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Household life is crowded and dusty; life gone forth is wide open… Suppose I shave off my hair and beard, put on the ochre robe, and go forth from the home life into homelessness.”
~the Buddha
MN 36

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Retreats and Programs

Retreat is a time when people can come to the monastery and meditate in a focused environment. This allows the possibility of directly experiencing the Buddha’s teachings. Every retreat is different, ranging in length from two to nine days. Most retreats at the Bhavana Society have a theme. Almost all retreats are held in silence. Usually a good portion of the day is spent in silent meditation. Retreatants are required to follow the eight monastery precepts, including not eating after noon. Everyone is expected to participate in the retreat schedule.

All these aspects allow for an environment in which meditation…(read more)