Home > Retreat List > Men's Open Retreat | The Secret Life of the Buddha

Men's Open Retreat | The Secret Life of the Buddha

Sunday, 16 October 2022 to Friday, 21 October 2022

Creative Symbols on the Path to Enlightenment

Buddhism is concerned not with theories and speculations or with mere external displays of religious piety, but with the direct experience, in the depths of our being, of what we truly and essentially are.

As such, the Buddhist path to Enlightenment is strewn with creative symbols – images, colour, evocative myths and stories, mantric sound, and rituals – to stir the depths of our consciousness and guide us towards, even give us a glimpse of, this direct experience of Reality.

On this retreat, Padmasagara will give a series of talks on the life of the Buddha as revealed in the scriptures, which are packed full of creative symbols: showers of flower petals, great lotus lakes, fire-breathing dragons, encounters with Mara the Evil One, and various miraculous happenings.

We will see how these symbols are not just creative in the abstract, or in the past, or in India or Tibet; they are creative right here and now.

Through discussion, meditation, chanting and ritual we will contemplate these creative symbols, allow them to work on us, transform us, energise us, and spark us off in our own spiritual lives so that with increasing confidence we can follow in the Buddha’s footsteps.

Details and Timings

The retreat starts with dinner on the first day at 6:30pm and finishes on the final day at 10.00am.

This retreat follow on directly from the Men's Great Gathering Weekend 3. Consider making the most of your journey to Padmaloka by booking onto both retreats for a reduced rate here.

Health and Hygiene

It is vital that you don't come on retreat if you have any symptoms of Covid-19, including a cough, loss or change of smell or taste, a temperature, or any other cold or flu-like symptoms; or if you have been in contact with anyone who has within the past 14 days.

We ask that you take two Lateral Flow Test, one 48 hours before arrival and a second within 24 hours of the retreat starting.
If you haven't taken one by the time you arrive at Padmaloka, we will ask you to do one upon arrival and you will have to wait for the result before entering the buildings.
You can order them free from the UK Government here: Lateral Flow Tests, or from most pharmacies.

We will be observing enhanced hygiene protocols during the retreat, details of which you can find in our Padmaloka Risk Assessment, which is accessible from the Coming on Retreat page.

We will be taking every measure we can to prevent the spreading of Covid-19 during retreats, but despite this, there will remain a risk to those who attend; please consider this when coming on retreat.

If you are unable to attend the retreat due to illness or local lockdown measures then your booking can be transferred to the online aspect of the retreat, or to a future retreat.

Banner and thumbnail image: cropped painting from Padmaloka by Aloka ©

Led By: 
Sanghanistha and team
Retreat Open To: 
Men familiar with meditation as taught in Triratna and open to Buddhist ritual
Retreat Type: 
Open Retreat
Booking Availability: 

If you have already booked on this retreat and wish to make a balance payment, please login first.