Adhisthana Retreats

Event Title: The Two Arrows: Dukkha to Insight (Online)

Led by Sona, Vidyamala, Vishvapani, Vimalachitta and Nagabodhi

How we respond to difficulty and suffering – whether physical or psychological – without piling on extra levels of distress and reaction is a central question in all our lives. It’s also a central concern of the Buddha’s teachings. The Salattha Sutta, the Sutta of the two arrows, evocatively describes this in terms of two arrows: the pain of being pierced by the first arrow describes the basic experience of pain or difficulty. The pain of being pierced by secondary arrows is a consequence of all the reactions that occur when we are not aware and wise. The Buddha also saw the profound value of positive emotion and joy in the spiritual life, and indeed in becoming fully human.

The team leading this retreat work with people across wide sections of society such as healthcare, education, criminal justice, political spheres and the workplace. They help people to engage more creatively with the challenges inherent in the human condition and to live with more joy and wisdom. We refer to this (in terms that fit with secular society) as ‘mindfulness’; but our work draws on the whole Dharma and our own experience of practicing it. It also expresses the inspiration we find in the Bodhisattva Ideal.

We’re offering this retreat at the request of the Order convenors, who believe that the movement can benefit from the practical skills we’ve learned. We’ll share these, drawing on early Buddhist sources, compassion practices and the perspective of the Bodhicitta.
Recordings of the sessions will be updated throughout the retreat, and and they can be found here[/link].

Daily Programme - Sessions
1) Meditation with the Adhisthana Community (1.5 hours)
2) Workshop/Meditation (2 hours)
3) Meditation/Mindful Movement & Enquiry Groups (1.5 hours)
4) Talk and Puja (1 hour)

Daily Program - Times
1) 7.00am UK/ 8.00am Central Europe/ 11.30am India/ 4.00pm Sydney/ 7.00pm Auckland/ 11.00pm San Francisco/ 1.00am Mexico City/ 2.00am New York
2) 10.30am UK/ 11.30am Central Europe/ 3pm India/ 7.30pm Sydney/ 10.30pm Auckland/ 2.30am San Francisco / 4.30am Mexico City / 5am New York
3) 3.30pm UK/ 4.30pm Central Europe/ 8pm India/ 12.30am Sydney/ 3.30 am Auckland/ 7.30am San Francisco/ 9.30am Mexico City/ 10.30am New York
4) 7.30pm UK/ 8.30pm Central Europe/ 12am India/ 4.30am Sydney/ 7.30am Auckland/ 11.30am San Francisco/ 1.30pm Mexico City/ 2.30pm New York

Please note the times given for Sydney are those prior to the start of Daylight Savings Time starting at 2am on Sunday 4th October. After that time, please add one hour.

Start and End: The retreat will start with session 4 on the first day and end with session 2 on the final day.

Uploading Sessions: To support those who cannot attend all sessions, we will have sessions 2, 3 and 4 available as video recordings within one hour of the end of the session.

(This retreat was originally an in-person retreat for Order Members and has now been opened up to both Order Members and Mitras and will be run online.)

The Team
Sona has been ordained for 45 years and has worked widely within Triratna as a member of Ordination teams, a Public preceptor, and President of multiple centres in Germany, Sweden and the UK. He co-founded Breathworks with Vidyamala and Ratnaguna in 2004 and has been instrumental in developing this approach to taking the Dharma into the world.

Vidyamala, having spent 45 years living with spinal pain and 35 years using the Dharma as her guide, is no stranger to the clarity of the Buddha’s approach to working with suffering and opening awareness to include wonder and joy. She drew on this experience in founding Breathworks and writing bestselling books on mindfulness and physical health. She is also involved in helping to develop meditation teaching and mentoring as part of Sikkha project..

Vimalachitta has been teaching meditation for 30 years in Triratna - including 13 years of full time teaching at the London Buddhist Centre. In the last 10 years she has also worked as a Mindfulness Trainer in corporate and educational settings, as well as courses, classes and retreats for the general public. She trained in Mindfulness for secular contexts with Breathworks, Breathing Space and Bangor University.

Vishvapani teaches mindfulness to everyone from prisoners to politicians, and he works with the governments in Wales and Westminster on how they can bring mindfulness to the whole of society. He is actively involved in the Cardiff Buddhist Centre.

This retreat is for Triratna Mitras and members of the Triratna Buddhist Order only

Start Date: 2nd Oct 2020
End Date: 9th Oct 2020
Deposit: £5

This Event is by Donation (Dana). Booking includes a non-refundable deposit. Payment above this is on a dana basis, and during the retreat there will be an appeal for dana. If the deposit prevents you from booking, please get in contact via

Bursary Fund - If you can’t afford to come on retreat you might be interested in applying for our Bursary Fund.

Click to be taken to practical information for coming on retreat at Adhisthana