Category Archives: Events

March 2017 Events

Weekly Meditation and Dhamma Talks

Join us every Tuesday evening, 6:30 – 8:00 pm, at Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon, WA.

Over the next several weeks, following meditation, Ajahn Sudanto will lead a discussion of the book: The Buddha’s Teachings on Social and Communal Harmony.

Everyone is welcome.  Cushions and chairs are available.

Meal Offerings are Needed on Weekends

Offering a meal is a lovely way to support the monks, and an opportunity to practice generosity, offer gratitude, ask dhamma questions, see the Hermitage and get to know the monks in a less formal setting.

You can find out when meal offerings are needed by checking the Hermitage Calendar. There are plenty of opportunities.  On weekdays, their meal comes from food people offer the monks during their alms rounds.

It’s important to contact the meal dana coordinator (Debie) to schedule your meal offering.  At least let her know you are coming.  Otherwise, if it looks like no one is offering the meal, she’ll call on the “rescue squad” (people who may be able to bring a meal on short notice).  If she knows you’re coming, this won’t be necessary and will reduce the number of times she needs to call on these volunteers.  Check out the Support tab for more information about offering food, or contact Debie with questions.

Admirable Friendship

“The Buddha said there are two factors that help most in the arising of discernment, that help you most along the path.   The foremost internal factor is appropriate attention.  The foremost external factor is admirable friendship.”   (From Thanissaro Bhikkhu’s book, Meditations)  From time to time, we’ll use this Admirable Friendship section to introduce you to a friend who is part of the Pacific Hermitage community.

A Friend of the Hermitage … Scott Benge

scott2016sq

Your first conversation with Scott may or may not be related to Dhamma.  Given half a chance, Scott probably will talk about his two granddaughters.  They happen to be “wonderful, exceptional, beautiful, athletic, talented” (you get the picture)!  Since one is only two years old, we asked how athletic she possibly could be.  Undaunted, Scott answered, “Well, she walks!”

It’s no surprise that when Scott and his wife Joan recently moved from their Lake Oswego home of 26 years, it was to Bend, Oregon (where those amazing granddaughters live!).

If you do have a Dhamma-oriented conversation with Scott, it will quickly reveal a dedicated practitioner who values generosity and ethical behavior.  In his words, “People who congregate around and support the monastics, who are dedicated to personal practice, and who embody generosity and ethical behavior — they are different.  They’re more grounded, centered, at ease, kind and loving.  I find them inspiring.”   If you get to know Scott, it’s clear that he not only values those characteristics in others, he embodies and demonstrates them himself.  An inspiring and admirable friend himself.

Scott initially became active in Portland Friends of the Dhamma (PFoD) in about 2004, and he helped with their efforts to bring a permanent monastic presence to this region.  In 2007, he was a steward for Ajahn Sudanto and Ajahn Karunadhammo when they came to the Columbia River Gorge to see if a hermitage might be appropriate here.  When Abhayagiri Monastery approved the idea, Scott worked on the PFoD organizing committee to make that happen.

When the Hermitage was established, Scott was asked to be president of Sanghata, a lay board of stewards that helps support the Hermitage and manages all its financial matters.  Since monastics are not allowed to handle or use money, all monetary donations must be sent to Sanghata.  Find out more about Sanghata by visiting sanghata.net.

 

 

February 2017 Events

The weather seems to be moderating a little bit, many roads are good to passable, and White Salmon hasn’t had temperatures in the teens or single digits for a couple of weeks.

Perhaps the monks can now settle into more of a normal “Winter Retreat” routine, rather than working on repairs, heavy-duty snow removal or preventing new snow/ice problems.

February Events:  A Quiet Month
  • Venerable  Saddhammo visits Jan. 31 – Feb. 7 (approx. dates)
  • Meditation with the Monks, Tuesdays, 6:30-8:00 pm, Yoga Samadhi, White Salmon, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
Keeping it Kind of Quiet Through March

With all the snow, ice and cold-related work, Ajahn Sudanto and Venerable Kondañño haven’t had the extended period of relative silence, meditation and study that usually defines Winter Retreat.   This normally is an important time of intense practice and renewal for monastics.

Their Winter Retreat “officially” continues through February, but the monks will try to maintain a retreat atmosphere through March.  You can help them do this for the next couple of months by curtailing unnecessary talking, offering them food for their daily meal,* or giving your time if it’s needed.  This type of support reduces demands on their time, which helps them focus on their practice as much as possible.   (Note:  It’s OK to say hello or ask Dhamma questions after offering a weekend meal or at Tuesday night meditation!)

* This is a daily need, throughout the year.  Please see the Support page or contact the meal dana coordinator for information or to schedule a meal offering.

2017 Events Schedule (and Monastics Return!)

2016-ph-bridge-w-snowMonastics Return January 11th

There ‘ve been only animal tracks on the Hermitage driveway since that white, fluffy stuff began falling from the sky a few weeks ago.  That will change soon.  The driveway snow will either melt or be plowed for Ajahn Sudanto’s and Venerable Kondañño’s arrival on January 11.

The monks may leave cold and snowy (and beautiful!) Birken Forest Monastery in British Columbia, only to return to pretty darn chilly and snowy White Salmon, Washington!  

Regular / Recurring Events with the Monks

Weekly, Meditation with the Monks, Resuming January 17th

  • The monks will resume leading meditation and offering Dhamma reflections, on Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8:00 pm, at Yoga Samadhi.  All are welcome!

Monthly, Beginning in April

  • Community Work Parties at Hermitage   (1st Saturdays, 1:00 – 3:00 pm, Apr.-Sep.)
  • Half-Day Retreats at Yoga Samadhi   (2nd Saturdays, 1:00 – 5:00 pm, Apr.-Nov.)
  • Portland Friends of the Dhamma   (3rd Fridays & Saturdays, Apr.-Nov.)
    • Tea, questions, meditation and Dhamma talk  (5:30 – 9:00 pm, Third Fridays)
    • Almsround and Meal Offering at PFoD  (10:30 am – 1:00 pm, Third Saturdays)

NOTE:  Yoga Samadhi and the Pacific Hermitage are in White Salmon, Washington.  Portland Friends of the Dhamma (PFoD) is in Portland, Oregon.

Special Events, Comings, Goings and Retreats

  • Dec. 1 – Feb. 28       2016-17 Winter Retreat
  • Jan. 11                        Aj. Sudanto & Tan Kondañño return to Hermitage 
  • May 3 – 17                  Retreat at Birken  Monastery for Hermitage group
  • May 19 – 27                Aj. Sudanto to Amaravati Monastery (UK)
  • July 7 & 8                   Luang Por Sumedho visits
  • July 9 – Oct. 5           Vassa (Monastic Summer Retreat)
  • Aug 19 – 22                Aj. Sudanto to Steens Mtn. / Bend
  • Aug. 29 – 30              Willa & Jitindryia Tuesday, plus Daylong
  • Sep. 6 – 13                 Yosemite Monastic Retreat  
  • Sep. 16 & 17            Hermitage Pah Bah*
  • Oct. 6 – 12                 Aj. Sudanto to Temple Monastery Kathina
  • Dec. 1 – Feb. 28      2017-18 Winter Retreat 

*If you will need lodging for the Pah Bah, it’s best to arrange it as soon as possible.

Please check the Pacific Hermitage website often to keep current with any additions, cancellations or changes.  To learn about or offer alms food or a meal to the monks, please visit our Support page or contact Debie at dana@pacifichermitage.org.

Best wishes for the new year!

Community Meditation Continues Through Winter

Join Us:  Tuesdays, 6:30 – 8:00 pm, Yoga Samadhi, White Salmon

P1040951Several members of the local community have offered to host Tuesday night meditation while the monks are away (now until January 11).

Please join us!  Some hosts may just begin and end the meditation, while others may lead a discussion or read something that speaks to them.  No matter what, it will be a warm and supportive space to meditate with new or longtime Dhamma friends.

Our Hosts:  Bruce Anderson (11/22 & 29), Colleen Regalbuto (12/6), Ellen Donoghue (12/13 & 1/3), Debie Garner (12/20) and Anna Siebenborn (1/10).   We’ll announce a host for 12/27 a bit later.

Weather (not to mention life!) is uncertain, so please check the Pacific Hermitage website for any last minute notices about the schedule.

Monks Return January 11

Ajahn Sudanto will return to the Hermitage January 11, after first attending the Abhayagiri Thanksgiving Retreat, then traveling to Birken Forest Monastery (Canada) for the first part of his annual Monastic Winter Retreat.  Venerable Kondañño, an Abhayagiri monk, will return with him and stay at least through the rest of the Winter Retreat.

November 2016 Events

aj-geoffAjahn Geoff (Thanissaro Bhikkhu) to Visit in November

We are fortunate to once again have Ajahn Geoff visit Portland and White Salmon!  In early November, he will be at Portland Friends of the Dhamma for a three-day weekend.  On the following Tuesday, he will lead meditation and give Dhamma reflections at Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon.

Ajahn Geoff is a well-known Thai Forest Tradition author and meditation teacher, and the Abbot of Wat Metta, a monastery in northern San Diego County, California.

* May 2017 Birken Retreat Registration Now Open (see previous post)*

November Events
  • November 4 – 6
    Ajahn Geoff at Portland Friends of the Dhamma
    (visit pdxdhamma.org for more information)
  • November 8
    Ajahn Geoff at Tuesday night meditation
    Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon (6:30 – 8:00 pm)
  • November 12
    Half-Day Mini Retreat with Ajahn Sudanto
    Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon (1:00 – 5:00 pm)
  • November 18 – 27
    Abhayagiri Thanksgiving Retreat (registration is closed)
Monks Away on Retreat(s):  November 16 – January 11

No monks will be at the Hermitage for about a month and a half, beginning November 16.  Ajahn Sudanto will leave that day for Abhayagiri Monastery.  Following the Abhayagiri Thanksgiving Retreat, Ajahn Sudanto and Venerable Kondañño, will travel directly to Birken Monastery to begin their Monastic Winter Retreat a month earlier than usual.

While the monks are away, please check the Calendar each week to see if a member of the community will host a Tuesday night meditation at Yoga Samadhi (6:30 – 8:00 pm).

Ajahn Sudanto and Venerable Kondañño will return to the Hermitage January 11, 2017 to complete the Winter Retreat, and Venerable Kondañño will stay through the winter.

2017 Birken Retreat: One Week or Two

img_1381The 2017 Birken Retreat (May 3 – 17) is looking a little different than in past years.  You now have the option of going for one of two weeksor for both weeks (14 days).  The options are shown a few paragraphs below.  Registration closes December 1.

Bob Miller will coordinate the retreat again this year, and shares the following with you.

Longer Retreats Deepen Your Practice

Longer retreats are a great opportunity to deepen your practice, especially in this beautiful setting in northern British Columbia. Sitting with people who have chosen to take eight precepts, observe noble silence, and take time away from their daily lives to deepen their practice is a great support.  If you’ve done this before, you know what I mean.  If you haven’t, you are in for a treat.

A Peek Inside a Retreat:  Typical Daily Schedule

This is a typical retreat day at Birken, but the schedule will be finalized after your arrival:

  • Morning: Meditation starting at 5:30 am, then breakfast, chores and free time* or time for sitting or walking meditation
  • Mid-day: Main Meal at about 11:00 am
  • Afternoon: More free time*, sitting or walking meditation, afternoon tea/Q&A period with Ajahn Sona
  • Evening: Meditation at 7:00 pm, followed by a Dhamma talk by Ajahn Sona

*There are miles of hiking trails and roads for the free time periods!

Retreat Options Between May 3 & 17

Ajahn Sudanto chose a two-week format this year, one that:  1) allows you to choose the length of retreat that meets your needs, and 2) allows more people can participate. If you’re a less experienced meditator or have less flexibility, you can request only the first or second week.  More experienced meditators may find the full 14-day option more beneficial.  Here are the dates/options:

  • Week #1 (May 3 to 10) – Arrive the evening of May 3 and depart early May 10.
  • Week #2 (May 10 to 17) – Arrive the evening of May 10 and depart early May 17.
  • Both Weeks (May 3 to 17) — Arrive the evening of May 3 and depart early May 17.
About Birken Forest Monastery (Sitavana)

Birken is located in British Columbia, south of Kamloops.  Visit Birken.ca for more information and lots of beautiful pictures of the monastery and the surrounding forest.  Be sure to look at “Visits” and read the Guest Guidelines.  

Cost

The retreat is offered on a “dana” basis.  You give what you feel called to/are able to give.  Food and lodging are included.  Sitavana is supported completely supported by offerings from lay supporters.

Registration (closes December 1)

 Ajahn Sudanto will make the final decision on the list of participants, but to get your name on the list of interested practitioners, email robertmiller1000@comcast.net (Bob Miller) with the following information:

  • Name
  • Physical address
  • Email address
  • Contact phone (preferably cell)
  • Other longer retreats you have attended
  • Can you drive to Birken? ** If so, how many total passengers (plus luggage) will your vehicle hold?
  • Do you prefer Week #1, Week #2 or Both Weeks?
  • If you are flexible, please let us know:
    • Can you do either Week #1 or #2?
    • Do you prefer Both Weeks, but are willing to do one week instead?
**Transportation 

Given the different options for attending, transportation will likely be different than in prior years, when we traveled together as a group.  We will probably need more drivers, so please consider if driving is a possibility for you.  It is possible to fly into Kamloops from Portland, and we will be getting back to you about transportation options from the airport to the Monastery.

Questions?  A Little Apprehensive?

Anyone who has considered going to their first retreat has “been there” – wondering if you really want to, are up for it, will be able to handle it, etc.  Please feel free to quiz us about what to expect or talk about what might hold you back.  Birken has limited staff and time to devote to questions, so please direct all questions to:

October 2016 Events

Let’s make sure the Hermitage stays warm this winter!  There’s a two-day Garden Party this month for that purpose, plus the regular half-day retreat and events at Portland Friends of the Dhamma.  Please join us for any or all of the events!

img_20121005_170835Two-Day Garden Party
October 1 & 2, 1 – 3 PM

It’s Time to Saw, Split and Stack!  The Hermitage uses a wood stove as its main source of heat, so each year we help the monks lay in a big stack of wood for the colder months.

If you’d like to help, please come to one or both days of our Saturday/Sunday Garden Party to re-supply the wood pile and help with some yard work.  You can choose to come for just some or all of each work party (1 – 3 PM).  The Tea Party each day starts at about 3 PM.  If these dates don’t work for you, but you’d like to help split or stack wood, please email the Hermitage to set up a time to come over.  We’ll have the power splitter for a while.

There’s also a meal offering each day before the work begins.  If you’d like to bring food, please arrive by 10:30 AM, and let the meal dana coordinator know that you’re coming.  Thanks!

Half-Day Meditation Mini-Retreat
October 8, 1 – 5 PM

Join Ajahns Sudanto and Karunadhammo at Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon, WA, for a quiet afternoon of walking and sitting meditation, and brief reflections.  This event is free and no experience is needed.  Cushions and chairs will be available.

Portland Friends of the Dhamma*
October 14 & 15

  • Friday, October 14
    5:30 PM — Tea and reflections
    7:00 PM — Meditation and Dhamma talk
  • Saturday, October 15
    10:30 AM — Alms Round
    11:00 AM — Meal Offering

* For more information, please visit Portland Friends of the Dhamma

Monks Away
October 18 – 24

Ajahns Sudanto and Karunadhammo will be leaving October 18 for the Abhayagiri Kathina. A lay community member will host the October 18, 6:30 pm meditation at Yoga Samadhi.  Ajahn Sudanto will return in time for the October 25 meditation and dhamma talk at Yoga Samadhi.

Thank You for Visiting, Ajahn Karunadhammo!

Photo: Ajahn Karunadhammo [photo: jfoto.com]

A warm thanks to Ajahn Karunadhammo for being a very welcome presence at the Hermitage these past several months.  Your wise and kind presence, inspiring Dhamma talks and support for Ajahn Sudanto have been much appreciated.

Ajahn Karunadhammo will leave October 18 with Ajahn Sudanto, to attend the Abhayagiri Kathina (similar to our Pah Bah), then once again reside at Abhayagiri.  (Ajahn Sudanto will return the afternoon of October 25.)

September 2016 Events

Luang Por Pasanno and Luang Por Viradhammo
2016 Pah Bah Samakkee Honored Guests:  Luang Por Pasanno & Luang Por Viradhammo

A Garden Party (Sept. 3) will help get the Hermitage ready for it’s honored guests for the Pah Bah Samakkee (Sept. 17 & 18 — see article below)!

REGULAR EVENTS

Garden Party — September 3
at the Hermitage:

  • 11:00 am — Potluck arrive by 10:30 am, if bringing food)
  • 1:00 pm — Help with yard work
  • 3:00 pm — Tea with monks

Half-day Meditation — September 10
at Yoga Samadhi (with Hermitage monks)

  • 1:00 – 5:00 pm
  • Free, no experience needed, chairs, bolsters & blankets available

EVENTS WITH LUANG POR PASANNO & LUANG POR VIRADHAMMO

Portland Friends of the Dhamma — September 16
at PFoD

  • 5:30 pm — Tea and Q & A
  • 7:00 pm — Meditation & Dhamma Talk

Pah Bah Samakkee Weekend — September 17 & 18
at 1085 N Main Avenue, Mountain View Grange (map below), White Salmon, WA (more information below or at Sanghata.net)

  • September 17 — Half-day Retreat, 1 – 5 pm (meditation and talks)
  • September 18
    • Meal Offering (potluck) at 11 am.  Please arrive by 10:30 am. Lower floor (enter from Estes Avenue).
    • Pah Bah Samakkee Ceremony, 1 – 3 pm. Formal offerings, chanting and dhamma reflections. Upper floor (enter from N. Main Avenue

NOTE: Additional parking available in ICE parking lot, about one block north of the grange, 1265 N. Main Ave. (look for tall, black ICE sign on east side of Main–map below). Please, no smoking in the ICE driveway or parking lot.

Tuesday Night Meditation — September 20, 6:30 – 8:00 pm
at Yoga Samadhi (Luang Por Viradhammo only)

PAH BAH SAMAKKEE

A Pah Bah is a ceremony for offering material goods and financial support to monastics. This year, it’s called a Pah Bah Samakkee.  Samakkee is a Thai word for “unity” and it signifies that several people have joined together to invite the monks to receive this outpouring of generosity.

On Sept. 17, there will be a half-day retreat.  On Sept. 18, there will be a potluck meal, then the offering ceremony.

All events are free.  No meditation experience is needed, you do not need to be Buddhist to attend and English will be the most commonly spoken language.  Chairs will be available, but please bring your own cushions if you will be sitting on the floor.  Donations are welcome, but not necessary.  Most talks will be given in both English and Thai.

If you would like to help with setting up (or taking down, please arrive at the Grange by 8 am and ask for Dan McCook.

Questions?  Please visit Sanghata.net or email pahbah@sanghata.net.

MAP TO MOUNTAIN VIEW GRANGE & ADDITIONAL PARKING AT “ICE” (Please, NO SMOKING on ICE property)  Click on the map for a clearer view.

Grange Map

 

2016 Pah Bah Samakkee Weekend Sept. 17 & 18

***REMINDERS:   Please see the notes below about bringing your own cushion, volunteering and the meal on Sunday. ***

Luang Por Pasanno and Viradhammo

Honored Guests:  Luang Por Pasanno and Luang Por Viradhammo

Our honored guests, Luang Por Pasanno and Luang Por Viradhammo, will visit Portland and White Salmon for several days.  During that time, they will lead a half-day retreat, the Pah Bah Samakkee ceremony, and other Hermitage and Portland Friends of the Dhamma (PFoD) events (schedule below).

The “Main Event” — Pah Bah Samakkee

The ceremony is Sept. 18 at Mountain View Grange, 1085 N Main Avenue, White Salmon, WA.  There will be a potluck/meal offering downstairs at 11 AM.  The ceremony (offering various items to support the monks and the Hermitage), chanting and a Dhamma talk will begin upstairs at 1 PM.  There is parking around the Grange, and at I.C.E. (a company about one block north of the Grange).  Map below.  Please:  No smoking at ICE.

Schedule of All Events

While visiting, Luang Por Pasanno and Luang Por Viradhammo will lead these activities:

  • Sept. 16, 5:30 pm: Tea, Q&A, meditation and Dhamma talk at PFoD
  • Sept. 17, 1-5 pm:  Meditation retreat at Mt. View Grange, White Salmon
  • Sept. 18:  Pah Bah Samakkee at Mt. View Grange, White Salmon, WA
    • 10:30 am — Meal offering/potluck (enter from downstairs) *** Please bring your offering READY TO SERVE (in your own serving bowl/plate and with a serving utensil).***
    • 1:00 pm — Ceremony (enter from upstairs)
  • Sept. 20, 6:30-8:00 pm:  Meditation and Dhamma Talk, Yoga Samadhi, White Salmon (Luang Por Viradhammo only)

Anyone is invited and may attend all or just some of these events.  No meditation experience is needed and chairs will be available.  ***Please bring your own CUSHION if you would like to sit on the floor.***  There is no charge for the events.

***VOLUNTEERS NEEDED — Volunteers would be welcome for setup and take down at these times: Sat. 9:00 AM – noon, Sun. 8:00 – 10:30 AM, and Sun. 3:30 – 5:00 PM.***

A Pah Bah is an event organized by lay supporters to offer monetary support and needed material goods to a monastery.  Samakkee is a Thai word indicating that several people have joined together to initiate the offerings this year.

For more information, please click on the appropriate links included above, visit Sanghata.net, or email Pahbah@sanghata.net.

Offering Support

Donations are welcome and may be offered at any of the events, however the monks cannot accept or handle money themselves.  Monetary donations should be put in a donation bowl or basket (available at most events), with checks made out to Sanghata.  Sanghata is the board of stewards for the Pacific Hermitage.  More information will be available at the Pah Bah Samakkee, or by visiting the Sanghata website, sanghata.net.

Map to Grange and Additional Parking at ICE
  • Click on the map below for a clearer picture.
  • Grange:  1085 N Main Ave, White Salmon, WA 98672
  • ICE:  1265 N Main Ave, White Salmon, WA 98672.   No Smoking on ICE property.

Grange Map

 

 

 

2016 August Events

IMG_20150606_141812495The August forecast is for lots of sun and all the regular monthly Hermitage events, starting off with a Garden Party on August 6th:
  • August 6 — Garden Party
  • August 13 — Half-Day Retreat
  • August 19 — PFoD Tea/Dhamma Talk
  • August 20 — PFoD Alms/Meal

 

First, a quick July reminder — Registration for the Abhayagiri Thanksgiving Retreat ends July 31.  Check the Abhayagiri website for more information.

August:  Garden Party, Half-Day Retreat and PFoD Events

August 6 — Garden Party:  Help Keep the Hermitage Green!  Well, except for weeds. You can remove that kind of green, as well as help with cleaning up the forest and doing various other types of yard and maintenance work.  After a couple of hours, we stop for tea and a chat.  The day starts with a meal offering (arrive by 10:30 am).  The work officially begins at 1:00 pm, and tea at 3:00 pm.  Come for any or all of the activities.

August 13 — Half-Day Retreat at Yoga Samadhi in White Salmon.  Sit, walk, listen.  No, it’s not dog training.  It’s training the mind!  Join the monks and others from 1 – 5 pm for a break from your usual activities and mind noise.

August 19 & 20 — Portland Friends of the Dhamma (PFoD) hosts the monks for tea, talk and meditation on Friday night, then a meal on Saturday.  Tea begins at 5:30 pm Friday evening, and the Dhamma talk at 7:00 pm.   At 10:30 am on Saturday, the monks walk on alms round, then have their meal at 11:00 am.  Please check PFoD’s website for more information.

September:  Pah Bah Samakkee

Join Luang Por Pasanno, Luang Por Viradhammo, and monks from the Pacific Hermitage and Abhayagiri Monastery, for the annual alms-giving ceremony to benefit the Pacific Hermitage.  The events will be held September 17 & 18 in White Salmon.

“Samakkee” is probably a new word for many of you.  It’s a Thai word meaning unity or harmony.  In this instance, it signifies that several people have come together to sponsor the Pah Bah.

For more information about the 2016 Pah Bah Samakkee, visit Sanghata.net, email Pahbah@Sanghata.net, or check this website again in late August.