Retreats offer the opportunity to set aside our day-to-day cares and turn within, in order to nourish and renew our spiritual lives. We welcome those who wish to experience life in a Buddhist temple. We offer both scheduled meditation retreats and private retreats:
We hold weekend retreats and three-day retreats periodically at the temple. Anyone may attend a weekend retreat, whether you have spent time at the temple previously or not. Three-day retreats require a higher level of mindfulness and commitment, and are not open to newcomers. If you wish attend a three-day retreat, please plan to visit the temple for an overnight stay at some point before the retreat begins, so that you may become acclimated to our daily routine and style of teaching. We typically schedule a retreat to coincide with a Buddhist festival. The teaching given during the retreat will focus on the significance of the festival, such as the Buddha’s Birth or Enlightenment, or the festival of a Bodhisattva such as Quan Yin or Manjusri. During retreats we do less working meditation and more sitting and walking meditation. We have an extra Dharma session in the afternoon for questions and answers pertinent to the retreat and teaching.
Besides our normal dormitory accommodations, the temple has two meditation huts which can be used for private retreats. They were both built for this purpose, and are available at any time of the year for those who wish to live at Pine Mountain Temple, and experience the deep quiet and focus that we enjoy in this location. Bathrooms, including a shower, and our kitchen are within 100 feet of both meditation huts (or kutis), and both have electricity and heating. We ask retreatants to participate in morning and evening meditation and services; the rest of the day is unstructured. Spiritual guidance and Dharma teaching from the two resident monks are always available. One hut, known as the Pine Shrine, contains a small altar dedicated to a manifestation of Quan Yin (or Avalokiteshwara) known as Bato, the Horse-Headed Quan Yin. The other hut is named the Willow Shrine, the willow branch being symbolic of the water of compassion, and often depicted in Buddhist art as being held by Quan Yin, the Bodhisattva of Compassion. Arrangements for spending time on a private retreat can be made via application on this website, working out the details with Rev. Master Phoebe, abbess of the temple.
To apply to come for a visit of any length, please click on the link ‘Registration’, fill in the application and submit it to the temple. One of the monks will contact you regarding your application to sort out the details. For shorter stays, we recommend coming for a weekend; however, you may also apply to come during the week and you may apply for any length of time that you wish to spend in the temple.