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by Gisele Theriault August 06, 2017

I hope you are storing a little delight for yourself that days of summer can offer. There is no time like a season in bloom.

The retreat at Plum Village in France is over now and if retreats are on your bucket list, you will definitely want to bookmark https://plumvillage.org/ for future consideration. Their summer retreat caters to everyone young and old. The myriad of enchanting moments with all ages made me smile with love and longing to my own beautiful family.

this magnificent shepherd tree watches over acres of sunflowers.
there are orchards of plum, apples and pear trees, mulberries, passion fruit and gardens galore.. So even among 900+ people, you could still find solitude in nature quite easily. 


Although Plum Village is the home of Buddhist nuns, monks and laypeople, the retreats are simply mindfulness.  When asked of his origins Thich Nhat Hanh, known as Thay (meaning teacher) use to love to say he was from the Republic of Mindfulness.  It's easy to imagine this is possible when in a retreat of 900+ people from 1 yr old - 90 yrs old, from 42 countries, multi-cultures, multi-religion, multi-language in one commitment to sharpen the skills of openness, caring, and mindfulness.. wow! 

I've been in the Winter and Spring retreats in PV as well as retreats in a few of the monasteries in the US which are also deeply gorgeous. All guaranteed to fill your cup. Imagine taking for yourself peaceful reflective time away from life as you know it. Imagine the barriers of differences dissolve and enhance the depth we can reach in understanding our hearts and what nurtures deeper breathing. The more stories we share with people we meet of different nationalities and cultural backgrounds, the more we realize that we all suffer. We all have within us seeds of suffering and seeds of joy. What we do have choice with is what seeds we choose to water. This is the path of mindfulness.

Bodhisattvas in training..
Robes in play always make me smile since I know how hard they work. ;-)
no mud no lotus magnificence..

  
final performance in the Buddha garden..
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Now I am in beautiful misty Ireland to start preparing for our Meditative Experiential Retreat next week. Very different environment with under 10 people. Looking forward to every enchanting moment of it. If you have any questions I can answer regarding the next retreat, I am here for you. 


Until then, grace, a smile and gratitude for your journey
always,

Gisele



Gisele Theriault
Gisele Theriault

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