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Realizing the Bodhisattva Way

Led by Gilbert Gutierrez



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Begins: Saturday July 13, 2019
Check-in: 4:00 - 6:00 PM - late arrival not allowed
End Date: Saturday July 20, 2019
End Time: 1:30 PM
Deadline: no applications accepted after July 9

The topic of this retreat is: realizing the way of the bodhisattva – how to properly practice and meditate along the Mahayana path. It will be a study and practice of drawing upon the inherent wisdom that the mind already possesses by developing right view and correct meditation practices.

This retreat is for all those who want to practice properly. It is not about conditioning your legs to sit comfortably, but about correctly applying the right view to meditation. If a practitioner with substantial experience is not moving forward in the practice but (and this is important), wants to move forward then this is the retreat to attend. Newer practitioners will also benefit, as Gilbert provides hands on instruction, and addresses questions about the different methods of practice, with an attitude of leaving no one behind.

Gilbert uses the instructions of the ancient masters’ exhortations and methods to provide precise training in meditation. Some of the teachers he references include Lin Chi, Huang Po, Han Shan, Mat Su, Nagarjuna, Hui Neng and Hsu Yun. He uses these masters’ writings to raise the proper spirit of Chan practice. He also uses material from early Buddhist texts, Abhidharma, Yogachara, Madhyamaka, Prajnaparamita Sutra and Tatathagarbha Sutra.


Retreat Program

Chan meditation methods will be taught in the context of daily life activities, such as sitting, standing, walking, sleeping, working, and eating. Chanting and gentle yoga exercises further harmonize the body, breath, and mind. The retreat also includes daily lectures, meditation instruction, guided meditation, and personal interviews. You can view a sample schedule here.

Requirements for Intensive Retreat

Our intensive retreats follow the traditional Chan monastery schedule, starting early in the morning and making the most efficient use of time in concentrated group practice. There are numerous forty-minute sitting periods throughout the day.

Participants should be mentally and physically prepared for the rigors of such a regimen. Therefore, we carefully screen each applicant to ensure sufficient experience for acceptance on an intensive retreat. The requirements are that the applicant has:

  • already received basic meditation instruction
  • established a daily personal practice
  • previously attended at least one non-intensive three-day retreat (e.g. Beginner’s Mind Retreat, Foundation Retreat)

photo by Richard Goldberg

Gilbert Gutierrez, a Dharma heir of Master Sheng Yen

Gilbert Gutierrez

Gilbert Gutierrez has over thirty-nine years of meditation experience, which includes his study of various martial arts as well as Chi Gong. In 2002, he received Dharma Transmission from Chan Master Sheng Yen, making him the only western lineage holder currently residing in the United States. He conducts retreats and lectures throughout North America.

His home base is in Southern California and he lectures regularly at the Los Angeles DDMBA chapter and with his own Riverside Chan Meditation Group in California. Gilbert teaches in a classical Chan style which inspires his students to investigate Chan through diligent practice.