the heart’s retreat

This weekend, we ran a retreat training a group of health care professional in the skills to run Mindfulness-Based programs. It always amazes me that we can be so  highly trained yet feel so much fear when test-driving new techniques or practices.  Of course, it’s a statement of courage that we tolerate our fear so that we can engage willingly in learning ways to better care for others.  In simple terms, these retreats blow my mind.  One exercise we always do is to sit in groups of two and ask: what does your heart yearn for?

What does my heart yearn for?

Rest.  Peace.  Silence.  Connection.

Rohatsu – the time we celebrate and consecrate the Buddha’s enlightenment – is December 8th.  I’ve yearned for years to take part in a Rohatsu retreat yet always felt the “red terror” at the thought of 7 days spent in such intense disciplined silence.  But life is too long to spend time yearning.  In two days, I’m headed to Upaya for Rohatsu with my dearest dharma siblings from all over the North American continent.  This time, different from other retreats, I am doing a few things that are cause the wave of red terror to rise.

I am not taking my notebook.

I am not going to schedule posts from Tuesday onwards.

I am not checking my phone (taking a separate alarm clock).

I am only taking the minimal clothing I will need.  Everything in the smallest carry-on I have.

What does my heart yearn for?

To let go with trust that nothing and everything will change.

9 thoughts on “the heart’s retreat

  1. Lovely post! “What does my heart yearn for? To let go with trust…” Wow – that just says it all… Wishing you a restful heart and mind during the retreat… Heart Hugs… Christine

  2. I am so gonna miss you all! Over this year I realize I’ve become wickedly attached to those Site Stats and these ten days will be a good way to go “cold turkey” from the addiction. Even if I return to find readerhsip is 0, I know where to find all of you. Bwahahahahahaaaa….

    Jomon, I’d love to have you join us at a retreat. We’re trying to formulate doing the training as a five-day retreat. Stay tuned!

    Barry, one of our sangha members reminded me that we will all be sitting at the same time on Dec 7th… May we all attain enlightenment!

  3. I had the same attachment to blog stats… This summer I tried my best to over come it. Mostly, I just stopped checking them, even though I was still very curious. I still check them now, but since I stopped obsessing over them, they’ve nearly doubled! One of those things…

    • Joseph, every time a post stat spikes, I get obsessed about why it did, and who was reading it, and where they came from, and how they’re enjoying it… Oh look! It’s that story about pulling out the arrow! 😀

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