Retreats, workshops, conferences, courses, gatherings, talks


Here are some dates for your diary – visit this page another time, subscribe to the RSS feed to find out more, or get on the In This Moment mailing list for regular updates. Secular buddhist events are few and far between, particularly in this part of the world, which is why you will find information on events happening elsewhere also.

New Zealand


• SYDNEY 12–13 November 2017
Workshop • Awakening Community
Elaine Kelly & Winton Higgins
Well-Aware-Ness Centre, 14 Ridge St, North Sydney

Community, or sangha, is the oft-neglected third refuge of the dharma. ‘Awakening community’ has a double meaning – breathing life into the communal dimension of our practice, and the communal engagement that contributes to our personal awakening. Both refer to the dharma as an ethical path, one rooted in care and compassion.

We will start by teasing out aspects of the ancient city in the Buddha’s parable about it, and then draw on elements of modern western thought and practice that help us to crystallise what this ancient model might mean in our own time. Particular attention will be given to the issue of asylum seekers and refugees.

We will also discuss the relationship between our personal dharma practice as a refuge and the need to extend compassion to those seeking another kind of refuge; how can our personal practice cultivate an ethos of compassion and hospitality toward those in greatest need?

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Events for those in Australia with an interest in a secular approach to Buddhism may be found on:


• SCHEIBBS 17–21 May, 2017
Secular Buddhist Retreat
Martine & Stephen Batchelor • • Tel +43 7482 424 12 • Mobil +43 699 8150 9810


• Bodhi College • Secular dharma course
Stephen Batchelor, Martine Batchelor, Jenny Wilks & Letizia Baglioni

As part of Bodhi College’s programme, Stephen and Martine Batchelor together with Letizia Baglioni and Jenny Wilks will teach a two-year course on secular dharma, which will include two four-day residential study modules plus one week-long residential meditation retreat per year.

The course is intended for students with a basic knowledge of Buddhism and a commitment to meditation who are seeking a secular form, language and community for their practice of the dharma.

In addition to the study modules and retreats, students will be assigned a mentor whom they will meet monthly for guidance in their own further reading, study and practice. 25 places will be available. Applications for the course are open now.

Each of the four study modules will focus on one of the four tasks that the Buddha presented as the core of his awakening:

  • Comprehending suffering – 17–21 February, 2016
  • Letting go of reactivity – 2–6 November, 2016
  • Beholding the ceasing of reactivity – Spring 2017
  • Cultivating the path – Autumn 2017

The first year’s meditation retreat (16–23 July 2016) will focus on the practice of stillness and insight through the cultivation of mindful awareness. The Spring 2017 retreat will be in the practice of questioning as found in the Korean Sŏn tradition.
The study modules will be held at St. Cuthman’s Retreat near Horsham, West Sussex, and the retreats at Gaia House, Devon.

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• NEWTON ABBOT, Devon 22–29 April, 2017
Sŏn (Zen) Retreat
Stephen & Martine Batchelor
Gaia House • • +44 1626 333613

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• CAMBRIDGE 17 June 2017
Daylong retreat
Martine Batchelor
Effortless Effort
At the Friends Meeting House, 12 Jesus Lane, Cambridge, Martine will be exploring creative, wise effort in our practice.

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• LONDON 18 June 2017
Daylong retreat
Martine Batchelor • +44 7954 472 771 Louise Kennedy

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• CAMBRIDGE 8 July 2017 • 9:30am–5pm
The Art of Solitude – a daylong retreat
Stephen Batchelor
Friends Meeting House, 12 Jesus Lane, Cambridge

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• LONDON 9 July 2017
Daylong retreat
Stephen Batchelor • +44 7954 472 771 Louise Kennedy

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• NEWTON ABBOT, Devon 22–29 July, 2017
Secular Buddhist Retreat
Martine & Stephen Batchelor
Gaia House • • +44 1626 333613

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• LONDON 28–29 September 2017
Philosophy as a Way of Life: Early Buddhism, Scepticism, Epicureanism and Stocism
Stephen Batchelor & John Peacock
A Bodhi College event at Goodenough College •


• COPENHAGEN 10–11 June, 2017
Meditation Retreat
Martine Batchelor • +45 3296 9591


• PARIS 6–7 May, 2017
Weekend Retreat (en Français/in French)
Stephen Batchelor

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• EPERNON 29 November–3 December, 2017
Retreat (en Français/in French)
Martine & Stephen Batchelor


• FREIBURG 10–12 November, 2017
Mindfulness and the cultivation of loving kindness, compassion, joy and equanimity
Martine Batchelor – in English with simultaneous translation • Telefon +49 761 5572 9336 • Mobile +49 177 347 8787


• BARCELONA 18–19 November, 2017
– Casa de espiritualidad Marcos Castañer
After Buddhism
Stephen Batchelor – in English with simultaneous translation in Catalan

Over this weekend, we will explore the impact of modern secular culture on traditional Buddhism, as well as the responses of contemporary Buddhism to secularity. This interaction has not only given rise to what is now called ‘secular Buddhism’, but has allowed Buddhist practices as full attention to spread across areas of secular society. 

With talks, meditations and debates, we will discuss the history of this encounter and how it is contributing to the evolution of Buddhist thinking and practice. We will see the dharma not in religious terms but as a practical ethical philosophy. By differentiating the central teachings of Gotama (the historical Buddha) from the metaphysical and cosmological beliefs of ancient India, we will see that dharma is nothing to believe, but a ‘clearly visible and immediate’ thing in the heart of human life right now. 

We will focus on maintaining the integrity of Buddhism as an ethical, philosophical and contemplative practice that involves the whole of the person and, on a broader level, aims to address the social crises that humanity faces in today’s world. •  send an email


• BEATENBERG 17–24 September, 2017
Secular Buddhist retreat
Martine & Stephen Batchelor
Meditation Center Beatenberg, CH – 3803 Beatenberg •
phone +41 33 841 21 31


BARRE, MA 9–14 June, 2017
Practicing Art, Practicing Dharma
Stephen Batchelor & Julie Püttgen
Barre Centre for Buddhist Studies
This course is intended for those with a dharma and artistic practice • +1 (978) 355-2347 ext.10

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CAMBRIDGE, MA 17 June, 2017
Daylong Workshop
Stephen Batchelor
Cambridge Insight Meditation Center • +1 (617) 441-9038

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SANTA FE, NM 21–25 June, 2017
Retreat: An Ethics of Care
Stephen Batchelor
Upaya Zen Center • • +1 (505) 986-8518


Secular Buddhism Association (USA) Practice Circle

Wherever you are in the world, you are invited to join US Secular Buddhist Association folk on the second and fourth Sundays of the month at 8pm Central time for an online practice circle. They aim to be a community that comes together by video conference to support each other’s dharma practice.

To find out more about the practice circle take a look at this web page

Secular Buddhism – an online study course

Using talks by Roshi Joan Halifax and Stephen Batchelor with study guides by Christine Johnson

Find out about the course here.

Being Completely Human: secular Buddhism and beyond – a study course

Using talks by Roshi Joan Halifax and Stephen Batchelor with study guides by Christine Johnson

Find out about this course here.

The four noble truths – an online study course

In this six-week online programme from 4 Sept to 15 Oct 2017, participants will explore in depth this foundational framework of the Buddha’s teaching from the perspective of early Buddhism. Drawing on the discourses of the Pali canon rather than later commentarial texts, emphasis will be given to the application of these teachings in today’s world. Equal attention will be given to the contemplative and ethical practice of these four truths.

A collaboration between Bodhi College and Tricycle: The Buddhist Review, this course will be led by Akincano Weber, Christina Feldman, John Peacock and Stephen Batchelor.

Find out about this course here.