Order retreats 2024

Akashavana is a space for dharmacharinis and people who are coming on retreat to be ordained into the dharmacharini wing of the Triratna Buddhist Order (TBO). We are open to bookings from dharmacharinis from a wider diversity of gender identities and ask all those coming here on retreat to be open to a wider definition of a women-centred space. If you are unsure if Akashavana is a good fit for you, please contact the community.


5 – 26 August 2024

Trikaya and the Possibility of Belonging

“We especially welcome non binary folx practicing within the Dharmacharini wing of the Order to this retreat. We will be paying careful attention to the creation of inclusive conditions, particularly in the area of gendering through our use of language”

Join us in a collective exploration of our System of Meditation, drawing inspiration from the Mahayana Trikaya Teaching pointing out who we actually are, in three simultaneous

  • Nirmanakaya & coming home to presence within this body, this world
  • Sambhogakaya & befriending the dynamic flow of feeling and energy and the relational
    dimension of being
  • Dharmakaya & opening to the open, boundless dimension of awakened being

We will delve into poetic themes of “coming home” and “belonging” as an emotionally
engaging and relational approach to insight that allows:

  • Respect and appreciation of core human needs – belonging, safety and dignity
  • Holding of the tension between our ideals and our current (often messy) experience
  • Healing the illusion of separation and the habits of dualism
  • Learning to feel sensations of belonging at the levels of self, community, place, world
    and to express compassionately responsive activity
  • Deepening of mindfulness and metta into Mahamudra samatha-vipashyana practice

This retreat will include meditation, movement (somatics), music, chanting & ritual led by
teachers and retreatants, group games, exercises and discussions, teacher input, practice
reviews and ample unstructured time for enjoying the beauty of the mountain.

About Silence: We will ease into a communal practice of silence to support rest and
regeneration as well as a quality of presence and listening essential to spiritual insight.
Appreciating that we are gathering after many years of pandemic, those wishing for mindful conversation in sangha will have opportunities to do so during mid day break, away from central communal areas. There will also be regular structured opportunities to connect with others in relation to the practices being offered.

The Dharmakaya is… the embodiment, or the perfection of mind. Mind meaning here the deepest part of oneself, because it is with that deepest part of oneself…that one realises the ultimate. So Dharmakaya corresponds to mind, what in us is mind, in a Buddha is Dharmakaya.
In the same way Sambhogakaya corresponds to speech, what, in us is speech or communication, or communication principle, in a Buddha is Sambhogakaya. So in his Sambhogakaya form, in his ideal form, his archetypal form, he communicates with others on the same spiritual level, communicates with other Buddhas and with highly advanced Bodhisattvas.

And then Nirmanakaya corresponds with – it literally means ‘body of transformation’ – …what is Nirmanakaya in a Buddha in us is physical body. Our physical body determines where we are. The fact that we have a physical body means that we exist at a certain point in space and a certain point in time...

Sangharakshita, Seminar on the Songs of Milarepa

Viveka (she/they) was ordained into the Triratna Buddhist Order in 1997 and is based at the San Francisco Buddhist Center where she was chair for 16 years. Currently Viveka is President of the New York and Mexico City Triratna Buddhist Centers. Viveka was a co-founder of Triratna’s Total Immersion longer meditation retreats. Viveka’s
personal practice and teaching has depth in early Buddhist mindfulness approaches taught in the Anapanasati and Satipatthana Suttas as well as later Vajrayana non-dual nature of mind meditation and liberating energy approaches, especially the teaching lineages handed down through Milarepa (Mahamudra) and Padmasambhava. Viveka has been a leader in encouraging the development of effective, embodied, emotionally intelligent and creative meditation teaching and practice in Triratna.
A certified somatic coach, their teaching is healing and trauma informed and creates an atmosphere of welcoming that holds a diversity of peoples. A proud child of Chinese immigrants, Viveka lives with her spouse. For 30 years she has been a consultant and leadership coach for racial and social justice as an integral expression of her dharma

Singhashri (she/her or they/them) is a queer, Latinx-American dharma teacher and writer. They teach mindfulness and compassion as means to awakening to love, beauty, and truth and have committed their life to supporting collective liberation for all and the joy and freedom found there. They teach at various retreat and urban centres
across the UK, Europe, and the USA, and they support a number of projects aimed at creating greater diversity and inclusion within Buddhist sanghas and the secular mindfulness field. Singhashri has taught with Viveka on past month-long Order retreats at Akashavana. They currently live in London with their partner.

cost €1,020 (concession rate: €870) £ sterling rate to be advised nearer the time

A deposit of €100 or £100 is required to book your space on the retreat. 

contact: [email protected] for booking and information

23 September – 14 October 2024

Six Element & Sadhana retreat – Seeing with Proper Wisdom 

led by Maitreyi and Padmasuri

The Six Element and Sadhana retreat is the outcome of a long-standing wish to take these Insight practices deeper in the supremely conducive elemental environment of Akasavana. Both Padmasuri and Maitreyi have led the Six Element practice often on ordination retreats and elsewhere and want to devote a longer period to explore the depths to which the practice can take us; with the loosening of self clinging and an opening to something far more vast and mysterious out of which the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas of our sadhana practices can emerge.

We will be introducing different ways of approaching the practice, including some initial study of the Dhatu-Vibhanga sutta, in which the Buddha teaches Pukkusati, to reflect on earth, water, fire, air, space and consciousness, “both internal and external, as it actually is, with proper wisdom,” so that we can bring clear view to our sitting practice. We’ll also be engaging with the mystery of the elements, which in the Tibetan tradition are referred to as the Maha Bhutas, ‘Great Ghosts’ or ‘Great Magical Transformations’ both in sitting practice and in the expansive environment of Akashavana. And each day turning towards the experience of the elements in our bodies and in the universe, and letting go any sense of ownership; out of which can emerge a deep sense of release, freedom and contentment.

There will be periods of full silence on the retreat, time for personal reflection, puja and devotion, options for meditation reviews, and plenty of space for exploring and relaxing into the magical realm of Akashavana and the Mandala of the Five Buddhas.

cost €1,020 (concession rate: €870) £ sterling rate to be advised nearer the time

A deposit of €100 or £100 is required to book your space on the retreat. 

contact: [email protected] for booking and information