2014 05- May Wesak Program

Update: View photos taken during the Wesak 2014 event.

The Wesak program for 2014 would focus more on self-practice or living in seclusion (闭关 ).  Participants can choose between 5, 7 or 9 days (1st day will tentatively begin on Wesak Day, 13 May 2014).

 

Tenative program

Date Program
11 May 2014 (Sunday) Arrival of participants
12 May 2014 (Monday) Hair shaving (for those who are planning to ordain)
13 May 2014 (Tuesday)Wesak Day Self retreat/ practice (闭关 ) to begin. Each participant (observing 8 precepts) would stay alone in a kuti. Prior to that, Khun Mae would provide guidance and instructions relating to the self practice.Throughout the duration, strict adherence to the precepts is required.

Participants who plan to complete 9 days may arrange return flight from 22 onwards.

Update: View photos taken during the Wesak 2014 event.

Significance of Staying of Self Practice by Staying in Seclusion 闭关 

Throughout the duration of staying in seclusion 闭关 , the participant is allocated a living quarters whereby he or she stays alone, without speaking, talking, or communicating with others (including via mobile phone, internet, etc).

As one quiets down, one may then begin to comprehend oneself better and developing mindfulness. Perhaps the first few days some internal battle may go on within as most of us may be too conditioned by external happenings and stimuli that we seldom have the opportunity to reflect in solitude. After all, external stimuli and perpectual distraction in the form of goals, targets,  TV, smartphones, gadgets, social networking, friends, internet, etc had been making us look outwards for so long.

Various emotions and thoughts would arise, and as one cut off communication with the outside world and focus on the inner world, one would have a chance to develop better comprehension of cause and effect.  After the initial few days of adjustment (that is why it is advisable to stay in total of 9 days in seclusion), one’s mind would slowly calm down. With lack of external distraction, one is with no other choice but to look within.

As one gradually develop better awareness within, one may become aware of arising and ceasing away of thoughts and feelings. With preservance and patience, one becomes more mindful and calm.

The heart then may genuinely experience deeper understanding of cause and effect. The understanding is no more merely theorical but something seen and experienced in the heart. With that, there would be a better genuine understanding that whatever arises comes from a cause. We are solely responsible for the results of our deeds in thoughts, words or actions, be it good or bad. The things that are happening to us are not other people’s fault.

For example, we may be suffering a lot because someone had done something bad to us. During the period of stay in seclusion, from looking within…we may finally see that the cause of our suffering was not due to the other person. But it is because we had develop attachment and allow the unhappy feelings to burden our hearts.

Without mindfulness and wisdom, we had not been able to see it clearly before. Even if another person were to see it and try to console or persuade us the whole day or night, we may not believe or feel better. But when we experience the realization in our hearts, we would know without a doubt of the truth.  When we realize that it is we ourselves, though lack of mindfulness and wisdom- start to load all types of hardship into our hearts, we realize it is time to let go.

Khun Mae would assist to provide a place that is contrusive- quiet, whereby meals would be provided- hence one need not worry. All one need to do is to practice on one’s own.

The practice would give us the foundation to build our mindfulness and wisdom. Hopefully, with the new skillful means, we would stay calm in the midst of difficulties and be able to apply mindfulness and wisdom in overcoming our problems and challenges.

Q&A:

Q:  I would to attend this event. What do I need to do?

A:  Please let us know if you would like to undergo ordination (novice or nun) or as 8 preceptor. You would need to make arrangements to book air ticket to arrive Bangkok by 11 May 2014. The departure day would be based on how many days (5, 7 or 9 days) that you would like to stay in seclusion and self practice.

Q:  How do I get from the temple from the airport?

A:  Khun Mae would arrange for someone to pick you up from the airport. Therefore we would require information on how many pax, flight number, date and time of arrival and at which airport (Don Meung or Suvarnabhumi airport).

Q:  Do I need to bring anything along with me?

A:  Upon confirmation, all your requisities (robes, blanket, etc) would be prepared for you. For 8 preceptors,  one would wear the standard 8 preceptor clothings and if you do not have it, you may request for the temple to arrange to buy for you (please provide your size).

Q: How much do I have to pay to join this event?

A: As per in past events, Khun Mae never impose any price or fee for any person who wishes to ordain or observe the 8 precept. Most importantly, make the best use of this opportunity to practice to the best of your ability. If you wish to contribute, you may contribute any amount that you wish.

Q: I am a vegetarian. Does the temple provide vegetarian food?

A: Arrangement can be made for vegetarian food to be cooked for you. Usually, we would have  a few practitioners who are vegetarians.

 

 

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