Spiritual programme

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Brightening Your Inner Clarity – Mindfulness Meditation & Yoga Retreat
From Monday, 4. December 2017
To Wednesday, 13. December 2017
Location : Main gompa

This is a very special retreat that brings together the path to inner clarity of body and mind through meditation, yoga, discussions of inner values and pilgrimage to the Mahabodhi Stupa for blessings and inspiration. The meditations and values discussions will be lead by Ven Khadro, the yoga and pilgrimages by Annie McGhee.


The mindfulness meditations will be guided and focused mainly on the breath, gradually moving to being mindful of mental activity and moving even more subtle inwardly to being mindful of awareness of awareness. This retreat will allow retreatants to build up a regular practice that they can continue after the retreat and maintain during their daily lives.

The mindfulness yoga will offer a perfect counterbalance of dropping into stillness of "being" rather than "doing". This type of yoga allows the observation of moment-to-moment awareness discovering a sense of openness and acceptance. Several types of pranayama (breathing exercises) will be explored and asanas (yoga poses) will be hold for slightly longer creating greater sense of calmness and flexibility of the body & mind.

The discussions of inner values will be based on the 16 Guidelines – a very grounding framework of universal values to develop wisdom and compassion. The 16 Guidelines are designed to transform the way that we think, we act, we relate to others and we find meaning. You are welcome to visit the 16 Guidelines website for more information.

The retreat will include full days in silence.

Retreat leaders

Ven. Khadro: was born in Venezuela of European parents, and lived in New Zealand for the last 12 years where she lead various mindfulness courses and 16 Guidelines workshops. Her "international" upbringing allows her to have a very open, friendly and warm manner. Khadro has served and taught in other meditation centres, she is a Buddhist Chaplain, a 16 Guidelines facilitator, an FPMT registered teacher and is the current Spiritual Programme Coordinator at Root Institute.

Annie resides in Australia, is a fully qualified and accredited yoga teacher, and has been practicing yoga for over five decades, and teaching for more than twenty-five years. She is experienced in numerous styles of yoga, and her classes are well known for their warm-hearted and non-judgmental teaching style. They are influenced by Tibetan Buddhism to help develop an open-hearted approach to life.


Mon 4 Dec Welcome to Root Institute
4.00pm Introduction to course by Spiritual Programme Coordinator (SPC)
6.00pm Dinner
7.00pm Evening Meditation
Tue 5 to Tue 12 Dec   
6.45am Morning meditation
7.30am Breakfast
9.00am Mindfulness Yoga Session
10.00am Break
10.30am Mindfulness Meditation Session (2 sessions in one)
12.00pm Lunch
2.00pm Discussion session on the 16 Guidelines
3.30pm Break
4.00pm Mindfulness Yoga Session
6:00pm Dinner
7.00pm Evening meditation / Pilgrimage to Mahabodhi Stupa
(alternate days to be announced)
Wed 13 Dec  
6.45am Morning meditation
7.30am Breakfast
8.30am Mindfulness Yoga Session
10.00am Break
10.30am Mindfulness Meditation Session (2 sessions in one)
12.00pm Lunch
2.00pm Root Institute Tour
3:00pm Feedback from the Group

Please note: this schedule is subject to change.

Guidelines of behaviour in a Dharma environment

Root Institute is a delightful, semi-monastic meditation centre.

To maintain a conducive, spiritually harmonious atmosphere for inner reflection and meditation, we kindly ask all our students, guests and visitors to observe the following guidelines:

  • Respect all life: do not intentionally kill any living being, even small insects.

  • Respect others' property: do not steal or take anything not freely given.

  • Be honest and straightforward: do not lie or intentionally deceive others.

  • Be celibate: no sexual activity; this also includes no romantic holding hands, hugging, massages and other physical displays of affection.

  • Be alert and mindful*: avoid intoxicants such as alcohol, drugs and cigarettes; we encourage you to stop smoking while here, but if this is impossible, you can smoke outside the gates.

  • Be considerate of others' silence: keep silence in the appropriate areas and at all times during residential courses, especially in the meditation hall (gompa) and dormitories; no singing or playing music and, in general, maintain a quiet demeanour while on the property.

  • Be considerate of the monks and nuns: dress respectfully; please no shorts above the knee, tank-top shirts, or tight and revealing clothing.

  • Couples: can stay in the same room for two weeks or less under the celibacy policy.

Please be aware:

  • * The Bihar state government has passed laws totally prohibiting the sale and consumption of alcohol in the state, with very severe penalties! Please ensure that you do not carry any alcohol with you in Bihar.

  • Also, please note that those in service or teaching in FPMT centers and projects do not engage in the practice of Shugden.

General information about the spiritual programme

Our spiritual programme now runs from beginning of September through to end of April.

On the appropriate dates in the Tibetan calendar year-round, however, we observe the standard pujas of the Gelug tradition and these are drop-in sessions which anyone can attend. If you are in Bodhgaya and would like to come along, please feel welcome to join us for:

  • Tara puja
  • Medicine Buddha puja
  • Lama Ch'opa ts'og offering
  • Protector puja

Unless otherwise indicated, registration is required for all spiritual programme events except drop-in sessions, Festival of Lights & Merit, and Mahabodhi Stupa events.

To book your own individual or group retreat, please go to Blessings > Retreat – at Stupa Garden of Compassion, through which you can also book accommodation.