Befriending Everyday Life: A Buddhist Retreat

Voluntown, CT, USA

SW
24 reviews
Jul 26 - 28, 2019
Group size: 5 - 15
Befriending Everyday Life: A Buddhist Retreat
Voluntown, CT, USA

24 reviews

$375
Jul 26 - 28, 2019
Group size: 5 - 15

About this trip

Together we will explore ways in which to support each other in being fully aware to all that is in the present, with all its textures and circumstances. Practicing curiosity about life instead of avoiding it, we can learn to see and let go of misperceptions and habits of mind that constrict and block us from truly living. 

This is at an all-inclusive subsidized rate of $275 per participant single occupancy. Use the code PLUMVILLAGE to receive this rate, a $100 savings per guest. For those who choose to, there will be an opportunity to offer Dana to support our teachers at the retreat.


Main House Accommodations: 

First Floor:   Water Bedroom: Twin XL beds

Earth Bedroom: Twin XL beds

Wheelchair accessible full bath with accessible shower plus one half-bath

Second Floor:  Sunrise Bedroom: One Queen and one Twin XL bed

   Moon Bedroom: Twin XL beds

   Stars Bedroom: Twin XL beds

   Two shared full baths

Our main house is shoe-free so please bring slippers or socks for indoors


Rustic Accommodations: 

Cottage Duality: One Queen Bedroom and One Bedroom with Two Twin Beds (cold water/toilet)

Yoga Studio: Back room with Two Twin Beds (no bathroom)

Guests may use shower and bathroom facilities in the main house


All beds are made with thoughtfully appointed, comfortable sheets, blankets, and pillow. Each guest is provided with one towel set. Please bring your own eco-friendly toiletries and if you have a favorite pillow, feel free to bring that, too. 


Wifi throughout main house and sporadic areas on the property.  


All meals are served family style in the Still Waters Dining Room and/or with outdoor seating when weather-permitting. We use non-GMO, local and organic ingredients whenever possible. 


Arrival Date: Friday, July 26, 2019, Check in at 4:00PM

Departure Date: Sunday, July 28, 2019, Check out between 12 and 2 pm 


Includes all accommodations, meals and site usage. Includes all required CT Bed & Breakfast Occupancy (11%) and Sales Taxes (6.35%).  


Meals include: 

Friday dinner, Saturday breakfast and lunch, snacks, dinner and Sunday morning brunch. 


Still Waters Retreat Center artist-owners Tao & Amy LaBossiere will be onsite all weekend to support the group. 

What to bring

House slippers for shoe-free main house (we have some guest slippers available)

Comfortable outdoor shoes for walking and hiking

Sunscreen, if desired 

Bug repellent, if desired

warm clothing for chilly evenings around the bonfire or mornings in the yoga studio

sunhat

rain jacket, umbrella

flashlight

water bottle

your favorite pillow(s) if you like more than one

ear plugs if you are a light sleeper

Reservations, Cancellations, Refunds

Reservations are first come, first served. We know that plans can go awry. However, we rely on your Reservation Deposit and a cancellation costs us time and money. We are not a big hotel chain that can offer same-day cancellations. When you enter into a Rental Agreement with us, you are informed beforehand that our Refund Policy is as follows: If an advanced cancellation is necessary (60 days or more in advance) your Reservation Deposit and Payments may be refunded.  After this time frame, cancellations will be considered a No-Show, and there will be no refund. Once you arrive at Still Waters, No Refunds will be given due to the weather, your change of plans, or an early departure. We are not responsible for acts of God and nature including power outages.

About the Dharma Teachers

TOM DUVA 

In the late 1990s, while seeking recovery from active addiction, Tom Duva began to practice with the Plum Village community of Vietnamese Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh. A few years later, at a local temple, he met and began to practice simultaneously with another Vietnamese Zen Teacher, Venerable Thich Tri Hoang. Tom received transmission of the 14 lay precepts from Thich Nhat Hanh in 2007.  In 2011, he received the Lamp Transmission (Dharma Teacher ordination) from the Venerable Thich Tri Hoang. 

For the last several years, Tom has spent most of his retreat times at Rose Apple Center for contemplation in Vermont. It was at Rose Apple that by chance he met Thay Doji, a monastic Dharma Teacher visiting from France. Tom has continued practicing  diligently with Thay Doji both in the States and in Europe. Tom enjoys offering retreats or daylong practices, where together we may create a container in which to explore our true nature.


MICHAEL GERES

Michael Geres met Tom during his own recovery process and has shared much of the same path. Besides his years practicing and attending retreats with Thich Nhat Hanh, Michael practiced extensively with the Venerable Thich Tri Hoang, receiving a certificate in Buddhist Studies from Thich Tri Hoang's Dharma Teacher Order in 2009. Michael received the Lamp Transmission in 2010, and was ordained as a lay Zen Priest in 2012.  Michael enjoys sharing the Dharma with others. His personal experience with addiction and recovery, along with his knowledge of Buddhism, has made him an asset to those seeking a spiritual solution to addiction from a Buddhist perspective. 


For many years Michael was a mentor in the Buddhist correspondence course.  This course, with personal guidance from mentors, offers the means to study and practice Buddhism to those who are incarcerated.


In 1998, Mike and Tom founded Pojama Sangha (pojamasangha.com) in Manchester, CT.  This Buddhist meditation group continues today to be a refuge to those wishing to encounter the Dharma.

What’s included

  • Bonfires
    Weather-permitting
  • Hiking
    Take a self-guided hike on our fire road in the private woods. See sculptures thoughtfully placed as you commune with nature.
  • All taxes
    Includes CT State Occupancy and Sales Taxes as required by law.
  • Alcohol
    Please refrain from alcohol or any drug use while on retreat.
  • Travel
    We are 30 minutes from Westerly, RI; 1 hour from Hartford, CT; 45 minutes from Providence, RI; 1.5 hours from Boston, MA; and 2.5-3 hours from New York City
  • Insurance
    Personal, medical or trip cancellation insurance

Your Organizer


SW
Still Waters Retreat
24 reviews
An artist-owned retreat center with your hosts, Tao and Amy LaBossiere. Still Waters is nestled among 88 acres of conservation forest and a private, 12-acre pond. We offer artfully appointed, rustic and comfortable lodging and retreats for small groups and individuals/couples.

Reviews

This was such an unexpected great trip for me and my boyfriend. We were referred to Stillwater last minute trying to book accommodations for a wedding close by, and it was the best referral I have gotten to date. We had to come in late our first day due to festivities, but we wish we were able to able to spend a full weekend at Tao and Amy's bed & breakfast and retreat center. The two of them were so accommodating to us both. The house as a whole was beautifully rebuilt by Tao and Amy since a fire in 2014, and each room used objects from the first house- including as much wood as possible. They were decorated in a way that made me want to photograph them and put them in a magazine. Before even talking to them about their lives, we knew they had to be artists. The room we stayed in was awesome to the point where I needed to ask about the pillows and bedding. Amy and Tao went out of their way to make breakfast for four guests, as if we were a retreat-sized group, which was so kind of them. We got to meet the other guests over breakfast and try Tao's famous savory corn cakes- something I will try to recreate for years to come. When it was almost time to go, we were lucky to get a tour of the property and cabins from Tao, who has lived here is entire life! Words don't do Stillwater justice, from the space they created, the trails they have for hiking, the accommodations for weddings, retreats, or special events, and the beautiful pond and landscape surrounding the main house. As a found object / mixed media / installation enthusiast myself, it was very exciting to hear and see what went into building pretty much everything at Stillwater. Each cabin on the property was unique, and felt like being in one of Tao's own installations. I could totally see my friends and family coming here for a wedding, retreat, or weekend to hang, and loving every second of the relaxation and environment they would be staying in! Staying here felt like we were truly immersed in something peaceful, artistic, and refreshing. We definitely would like to return for a weekend where we have no plans, as you could spend the entire day relaxing on the property or chatting with Tao and Amy. Thank you again for such a lovely visit and the chance to meet you both. We look forward to seeing you again and sharing word on our time here with friends and family.
As always, Amy and Tao outdid themselves to make our retreat something truly special. Wholesome, delicious food beautifully presented, superb accommodations, and wonderful grounds to enjoy. I loved being out on the kayak and I appreciated the opportunity to create fresh flower arrangements with cuttings from the property. Can't wait to return!
TD
we had a wonderful retreat. Thanks to Still Waters, our every need was met, from dietary concerns, cleanliness, comfortable beds and linens, quiet ,. this is by far the best place I have held retreats , both in the USA and Europe. There was very little energy needed for logistical concerns, which offered us as organizers of the retreat, to focus on the nature of the retreat. We will be back! Tom Duva
A beautiful location tucked away in the woods in Connecticut Pristine location on a beautiful lake ideal for Kayaking and canoeing The property is very well manicured. With tall majestic evergreens and maples. The cabins are very well maintained, clean and modern. Inn-keepers Amy and Tao are a delight. This was the perfect weekend get away to unplug and recharge. We came from Eastern Long Island, hopped on the Orient Point Ferry and was there in no time. Very conveniently located. We stayed in the main house and took advantage of the meal services and was delighted with every service. Wholesome home cooking made with love. Big portions and great selections. 4 Stars all around. We definitely want to come back in the Autumn to see the foliage colors - I bet its amazing. A truly glorious retreat -
KM
My second retreat at Stillwater's Retreat Center and it continues to be a restorative and heart-opening experience. Peaceful environment, comfortable accomodations, excellent meals and great and welcoming hosts in Tao and Amy. Highly recommend this retreat center for established groups of 10-12 people for weekend or weekday retreats.
Show More Reviews

References

I had the opportunity to co-lead a Buddhist retreat at Still Waters this past weekend. We could not have found a better place for our retreat. The accommodations were wonderful. The grounds were beautiful, but most beautiful and important was the love we all felt from Amy and Tao. They really go beyond being good hosts. I could tell that they cared about what we were trying to achieve at our retreat. Two of the topics of our retreat were love and spiritual friendship. Learning how to love and develop spiritual friendships are very important life lessons. Tao and Amy are fine examples of both.
By Michael Geres on Jul 29, 2019
My experience at Still Waters Retreat was beyond words. The atmosphere, the food, the hospitality of Amy and Tao was more than welcoming, it was a graced experience. You can tell that the essence of the fantastic people they are is in every aspect of this home, the food and the grounds. Andrea M.
By Andrea Minelli on May 13, 2019