Thank you Jennifer Stretton for posting your blog entry about our Bali retreat here below. Five years have passed and we have all become older. Some of us have felt the aging process more acutely though, imagine hitting the sixty-year old point. As we can't run away from impermanence lets hold our nose and warm up to it; a good way of doing that is intense meditation.
For those of you who wish to attend our October sesshin Jen's description will give you a feel of the retreat although in the end this is a purely subjective experience and no two peoples account could be identical.
What comes up during a sesshin is really not that important; your experience may be a predominantly peaceful or joyful one or, as a result of the sitting, you may face your confused state of mind, experience some unowned pain or sorrow that will rise to ask for your attention. What's important is not what comes up, so forget seeking extraordinary breakthroughs, what matters most is that you are showing up sincerely and unreservedly for your life. It's that showing up that has great value. I need to tell you about that later.
Please note some possible changes between Bali 2012 and version Portugal 2017:
1) Don't count on seeing any rice fields in the South of Portugal or white cranes hovering above them.
2) I cannot guarantee the presence of any ducks during our daily outdoor meditation walk but you may be pleasantly surprised..
3) I am not bringing Mon the dog with me on the plane to Europe, he will stay behind in Bali, especially in light of how poorly he behaved himself in our last reatreat in Bali. I think my good friend Rob Dubois agree with me on that.
4) For your enjoyment there will be another session of zazen added to the schedule. Actually, this makes it now standard hours of sitting in sesshin before we were chilling.
I hope I have not left anything important out. Don't hesitate to write to Jen or to myself if you have any questions.
I am getting excited about the idea of coming and sitting with you and embracing my demons and encouraging you to embrace yours, that should be fun, taking the old ghosts out of the closet, airing them a bit and cheering them up.