by Alumni, Sheree
After doing the MBCPM entry level and alumni courses, I felt ready to try a meditation residential retreat.
The meditation retreats that I attended were put on by an organization in Ontario called True North Insight. They were both held at the beautiful Galillee Centre, an oasis in Arnprior on the Ottawa River. The first one I attended was run by Daryl Lynn Ross and was a three day silent retreat. Having only done a maximum of 60 minutes of meditation on my own, going into two and a half days of silence, from 7 pm Friday night to Sunday noon seemed a little frightening. No music, no books, no one to talk to: what was I getting myself into?
From the moment I arrived I had a good feeling. The warmth and peacefulness that surrounded me when I entered Galillee: from the people, and the place, which were shown around, were refreshing. The building, built in the 1800’s, has exquisite charm, and everyone gets a private room with sink. There were about 50 people attending, of every age and nationality. Instructions were given by Daryl Lynn at the opening and so we knew exactly what to do and when, how things would be run, and how to ask a question without talking. Before going into silence we were given an opportunity to ask our questions.
The two and a half days flew by so quickly it was unbelievable. The days were full of activity and by the end of each day I would lay down and close my eyes and have the best sleep ever. The vegetarian food was very good and there was variety enough to satisfy different tastes (the chili and fruit crisp with ice cream are to die for.) At the very end of my first retreat, I felt that I didn’t want to leave.
I went back again a few months later and did a four day retreat, which was another amazing experience with Dr Bill Knight, as it was based in Mindfulness. I highly recommend this retreat. I would be happy to talk about it further with anyone who has any questions. To sign up for any of these retreats you can call Janet at TNI who is one of the greatest people.
The link to TNI is http://www.truenorthinsight.org