No one with a sincere desire to attend will be turned away from registration due to lack of funds.  We have staff and workstudy positions, as well as scholarships available.

    Robert Burns Supper

    A Burns Supper Guide

    from Burns Night: My Supper With Rabbie

    And there's a hand, my trusty fiere!
    And gie's a hand o' thine!
    And we'll tak' a right guid-willie waught,
    For auld lang syne.

    The annual celebratory tribute to the life, works and spirit of the great Scottish poet, Robert Burns (1759-1796). Celebrated on, or about, the Bard's birthday, January 25th, Burns Suppers range from stentoriously formal gatherings of esthetes and scholars to uproariously informal rave-ups of drunkards and louts. Most Burns Suppers fall in the middle of this range, and adhere, more or less, to some sort of time honoured form which includes the eating of a traditional Scottish meal, the drinking of Scotch whisky, and the recitation of works by, about, and in the spirit of the Bard.

    Every Burns Supper has its own special form and flavour, though there are probably more similarities than differences among these gastro-literary affairs. Individual tastes and talents will determine the character of your Burns Supper. Some celebrants may contribute the composition of original songs or poems; some may excel at giving toasts or reciting verse; while others may be captivating storytellers. A particular group of celebrants will, over time, develop a unique group character which will distinguish their Burns Supper celebration from every other.Our core group has been meeting for 14 years. We started off on a whim, without any notion of traditional form, other than the idea that we would eat haggis, read Burns, and drink whisky (not necessarily in that order). An itinerary evolved that has lots of traditional elements, but leaves room for personal or topical additions. Feel free to add a few unique conventions of your own.With a little bit of planning anyone (well, almost anyone) can enjoy a Burns Night celebration. All that's needed is a place to gather (gracious host), plenty of haggis and neeps to go around (splendid chef), a master of ceremonies (foolhardy chairman), friendly celebrants (you and your drouthy cronies), and good Scotch drink to keep you warm (BYOB). With these ingredients, at least a few celebrants will be able to make prattling fools of themselves, trying to do justice to the words and spirit of Robert Burns. And if everyone brings along a wee dram and a bit of poetry, prose or song then each, in turn, may become an object of mirth and amusement to the gathered throng. Be prepared to enjoy yourself beyond all expectation. With good cheer and gay company we all may, in short, be able to ring in the Bard's birthday fou rarely.I've found that most people, although they may be unaware of it, love to attend Burns Suppers. They may feel a little intimidated at the idea of attending a participatory event, but are attracted by the idea of a ribald literary soiree. (They may perceive a Burns Supper to be some sort of droll intellectual exercise - it has hip cachet and doesn't sound too threatening.) These people are often wonderfully appreciative guests and end up having a great time. And therein lies a dilemma for all Burns Supper organizers: Motivating guests to be active participants, rather than passive appreciators. Everyone should feel comfortable taking part with verse, anecdote or song, but they may need a little help and encouragement. So as a Burns Supper chairman it is highly recommended that you come prepared with plenty of literary ammunition with which to arm any unprepared, or reluctant, celebrants. It helps if you know your guests and can match them with a suitable reading. Better still, you may be able to gently motivate them, in advance, by including an informal listing of sources along with your charming (I'm sure) Burns Supper invitation. Hopefully that, along with the good vibes and good whisky, will be all the encouragement anyone will need to lower their inhibitions to a level that Burns, himself, would appreciate.

    Event Date 01-25-2024
    Event End Date 01-25-2023
    Quintessential Trungpa Rinpoche:  Shamatha-Vipashyana Meditation-- "Touch and Go")

    Quintessential Trungpa Rinpoche:  Shamatha-Vipashyana Meditation: "Touch and Go"

    February 2-4, 2024

    Limit 5 participants

    There are no prerequisites for this retreat

    "A common misunderstanding is that the meditative state of mind has to be captured and then nursed and cherished.  That is definitely the wrong approach.  If you try to domesticate your mind through meditation--try to possess it by holding on to the meditative state-- the clear result  will be regression on the path, with a loss of freshness and  spontaneity.  If you try to hold on without lapse all the time, then maintaining   your awareness will begin to become a domestic hassle  It will  become like painfully going through housework.  There will be an underlying sense of resentment, and the practice of meditation will become confusing.  You will begin to develop a love-hate relationship toward your practice, in which your concept of it seems good but, at the same time, the demand this rigid concept makes  on you is too painful.

    So the technique is based on touch and go  You focus your attention on the object of awareness then, in the same moment, you disown that awareness and go on. What is needed here is some sense of confidence--confidence that you do not have to securely own your mind, but that you can tune into its process spontaneously."  Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche

    The Quintessential Teachings of Trungpa Rinpoche series are a set of weekend retreats suitable for beginners and advanced students which engage the pith oral instructions of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche.  In this retreat we will engage the fundamental instructions on Dzogchen and Mahamudra practice given by Trungpa Rinpoche to his direct students.  

    As beginners one always comes at practice with a mind conditioned by certain assumptions.  Generally we attempt to sustain a fabricated concentratiion by focusing on a technique.  But in this case one needs to develop a fundamental awareness which knows when you are present directly and then we let go of  any attempt to hold on to a fabricated concentration.  This is both the development and realization of "knowing the one" or "resolving the nature of mind."  It is not about feeling "good" particularly or pushing away thoughts so that we can achieve a "thought-free state."  It is realizing that this moment of knowing when we are present in a way which is not conditioned by our habitual reactions is the ultimate reference point -- the ultimate nature of our awareness.

    The weekend will consist of talks by the resident teacher and the Practice of "mixing mind with space" the essential training of Dzogchen practice.  There will be group discussion and individual meditation interviews.


    Cost  $195.00

    Includes room and Board 

    Event Date 02-02-2024
    Event End Date 02-04-2024
    Individual Price $195.00

    Shambhala Day

    February 10, 2024


    Join us for a traditional Shambhala Day celebration.

    This year we will start with a morning sitting meditation with instructions for new people from 9-10 a.m.  This will be followed by champagne brunch.

    12 noon we will do the Sadhana of Mahamudra and Lhasang

    1:00 will be I Ching readings and selected Dharma Readings and informal discussion-- practice booklets will be handed out.

    2-3:30 break

    3:30 a Shambhala Day Address from the Vidyadhara from days of yore

    5 pm Cocktails

    6 pm Fireworks!

    8-10 Music and Dancing

    To reserve a place please call ahead (207) 607-3392

    Event Date 02-10-2024
    Event End Date 02-21-2023

    The Quintessential Trungpa Rinpoche:  "The Cosmic Joke and the Great Switcheroo"

    There are no prerequisites for this retreat.

    "The attempt to confirm our solidity is very painful.  Constantly, we find ourselves suddenly slipping off the edge of a floor that had appeared to extend endlessly.  Then we must attempt to save ourselves from death by immediately building an extension to the floor in order  to make it appear endless again  We think we are safe on our seemingly solid floor, but then we slip off again and have to build another extension.  We do not realize that the whole process is unneccessary, that we do not need a floor to stand on that we have been building all these foors on the ground level.  There was never any danger of falling or need for support.  In fact, our occupation of extending the floor to secure our ground is a big joke, the biggest joke of all, a cosmic joke.  But we may not find it funny; it may sound like a serious double cross"  The Myth of Freedom


    "The Quintessential Trungpa Rinpoche" retreats are a series of weekend retreats which focus on some of  the key teachings Trungpa Rinpoche presented during his transmission of the authentic Dharma to the west.  In this retreat we will explore the fundamental teachings on habitual mind as the "cosmic joke.;" and how meditation practice enables us to infiltrate the process of ego with wakefulness-- thereby discovering nonreference point experience-- the basis of Mahamudra and Dzogchen-- in the midst of confusion.

    The weekend will consist of talks by the resident teacher and the Practice of "mixing mind with space" the essential training of Dzogchen practice.  There will be group discussion and individual meditation interviews.

    cost:  $195.00

    includes room and board.

    Event Date 02-23-2024
    Event End Date 02-25-2024
    Individual Price $195.00
    Meditation: The Practice of Being
    Meditation: The Practice of Being

    July 5-7, 2024

    There are no pre-requisites for this retreat

    "The truth of the matter is that every time something happens, we become aware of it. Where do you become aware of it? We say, "In our mind," and that means in space. In other words, space becomes aware of its own movement. This idea, by the way, is basically pointing to ordinary experience by undercutting the quality of experience that is based on ego. Ego is constantly thinking and talking, constantly making up something about what is happening. However, from the point of view of meditation, the only thing that is happening is whatever instantly arises in space, and in that instant, whatever arises has no history. Therefore, it has no memory, and therefore, it has no future. And therefore, even in the present, it has no existence. It is simply pure being, which is like striking a match on a stone-- the flame that occurs is the same as what occurs in space when experience arises: strike! Ssst! Light! Bright! Smell, taste, touch-- everything comes out of that. Its instantaneous and immediate.

    "Most people have no idea about this. In fact, most people think that everything has always been "this way." and therefore, it always will be "this way." Therefore, everyone is trapped. The whole world is trapped in passion, aggression , and ignorance. It's so tight that you can't escape. If you move from passion, you get trapped in aggression. If you move from aggression, you get trapped in ignorance. If you move from ignorance, you get trapped in passion. Bascially no one sees the ground out of which all this arises. The Buddhist teachings point out that the ground is unobstructed space. That space is, in the ordinary sense, equated with or associated with what we call mind. Mind is that which knows. It doesn't know anything in particular; it is the quality of knowing. And that quality of knowing is what is illuminated in the practice of meditation."
    Meditation: The Practice of Being, Vajra Regent Osel Tendzin, Burlington, Vermont. 12/2/87

    $195.00 includes room and board
    Event Date 07-05-2024
    Event End Date 07-07-2024
    Individual Price $195.00