How to Plan a Meditation Retreat

How to Plan a Meditation Retreat
“Nowhere can man find a quieter or more untroubled retreat than in his own soul.” ~ Marcus Aurelius It’s not just practicing Buddhists who are flocking to the many temple tours in Asia this year, but curious vacationers who want to learn about the region’s history and culture. Some travelers who head to Japan trek the 800-mile Shikoku route that stops at 88 different Buddhist temples. Buddhist-themed tourism is big business all over Asia, with Japan, China, Thailand, Burma, India and Sri Lanka the primary destinations for culture-hungry tourists and pilgrims. Spending your retreat at a Buddhist temple is a challenge. It calls for planning, perseverance, and a decent amount of study before departure. But the rewards of a meditation retreat or extended, contemplative stay at an Asian Buddhist holy site can be life changing. Typical two-week tours offer up things like meditation retreats in Sri Lanka monasteries, festivals in India, up-close tea ceremony experiences in Japan, back-road hikes to remote temples in China, Burma and Thailand. It’s a rare treat for Westerners to spend an afternoon sipping matcha tea in a Tokyo Zen temple or devoting two full weeks to a silent Vipassana retreat in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Temple tour tips for travelers Anyone who wants to see Buddhist temples in Asia needs to do some homework before booking a specific tour. Here’s the best way to begin: 1. Decide on a specific temple or region you want to visit. Many Asian countries, particularly Burma and Sri Lanka, are quite strict about what tourists can and can’t do, and how long they can stay. 2. If you are connected with a Buddhist community in your home country, speak with someone there who has traveled in Asia before. That’s because some national tourism offices give preference to “pilgrims,” a term generally defined as any Buddhist wanting to visit particular temples or holy sites. 3. Don’t rely on a destination country’s embassy or government travel office to offer reliable agency contacts. Some of those “official” travel agencies in various countries are low-quality organizations whose status is purely political and not based on their quality as travel bookers. 4. If you book your own tour, be absolutely certain that you know the “rules of the road” for any temple you plan to visit. Some only allow tourists at certain times, or will ask you to fill out an application if you want to attend a meditation retreat. This is a crucial step because you may not be able to get a pilgrim visa, or any visa, without a written “invitation” from a temple official. 5. Once all the paperwork is done, applications filled out (if necessary) and tickets purchased, make sure you understand how to dress and act when spending time at your temple of choice. Remember, Buddhist temples are, in a manner of speaking, very similar to Christian churches. Etiquette for temple visitors Rules of etiquette at Buddhist temples vary, but there are some general guidelines. 1. At many temples, especially in Burma and Thailand, there will be residents who are trying to meditate, so strive to speak in a low voice while on the grounds. 2. Dress conservatively. For both women and men, this means covering legs at least to below the knees, preferably all the way to the ankles. Asia can be the hottest, stickiest place on earth during the warm months, so keep that in mind when planning a trip. Arms should be covered as well. The general rule is that short sleeves are usually okay, but sleeveless shirts and tops are a no-no. 3. Wear shoes that you can quickly take off, because you will need to remove footwear when you are in and around a temple. 4. Don’t touch or point at sacred statues, nuns or monks. When approaching a Buddha statue, try at all times to keep your head below the Buddha’s head. This applies to reclining Buddha images as well, so be ready to do some kneeling or crouching if you want a close-up photo. You should also bow your head as a polite display of respect when you are face-to-face with a Buddha statue or image. 5. Remember that specific temples you visit will likely have some other, local rules for you to follow, so be ready to add to the general list above. Touring famous, or little-known, Buddhist temples and monasteries of the world can be the retreat of a lifetime. But, special experiences call for special preparation and proper behavior. Make sure you know what to expect by spending plenty of time planning your trip and learning how to behave once you arrive. Travelers who do the leg work and advance planning will be rewarded with an unforgettable experience and perhaps an enlightening one. This article was written by Catalin Zorzini. Catalin is a design blogger with a thing for ecommerce, matcha tea and bebop. With all my love, Like this post? Then sign-up for our “Daily Dose of Inspiration” Newsletter. It’s FREE! Over 30,000 like-minded people have already registered.

Author: pf # XaniSaja14
 50%  ( 0 people voted )


What is tripcode?
A tripcode is a hashed password, by which you can be identified by others. This does not require registration and you will be still anonymous. Password is not stored on the server.
What is this?
Anti-spam protection against robots. Please write this two numbers in decimal form.
five   nine
(write in decimal)

By submitting this form, I Agree to the Terms and Conditions. Click here for whole text of Service Agreement.

Optional URL of video, picture or google map:

Best of week
Most Popular

15 New Year’s Resolutions Every Person Should Actually Make

15 New Year’s Resolutions Every Person Should Actually Make
Making New Year’s resolutions and staying committed to them can be a challenging thing for a lot of people. And even though I think it’s important to have a vision, a clear direction or goal ...
Why True Love Is Eternal
9 Ways to Feng Shui Your Office Desk for Wealth and Success
9 Ways to Feng Shui Your Office Desk for Wealth and Success

4 Things You Can Learn from Visiting an Ashram

4 Things You Can Learn from Visiting an Ashram
It is coming up on the 1st anniversary since my first visit to an ashram. I took a trip by myself in January of 2011 not knowing what to expect to this place called Yogaville. The drive was about 4 ...
Why Positive Thinking Won’t Guarantee You Positive Results
Have You Seen the Wizard?
The Poorest & Most Generous President in the World

The Urgency of Smiling

The Urgency of Smiling
A dear friend recently shared a homemade smile card experience with me: Ever since yesterday, I've had this urge to pay forward someone's coffee. But I didn't have a smile card.
Developing: Drug that Sends Cancer Cells to Sleep to Stop Them Spreading
Your Health Is Bigger Than Your Body
Don't Worry Be Healthy

The Elephant Whisperer

The Elephant Whisperer
Lawrence Anthony, the acclaimed South African conservationist passed away this March. His funeral turned out to be as extraordinary as his life. Two herds of wild elephants traveling single file ...
The City That Ended Hunger
Ancient Wisdom From the Second Most Translated Book in the World
Change is Coming

New Hypersonic Plane Could Fly Between New York and Tokyo in 90 MINUTES

New Hypersonic Plane Could Fly Between New York and Tokyo in 90 MINUTES
XCOR Aerospace claims its Lynx spacecraft can travel at a speed of more than 2, 500 mph and dozens of miles above the earth before safely landing at an airport. It would be the fastest commercial ...
The Secret Powers of Time
The Odd Truth About Other People's Problems
12 Scientifically Proven Steps to Happiness

Finding A Job..when You Least Expect It!

Finding A Job..when You Least Expect It!
So I haven't held a job since April of 2011 due to multiple health issues. I currently draw disability but am having trouble finding money at the end of the month so I decided I would look for a ...
What If Money Were Not an Issue?
Is Time Really Money?
After 25 Years of Trying, Two Friends Win $14 million Jackpot

The Fine Balancing Art of Yin and Yang

The Fine Balancing Art of Yin and Yang
In the past 2 years I have experienced the delights of visiting Thailand and being bowled over by their inherent sense of beauty and creativity to their humble way of life and their desire to please...
The Action of Light
A Quick Guide To The Art of Listening
An Incredible Graduation Gift from Dad

Drew Brees is Donating $1MILLION for Superstorm Sandy Relief

Drew Brees is Donating $1MILLION for Superstorm Sandy Relief
The New Orleans Saints quarterback told CBS' 'Person to Person' in an interview to air on Friday that the donation will come through the Dream Foundation he runs with his wife, Brittany. Brees says ...
High School Football Team Lends Special-Needs Girl Tactical Defense
18 Holes Of Happiness
Gold Medal Gives Ugandans New Hope

Grandmother Power: A Global Phenomenon

Grandmother Power: A Global Phenomenon
Today’s grandmothers are different from mine. My grandmother lived a mile away. I played under her bushes where spring violets grew.
The Millionaire Janitor
What Motivates Philanthropists?
6-Year-Old Nico: Halloween's Real Life Hero

11 Must-Read Books for Young Leaders

11 Must-Read Books for Young Leaders
Recently, I wrote that leaders should be readers. Reading has a host of benefits for those who wish to occupy positions of leadership and develop into more relaxed, empathetic, and well rounded ...
10 Lessons to Learn from Storm Sandy and Natural Disasters
The Beauty of Questions
Finding Humility through Wisdom

Cultivating Your Inner Garden

Cultivating Your Inner Garden
What we are is God’s gift to us. What we become is our gift to God. ~ Eleanor Powell...
A Tire-d Kindness
True Beauty Is the Beauty from Within
True Beauty Is the Beauty from Within

private label cosmetics, skin care manufacturer, custom made cosmetic, custom made cream, custom lip stick lip balm | Kozmetický salón v Bratislave salón krásy Bratislava Kozmetický salón bratislava kozmetika Bratislava Kozmetika v Bratislave omladenie pleti regenerácia pleti beauty salon Bratislava | Čistenie pleti hĺbkové v Bratislave Kozmetický salón Bratislava Kozmetika Bratislava Beauty salon Bratislava | Chemický peeling v Bratislave aha chemicky peeling v Bratislave Chemicky peeling Bratislava peeling aha kyselinami v Bratislave Kozmetický salón v Bratislave Kozmetika Bratislava | good positive news inspirational stories articles
Version:1.23 2013-07-17 Generated in 0.0321 s