Many of our in-person events have now been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak. However we are gradually re-establishing some in-person events as the coronavirus restrictions gradually ease. Please keep an eye on this page on our website for the latest notifications from Bristol Insight. Things are unfolding rapidly and the well-being of our sangha and the wider community are our principle concern. At this time we aspire to act according to the principles of the dharma with non-harming, kindness, compassion and equanimity. Where events are cancelled we will aim to offer online alternatives where possible to maintain our sense of community and mutual support.
Tuesday Sitting Group
We are offering an online Tuesday sitting group using Zoom.
If you wish to participate in these online sessions then please email email@example.com for the Zoom link.
The session will open at 7:15pm for a 7:30pm start.
We will begin with a meditation session of about 30 minutes followed by a short break. Then in the second half we will have our Cultivation of Practice sessions. This part of the Tuesday evening sitting group invites us to engage in a variety of activities that aim to deepen our practice in the company of others. These activities may include movement, reflection, discussion, mindful sharing in pairs or in small groups. You can find our present activities by clicking on the link below.
All are welcome.
16th January 2021: A Day with Suvaco
Details to follow.
Nature meditation: SUNDAY 13 December 2020 1-4pm
Fancy practising outdoors? Do you want to sit with others face-to-face and stay safe? Are you missing connection with nature and other practitioners?
We might have a solution for you! Bristol Insight Meditation is offering nature meditation retreats in a privately owned wood about 6 miles outside Bristol. We will meet at the woods to carry out sitting, walking and nature-based practices for about 3 hours.
These woods are really special. There is sufficient space to keep 2 metres apart at all times yet stay in a circle. Even better, the woods have several large covered areas, so the event will go ahead regardless of the weather. The facilities also include easy car parking and even a compost loo! You will need to bring water, something soft to sit on and whatever you need to practice (e.g. stool, cushion, blanket) and wear appropriate clothing and shoes.
The cost per person is £5 to cover the woods hire.
For further information and directions to the site, please contact Lesley Wye on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bristol Insight Virtual Self-led Retreat Saturday 5th December 10.00am-17.00pm
Up until now, we have run the virtual self-led retreat in the same format as the in-person retreats. We’re aware that this doesn’t work for everyone and that it can be difficult to devote most of a day to meditation when there are others in your home. From November, we are going to offer the option of a full day or half day (morning or afternoon) retreat with a check-in and out at either end. Here’s how it will work:
10 – 10.30 am – Introduction to the day
10.30 – 12 – sitting and walking practice
12 – 1pm – listen to the recorded talk
1pm – brief goodbyes and review of the morning for anyone leaving at this point
1.45pm – check-in and welcome to anyone joining for the afternoon
2pm – 4.15pm – sitting and walking practice
4.15 – 5pm – end of day sharing
People are, of course, free to spend the practice parts of the day any way they choose, e.g. going for a walk.
David and Caroline, who run the Zoom link, are happy to break the silence to say goodbye to people who leave at the end of the morning and welcome people joining in the afternoon. People would need to let us know in advance if they are planning to join in the afternoon.
There is also a suggestion of changing the virtual retreat from Saturday to Sunday, as this may suit more people. We plan to run a poll about this.
Let me know if you have any questions.
Dharma talk for 5th December: 2014-09-25 The Story of Separation – The Knowing of Interdependence 51:52 by Kirsten Kratz
One of the pervading stories of our times is the story of separation. The teachings point to a very different understanding: interconnectedness and interdependence. How does the perspective/story we believe in effect our actions, intentions and the perception of us, others and the world? Which way of seeing do we wish to cultivate and give our energy to?
Gaia House : Living with Uncertainty – Knowing Freedom
“As we face growing personal and social challenges, we may feel isolated. But a deeper truth points to our fundamental affinity with all life. Our practice can help us to feel at home with this reality. Kirsten talks with her usual clarity and enthusiasm. A good talk for a mid-pandemic Christmas.”
For more information, please contact David Ringsell on email@example.com
With loving kindness from the Bristol Insight Self-led Retreat Team.
Chris Cullen’s retreat (21/3/20)
We had our first on-line retreat with Chris Cullen with over 30 participants online. We much appreciate Chris’s heartfelt response to the present unfolding situation and his offerings for practice at this time. You can listen to an audio recording of this online retreat with Chris Cullen here:
Bristol Insight WhatsApp group
We also have set up a WhatsApp group to help us keep in touch. If you wish to join this group then click on this link Join group
Dharma resources to help us navigate these turbulent times
Zohar and Nathan have recorded some talks and meditations “to help us all respond to coronavirus and it’s effects.”
Coronavirus and the support of the Dharma – Part 1 by Zohar Lavie
Guided meditation: “Coronavirus and the support of the Dharma – Part 2” by Zohar Lavie
Guided metta meditation from Nathan
There’s a good online talk relating to responding to the virus from Jack Kornfield
Gaia House online practice opportunities
While we cannot gather in person, Gaia House will be creatively exploring how we can support and nourish each other. In the coming days and weeks, we will let you know what online practice opportunities we are helping to coordinate.
Online Sitting Group
Our Online Sitting Group meets every Monday, 8-9pm (UK BST).
The group is facilitated by Gavin Milne and guest teachers.
The schedule for the next few weeks is:
This group meets every Monday at 8-9pm, facilitated by Yahel Avigur and guest teachers.
9 November – Laura Bridgman
The group is suitable for all levels of experience, although some familiarity with Buddhist teachings and prior experience of either an evening course or a retreat will be assumed.
You are welcome to join on any dates that suit you, although we ask you to attend for the whole of each meeting.
Gaia House Online Dharma Hall
Gaia House is opening an online Dharma hall: a new space for connection, reflection, and refuge. A place where we can share the Dharma and practice together, supporting us to meet our lives and our world in these times.
Sunday 8 November – 9:30 am Yanai Postelnik
Tuesday 10 November – 7:30 pm Ella Titman Tamari (Community Dharma Leader)
Wednesday 11 November – 11:00 am Yuka Nakamura
Thursday 12 November – 11:00 am Katrin Heyde
The sessions will be held by Gaia House teachers and Community Dharma Leaders. Each online meeting will include some meditation, an exploration on a theme that connects Dharma practice with the current situation, and some time for interactive sharing with the community online.
We hope this can be a space that supports us all to turn towards what is difficult, and find ways to respond to ourselves, others and the world with compassion and wisdom.
The meetings will be held via the easy to use Zoom platform. To join any of the meetings click here.
Dana is invited both for Gaia House (the ‘General Fund’) and for the teacher running the session. To offer Dana related to this offering, please click here to visit the Gaia House website where you can make a one off donation. Please note that you will need to click on the ‘Add to basket’ button for both the teacher and for Gaia House. To ensure that Teacher Dana reaches the teacher, please specify in the notes section on the checkout page the name of the teacher you are offering to. Thank you for your generosity.
May our practice together support the welfare of all beings.
Later this month and next at Gaia House
Laura Bridgman and Gavin Milne
Waking up Everywhere
Insight is a penetrative understanding into who and what we are, a kind of waking up that can change our lives. If we consider the perspective that all of our lived experience is relevant to insight and understanding, we can attune to thoughts, feelings and reactions we have throughout our day with a kind, spacious heart-mind intelligence.
We will explore practising together in a compassionate, relaxed and curious way, setting the compass of our lives such that the seeds of insight and liberation can increasingly be sown through all the activities of our lives.
The retreat is suitable for all levels of experience, and will also form the beginning of a monthly ‘waking up everywhere’ practice group, offered by the teachers, convening one evening a month online to explore and support a path of awakening within the very circumstances of our lives.
Online Vigil for a Wild Earth 12th December 7-9pm
Over the last 8 years an all-night vigil has been held in late autumn at Gaia House Retreat Centre and other homes and cities around the UK, as time dedicated to bring our concerns for the world into the powerful and transformative space of practice, while raising funds for charities working in environmental and humanitarian sectors.
In this 9th consecutive year of the annual Sangha vigil, the coronavirus has brought distinct challenges and struggles, exacerbating many of the multiple planetary crises we are collectively facing in these times. Economic disparity, racism and the extreme weather events of climate change have become more visible within and between countries. The call to be present to, and respond to the challenges of our precious Earth has never been stronger.
While we cannot meet in person we hope you will join us for an online gathering to create a crucible in which the difficult and beautiful alchemy of practice can emerge, and act as a powerful support for any responses we feel called to make off the cushion in our lives.
This year we are happy to be able to invite sanghas across the world to join us in USA, Israel and Finland and beyond.
This year’s Vigil will be fundraising for Moor Trees – a charity based near Gaia House, that aims to restore native broad-leaf woodland through the growing and planting of thousands of local tree saplings on and around Dartmoor.
To find out more and register please visit our Chuffed fundraising page. https://chuffed.org/project/
Our Facebook event page is https://www.facebook.com/
Please do share this invitation with friends, family and community.
With love and thanks
Julia, Lindsay, Gavin and Jane
28 November – 29 November
Undoing Patriarchy and Unveiling the Sacred Masculine Online retreat
On this meditation retreat, Southsea Sangha and Daniel welcome all male-identified and all masculine identified people to collectively illuminate how patriarchal expressions of self create suffering for all of us, as we begin to develop a relationship to a more sacred masculinity. To find out more and to register click here.
Bodhi College Online – Early Buddhism for today
Bodhi college are offering an ongoing series of online talks and practices entitled “Thinking Out Loud: Conversations on Early Buddhism”.
These are unique times. Now more than ever people are seeing the value in connection and building communities online. It’s perfectly natural to feel fear and anxiety. Yet, we have a supportive antidote to self-isolation. Every weekday until the COVID-19 lockdown ends we are going to be running live online meditation sessions.
Online offering from Bhante Bodhidhamma
Bhante Bodhidhamma is offering a Lockdown Evening Meditation every evening from 8-9.30pm (BST).
To connect click here
Spreading the Karuna virus
“In the beautiful Karaniya Metta Sutta (on loving kindness), the quality of protecting others from harm (even as a mother would protect her only child) is greatly emphasised. I would therefore gently encourage everyone to keep well informed and take as many value-aligned precautions as personal conditions allow. Let’s learn from other nations and each other, and do our best to collectively spread the Karuna (Compassion) Virus to all beings, instead!” – Venerable Canda