Introduction to Buddhism & Intermediate Courses

Land of Joy offers a number of retreats and courses suitable for all levels of understanding including for those who are new to buddhist philosophy and the concepts it uses. Most of the following courses are a perfect way to be introduced to these concepts in a gentle and accessible way with plenty of opportunities for discussions and questions.

Those courses clearly labeled as “Intermediate” present and discuss topics that are most suitable for students who have already a basic understanding of Buddhist concepts.

We are beginning to offer our group retreats onsite again. However, please be aware that any new restrictions due to COVID could mean we have to make changes at short notice.  We hope to be able to live stream some of the onsite retreats, so those who can’t make it to the centre can still join the retreat via Zoom. Please share how you would prefer to attend the retreat when you complete your booking form so that we can assess the most appropriate way forward.

Please be aware retreats might be cancelled up to two weeks prior to the event due to lack of numbers or other reasons so please keep this in mind when booking transport.


With Ray Furminger: 18th – 20th February

You always wanted to mediate but don’t know how to start? Or you simply can’t find the motivation to sit and meditate or maybe you think mediation is not for you.

Join us for this weekend’s course with Ray. In this weekend course Ray will lead simple and approachable meditations that will give the knowledge, confidence and courage that will help us to begin a stable and regular meditation practice.

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With Andy Wistreich & Shan Tate: 19th – 20th March – this will be offered as an online course

It’s understood in buddhist traditions in general that one needs a teacher, someone reliable from whom one can receive authentic teachings, advice and instructions. It is often said that one shouldn’t rush into a relationship with a teacher, but rather, that when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.

This weekend course will include conversations in small groups, and in the whole group, as enabled by Zoom. These conversations will enable buddhist practitioners of all different levels of experience, engagement with the path and walks of life, to come together and learn from one another.

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With Ven Mary Reavey: 22nd – 30th April

Genuine Happiness is achievable. What is useful is a road map that will guide you from ordinary everyday (limited) happy experience towards Genuine Happiness that is lasting and under your control.

In this retreat, you will examine Stages of the Path (Lam Rim) that will lead you there.

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With Ven Mary Reavey: 20th – 22nd May

This weekend will  provide the opportunity to discover and explore the fundamentals of Buddhist meditation. Throughout this weekend, we will look into the various aspects of the theory and practice of meditation as well as being guided through meditations on the subjects covered in the “A Practical Guide to True Happiness Retreat” in April.

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With Geshe Namdak:  17th – 22nd  June

During this retreat we come to understand the most important aspects of the path to enlightenment.

We will see that the stronger our compassion is for others, the more courageous the bodhicitta attitude of attaining enlightenment becomes. If this gets combined with emptiness, the view of ultimate reality, it becomes even more powerful.

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With Fichou (Christian Fischer) & Ray Furminger: 12th – 22nd August

Many students have the commitment to complete the nine Ngöndro, or preliminary practices, associated with Vajrayana practice or have been given some or all of them to complete by their teacher.

Among these is the practice of offering 111,000 water bowls. Making offerings is said to accumulate great merit, helps us generate a mind of generosity and is also a specific antidote to miserliness. The water bowl offerings, as with the other eight preliminary practices (prostrations, Vajrasattva, refuge, mandala offerings, guru yoga, Dorje Khadro, tsa-tsas and Samayavajra), are an extraordinary way to accumulate merit and to purify negative actions in order to quickly generate realisations on the path.

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With Ven Mary Reavey: 23rd – 30th September

Shamata is the development of attention which enables us to focus our attention on an object without agitation or dullness, eventually reaching the clear mind of. Shamata (calm abiding) is the clear mind that provides us with the focus we need to positively transform our minds for ourselves and others. We all need to start where we are so no matter what our level of meditation might be, you will find benefit from training your attention.

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