May 2020

11May(May 11)3:15 PM19(May 19)10:15 AMSpring Insight: Dharma, Care & Community in Uncertain Times -- Online Only3:15 PM - 10:15 AM (19) Online Teacher(s): Matthew Brensilver, PhD; Brian Lesage; Jin-Hua Dana Jiang (assistant) No prerequisiteOpen

Event Details

Dates: Monday, May 11, 3:15pm – Tuesday, May 19, 10:15am; 9 days (includes 2 partial days). See schedule below.
Sliding Scale: $320-$2100; Code 352R20.
Registration closes midnight Sunday, May 10.

ONLINE: This at-home retreat is now offered online only, on a sliding scale basis from $320-$2100. We invite you to try this creative form of practice as we take care of one another and respond skillfully to COVID-19.

PLEASE NOTE: This retreat will be modified for an at-home experience.

Retreat Description:
Beneath the frenzy of this time, something is rumbling deep in our minds. It is as if the tectonic plates are moving inside us, but we don’t know exactly where everything will land. There are opportunities and grief. Change and loss are always somehow startling and it takes time and tenderness for the heart to catch up.

From one perspective, spiritual practice right now might appear to be a luxury. Yet, in the middle of the intensity of this historical moment, caring for our hearts is an urgency. Fear, stress, and uncertainty make our minds very suggestible and can lead us down the rabbit hole of anxiety and agitation. But this moment also acts like a magnet, pulling our goodness to the surface. This retreat is an opportunity to cultivate a sense of refuge. The felt experience of refuge gives us the strength such that our heart can remain open amidst uncertainty.

Practicing within our own homes offers an unusual opportunity. Our home creates a sense of comfort – but is often the site of unconsciousness: our habit energies are often strongest there. At-Home retreat can be transformative in ways we do not experience in residential retreats. It allows us to deeply integrate this spiritual path into our living space, creating the visual and temporal reminders of path and practice in our own home.

We will, of course, be doing this together. In a time of isolation, finding community can be especially meaningful. Our retreat will provide a structured immersion in meditation practice, guided instructions and dharma talks while allowing the flexibility to practice in a rhythm that accommodates your life.

Each day will consist of a morning practice period, a dharma talk and a guided loving-kindness meditation in the evening. The timing for these group periods is designed to accommodate different time zones so East Coast participants can be included. You will also have small group practice discussions with Brian and Matthew. All are welcome.

Daily Schedule
All times shown are Pacific Daylight Time
Bolded sessions indicate all are encouraged to attend
Monday, May 11 – Opening Day
2:00 p.m.           Technical Open House
3:00 p.m.            Break
3:15 p.m.           Meditation Hall Opens / Arrive and Settle
3:30 p.m.            Formal Opening / Welcoming Talk 
5:00 p.m.            Ending

Tuesday, May 11 — Monday, May 18
7:00 a.m.            Personal early practice – Sitting / Walking
8:15 a.m.            Arrive and Settle
8:30 a.m.            Morning Instructions and Sitting Meditation
9:30 a.m.            Walking Meditation OR Practice Meeting (if assigned)
10:00 a.m.          Sitting Meditation
10:45 a.m.          Walking Meditation OR Practice Meeting (if assigned)
11:15 a.m.          Sitting Meditation
12:00 p.m.          Lunch/Practice/Take Care of Life as You See Fit
3:15 p.m.            Arrive and Settle
3:30 p.m.            Sitting Meditation  OR Affinity Group (AG) Sits
                                 POC AG:           Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday
                                 LGBTQI AG:     Wednesday, Friday, Sunday
4:00 p.m.            Stretch Break
4:15 p.m.            Dharma Talk / Q and A
5:00 p.m.            End of Day

Tuesday, May 19 – Closing Day
8:45 a.m.            Closing session
10:15 a.m.          End of Retreat

General Information

Cancellation Policy:
$100 – Up to 2 days prior to your retreat.
No refunds as of 2 days before.


  • Brian Lesage

    Brian Lesage

    View Brian's upcoming programs or profile.

  • Jin-Hua Dana Jiang

    Jin-Hua Dana Jiang

    Born in China’s rural Heilongjiang province, Jin-Hua Dana Jiang immigrated to the U.S. when she was about eleven years old. For a decade, Jiang lived in various Buddhist temples in the U.S.—all founded by her great-grand uncle Master Hsuan Hua—and lived as a nun from 12 to 17. In 2006, Jiang graduated from the University of California, San Diego, with a BA in Chinese Studies, and she also completed 9 credits in Master in Mindfulness Studies from Lesley University in Boston. Currently, she works for Glendale Community College in Arizona and, in accordance with her interests, has run an on-campus group meditation space for the past four and a half years. In her free time, Jiang enjoys meditation, hiking, swimming, and attending spiritual retreats.

  • Matthew Brensilver, PhD

    Matthew Brensilver, PhD

    View Matthew's upcoming programs or profile.

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