Neuroscience Retreat

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Date(s): Jun. 14, 2019 - Jun. 21, 2019

Upper Hamlet - Plum Village

“We have the tendency to believe that the subject of cognition, our mind, is something that can exist independently from the object of cognition. And we tend to think that the object of experience, what seems to be out there, is something that exists separately from our mind.

When you invite a flame to manifest, you may think that the flame is something totally different from the match. But actually, you know that the flame is imminent, is hidden in the fuel and the oxygen. The flame has no real locality. When the right conditions come together, the flame manifests.

This is equivalent to what we learn in phenomenology: to be conscious, is always to be conscious of something. Object and subject are always together — this is the nature of interbeing.”

– Thich Nhat Hanh

Happy Scientists Change the World

The community of Plum Village would like to warmly invite scientists, researchers and therapists to join us for a special retreat focused on integrating mindfulness practice and research with the fields of neuroscience, neurofeedback and trauma therapy. The intention behind this retreat is to bring together thought leaders in the field of mindfulness, neuroscience and trauma therapy, in a relaxed yet concentrated spirit, to nurture collaboration between monastics and scientists.

As a monastic community, we see we have much to learn from recent discoveries in the field of science. And for our part, we hope to contribute the best of our lineage of Zen Buddhism to the work of scientific thought and discovery. We see clearly the importance of bringing together these two perspectives and the potential for both to be enriched through the encounter.

Thich Nhat Hanh’s vision is to offer scientists a chance to immersively experience mindfulness practice, cultivate community and friendship, and share their discoveries, within a residential practice environment. The retreat schedule will include walking meditation, mindful eating, sitting meditation, teachings from senior monastics, small group sharings and workshops, along with personal rest and journaling time. Participants will also have a chance to enjoy silent practice from after the evening workshop through to the end of breakfast the following day. The intention of the retreat is to allow scientists to refine and develop the fundamental instrument of scientific discovery, which is the mind.


Please let us know what is your field of study or interest, our aspiration for this retreat is to create a space for scientists and clinicians to come together to practice and exchange insights. Priority for registration will be given to working scientists and therapists.

  • Only when camping or staying in a campervan/caravan can couples stay together)