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Dharma Training Programme 2021 – Emptiness Retreat

Join us for the third of three Dharma Training retreats, exploring the teachings of the Three Doors of Liberation.

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21 Oct 2021 - 25 Oct 2021

Sidcot School, Winscombe, North Somerset, BS25 1PD

Cover photo by: Lucy Jones from the Isle of Man

‘Emptiness’ is the third of three Dharma Training retreats exploring the relevance of the Buddha’s teachings of the Three Doors of Liberation to our everyday life.  This series of retreats is for those with an established mindfulness practice who wish to deepen their connection with other beings.  

Thich Nhat Hanh wrote about Emptiness: ‘Wherever we go, we touch the nature of emptiness in everything we contact. We look deeply at the table, the blue sky, our friend, the mountain, the river, our anger, and our happiness and see that these are all empty of a separate self. When we touch these things deeply we see the interbeing and interpenetrating nature of all that is’.

Emptiness does not mean nonexistence. Understanding emptiness helps us to see that we are not alone, that we are profoundly connected to all beings in the past, the present and the future. Understanding emptiness can transform our consciousness, our ideas of happiness, and our lifestyle.

The retreat will be held at Sidcot School for those attending in person, and will also be available online using Zoom, from 5.00pm on Thursday, October 21st to 3.00pm on Monday, October 25th, 2021 and will be led by UK Dharma Teachers Angie Searle and Dene Donalds. During the retreat, we will also hold a Transmission of the Five Mindfulness Trainings, further details will follow in due course. 


What to expect

There will be opportunities on the retreat to build friendship and community with other practitioners and we will explore ways in which ‘emptiness’ can help us to connect more deeply with the world in which we live and to find greater meaning in our lives. The retreat will include:

– Opportunities to practice guided and silent sitting meditations, walking meditation, mindful eating and noble silence;

– Opportunities to learn from others through dharma sharing and exploration;

– Dharma teaching from UK Dharma Teachers. Set texts for reflection may be shared with you before the retreat.

– Those attending online via Zoom will be able to join meditation sessions, Dharma talks, dharma sharing and other activities and we encourage everyone to have had a look at chapter 1 of Thich Nhat Hanh’s book ‘The Art of Living’ in preparation for the retreat



Registrations start on 21st June, payments will be taken in August.

The cost of residential retreat     : £310

Bursary assisting fees                       : £335 / £360 (much appreciated)

Supported places   – 4 places        : £232.50

“Wake Up” members – 4 places    : £155

Online retreat guide price              : £95

Any surplus, after administrative costs, will be donated to the Plum Village monastic centres .

In order to register your interest (free of charge), please click on the link below which will take you to the event listing in Eventbrite. There you will see a button marked “Tickets”;  click on that and scroll to the bottom of the tickets. You will see these two types of ticket for sale:

  • Register for Residential retreat
  • Register for Online retreat

Please select the appropriate one, both are free of charge. You will then be presented with a form which asks a few questions. One question is whether you would like to receive the Five Mindfulness Trainings; this option is offered to all those attending the retreat whether residential or online. We will provide further details when the way forward is clear, hopefully by early August.

How to attend

More information and booking via Eventbrite

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