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Open Way Fall Retreat, 2015 (Part 1)

29 Sep

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This last weekend was our annual Montana Open Way Sanghas fall retreat.  Once again we used the Flathead Lutheran Bible Camp facility in Lakeside, MT which sits right on the Flathead Lake – so lovely!  As a bit of background the Montana Open Way Sanghas consists of four sanghas in three different towns in western Montana: Open Way and Be Here Now (my group) in Missoula, Flowing Mountains in Helena, and Open Sky in Kalispell.  Our collective sanghas are joined together as sister communities in the mindfulness tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh’s Order of Interbeing.  The buddhist word Sangha means spiritual community in Sanskrit.  We all join together for two retreats a year, assemble an annual newsletter publication, and our leaders meet quarterly.  We are a big happy family here in Big Sky Country!

Our retreats start on a Thursday evening and end on Sunday afternoons.  This past weekend we had 60 retreat attendants, our largest adult population yet to date.  How wonderful it is that we have these opportunities locally to go on retreat and to be attracting so many folks.  We brought in a dharma teacher from Austin, TX to lead our retreat, Terry Cortez-Vega.  It was the first time she had come to lead a retreat for us and we very much enjoyed her down to earth style and way of sharing the dharma with us.

2015 Fall Retreat Pictures

2015 Fall Retreat Pictures

I wrote this on Friday:

This morning,
when the sky was still cast with stars
unfolding through the pine boughs,
sprays of fresh predawn air
sifted through my lungs
as it swept over the lake

Stillness greeted me
when I stepped outside,
earth and stone crackling underneath my footfalls
held my shifting weight with care and ease

I thought little of what the day would bring
little of what needed to be done once the sun alighted the water
Instead, my attention was held by the radiance of the moon
and the gathering and releasing of breath

2015 Fall2

More to follow…stay tuned :)

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2 responses to “Open Way Fall Retreat, 2015 (Part 1)

  1. helmontpetit

    September 30, 2015 at 7:33 am

    Yum. I can almost smell the pines and feel the cool breeze off the lake. I can hear the footfalls on gravel and see far on the horizon. Thank you for the mini vacation.

     

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