Active hope for humanity
Smritiratna first took up Buddhist practice in 1977 at the age of 21 while studying Developmental Psychology at Sussex University. At 27, he began training in earnest with the FWBO and entered the Western Buddhist Order in 1991.
In 1996, he came to Scotland, joined the Dhanakosa project and spent five years on-site, teaching and house-keeping. In 2001, he gave up house-keeping to concentrate on study, contemplation and teaching. He now lives in a forest hut near Dhanakosa. He still leads Dhanakosa retreats and continues to delight in introducing meditation to newcomers.
Sukhema was born in Illinois and has been living in Glasgow since 1981. He has been leading retreats at Dhanakosa since the early nineties when it first opened. His day job is teaching tai-chi in healthcare settings including the Maggie Cancer Care Centre where he also facilitates a therapeutic writing group.
His passions are poetry,dance, drama, gardening and wild swimming. He's the editor for Playspace Publications , a published poet and researcher for Art in Health.
Amber started yoga at the age of 16 after an injury made her withdraw from competitive gymnastics in the 1970’s. She was fortunate to find an Iyengar Yoga Teacher at that time, and this became by far her most preferred style of yoga due to the alignment and attention to detail of the posture work. Amber qualified as an Iyengar Yoga Teacher in 1997, and in the year 2000 went to the Iyengar Yoga Institute in Pune in India to study with Mr Iyengar. In the UK Amber taught for 10 years at the Croydon Buddhist Centre becoming the Manager of the Yoga and Health Centre there. Amber is also a qualified Holistic Therapist, and nowadays her passion for health and spiritual well-being is practised alongside her love of permaculture.
Open to all, these retreats are suitable for both beginners and those with more experience, but no previous experience is assumed. All these retreats include introductory meditation teaching and periods of silence.
Seeing the dangers confronting humankind these days, we can feel depressed, demoralised and helpless to avert disaster - or even to talk about such feelings. This retreat provides a space not only to talk but to explore an extraordinary sequence of reflections and communal practices that can rekindle an active hope and vision for humanity.
The retreat takes its title from a book called ‘Active Hope’ co-authored by Joanna Macy. Having studied Buddhism, Joanna went on to develop this sequence of exercises and reflections to help us move from despair into an ‘active hope’. Such hope is far more than something vague and passive ... more like a vision for humanity, a future to which we can contribute and actively help to bring about.
For more information please read the retreat information sheet.