The Art of Communicating

Summer Retreat from Magnolia Grove Monastery

“Once you can communicate with yourself, you’ll be able to communicate outwardly with more clarity. The way in is the way out.”
― Thích Nhất Hạnh, The Art of Communicating

Please note we can only accommodate 150 fully vaccinated friends onsite for this retreat (special exception for children under 12 years old). 

What prevents us from communicating lovingly with our family members and the people we hold most dear? When and why did we start to feel disconnected from the people and the wonders around us? How can we transform our hurtful speech into loving speech?

We are spiritual seekers searching for happiness. By learning how to communicate patiently with ourselves and others, we can experience more peace in life. We can give only what we have. Communication is an art and a skill. Perhaps we have tried countless ways to reconcile with our loved ones. At times, we succeed, and other times, we don’t. The fourth Mindfulness Training invites us to cultivate loving speech and compassion, listen to relieve suffering, and promote peace in myself and among other people, ethnic and religious groups, and nations.

Our togetherness in this retreat will give rise to practices and insights that can heal past wounds and cultivate resilience amidst unpredictable challenges. When peace is present and kindness shared, happiness and love can become an inexhaustible source of celebration and joy… Once we have mastered and practiced the art of communicating, the wonders of life become more available to us. Suffering calms down, and our peace and happiness are more profound.

During this retreat, senior monks and nuns from our Plum Village mindfulness practice centers in North America will offer well-timed
teachings on the art of communicating that individuals of any age can learn. We will work with patience as one of the foundations of healthy non-verbal expression, deep listening, and loving speech. We will explore the path to transformation, healing, and joyfully living together.

We will also have guided practice sessions for children. These include circle songs, games, and central Plum Village practices like mindful breathing, how to handle strong emotions, how to become a bell master, pebble meditation, and the Two Promises. Teens will have hangout sessions, mindful games and sharing. Affinity spaces will be available to connect with others as we look deeply into the challenges and joys that we experience in our daily lives, including specific spaces for young adults and people who identify as BIPOC and LGBTQIA+.

“You can’t take the other person out of you. You can’t take yourself out of others. The suffering still continues. So the question is not whether you will stay together or not; the question is whether you can focus on trying to understand each other using compassionate speech and deep listening, no matter what the outcome.”
― Thích Nhất Hạnh, The Art of Communicating

The program includes guided meditations, Dharma talks, Dharma sharing circles, walking meditation, reconciling and re-establishing communication with our loved ones, a Five Mindfulness Trainings Transmission, and practices for applying mindfulness to our daily lives.

The monks and nuns are here for you. We offer guidance in the essential practices of mindfulness, provide safe spaces of sharing where we listen deeply to each other, and an opportunity to connect with others. This retreat is a time to grow, learn, heal, and let go of the past while learning to dwell happily and solidly in the present.


  • Tent/RV/Commuter – Adult $160 | Child $80 | Teen $112 | Student (18-26/Seniors (66+) $144
  • Dormitory – Adult $260 | Child $130 | Teen $182 | Student (18-26/Seniors (66+) $220
  • Cabin – Adult $350 | Child $175 | Teen $245 | Student (18-26/Seniors (66+) $240
  • To register for the Summer Retreat, reserve one Dormitory, Cabin, or Tent/RV/Commuter space per person.
  • Guests must provide their own tents for camping registrations.
  • Please note that cabins are prioritized for couples and families.
  • Commuters must take care of their own accommodations

Registration: Click here to have more information and to fill out the registration form

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What is Mindfulness

Thich Nhat Hanh January 15, 2020

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