Dana is a Pali term meaning “generosity” or “giving”. At the end of each retreat, people are given the opportunity to offer a donation to the teachers.
The booking charge for these days covers the ongoing costs of running the retreats and the teachers receive no payment. Instead, in the ancient and beautiful tradition of dana, those who receive these priceless teachings of freedom and compassion are given the opportunity to offer a donation to the teachers, who rely partly or wholly for their livelihood on this generosity. It enables teachers to continue teaching, and also benefits many others.
It is an invitation to participate in the spirit of generosity that has sustained this tradition and teaching for more than 2,500 years. Over the centuries it is this generosity that has enabled the creation of retreat centres, the support of monasteries and a whole range of social/peace practices and projects. It enables teachers to continue teaching, and so also supports the very life and sustainability of the teaching. Oxford retreats are run through the generosity of volunteer managers. The booking fee covers the costs of printing the retreat programme, website expenses, hall hire, and teachers’ travelling and accommodation expenses.
Coming on retreat is an invitation not only to participate in the practice of meditation but equally to participate in this ancient and rich tradition of dana. Your generosity to the teachers is greatly appreciated; it is truly what enables the continuation of the teaching.