Order retreats 2023/2024

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.

25 September – 16 October 2023


A 3 week meditation retreat for Dharmacarinis at Akashavana

Led by Prasadavati & Vajradevi

The retreat will be in English.

In the wildness and beauty of the mountains of Aragon, Vajradevi & Prasadavati will share their love of the Satipatthana Sutta and the rich array of teachings and approaches to meditation and wisdom within it. Our aim is to use mindfulness in the service of liberation through the practice of awareness and right view, in such a way that reveals the joy, depth and clarity available to us.

The emphasis in meditation will be receptive and attentive, meeting the present moment with a radical tenderness where subtle awareness and clear seeing mean the possibility of wisdom is always present. There will be a particular emphasis on the ways self-clinging manifest in our experience and exploring compassionate awareness & right view in relation to the lakshanas.

The retreat will take in the needs of the participants balancing input with periods of unstructured practice. We will be in silence throughout most of the retreat, with opportunities for questions and to share our practice.

cost: €985 unwaged €840

Sterling rate to be advised nearer the time of the retreat

contact: [email protected] for booking and information

Visit Vajradevi’s blog:


Vajradevi: “I was ordained in 1995 and six months later signed up to help create what eventually became Akashavana. I’ve been drawing from the Satipatthana Sutta in my own practice, and then teaching, for 25 years. Awareness as a path to wisdom is a deep bedrock in my life during the wonderful and the difficult times. I love the wildness of the mountains where I feel free, and practice becomes more in line with reality.”

Prasadavati: “I met the Dharma in my early twenties in West London. Shortly afterwards I moved to Germany, where I’ve lived ever since. After my ordination in 1995 it was clear that we needed a centre in our local town, Minden, so that became my main focus for many years. Discovering the Satipatthana Sutta while supporting a long meditation retreat transformed a general interest in mindfulness into a revelation of mindfulness in the service of liberation. It was as if a door to the very heart of the Dharma had been opened. 17 years later I’m still studying and practising this core teaching, exploring ways to communicate its potential to reveal the truth of the Dharma in direct experience – ways that address the whole of our being, the whole of experience with kindness, playfulness, relaxation and joy.”


 23 October – 2 November 2023

Working Retreat

An opportunity to join the community for a 10 day working retreat.  We will be living and working together on a variety of tasks and projects to maintain and beautify the material realm of Akashavana.  Practical work will be held in the context of  meditation and ritual alongside time to reflect and relax into the forest realm of luminous space.

We are very happy to answer any questions you might have. If you are interested in coming please contact us by email.

Cost: £100 which covers basic costs, if you are able to offer dana this will be much appreciated.

contact: [email protected]



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...

Sangharakita, 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.

(2024 rates not yet confirmed): A deposit of €100 or £100 is required to book your space on the retreat. We will confirm 2024 rates as soon as possible.

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 (2024 rates not yet confirmed):

A deposit of €100 or £100 is required to book your space on the retreat. We will confirm 2024 rates as soon as possible.

contact: [email protected] for booking and information