21-Day Retreat: Vulture Peak Gathering

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Date(s): Jun. 01, 2016 - Jun. 22, 2016
Language: English

Plum Village - all hamlets

Registration for the 21-Day Retreat is only still available in New Hamlet.

1966: The first six members of the Order of Interbeing (Sr Chan Khong is second from left)

1966: The first six members of the Order of Interbeing (Sr Chan Khong is second from left)

I take refuge in the Sangha, the community that lives in harmony and awareness. Dwelling in the refuge of the Sangha, shining light that supports me, keeping my practice free of obstructions. Taking refuge in the Sangha in myself, I aspire to help all people build fourfold communities and walk together on the path of liberation.”


We warmly invite members of the Order of Interbeing and international sangha members to come together to nourish our Dharma Tree and Community with a Vulture Peak Gathering in Plum Village from June 1-21st.

We will be exploring two core themes of Applied Buddhism in the Plum Village tradition: inner practice and outer engagement.

This special retreat will have two segments of 11 days each, and you are invited to come for either or both segments. In addition to the basic practices and daily services, we will have a chance to learn from senior Dharma Teachers both monastic and lay, who will collaborate in offering the teachings and presentations. We will have many opportunities, through discussion groups, workshops and affinity presentations, to share, learn and nourish our insights and understanding as a collective.

UPDATE (23 April 2016): In the spirit of inclusion, these two core themes of outward engagement and inward consolidation will be explored in both weeks, and deepened over the course of the retreat. Please note that there will be a Transmission Ceremony for OI aspirants (who have the support of their mentor and local sangha) to receive the 14 Mindfulness Trainings at the end of the second week.

Thay watching the sun set from Vulture Peak (India, 2008)

Thay watching the sun set from Vulture Peak (India, 2008)

Who is this retreat for?

The retreat is specifically directed towards members of the Order of Interbeing, but is also open to all experienced practitioners in the Plum Village tradition. We warmly invite and welcome all Order Members and Dharma Teachers who are active in sharing the teaching in all sectors of society (such as the fields of medicine, ecology, mental health, business, law, military, activism etc.) and who are experienced and involved with building and facilitating Sanghas.

Intention: To Nourish the Dharma Tree

Upper Hamlet Linden TreeThe foundation of our coming together in June is to practice and nourish each other on the path of awareness and compassion. With this base, we will have opportunities to look deeply – as an international community – into our Plum Village tradition, into the Order of Interbeing and the different areas of engagement where we offer the teachings – and the challenges that come with doing so.

Thầy has shared many times that the Dharma is like a tree that needs nurturing and attention. Every season, it needs to grow new roots as well as new leaves. We come together with no other intention than to nourish our tree and community.

Nourishing our Roots and Trunk: “The Way Out is In”

The retreat will focus on the basic foundation teachings and practices that Thầy has uncovered and enhanced from the original teachings offered by the Buddha. We will look at what is the essence of the “Plum Village” tradition that combines elements from the Mahayana, Theravada tradition, as well as modern influences from the sciences and “Western culture”.

In other words, What is the heart of the “Plum Village Medicine”?* What is its true spirit or flavor? What are the essential sutras, practices, and principles of the Plum Village tradition?

Nourishing our branches & leaves: “Engaged Dharma”

We will also focus on the different areas of engagement of our Plum Village community and how we are sharing and adapting the teachings and practices so they can be effective and relevant. We will hear from Dharma Teachers and OI members’ experiences and challenges in offering the teachings in different fields such as: the medical profession, law and politics, corporations and business, environment protection and ecology, education, youth engagement, family, veterans and so on.

How is the “Plum Village medicine” being changed or diluted? What are ways that the medicine is being administered and skillfully adapted to meet new conditions and new types of practitioner?

*”Plum Village Medicine”: During a retreat before Thầy’s stroke, he described our practice and teaching as a kind of medicine that is practical, therapeutic, and evidence-based, and not just philosophical, religious or belief-based. He also mentioned that it was okay to “water-down” the medicine to make it more accessible and as part of “skilful means”, but we must be careful not to lose the original flavor or purpose of the medicine.

We look forward to coming together as a spiritual family in June.

LH formal lunch