Rains Retreat

Plum Village is delighted to announce that our fourfold community will be observing our annual 90-day Retreat from 14th September to 12th December 2019.

Observing an annual 90-day “Rains Retreat” is a traditional monastic practice dating back to the time of the Buddha. Registration for the full 90 days is open to those who already have experience with Plum Village practice. But anyone, including thos new to the practice, is welcome to join us for two weeks.

Practicing deeply

The Rains Retreat is primarily a time for the monks and nuns to come together to study and deepen their practice, and during these 90 days the monastics do not leave the monastery to teach outside.

It is a time for everyone to deepen and strengthen our spiritual roots. The emphasis is on generating powerful collective energy of mindfulness, as we live, practice and work together with a full schedule of Plum Village mindfulness practices six days a week.

Generating a Strong Collective Energy

In the Rains Retreat all the different hamlets will get together on Thursdays and Sundays, for a Dharma Talk and a full day of practice together. Some teachings might be in Vietnamese, for which there will be simultaneous English and French translation.

There will be a full day of collective practice for the lay community from all hamlets every Thursday. These “Lay Days” offer a wonderful opportunity to practice and work together in joy and harmony, learning to create nourishing days of mindfulness as a community.

Everyone staying in Plum Village is requested to observe the “Rains Retreat Boundaries,” by not going online nor leaving the monastery to go to town and so on. This creates a very focused and solid collective energy of practice.

Who is the Rains Retreat for?

At the beginning of every rains retreat the participants are counted by putting in their stick, symbolizing to stay within the retreat boundaries for 90 days.

The Rains Retreat is the only retreat in the year which is oriented primarily towards monastics and long-stay practitioners. The teachings, classes and other sharings will provide continuity for deepening the practice for the full 90 days.

Be aware that although the Rains Retreat offers a more regular schedule than our other retreats, our focus is still on community practice. We will learn to find a balance between study, practice, work and play. It is not a silent retreat, and we will offer a maximum of two sessions of sitting meditation per day: morning and evening. By living together and dealing with each other on a daily basis, we learn to develop our understanding and compassion in such a way that we can see the fruits of the practice right away in our relationships. Anyone wanting to join us for the 90-Day Retreat must be willing to go in the direction of harmony, open communication, and reconciliation in the face of any interpersonal challenges that come up during the retreat.

Lodging for the full 90 days is limited to dormitories. There will be no possibility for bookings in private rooms.

There are limited spaces available for the full retreat. If during the course of the retreat, you decide not to continue through the full 90-days, there will be no refund for the remainder of your stay.

Submitting an application to any of the three hamlets is only a preliminary step. We will contact you with further information about how to move on through the application process.

Practical information

  • Retreatants staying the full 90 days are invited to arrive early so we can prepare to start the retreat together.
  • All 90-day retreatants are requested to make departure arrangements for Saturday 14th of December (two days after the Rains Retreat Closing Ceremony).
  • Before registering, please read our information about extended stays.
  • For shorter visits: to maintain the collective energy during this period we encourage you to come for two weeks, but one week visits are also possible.

We look forward to welcoming you to join the river of practice during this wonderful retreat.


Registration for a one or two weeks stay in the Rains Retreat

Arrival days are every Friday in New Hamlet and every other Friday in Lower Hamlet and Upper Hamlet, starting Friday 20th September 2019.

Single woman or couples

– or –

Single man and couples

Registration for the whole 90 Days Rains Retreat

The 90 Days Rains Retreat has started and is fully booked.