Knowing the Mind: Investigating Ways and Means of Exploring the Nature of Mind
October 8 @ 9:00 am - October 17 @ 1:30 pm
A Residential Meditation Retreat with
Venerable Ajahn Punnadhammo
October 8–17, 2019
We are fortunate to welcome Venerable Ajahn Punnadhammo to Wisconsin to lead a 10-day residential retreat October 8–17, 2019. The retreat will be held at Pine Lake Camp in Westfield, Wisconsin, a beautiful location surrounded by rolling hills, farms, and oak savannas and offering lovely walking trails.
The theme of the retreat will be “Knowing the Mind: Investigating Ways and Means of Exploring the Nature of Mind.” During the retreat, we will create a renunciate environment by following the Eight Precepts (see below), which include observing noble silence and abstaining from eating after midday. Our practice will include morning and evening chanting, sitting and walking meditation, and daily Dhamma talks and teachings.
There will be a vegetarian breakfast in the morning and a vegetarian main meal that will finish by 1:00 p.m. Everyone attending the retreat will refrain from eating solid food between 1:00 p.m. and dawn the next day. Clear fruit juice and tea will be available about 5:00 p.m.
Rooms are either single and double occupancy. Room assignments will be made by the retreat manager before the retreat begins, giving priority for single rooms to those whose health, mobility, or other special circumstances would make it difficult to share a room. If you snore, use a CPAP machine, or have other nighttime needs or patterns that could be disruptive to the sleep of a fellow yogi, please register for a single-occupancy room rather than a double.
This retreat is appropriate for those who practice meditation on a daily or almost daily basis and have attended several three-day residential retreats or at least one residential retreat of five days or longer. Please do not register if you do not have this experience and do not have a regular daily meditation practice.
In keeping with Theravada tradition, the entire costs for this retreat are on a dana (freewill donation) basis. You will have the opportunity to offer dana at the end of the retreat.
The $100 deposit required with your registration will serve to hold your spot; it does not cover the cost of the retreat. The dana we receive will be used first to cover our costs (room and other facility costs; meals; organizational costs; and the teacher’s transportation, room, and meals). Once those expenses are met, the remaining dana will be offered to Arrow River Forest Hermitage in gratitude for Ajahn Punnadhammo’s teachings.
If you’d like to learn more about the Buddha’s teaching of dana and its rationale, these two articles by Thanissaro Bhikkhu may be of interest:
The Eight Precepts
During this retreat, we will follow the Eight Precepts, as enumerated below. To understand more about this inspiring practice, see “The Dhamma Is Beautiful in the Beginning, Beautiful in the Middle, Beautiful in the End: The Pleasure and Simplicity of the Eight Precepts.” In registering for this retreat, you are agreeing to abide by these training precepts throughout the retreat:
- Non-harming: Not intentionally killing or harming any living creature.
- Non-stealing: Not taking that which is not freely given; respecting the property of all beings.
- Refraining from false speech: Speaking only what is true and useful; speaking wisely, responsibly, and appropriately. In the context of this retreat, this means keeping noble silence.
- Refraining from sexual activity: Refraining from all sexual activity.
- Refraining from the use of intoxicants and drugs that lead to carelessness: Abstaining from the use of alcohol or other nonprescription
Note. This precept does not apply to medically required drugs. Please do continue to take any prescription or over-the-counter medications you normally require.
- Refraining from eating at the wrong times. Not eating from 1:00 p.m. until dawn the next day. There will be a light morning meal and a main meal that is completed by 1:00 p.m. Around 5:00 p.m., tea and clear fruit juices will be available. Those with medical conditions that make it impossible to abide by this precept should discuss their situation with the registrar.
- Refraining from entertainment, beautification, and adornment. Not indulging in entertainment or adorning the body with jewelry, makeup, or other things that draw the attention of others or distract from turning inward.
- Refraining from lying on a high or luxurious sleeping place. Not overly indulging in sleep or using sleep as a means of distraction.
Note. The Eight Precepts are an essential component of this retreat. They provide a form for the retreat that is meant to be helpful. If medical, physical, or emotional factors would make keeping the Eight Precepts excessively challenging, please consider whether this is the right retreat for you.
To register, complete this online registration form. A $100 deposit is required to hold your place. You’ll find instructions on how to submit the deposit at the end of the registration form.
Your place in the registration queue will be held only once we have received your payment. If you completed your registration earlier but have yet to pay your deposit, here is a reminder of how to do so:
BY CREDIT/DEBIT CARD or PAYPAL ACCOUNT:
Use this link.
Make your check for $100 payable to Madison Vipassana, Inc., and mail it to:
Madison Vipassana, Inc.
6907 University Ave.
Middleton, WI 53562
The deposit can be refunded upon request (except for cancellations after September 9, 2018—see Cancellations, below). If we aren’t notified otherwise, all deposits will be added to the dana contributed at the end of the retreat. If payment of the $100 deposit is a barrier to your registration, financial assistance is available through our retreat scholarship program (see below).
After registering, you will receive two emails, the first confirming that we received your registration. Close to the time of the retreat, you will receive another email providing information on the facility, driving directions, and recommendations on what to bring.
For questions about registration, contact the registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young adults and people of color
We want to encourage attendance at our retreat by young adults (18–26) and those identifying as persons of color. Recognizing that our retreats fill almost immediately after they are announced, we hold a few spaces open for additional registrations from young adults and persons of color until two weeks before the retreat opens—in this case, until September 24. Thus, until September 24, one or more of the reserved spaces may still be available even if the website says the retreat is full. After September 24, we will fill the reserved spaces from the retreat’s waitlist. If you have questions about whether spaces are still available, please contact the registrar at email@example.com.
Retreat scholarship program
Financial assistance is available through our retreat scholarship program. If payment of the $100 deposit is a barrier to your registration, please contact the registrar at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss how we can help.
To inquire about special situations, contact the registrar at email@example.com. Please note that we are unable to accommodate special dietary or environmental needs.
If you need to cancel your registration, please let us know as soon as possible so we can offer your place to someone on the waitlist. If you cancel by September 9, 2019, your deposit check can be refunded upon request, or it can be added to the dana for the retreat. The deposit will not be refunded if you cancel after September 9.
The retreat will begin on Tuesday, October 8. Check-in will open at 1:00 p.m., and the retreat will begin in the Dhamma Hall at 3:00 p.m. The retreat will end on Thursday, October 17, after the midday meal.