Bhante Sujato 7-day meditation retreat

kr 1500

7-day meditation retreat with Bhante Sujato October 2024 at Venabu Fjellhotell. Total price NOK 7,700 (€675), deposit NOK 1500 (€130) upon registration, balance to be paid 4 weeks before the retreat starts.

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Description

Time: From Friday 25th of October to Friday 1st of November 2024. Starting at lunch 12:00 noon the first day, departure after lunch on the last day.
Location: Venabu Fjellhotell, Rondevegen 860, 2632 Venabygd.
Language: All teachings will be given in English.
Price: Total NOK 7,700 (€675), deposit of NOK 1,500 (€130) to be paid upon registration, balance to be paid 4 weeks prior to the start of the retreat.
Maximum number of participants: 50
Transport: Each individual must provide transport to and from, but we help connect those who have their own transport with those who do not.
Food: Vegetarian with eggs and milk.
Age
: Minimum age for participation is 18 years.
Organizer: The Buddhist Society of Norway.
Retreat leader: Ajahn Nitho, for queries please email retreat@dnbf.org
Instructor
: Bhante Sujato.

We are renting the entire Venabu Fjellhotell for a silent meditation retreat in October 2024, so that all participants have optimal conditions for learning, practice and development. All participants get their own room with shower/bathroom, and the chef at Venabu will cook really good vegetarian food for us.

Instructor Bhante Sujato has practiced full-time for 30 years as a monastic, and travels the world organizing retreats, courses and lectures. DNBF has invited him to Norway to arrange a meditation retreat.

We’ve asked him to focus on the Buddha’s teachings around awakening – the goal of Buddhist practice. What is this awakening that is available to us as humans? What’s it like to be awake? How does this happen? How does Buddha describe awakening? Why should we evolve towards awakening?

Bhante Sujato will of course also teach meditation, mindfulness and the other factors of the eightfold path to support the participants’ meditation and practice this week.

All teaching is given in English.

Venabu Fjellhotell with Rondane National Park in the background.

Beginner or experienced

This retreat will be suitable for everyone – a full introduction to meditation will be taught, as well as deepening in various areas as desired or needed. There will be teaching, guiding, questions/answers and individual guidance – and we will probably also have time for some yoga.

The meditation and teaching are carried out on comfortable chairs, but you can also sit on the floor using a mat and cushions or stools. Meditation can also be done lying on mats, or in bed in your bedroom.

All activities at the retreat are voluntary, you choose how many group activities you participate in, and how much you want to be alone and meditate/study in your own room.

Transportation

Everyone must provide their own transport, but we will try to connect those with and without their own transport. There are trains to Ringebu train station directly from Oslo and Oslo Airport. Venabu Fjellhotell has a pick-up service at the train station. Train tickets can be booked at vy.no

Venabu Fjellhotell
Ringebu Togstasjon/Trainstation

Food

We set up for breakfast at 07.00 and lunch/dinner at 12.00, as well as something snack in the evening – buffet/self-service. The food will be vegetarian, with eggs and dairy products. There will be snacks, tea and coffee available throughout the day. A simple hot meal will be served on the first evening and you will depart after lunch on the last day. If you have special dietary needs in addition to this (vegan, gluten-free, etc.) you must bring some food yourself.

Accommodation

Everyone gets their own room, which is of a good and simple standard, without a TV. Wi-fi is available in the hotel, and the entire area has 4G coverage. There is no room service during the retreat.

To keep the price down, all participants must contribute a total of approx. one hour of karma yoga – simple tasks during your stay – but the staff at the mountain hotel are in charge.

Equipment

The place has nice chairs to sit on, but we still recommend everyone to bring their own equipment: chair, stool, seat cushions, mat, etc.

Many people also choose to bring earplugs, so that everything can be completely quiet during a meditation. If you enjoy hiking in nature, bring a jacket, suitable shoes and maybe an umbrella.

Program

The program for the retreat will be published before the retreat, but here is a preliminary day program:

06.00 – 07.00 — Group meditation (optional)
07.30 – 08.00 — Breakfast
08.30 – 09.30 — Teaching
10.00 – 11.00 — Free practice
11.00 – 12.00 — Free practice
12.00 – 13.00 — Lunch
13.00 – 14.00 — Karma yoga – Free practice
14.00 – 15.00 — Free practice
15.00 – 16.00 — Guided meditation – Free practice
16.00 – 17.00 — Individual guidance – Free practice
17.00 – 17.30 — Individual guidance – Free practice
17.30 – 18.00 — Evening snacks
18.00 – 19.00 — Free practice
19.00 – 20.00 — Free practice
20.00 – 21.00 — Questions and answers
21.00 – ??.?? — Free practice

Meditation

During a meditation retreat, we put the world on the outside aside for a while, to reach peace on the inside. Depending on your experience level, effort is required, especially at the beginning.

Meditation practised over a few days can create a peaceful, harmonious, happy and light mind, and the deeper the meditation is, the stronger the experience will be.

Meditation is the eighth factor in the Noble Eightfold Path, which sets meditation into a bigger framework, so that the training can lead to insight and wisdom about ourselves. It is these insights which can change the mind towards peace, lightness and freedom in the long term.

As described in the Noble Eightfold Path, meditation builds on knowledge, right intentions, ethics/moral, efforts to lead the mind in a positive way and mindfulness.

A mind in harmony and peace relieves stress and positively affects body and health. But meditation as part of the Eightfold Path is primarily a tool for better quality of life and wisdom.

Medicine and Health

If you have a physical illness, remember to bring the necessary medicine. Meditation cannot replace medicine. If you have a physical illness that gets worse from long periods of sitting or walking, check with your doctor before signing up.

If you have a mental disorder, you must clarify with Ajahn Nitho and health personnel before registration. Meditation cannot replace therapy or medication, and a retreat is not a place where you can stop or adjust medication.

Do Not Bring

  • Do not bring pets
  • Do not bring or use alcohol
  • Do not bring and wear provocative clothing

Registration

You register by pressing the “Add to Cart” button at the top of this page. Your registration is valid when we have received the payment.

IMPORTANT: For those who have paid a deposit of NOK 1500 or the full participation fee of NOK 7500, and subsequently withdraw from the retreat, even after the retreat has started, for any reason (including illness), the amount will be refunded if the society finds another person, for example from the retreat waiting list. Otherwise, we recommend travel insurance, to remove the risk if you have to withdraw, for example due to illness, and the association cannot find someone to take your place.

IMPORTANT: According to Norwegian law, you have a 14-day cancellation period for services purchased over the internet. This then applies 14 days after registration. When registering 14 days or less before start-up, the cancellation period applies until the service is delivered – i.e. the retreat begins.

Feel free to bring a friend, but remember that this is a quiet retreat, where the focus is on our inner world, and to a less extent the social.

Literature

Ajahn Nitho recommends a small book on meditation called Kindfulness, it is an expanded and improved version of the free booklet Basic Method of Meditation, published by Wisdom Publications, Boston, USA. It provides a simple, short and effective introduction to meditation. The book is in English, but the free booklet is available in both English and Norwegian.

Silence and the 8 training rules

During the retreat we practice silence. This means that we avoid talking to each other or using any form of non-verbal communication. The exceptions are if the instructor open for questions at the end of the day. We practice silence to minimize distractions and facilitate a calm mind that can focus inward. Silence helps and supports meditation.

During a retreat, especially for longer retreats, in order for the mind to have optimal conditions to develop towards freedom, lightness, energy, harmony and balance, there are eight recommended training rules:

  • train not to destroy/harm living beings
  • train not to take, what is not given
  • practice abstaining from sexual activity
  • practice refraining from improper speech
  • practice abstaining from intoxicating drinks and drugs, which lead to indifference
  • practice refraining from eating after lunch
  • practice abstaining from dancing, singing, music, entertainment, perfume and cosmetics
  • practice abstaining from a luxurious lifestyle

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