Sojong Retreat

Sojong Retreat

Meditation and Spiritual Purification Retreat

Discipline constitutes a third of the Buddhist spiritual path. And to make it easier, the Buddha designed the Sojong practice: the ethical conduct that purifies karma and enhances mindfulness.

In this retreat you’ll learn the keys to Buddhist discipline and the way to integrate them in your daily life. You will also explore their benefits during the guided meditation sessions, and you’ll have the opportunity to pray, study, meditate and serve side by side with the monastery’s monks and nuns while immersed in the best conditions for flourishing spiritually.

>>Spanish Version Here<<

The retreat is based on the Sojong principle: adopting ethical discipline to purify negative karma. This will be fulfilled by taking the eight lay vows, including not having dinner (see “What is Sojong”).

The retreat will combine theory and practice:

  • Teachings on the Buddhist discipline, the art of achieving balance to flourish spiritually.
  • Meditation sessions in which you’ll feel the impact of discipline on the mind.

The teachings will cover the following topics:

  • How to develop spiritual discipline in daily life
  • The role of discipline on the spiritual path
  • How to discipline the mind
  • Why the Buddha established the monastic sangha
  • The proper motivation to become an ordained Buddhist
  • The benefits of monastic life
  • What should be studied to become a monastic
  • Advice on how to integrate the spiritual art of living into daily life

Part of the retreat will be based on Acarya Nagarjuna’s The Discipline of the Novice Monk. In barely 65 verses, the renowned 2nd century Indian master explains the ethical keys of the ordained practitioner, and serves as a reference for laypeople wishing to improve their daily conduct.

Sojong is the spiritual practice of keeping pure and disciplined conduct. All Buddhist traditions teach it, and it is based on taking the following eight vows for 24 hours:

  1. Not killing
  2. Not stealing
  3. Not having sexual conduct
  4. Not lying
  5. Not taking intoxicants
  6. Not dancing, singing or wearing ornaments
  7. Not eating after midday
  8. Not using high beds nor luxurious seats

The benefits of sojong are so vast that all Buddhist masters, regardless their tradition, emphasize its practice. Among the most important effects of Sojong are:

  • Purifying negative karma
  • Restoring broken commitments
  • Enhancing mindfulness
  • Training in daily conduct
  • Strengthening meditatio

Khenpo Pema Wangdak was born in Tibet and was educated in exile in India. In 1982, H.H. Gongma Trichen Rinpoche asked him to transmit the Dharma of the Sakya Lineage to the West. Since then, Khenpo Pema has guided hundreds of students and is the head of the Vikramasila Foundation, which runs several Sakya centers in the US, India and Nepal. Khenpo Pema’s mastery of the English language and his familiarity with Western culture, as well as his wisdom and compassion, make him an outstanding master.

Lama Rinchen Gyaltsen is the resident teacher at the Centro Internacional de Estudios Budistas (Spain). He lived in India, Nepal and Tibet for over a decade, where he received his philosophical training and completed numerous meditation retreats. He currently teaches the theory, practice and meditation of Tibetan Buddhism, and has translated these precious teachings from Tibetan into both English and Spanish.

It is the custom in Buddhism to offer a donation to the master at the end of a retreat. This donation is voluntary and may include the members of the ordained sangha.

  • Recently ordained monastics
  • People considering the Buddhist monastic life
  • People interested in deepening their ethical and meditative practice on the Buddhist path
  • People seeking a purifying meditation retreat

The retreat will start on the 17th of July at 18:00 and will finish on the 31st of July with lunch.

Schedule during the sojong days
05:30 Wake up
06:00 Sojong vows and prayers
08:00   Breakfast
10:00-11:30 Teaching
12:00-12:45 Shamata Meditation
13:00 Lunch
16:00-18:00 Teaching and Discussion
18:00 Tea Break
19:00-20:00 Guided meditation
22:00 Lights out

REGISTER
Registration: Free, but a donation can be made to Fundación Sakya.

***Before you make the register, you should know, that it’s an essential requirement overnight in the monastery***

ALOJAMIENTO (14 noches)
•  Full board, individual room: 784€ (56€/night)
•  Full board, double room: 616€ (44€/night)
•  Full board, quad room: 560€ (40€/night)
•  Full board, dormitory 462€ (33€/night)
***(Shared rooms are separated by gender.)***