Thread: Samatha Meditation Retreat UK

  1. #1
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    Hello,

    Is anyone familiar with the Samatha Foundation?

    They run weekend courses around the UK, and was wondering if anyone has any experiences with them or samatha meditation in general?


    Thanks

  2. #2
    Woodscooter will be able to tell you something about this, Jack, because I think he goes to their (Forest Tradition) meditation classes.

  3. #3
    Technical Administrator woodscooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Replying to jack:
    from post #1
    I go to a weekly Samatha meditation group here in West London, led by a lay teacher.

    The foundation was established by a Thai Forest monk who came to this country quite a long time ago, and there is a centre at Greenstreet in Wales where the weekend (and weekday) courses and retreats are held.

    I have heard from others who have been to weekend courses that it's all very peaceful, the accommodation is "quite basic" which I understand to mean cold in the winter and without modern conveniences.

    As well as welcoming all to weekend retreats, they train teachers to lead meditation groups, and there are about a dozen groups, like the one I go to, around the country. There's no master plan for these, they just get set up where-ever a trained teacher chooses to live.

    The training in meditation is very structured, compared to a different approach I have learned before from another tradition. The structure helps train attention on the breath to begin with, and gently leads you to settle at a deeper level after some weeks of practice.

    I'm not the only one here with experience of Samatha. Perhaps Slartibartfast will add a post from his perspective.

  4. #4
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    Thanks, I was recommended the Samatha foundation and looking forward to trying it out.

  5. #5
    Forums Member Slartibartfast's Avatar
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    Hey

    I have been with a samatha foundation group for about two years now . I plan to go on my first retreat in September. Some guys are coming over to Benburb here in Ireland. Very excited

    All in all it's like what woodscooter said. There is a very structured incremental technique taught and some intensive weekend or week long retreats.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by woodscooter #3:
    I have heard from others who have been to weekend courses that it's all very peaceful, the accommodation is "quite basic" which I understand to mean cold in the winter and without modern conveniences.
    Thanks slarti!

    Winter cold would be a tough one. No bed is perfectly fine.

    I hope they have some weekend retreats during the summer.

  7. #7
    Forums Member Slartibartfast's Avatar
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    I think if its your first retreat you get a bed

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slartibartfast #7:
    I think if its your first retreat you get a bed
    That's nice. When I went on my first retreat, we got a bed two inches thick. I would have happily slept on the floor. We were already sleeping in an open hut, with little serpents going up the railings of the hut at night seeking shelter from the rain. Closest thing to sleeping in a jungle. It was a very rewarding experience, battling fears with meditation, and watching yourself calm, contemplating impermanence, some of the deepest sleep I've had in a long while.

  9. #9
    Global Moderator Esho's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jack #8:
    watching yourself calm, contemplating impermanence, some of the deepest sleep I've had in a long while.

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