The Art of Meditation: A Weeklong Retreat

Loden Nyima

April 10–17, 2022

Tuition $300 + 7 nights

Join us for a peaceful abiding meditation retreat in the mountains. Meditation is ultimately a process of accepting and befriending ourselves completely, all the way to our natural basic goodness. In the process we will encounter not only our innate ability to truly rest and rejuvenate, but as well lots of ups and downs, strong emotions, unprocessed material, cycles of inspiration and discouragement, and questions about how to integrate our practice with daily life. These are all well and good parts of the path, perhaps all the more-so amidst the stresses of modern times where we’re often coming to meditation for relief — and rightly so!

Shamatha, or “peaceful abiding” meditation has been practiced by people, Buddhists and beyond, for thousands of years.  Retreating into the mountains together to meditate is one of the great living traditions of spirituality we have today.  It’s survived because it works, and continues to be used by people of virtually every walk of life and as part of a wide range of contemplative paths.

In this retreat, we will practice shamatha meditation, and in particular, learn the art of relating with all of the above and more.

Participants can expect:

  • Many hours of practice each day in a gentle and supportive setting
  • Time each day to rest and connect with nature
  • To learn how to tap into and strengthen our inspiration
  • Experiential exercises on how to deepen our meditation, heal and relate with difficult emotions, and use the natural environment as a source of strength
  • To learn how to establish an attainable daily practice and tools we can use on the spot in life
  • Group discussions and one-on-one sessions with the instructor

Please review and understand SMC’s current COVID-19 policy before visiting SMC.

Read Loden’s articles on Heartbreak and Healing in difficult times and Buddhism and COVID-19.

Program Preparation, Attendance Requirements, and Additional Info

Please feel free to contact Loden at if you’re trying to decide whether or not this retreat is for you.

For logistical inquiries, please contact

Full attendance required.

*This program meets the requirements for a Shambhala weekthun.*

Heart Gift

Toward the end of your retreat you will be asked if you would like to make a heart gift to the teacher. In Shambhala and other wisdom cultures, people often make heart gifts to those who have made receiving precious teachings possible. The heart gift is purely optional and based on personal inspiration and gratitude. The amount is not important, just your inspiration to give, connect, and explore the cycles of generosity and offering. Gifts can be made by cash, check or paypal.

Financial Assistance & Scholarships

Click here to learn more about Financial Assistance and Scholarships.

Loden Nyima

Gelong Loden Nyima is a fully ordained Buddhist monk. He lived at Gampo Abbey from 2009 – 2017 where he practiced intensively, completed a cycle of advanced studies (Shedra), and served in various roles including as a senior teacher. He now lives at Drala Mountain Center where he serves as Resident Teacher and a founding faculty member for the Path of Meditation, the Summer Seminar, and other programs. He spends a portion of each year in retreat, travels to continue his own dharma education, and can often be seen jogging around the land at DMC.

Program Details

Registration takes place from 2– 5 pm on your program start date. All participants and volunteer staff must check in at our Guest Registration house. Please arrive before 5 pm to check in and settle into your accommodations. Your program begins with dinner, followed by an orientation. The Guest Registration house closes at 5 pm after which no one is available to provide information or orient you to your accommodations. Your program will end with breakfast on the last day. Further specifics regarding your program's schedule will be available upon arrival. If applicable, you will receive an email from the program coordinator in the week prior to your program with any additional information you may need.