Throughout March, our Snows retreat continued, with 40 people meditating together each day

… on the three yogas of completion stage.

This third month of silence is the golden period of the retreat, when the retreat is at its deepest and most peaceful.

While the retreaters enjoy the quietude of retreat,

Venerable Tharchin prepares his next teaching,

and Yangdon and Paul work in the kitchen.

The retreaters also help in the breaktimes with many jobs to support the retreat, like sweeping the path before sessions.

In April, having spent three months in silence together the retreaters started to come out of silence and share their experiences…

as well as their favourite walks (including a few cross-country adventures!)

“At Tharpaland a person has a chance to watch their mind change like the clouds in the sky… to face their demons in solitude and find their jewel like experience.”

“Now that I’ve completed my retreat I feel fantastic. It’s like anything can be achieved.” “My wish to help others be free from their suffering is my priority.”

“Apres trois mois de retraite en silence la profonde harmonie et complicite qui nait entre des gens …

…qui ne se connaissaient pas au depart et juste incroyable ce qui se passé en retraite est au dela des mois”

At Tharpaland, I had time to ponder on the important things, like

“In emptiness there is no coming and no going…

and no over there nor over here…”

“Keeping silent in and of itself for so long, was a powerful and hard to predict experience. I imagined that my mind would be less talkative, but no.

When we could finally talk to each other, we found the group bonded and learned from each other in ways beyond anyone’s ordinary imagination.

I wish everyone a long retreat experience – if not several!”

The retreat finished with a thanks giving tsog offering on NKT Day…

and a group photo…

….followed by a party!

And then its time to say goodbye to most of the retreaters.

While six move into new accommodation to continue in solitary retreat.

A week later we celebrate Budhha’s Enlightenment

…with a two day Avalokiteshvara Fasting retreat.