Retreat programme

Saturday 23 November 2019 – Yanai Postelnik

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YANAI POSTELNIK has practised and studied Insight Meditation and Buddhism since 1990 and has been teaching internationally for over 20 years. He is much inspired by the Thai forest tradition and the transformative power of the natural world. Yanai is a Core Faculty member of Insight Meditation Society, Massachusetts.

The theme of this retreat will be – Holding the Heart-line: practising with vulnerability and courage in a climate and ecological emergency. This will be a day of practice and reflection on some of the important questions for meditators and dharma practitioners in our time. What does it mean to keep our heart open in the face of climate destabilisation and ecological breakdown? How do meditation practice and dharma teachings  support and equip us to turn towards what is true and respond appropriately? How might our practice support us to maintain non-violence if we feel called to engage in civil disobedience?

Yanai has been involved with Extinction Rebellion and exploring non-violent civil disobedience as compassionate practice since November 2018

Saturday 8 February 2020 – Suvaco

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SUVACO is a former Buddhist monk and a passionate advocate for embodying life in all of its forms. He lives in the South West UK where he works as a psychotherapist and Tai Qi teacher.

Saturday 7 March 2020 – Zohar Lavie*

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ZOHAR LAVIE has been practising meditation in different traditions since 1995. This journey has taken her from the meditation cushion into exploring further ways of expressing truth and love and in 2004 she co-founded SanghaSeva. She now spends most of her time facilitating retreats that offer service as a spiritual path around the world. Since 2006 she has been teaching on silent retreats and Dharma gatherings in India, Europe and Israel.

*Zohar Lavie’s retreat is unsuitable for beginners.

Saturday 4 April 2020 – Jaya Rudgard

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JAYA RUDGARD began meditating in 1985, and was ordained as a nun in the Thai Forest Tradition from 1996-2005 with Ajahn Sumedho as her main teacher. Trained to teach in the US by Jack Kornfield and Joseph Goldstein, Jaya teaches regularly at Insight Meditation Society in Massachusetts as well as as at Gaia House and other centres in the UK. She also leads retreats for the Mindfulness Network and the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, of which she is an associate, and is the founding teacher of Oxford Insight’s Monday evening sitting group.

Saturday 9 May 2020 – Venerable Canda

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VENERABLE CANDA began meditating in 1996 with SN Goenka. She ordained as a Buddhist nun in Burma in 2006 and subsequently took full ‘bhikkhuni’ ordination under the guidance of her Teacher, Ajahn Brahm. Her approach to meditation focuses on kindness and letting go as a means to deepening stillness and is increasingly informed by the early Buddhist texts. Ven Canda founded Anukampa Bhikkhuni Project with Ajahn Brahm- a UK charity aimed at establishing a nun’s monastery in the UK.

Saturday 6 June 2020 – Chris Cullen

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CHRIS CULLEN works as a mindfulness teacher and psychotherapist. He trained to teach Insight Meditation with Christina Feldman, and also did the Community Dharma Leader training at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in California. Chris co-founded the Mindfulness in Schools Project, and is on the teaching team at the Oxford University Mindfulness Centre. He teaches mindfulness courses for students at Oxford University and for MPs and Peers in the Houses of Parliament.

Saturday 4 July 2020 – Anushka Fernandopulle

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ANUSHKA FERNANDOPULLE has trained in Buddhist meditation for over 25 years, lives in San Francisco and teaches meditation around the globe. Her teaching is informed by nature, creative arts, political engagement, and modern urban life.

Saturday 19 September 2020 – Kirsten Kratz

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KIRSTEN KRATZ has practised Buddhist meditation in Asia and the West since 1993 and started teaching in 2006. One of her particular passions is exploring how wisdom teachings can foster appropriate responses to the challenges of our time. She supports those on personal retreat in Gaia House and she is co-initiator of the Dharma Action Network for Climate Engagement (DANCE:

Saturday 17 October 2020 – Bhante Bodhidhamma

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BHANTE BODHIDHAMMA started training in Soto Zen in 1977, then in the Mahasi Theravada tradition. In 1986 he ordained, subsequently spending eight years at Kanduboda Mahasi Meditation Centre in Sri Lanka. He has been teaching in England, Ireland and internationally since 1998. After four years as resident teacher at Gaia House, he founded in 2007 the Satipanya Buddhist Retreat in Wales, a meditation centre devoted to the Mahasi tradition.

Saturday 28 November 2020 – Jake Dartington

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JAKE DARTINGTON has practised Buddhist meditation since 1995. After training as a Dharma teacher with Christina Feldman, he started teaching in 2007. He has a background in Philosophy and Buddhist Studies and has trained as a teacher of MBSR/MBCT. Jake lives in Nottingham where he teaches mindfulness and Insight Meditation.