A 5-Day Residential Silent Mindfulness Retreat
with Bob Stahl
13 - 18 November 2023
Soutelo, Vila Verde, Braga, Portugal
This insight mindfulness meditation retreat will offer periods of sitting and walking meditation, as well as practice discussions. The daily talks and systematic instructions will emphasize steadying and quieting the mind, opening the heart, and developing clarity, wisdom, and depth of practice. The teachings will be embedded within the spirit of Loving Kindness.
Through the direct practices of the four foundations of mindfulness you will learn how the essence of these wisdom teachings (Dharma): the four noble truths and the three characteristics of existence intersect and inform all mindfulness-based approaches.
Who is this Retreat For?
This retreat is suitable for anyone wanting to deepen their mindfulness practice. This retreat will focus on cultivating further understanding of the rationale on how the Dhamma informs all mindfulness-based approaches. This will be especially of interest to those teaching or aspiring to teach mindfulness in healthcare, psychology, education, science, government, or in the business and corporate sectors.
This retreat also fulfils prerequisites for mindfulness-based teacher training.
ABOUT THE TEACHER
Bob Stahl, PhD, has founded eight Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) programs in medical centers in the SF Bay Area and is currently offering programs at Dominican Hospital, El Camino Hospitals in Los Gatos and Mt. View, and Good Samaritan Hospital. He serves as a Senior Teacher for Brown University Mindfulness Center and the Oasis Institute for Mindfulness-Based Professional Education and Training at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Bob teachers MBSR Teacher Trainings and Insight Meditation retreats worldwide and is the guiding teacher at Insight Santa Cruz and a visiting teacher at Spirit Rock. He is coauthor of 5 books: A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, LivingWith Your Heart Wide Open,Calming the Rush of Panic, AMindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook for Anxiety, and MBSR Everyday.
For Dharma Talks with Bob Stahl follow the link: https://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/268/
The retreat will be guided in English, without consecutive translation.
Casa da Torre, Soutelo, Vila Verde, Braga, Portugal (info here)
The accommodation at Casa da Torre is in individual and double rooms with private bathroom. The rooms are not luxurious, but rather very simple with all the comfort for you to have a pleasant and peaceful stay during the retreat. The Center has several gardens in the exterior that you can use during the entire duration of the retreat. It also has a beautiful terrace with an amazing view over an extensive natural area.
* Casa da Torre is a Jesuit Monastery and the choice of this type of retreat center is not because of the religious thematic of the place, which is not essential for a mindfulness retreat but rather because it meets several criteria that we find important for a retreat: silence, simplicity, high number of single rooms with private bathrooms available and great quality of the meals (variables that are requested for many of the people that are interested in our services)
Meals are vegetarian and they will include: complete breakfast, lunch and dinner & snacks at the bar (coffee, tea, biscuits)
If you need any special adaptation in terms of meals please let us know.
- 13 November Monday -
4.30pm - 6.00pm: Arrival
6.30pm – 7.30pm: Dinner
7.30pm - 9.30pm: Welcome and Introductions | Walking and Sitting Practices
9.30pm Closing for the Day or Further Practice
- 14, 15, 16 & 17 November (Tuesday through Friday) -
7.00 am: Wake up
7.30am - 8.00am: Sitting Meditation
8.00am - 9.30am: Breakfast
09.30am - 10.30pm: Sitting - Instructions / Q & A
10.30am - 11.15am: Walking Meditation
11.15am - 11.45am: Sitting Meditation
11.45am - 12.30pm Walking Meditation
12.30pm – 13.00pm: Sitting Meditation
1.00pm - 2.00pm: Lunch
2.00pm - 3.00pm: Rest
3.00pm - 3.30pm: Sitting Meditation
3.30pm - 4.15pm: Walking Meditation
4.15pm - 5.00pm: Sitting Meditation
5.00pm - 5.45pm: Walking Meditation
5.45pm - 6.30pm: Sitting Meditation
6.30pm - 8.00pm: Dinner
8.00pm - 9.00pm: Dharmma Talk
9.00pm Rest or continue pratice
- 18 November, Saturday -
7.00 am: Wake up
7.30am - 8.00am: Sitting Meditation
8.00am - 9.30am: Breakfast
09.30am - 10.15am: Sitting Meditation
10.15am - 10.45am: Walking Meditation
10.45am - 12.00pm: Talk, Breaking Silence, Closing Circle: Self-Care, Resources, Q&A
12.30pm: Farewell & Lunch
650 euros euros (participants registering in individual name)
650 euros + 23% IVA (for participants registering through companies)
Meals and Accommodation:
400 euros (individual or double rooms)
We are offering two 50 % Discount Scholarships (for the tuition of the retreat only. Accomodation must be paid in full) for registrations from LOW GPD COUNTRIES
Please note that the crucial factor for the reduced Low GDP fee is not the country of origin but the country of residence.
The only countries eligible for the low GDP(Gross Domestic Product) reduction are:
- African countries
- Asian countries (with following exceptions: Bahrain, Brunei Darussalam, Hong Kong SAR, Israel, Japan, Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Macau SAR, Qatar, Singapore, UAE)
- Latin American countries (exception: Bahamas)
- and the following countries in wider Europe:
Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Latvia, Lithuania, FYR of Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia,Turkey and Ukraine.
Applications for the LOW GPD FEE are accepted until the 1st September 2023. You should send your application using the details below. We will evaluate all applications by 15th September and inform if your application for the Scholarship will be accepted. We will evaluate all applications by 15th September and inform if your application for the Scholarship will be accepted.
To apply to the scholarship:
- Send an email email@example.com:
- Thename and date of the eventyou want to register
- Curriculum Vitae
- Intention letter informing your professional training path and professional experience, experience teaching groups, personal development in the area of mindfulness and motivation to participate in the program. If you are requesting a scholarship please let us know why do you need this financial support.
The limit date for registration is the 30 October of 2023. After this date we won’t accept any further registrations.
The number of places is limited, so we advise your registration as soon as possible.
To register in the retreat:
- Make the payment of the value of the retreat using the payment options below:
- Complete the form using the link below with your options regarding accomodation & meals:
In the first day of the retreat you will have to pay your accommodation/meals fee directly to Casa da Torre in the total value of de 400 euros.
After the reception of your email we will send you a reply confirming your place in the retreat and with information relating to the retreat. If you don't receive our reply please contact us.
- If your retreat is canceled until the 1st of August you will receive a full reimbursement of the retreat minus an administration fee of 50 euros plus fee for the international bank transference. After this date we won’t make any reimbursements.
- If the event is canceled due to an unexpected reason, Ser Integral: Centro Português de Mindfulness, will provide a reimbursement of 100% of the value paid for the retreat, but we won’t be responsible for any other costs (i.e., travelling and accommodation) associated with your participation in the retreat.
- The retreat will occur with a minimum and maximum number of participants (limited places available). In the eventuality of the retreat not having the minimum registrations established Se Integral: Portuguese Center for Mindfulness will have to cancel the event.
- Please bring confortable clothing, a meditation cushion, yoga mat and blankets for your own comfort in the practice room. Also bring confortable walking shoes to use on the gardens/forest and you might also be interested in bringing a mosquito repellent.
- The program is subject to minor changes according to the needs met during the retreat.
- The room has bed sheets, towels, blankets, but you should bring all the toiletries that you usually need (e.g., shampoo, soap, etc)
- Individual rooms are limited and they will be offered on first registration basis. The cost of a private room per person is the same as a double room per person.
How to get here?
Please see the information on: http://casadatorre.org/arrive/arrive.html
The closest airport is PORTO (OPO). From here you can rent a car to drive to Vila Verde (use the GPS coordinates and address below), take a taxi to the Bus Station in Porto (http://www.renex.pt/, Address: Campo Mártires da Pátria, 37, Porto) to get a bus from Porto to Braga and from Braga please see the details below:
By Bus: Between 7am and 8.15pm you can find several buses that leave the Bus Central Station of Braga to Vila Verde, Arcos and Monção. You need to get out at the stop – Rio Homem, make a left and you will have Casa da Torre ahead (with a big gate).
By Taxi: From the Central Bus Station or Train Station of Braga to Casa da Torre you will pay around 12 euros.
By Car: GPS coordinates :41º36’.08”N 8º26’17.05”W or the address: Casa da Torre, Avenida Viscondes da Torre, nº 80 4730-570 Soutelo – Vila Verde.
By Shuttle: Ser Integral: Portuguese Center for Mindfulness will organize shuttles from the airport to the retreat center if a minimum number of participants from other countries registers in the retreat. There will be a fee for this service (to be determined).
At what time should I arrive? When will we finish?
Arrival is on the 13th of November between 4.30pm and 6.30pm so that we can process your arrival and registration. You will then be assigned to your room and we will meet at 6.30pm for dinner. In the last day of the retreat we will have lunch at the retreat center and after this we will all leave the retreat center.
Is there wireless and mobile phone connection?
Yes, but usage of mobile phones and internet is not allowed during the 5 days of the retreat.
Is it possible to arrive earlier or stay after the retreat ends?
Yes, if you need more nights at the retreat center you have to contact Casa da Torre directly.
What do I need to bring?
It is advised to bring confortable clothing, a meditation cushion, a yoga mat and blankets for your comfort during the practices. The room has bed sheets, towels, blankets, but you should bring all the toiletries that you usually need (e.g., shampoo, soap, etc). Also bring confortable walking shoes to use on the gardens/forest and you might also be interested in bringing a mosquito repellent.
Is this retreat accepted as a pre-requisite for the teacher training in mindfulness?
This retreat meets the pre-requisites for the teacher training program in MBSR. If you want to know if this retreat is acceptable by other institutions, please contact them directly.
I’ve completed the MBSR in a retreat format or 8 week format. Should I expect the same dynamics in this silent retreat?
No, a silent retreat in mindfulness meditation does not follow the same dynamic of an MBSR program. This retreat will have almost no guided meditation practices, in order to help you cultivate the ability to practice in silence. There will be group discussions daily after the morning Dharma talk, and at the beginning and end of the retreat, but no other group discussions. You will also have the opportunity to meet individually with the teachers throughout the retreat.
What do previous participants have to say about their experience on other retreats organized by Ser Integral: Portuguese Center for Mindfulness?
"Thank you so much for organizing this retreat in Braga, it was a true gift for me and I got so much out of it...words cannot even describe. The organization was excellent, I loved the monastery and Paul and Anna were wonderful teachers!" - Myrto Legaki, Greece (2017)
"I flew from Denmark and joined a 5-day silent retreat organised by Ser Integral in Porto. The retreat place was perfect and I was very impressed by the genuine care of the organisers. They were truly helpful, professional, attentive and loving throughout the whole event. We stayed in single rooms and having this privacy was very helpful for me to extend deepening the silence. And if you are wondering, the food was great as well!:) I am looking forward to coming back for more retreats." Esen, Denmark (2017)