The heart of skillful meditation is the ability to let go and begin again, over and over … There is no distance to traverse in recollecting our attention; as soon as we realize we have been lost in discursive thought, or have lost touch with the chosen contemplation, right in that moment we can begin again. Nothing has been ruined, and there is no such thing as failing. There is nowhere the attention can wander to, and no duration of distraction, from which we cannot completely let go, in a moment, and begin again.” ~ Sharon Salzberg
Life itself is about constant beginnings – renewing ourselves again and again and again. Life is actually a never-ending flow of new – each moment is new, each breath is new, each thought is new. In fact, we ourselves are constantly re-newing and changing. With this in mind, the truth, as Sharon Salzberg suggests, is that really, “nothing has been ruined, and there is no such thing as failing.”
During this silent daylong retreat, we’ll be exploring through guided and silent practice how we can let ourselves off the hook for all the ways we believe we’ve somehow failed, reminding ourselves that every single moment is an opportunity to start over, that nothing has been lost, that our lives can and do and are in fact always changing.
We’ll be gathering for our retreat on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m in the peaceful, spacious, modern blue sanctuary of the Unitarian Universalist Church of the Shenandoah Valley, 6380 Valley Pike, Stephens City, VA. The quiet church grounds include open spaces and beautiful walking trails in the woods.
The format will include both guided and silent meditation, a dharma talk, and walking meditation both inside the sanctuary, and outside on the beautiful grounds. The silence will end at 4 p.m., and we’ll finish with a half-hour dedicated to questions.
Please note: Meditation experience is recommended, but not required. Comfy chairs are provided.
Registration for this meditation retreat is $65. Late registration is unavailable the day of retreat. Once you’ve registered, you’ll receive detailed instructions, suggestions, directions, and a short form to fill out. ]
If you aren’t able to attend the retreat and need to cancel, we offer a 65% refund, or … you can choose to be a guest at a future daylong retreat within the next year.
TESTIMONIALS FROM PAST PARTICIPANTS
“Shell, thank you for a beautiful and powerful day. This retreat was transformative for me, truly a day of awakening. Thank you for your loving and compassionate guidance.”
“Thank you for leading such a beautiful retreat. I felt completely wrapped up in the comfort, safety and structure of the day. It was pitch perfect.”
“As always, it was a pleasure to experience another one of your retreats; each one is a gem and I cherish them. I really feel blessed to have experienced so many hours of your excellent teaching, you really are an expert at what you do and I truly admire the way you hold the space for us as you lead class and retreats.”
“Yesterday was awesome! Seven hours of silence and meditation, just what I needed!! Great leader, great people, great view, great day!! I feel so refreshed! Looking forward to doing it again in the future! Thanks so much Shell.”
“Thank you again for the fabulous experience, and for your expertise that you are imparting to curious minds such as mine. I am grateful for the exposure, and realize I have much to learn about the art of meditation. Thank you for making my first experience pleasurable.
If you’re planning to stay overnight in the area, please click here for things to do and places to stay.
New to retreats? Click here to read an article Shell wrote about attending retreats.