Two Oars in Water: A Weekend of Deep Practice

November 9th—November 10th

Date details +
    Room: WPFC Carriage House
    Program Registration is Closed.


    Join for all or part of the weekend.

    Cost: Generosity policy

    This is a weekend of intensive practice.  We are embarking on a longer journey as a sangha, one that could be visualized as two oars of a rowboat beginning to row in tandem.  One paddle: deep meditation practice, and the other: community process (learning how to make decisions together; how to have ways of being together that allow our whole being to be present).  

    What does it mean to be a group of humans practicing meditation (and meditation in action) together? How do we learn to steady ourselves, to paddle together, to humbly begin to move through changing waters?

    This first deep practice weekend will be three quarters deep meditation intensive and one quarter participant driven process picking up threads that emerged in the September 22nd community gathering. 

     Join us for all or part of the weekend.  

    The weekend schedule is posted at the bottom of this description; please try to plan your entrance to respect the container of practice for all. Make time to stretch your practice, or just dip your toe in and explore what a retreat container feels like. If you are not able to attend this time, there will be more to come.  Please refer to our programs page for save the dates for upcoming deep practice weekends.

    Part One - Deep Meditation:

    Silence. Stillness. Please join us to enter into deep practice. For the entire day on Saturday and half of the day on Sunday we will follow a gentle and precise schedule of periods of meditation, followed by walking meditation or movement. With a contemplative lunch in silence our time will support profound practice. Acharya Lobel will offer optional individual meditation interviews on Saturday afternoon and a dharma talk on Sunday morning.

    This is neither a beginner nor an advanced program, but is open to anyone called into the depth of meditation, longing for the spaciousness and confidence of natural awareness. 

    The Sunday open meditation will be incorporated into the weekend, and all are welcome to join us for meditation and the dharma talk on Sunday.  

    Part Two – Community Process, Brainstorming and Play:

    Following from the deep meditation practice weekend, we will shift form and come together to begin to map the territory of where we are, what we want to be, and how we get there. Picking up the threads from the community meeting we will start to look at what have been identified as pressing concerns: decision making, leadership structure, programming elements, and others that present themselves that day. To help prepare for this and future gatherings, a feedback form has been created to gather input from folks before we begin.

    This will be a time for brainstorming and staying with identifying the needs. For this particular gathering, our sangha facilitator, K.T. Tierney, will hold us in a creative, generative, reflective space. We find ourselves longing for more horizontal leadership/decision making forms, but with most of our past experience together in taking place in hierarchical models. This change will not happen in one meeting. We need to learn how to make decisions together before we can make decisions.  Play, creativity, and openness can help us get there.  We hope to conclude, not with broad fixed solutions, but with some response to the question: what is the next, most elegant, move?*  We do not know the whole way forward but we can still proceed with grace and simplicity. 

    Our goals for this conversation:

    • Be transparent about how we got to where we are.
    • Laying out the complex situation we are in surrounding leadership and decision making.
    • Leaving time for those present to voice and investigate what they want heard.
    • Creative ideation, beginning to look at who/what/how we want to be can be exciting.
    • Having fun.
    • Allowing space for tensions.
    • Making care-full, simple moves. 
    • Not being outcome oriented, this is just the beginning of a long process.

    *This guiding question is attributed to Gibrán Rivera in adrienne maree brown’s work emergent strategy.

    The Schedule:

    Saturday, November 9th

    (Doors open at 6:30)

    7:00am Opening sit and walk/movement

    8:00am Silent light breakfast

    9:00-12:00 Sitting and walk/movement 

    12:00-2:00 Lunch, rest 

    2:00-3:30 Work practice and silent study 

    3:30-6:00 Sit and walk/movement.  Optional interviews. 

    6:00-8:00 Some will depart, others will have dinner in or out 

    8:00-9:00 Closing sit (Participants return home for the evening)

    Sunday, November 10th

    (Doors open at 6:45)

    7:00am Opening sit and walk/movement 

    8:00am Silent light breakfast 

    9:00-12:00 Sitting and dharma talk 

    12:00-1:30 Lunch, rest

    1:30pm-5:00pm Facilitated participant-driven dialogue 


    The retreat is offered on a dana or generosity policy, with the aspiration to disentangle from transactional economy.  To read how another meditation center uses a dana policy, explore here.

    Upcoming Deep Practice Weekends:

    • November 9-10
    • December 14-15
    • January 10-11
    • February 8-9

    Beginning Principles for deep practice weekends:

    • Neither beginning nor advanced, all are welcome.
    • Held routinely (Trying once a month for the winter)
    • Folks can enter and leave as needed.
    • Offered on a dana or generosity policy.
    • Incorporates Sunday open meditation—dharma talk is given during the 2nd

    -Dharma Talk speaker changes each month.

    • Two Oars, Together:

    - Deep meditation practice (All day Saturday and Sunday Morning)

    - Community process/building our decision-making structures (Sunday afternoon)