10-Day Intensive Silent Illumination Chan Retreat
"Silently and serenely, forgetting all words, clearly and vividly, it appears before you."
|Teacher: ||Simon Child, a Dharma Heir of Master Sheng Yen|
|Begins: ||Friday Nov 23, 2012 check-in 4:00-6:00pm|
|Ends: ||Sunday Dec 2, 2012 11:00 am|
|Openings: ||Available - register online|
|Deadline: ||November 19, 2012|
The above verse comes from "The Inscription on Silent Illumination," a poem composed by Master Hongzhi Zhengjue of the 12th century Caodong (Soto) lineage of the Chan school.
Master Hongzhi wrote many beautiful verses describing his deep insight, and today, these verses encourage us along the path of spiritual cultivation. Yet this verse is also a guideline for a method of practice, which he called "Silent Illumination." With this simple method, one cultivates relaxation and awareness of the state of body, mind, and environment. Eventually, as the mind calms, it regains its natural clarity, that which Master Hongzhi likens to ďautumn pool." With the settling of wandering thoughts and conceptualization, there is "silence"; with the emergence of clarity, there is "illumination."
This 10-Day Silent Illumination retreat will be led by Simon Child, a Dharma heir of Chan Master Sheng-Yen. Drawing on teachings of the Master, he will lead us in understanding the concepts and applying the method of Silent Illumination. He will also give personal interviews to provide additional guidance.
The Silent Illumination method will be taught in the context of daily life activities, such as sitting, standing, walking, sleeping, working, and eating. Chanting and gentle yoga exercises further harmonize the body, breath, and mind. The retreat also includes daily lectures, meditation instruction, guided meditation, and personal interview.
Note: This is an intensive retreat, intended for practitioners who:
- have established a routine personal practice
- have prior retreat experience (3-day or longer meditation retreat)
Dr Simon Child received Dharma Transmission from Master Sheng Yen in 2000 and is the principal Teacher of the Western Chan Fellowship, a lay Chan organisation based in the UK. Resident in England he works as a family doctor, and is married with two adult sons. Simon started his training with John Crook in 1981 and trained with Chan Master Sheng Yen from 1992. His teaching approach uses the orthodox methods of Chan Master Sheng Yen and also some adaptations to help the Western personality engage with traditional practice.