Accounts of the women in the Buddha’s life rarely receive the attention they merit. Whatever may be the reasons for this neglect, the results are always unfortunate. Reading, discussing, and reflecting on these women’s stories can help them to come alive, opening up new depths in the Buddha’s teachings and presenting unfamiliar angles of vision on our own study and practice. In the challenging conditions of today’s troubled world, the resources for reflection and insight found in the stories of the women in the Buddha’s life have never been more pertinent.
This 3-day retreat takes an immersive approach to reading a selection of these women’s stories – chosen from a variety of Buddhist traditions – and will be structured around a wide range of reading and contemplative practices. Together we will encounter the spiritual power of the first Buddhist women in their lives as mothers, sisters, wives, and friends, as well as both lay and monastic practitioners.
Exploring their stories together will enable us to uncover and highlight the possibility and power of human relationship and community that shaped the Buddha’s life and ministry.