In autumn you turn to what has been waiting for you. The goddess goes down into the underworld to that old husband of hers. The hero sails his ships to the underworld to get advice. Everything grows quieter. It’s a time to be simple. This means we let the world carry us through the holiday and the winter, all the way to the return of spring. We need less because just being here is so much. Things we don’t need fall away. What you most care about, what the heart loves, appears. Meditation stretches out from horizon to horizon.

In meditation you show up for your own life. You go down and in like a goddess or a hero, visiting the world beneath the world.

When things are simple they are elegant. When things are simple, whatever paths you walk, you will be enough.


Note: Limited space is available. For more information or to be placed on the waitlist, please contact the registar.



  • Dates: November 16-19, 2017
  • Times: Thursday eve till Sunday noon
  • Location: Commonweal Center, Bolinas, CA
  • Cost: See registration page
  • Registrar: For questions about the event please contact the registar, Sacha Kawaichi, at

About Open Mind Retreats

Pacific Zen Institute’s Open Mind Retreats come out of our impulse to make a Zen retreat that is native to American culture. The idea is that when we take away the barriers to understanding, things just naturally shine.

This is a residential retreat held in a beautiful place on the ocean with a simple feel, and wonderful food. There will be sitting together, koans, teaching, walking on the beach, poetry, conversation, writing and time to find out what our lives might be like without our usual stories. We will do exercises that help our attention to deepen. We will make discoveries and our lives will open.

This is a retreat that people find has a powerful effect on their lives and their understanding, both of the practice of the inner life and of the world of work and personal interaction. It has the deep strength of an intensive meditation retreat inside a form that works for people with many different levels of meditation experience. It has a schedule that makes it work well for those who would like to bring a partner or a friend. No particular background in spiritual practice is required. The retreat has limited numbers so sign up early if you want to come.

Art Credit: Hilma af Klint, “Buddha’s Standpoint in the Earthly Life, No. 3a”, 1920.

By registering for this event you agree to our Cancellation Policy.

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