Rayong Beach Mindfulness Retreat
with Pandit Bhikkhu and Marisa Cranfil-Young
Thursday 21st – Sunday 24th January 2016
should be perfect weather for sun, sand and meditation
- We’re returning for a weekend of quiet, meditation, and sand – on a quiet beach, Rayong province.
- This time round we will travel to Rayong on a Thursday morning so we have a full 2 days at the beach. Return on Sunday afternoon. Expect the weather to be near perfect – dry and with the sea breeze.
- We’re limiting numbers to around 12 people; at the very most 20. That will give us more space.
- This retreat is not for beginners – priority will be given to those with some retreat experience.
- The schedule will be very light – so you will need to be self-motivated in meditation.
Leading the Retreat
We trust you already know Pandit Bhikkhu, organiser behind littlebang.org, and Marisa Cranfil-Young who we have hosted many times – she is a teacher of Qi Gong, Yoga and Vipassana.
Marisa Cranfill Young
Frequent trips to Asia as a child influenced Marisa’s passion for an investigation of meditation, yoga, qigong, Chinese healing arts and academic field work for over 17 years. She discovered qigong while attending university in China and combined it with a meditation and yoga practice, experiencing amazing results: more energy, deep healing, and insight to nature’s unlimited potential. Today she shares these gifts as a certified qigong, yoga, and Vipassana meditation instructor. Her qigong training is through the Universal Healing Tao Lineage and the Wandering Tao School. She currently divides her time between San Fransisco and Bangkok where she offers classes, workshops, and private consultations.
We will be at 3 very pleasant houses, located in a gated community on a quiet beach on the South coast of Rayong province. It is about 2.5 hours from Bangkok. There will be plenty of space.
There are a variety of rooms in the different houses. Some are air-con, some have beds, some have sleeping mattresses – i.e. conditions vary. We don’t have an exact plan of the many rooms and so cannot guarantee anything, except that the houses are very pleasant, clean, equipped with necessities, and that we are very fortunate the owners have given us permission to use their private houses for the purpose of a meditation retreat.
Sorry – it would be nice, but we can’t give private rooms. We won’t be crowded though. And sharing is good for mindfulness – monks usually share for several years when they ordain for this reason! The beach air is very fresh, especially at this time of the year. Males and females will be in separate areas, so we can’t give any couples rooms either.
This retreat is set out for those with experience in meditation already. You don’t have to be an expert, but there won’t be strict sitting and walking sessions all day like many other retreats.
Thursday 21st January
- Meet at Baan Aree (map below) near Ari BTS station at 5:30pm
- Have your last meal of the day at Baan Aree Vegetarian food stalls
- Depart 6:30pm (we leave promptly, so that we are not arriving in Rayong too late)
- Arrive at our destination around 9:00pm
- Group sitting and orientation
Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd
- 5:30am Meditation on the Beach as dawn comes up
- Breakfast 7:15 (ish)
- 8:30-11:00am Qi Gong on the beach, followed by sitting meditaiton
- 12:00 Lunch (mostly vegetarian)
- 4:00-6:00 Afternoon sitting and walking meditation
- 7:00pm Light Food for those who need it (we follow monastic tradition of eating only in the morning, but something light, single dish, will be available if you need it)
- Evening Meditation and Dhamma Talk 7:30-9:30
Sunday 25th January
- 5:30 am Rising dawn meditation on the beach
- Breakfast 7:30 (ish)
- 8:30-10:30 Last Qi Gong and meditation
- 11-12 clean up and be packed ready to leave
- Lunch 12-1:00
- Final checks and clean up, load the vans. Leave before 1:30pm
- 5:00 ish Drop off at a BTS station in Bangkok
We aim to be back in Bangkok before 5 pm, with a drop off point at one of the BTS stations.
Vipassana meditation aims to cultivate strong body/mind awareness in the present moment. The benefits and other descriptions are well described on thousands of websites.
We will also do a daily Qi gong session – you don’t need prior experience with Qi Gong – we will be using it as a form of mindfulness movement practise, similar to walking meditaiton.
Food and other things
We will provide breakfast, large lunch, and a light evening meal. This will more than keep you alive and healthy! We’ll ask you not to eat or snack between these times – self-discipline around eating is one important part of a proper Vipassana retreat experience. In Burmese retreats there is no evening meal at all, and this provides a lightness of the body and mind, as well as gaining insight and discipline into how we look to food and drink as a psychological prop. For those who need it there will be a light evening meal., though we’d encourage you to eat only very lightly.
We cannot cater to individual diets – almost everyone seems to have special requirements these days that they can’t live without. One lesson from monastic living: you can actually live very well just on what people offer. We have had good experience with the restaurant we use by the beach, and no one has died on us yet (not due to the food anyway).
The cost will be 3,500 baht per person, which should include everything, with something left over.
If you are planning to drive there yourself, then the retreat cost is 2,500 baht
Bringing correct change is handy!
Please avoid large or hard-case bags. You don’t need much, and storage space in the vans is limited.
We will take meditation mats. You will need to take your own sheet and pillow cover (if that is not practical, for instance if you are touring, let us know and we’ll work something out). You’ll need your own towel, soap and toiletries.
It’s a great privilege to be offered these houses to use, so we must ensure we leave them in perfect condition. This is not a resort – they are private houses.
Details etc.. change, so be sure to re-read this page closer to the time for more suggestions, and to see any changes that have been made.
Torch, mosquito repellent, medicines you use – please bring your own along. We have no transport available during the retreat to go buy things you forgot.
You’ll be asked to keep to the schedule of group meetings and free time, as it maintains the group energy and focus. If you have difficulties, see the teacher or manager.
We will meet at Baan Aree, which is close to Ari BTS station, at 11am . Get your own meal there (they have excellent cheap food). Light single-dish will be provided later in the evening if you need it.
Please be sure that you wish to join the retreat – always so many people book, and then mysteriously fall ill on the day! You are free to cancel your booking at any time, but from 5 days before the retreat, if you cancel we ask that you pay the 1000 baht Mini-van fare, as we will be incurring this expense.
Complete the form below. Then you will be returned to this page.
Note that Pandit Bhikkhu will be away on retreat until 20th December, so confirmation might be slow.
Spaces are very limited, so please don’t be offended if you did not make the list.
I hope you will be able to join and share in this experience with this meditation teacher who really impresses. It’s great to get the female perspective and approach to meditation!