Throughout the year I run silent meditation retreats, in peaceful locations to provide practitioners with the opportunity to deepen their experience of mindfulness and meditation.
If you are learning meditation, then perhaps you are attending a class, practicing through a mobile app, or following instructions in a book.
This is a wonderful start, giving you a platform to gain experience of the peace within, however often the process of training can be rushed.
With the drop-in evening classes that I run, many people need to rush to the venue and then rush home to their families and busy lives. Often in the meditation sessions due to the power of distractions, thinking about what needs to be done later.
Of course they gain some glimpses of peace which sustains them through the week, until the next class, however we have the potential to have a much richer and deeper experience.
Or maybe you practice through an app 5, 10, 15 minutes a day. This is a great way to establish a regular habit. However it can simply be squeezed into our busy life
Going on retreat gives us the chance to spend quality time with our mind and enjoy the experience of peace within.
We have the whole day, weekend, week to just focus on cultivating peace.
There are many types of retreat; silent retreat helps us to really experience the inner peace within our mind and reduce distraction.
How does a day silent retreat work?
You make your way to the venue, ideally setting out early, giving yourself plenty of time to find the location.
When you arrive at the venue, the kettle will be ready for you to have a drink and possibly a snack if you wish!
At this time you get chance to meet fellow retreaters’ and have some orientation of the venue and beautiful grounds.
The actual silence begins as soon as we enter the meditation room, so this will be at 10.15am. If it is a day retreat the group will then keep silence until the discussion at 4.30pm. At this point you will have the opportunity to share you experience, if you wish, with a fellow meditator next to you.
The benefits of keeping silence during the retreat is that you can go deeper into your experience, have more concentration and less distraction in the breaks between the meditation sessions.
As the day progresses your concentration improves and your mind begins to settle.
In the breaks between meditation sessions, you can take relaxing, reflecting walks in nature or simply chill-out in the meditation room or dining area. At lunch and break times you can also gain experience of mindful eating and drinking in a concentrated group..
The silent retreat provides a relaxing, supportive environment to progress with your training. Although you are silent you still have a bond and connection with others around you.
Many people find the experience very helpful and feel once they have completed the retreat, that they have made a significant step forward with their practice.
I hope you’re able to make a silent retreat in the future and enjoy the following benefits:
Increase focus and concentration.
Sense of contentment and well-being.
Improved confidence in your practice.
A relaxing holiday for your mind.
A deepened experience of meditation.
Discovery of the inner peace within.
Enjoy a day without distraction.
Take home a special, peaceful experience which you can share with those around you.
Disconnect from technology and connect with inner peace and nature.
Click here for information about retreats.
Article written by Adam Dacey.
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