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Awakening Imagination - Online

Tuesday, 13 July 2021 to Sunday, 18 July 2021

This page is for booking onto the online aspect of the Awakening Imagination hybrid retreat.

“The imaginal faculty is, in reality, the man himself, because when one truly perceives an image one perceives it with the whole of oneself, or with one’s whole being. When one truly perceives an image, therefore, one is transported to the world to which that image belongs and becomes, if only for the time being, an inhabitant of that world. In other words, truly to perceive an image means to become an image, so that when one speaks of the imagination, or the imaginal faculty, what one is really speaking of is image perceiving image. That is to say, in perceiving an image what one really perceives is, in a sense, oneself.”

Sangharakshita, ‘The Journey to Il Convento’

Although Sangharakshita never gave a systematic teaching on the theme of the imagination (the theme does not lend itself to that kind of treatment!) he often evoked its vital importance and encouraged a thorough exploration of the world of images, myths and symbols, as an essential part of Dharma life, not least through the preparation for and taking up of a sadhana – the mantra recitation and visualisation of a particular Buddha or bodhisattva – at the time of ordination.
It is therefore extremely important that men wishing to join the Order appreciate Sangharakshita’s vision of what constitutes the ‘imaginal faculty’ and are able to navigate within the ‘world of images’ wherein one truly meets oneself.

On this retreat we will be studying two important lectures given by Sangharakshita during the ordination retreat at Il Convento in Tuscany in 1984 – ‘The Journey to Il Convento’ and ‘Saint Jerome Revisited’ – as well as the section ‘What is Myth?’ from The Essential Sangharakshita.

Details and Timings

The retreat will start with hellos and an introduction at 8pm on the first evening, and finish with meditation and transference of merits on the final morning at 7am. The complete programme for each full day of the retreat will be sent out closer to the start of the retreat, and it will include morning meditation at 7am, a mid-morning event, a mid-afternoon event, and an evening event.

Each event will be done via the online platform Zoom, and further technical details will be sent out when you book.

Preparing for the Online Event

To make the most of the event we recommend that as far as possible you create retreat-like conditions at home. This might include reducing input, maintaining a daily meditation practice, and taking time to reflect and absorb the meditation and study. You can find some more ideas and guidance on being on an online event here: A Guide to Online Events

A Dana Event

After the deposit, these events will be run on a donation basis.

There will be an opportunity to donate on the last day, or you can do so any time online, but please be aware that by law we are unable to refund donations once they have been given.

Dana gives an opportunity to be a part of the culture of generosity that sits at the heart of Padmaloka, to help keep that heart alive and thriving, and to contribute towards the short and long term ability of Padmaloka to be able to keep on giving that most precious and essential gift of the Dharma to as many men as possible, so please do consider donating what you can based upon your circumstances.

Please Note: Bookings for this event will close midday on Monday 12th

Banner and thumbnail image: edited line drawing and 'Mythic Psychopomp' painting by Aloka ©

Led By: 
The Ordination Team
Retreat Open To: 
Men training for ordination and Dharmacharis in UK and Europe
Retreat Type: 
Going for Refuge Retreat
Booking Availability: 
Fully Reserved

This retreat is now fully booked