The Ser Chö Ösel Ling Personal Retreat Season provides an opportunity for individual with prior retreat experience, who can practice independently, to do extended personal retreat in a supportive group environment. Individuals who wish to take part will need to have approval from their primary mentor and have a specific plan for retreat worked out in conjunction with their mentor. Both the length of retreat, and the specific program of practice should be agreed to in advance. As a rule of thumb we recommend that people who have not done individual retreat before limit their first personal retreat to a few days. Individuals who have done personal retreat before should consider a gradual increase to the length of retreats if they are inclined to do longer retreat.
Retreat Application Qualifications
Retreat applicants should fit the following qualifications:
- Be able to practice independently for the duration of their retreat.
- Be willing to commit to following the Daily Schedule including the evening group practice.
Retreatants will follow the common schedule for practice sessions listed below. The daily schedule begins with a session before breakfast starting at 6:00 a.m. The morning and afternoon will both be 3-hour sessions with a tea break in the middle. After dinner there will be a group session of about 45 minutes for recitation of aspiration prayers. While this retreat is primarily personal retreat with most practice done alone, all participants are expected to attend the group session.
6:00am - First Session
7:20 - End First Session/Bathroom Break
7:30 - Breakfast
9:00 - Morning Session 1
10:30 - Tea
10:45 - Morning Session 2
11:50 - End Morning Session 2/Bathroom Break
12:00pm - Lunch
2:00 - Afternoon Session 1
3:30 - Tea
3:45 - Afternoon Session 2
5:00 - End of Afternoon Session 2
5:30 - Dinner
6:30 - Evening Group Session
7:15 - End Evening Session
The common schedule of practice provides the basic discipline for the retreat environment. In addition, retreatants will maintain silence during meals and other breaks in practice. Individuals may of course practice outside of the formal schedule, but they can expect that others may be doing chores or walking around the cloister at that time. While there will be variations in individual practice according to the retreat plan established in consultation with your mentor, all are expected to maintain the community discipline and follow the schedule.
Limited Onsite Teacher Support
Teachers from KCC will be onsite during the retreat, though they will be primarily engaged in their own retreat. If you think it would be helpful to check in with a teacher during your retreat, either in person or by phone, please make arrangements beforehand. Retreat center staff and the teachers on site will of course respond if there is an urgent need for assistance.
Three vegetarian meals will be served daily.
Retreatants will assist the cook and ensure that the facility remains clean and orderly throughout the duration of the retreat. You should expect to contribute ½ to 1 hour per day in this effort. Chores will be done during the three meal breaks. There will be extra chores at the end to leave the facilities in a clean and functional state at the end of the retreat. Snow should be expected during this retreat and this may require rearranging chores so that able bodied retreatants can shovel snow within the cloister.
TO APPLY, please do the following:
- Contact your principal mentor to create a plan for your retreat. If you are not associated with a teacher at KCC, please work with your current mentor to develop a retreat plan suitable for you. Then forward a note from your mentor which indicates that they have approved your retreat plan to Dora DeCoursey, or call (503) 282-2809.
- Registration is open but not available online. To register, please contact Retreat Manager with requested dates of stay. There is a rolling registration cut-off date; this means that your ability to register depends on (1) room availability and (2) that you have registered at least 14 days before your arrival date. Those who wish to do a longer retreat should register early.
There is a three-tiered cost structure for the retreat and a two-night minimum stay is required. It is intended to encourage longer retreats and reflects the reduced impact on staff when there is less coming and going.
Seven nights or less: $50 per person/per day
Eight to 14 nights: $45 per person/per day
More than 14 nights: $40 per person/per day
Assistance for those in need of up to 50% of retreat cost may be available. Priority is given to KCC supporting members. For more information and to apply, go to KCC Scholarship Guidelines.
For further general questions, contact Linda Grove.