Sunday, September 20, 2009

Return from the land of the lotus

A couple of weeks ago after a stressful summer of house hunting, I decided I would go on retreat to Padma Samye Ling Retreat Center and Monastery (Inconceivable Lotus Land) which is located in Delaware County in upstate New York. Set near the top of a mountain in the western region of the Catskill mountains, the outstanding facilities are contained within five hundred acres of forests, meadows, and natural springs. This is the first time I went to the Shedra retreat which means "place of learning." It has been 3 years since I have been back to the land. I used to go frequently when I lived in Chicago. It was easy to drive up with my friend Dawn and there were times we would drive up 6 times in a year!
This Shedra was a particular study of our inner universe of our channels, winds, and essence elements according to Anuyoga Tantras. This was intensive study based on teachings of great masters of Vajrayana Buddhism. Unlike summer retreats that I have attended this retreat had 2 teaching periods where we would learn ancient Buddhist practices. I really enjoyed the extra time learning from my beloved teachers. They are so knowledgable and filled with love and compassion. I also enjoy connecting with sangha (like-minded practitioners) and sharing experiences.
What I find most beneficial is being in this beautiful natural setting and learning how to relax with special meditation techniques I can bring home to practice so that I can benefit myself and others. I find that going on retreats is much more relaxing than going on a vacation sipping margaritas and I am aware that the happy feelings last much longer.
If you would like to know more about Padmasambhava Buddhist Centers or support by contributing to many of their ongoing projects, please visit:
May all beings have happiness and the cause of happiness.