time is the replacement of our leaky mains water feed, about 1000m of pipe from the village, under a river, across a field, up a rocky path and eventually arriving at Vajraloka.

 

 

2020 RETREATS NOW BOOKABLE

Click on “Retreats” to see and book all retreats for 2020 (and the rest of 2019 of course). On that page, you can also download a PDF of the full 2020 programme text – the illustrated brochure will follow towards the end of August.

Annex Build update (Week 5)

The work on our new extension is moving forward, with the structure beginning to appear.

 


One happy side effect digging out the foundations for the new building is that the removed soil is being used to extend Vajraloka’s car-park. Parking will increase from 12 to 16 or 17 spaces, another much needed improvement to our facilities.