Earlier this month, YAs from around the world gathered together for a weeklong retreat at the BMCM headquarters in Tomales, California, and then spent a weekend together in a spiritual household at nearby Dillon Beach.
The weeklong retreat, with the theme "Deepening Meditation," was a precious chance to spend one day unpacking each of the eight points and thinking about how that point could be used throughout the day to help deepen our meditation.
The schedule had plenty of time for reading in the gardens, memorizing new passages, mantram beach walks, and spiritual fellowship with other retreatants. There was also the traditional YA volleyball and ice cream outing and this year – a brand new tradition – mantram hula hooping!
When the retreat ended, YA Cohorts packed up and moved to a house at Dillon Beach. We got lucky with warm and sunny beach weather (often unheard of in Northern California!) and spent a lot of time taking beach walks, beach naps, and other beach shenanigans.
Spending the weekend together was a great opportunity to see what living in a spiritual household is like. The group set our own schedule, took turns cooking, ate meals together, enjoyed spiritual reading, worked out times for meditations which would work for everyone, and even tried a meditation session on the dunes! We had great satsang, relaxation, and a lot of fun, and we also appreciated the transition from the intense retreat atmosphere to a YA spiritual household, which helped us transition again into our everyday lives at home afterwards.
We had a great time with the 2015 Cohorts and are looking forward to next year's program!