Top Canada Retreats


Metta Vipassana: Cultivating Love & Wisdom (Vancouver)

About This Event

Sign-up to be notified when registration opens for this 2021 program.

Vipassana (Insight or Mindfulness) meditation practice unites the stillness of concentration with the immediacy of moment to moment silent 6 sense door awareness. By calming body and mind, intuitive wise knowing arises — opening to the truth of each moment's experience within and around us. In this way, we increase our ability to meet life's ups and downs with graceful ease and peace.

Metta (Lovingkindness) meditation practice calls forth the beautiful spiritual emotions within our heart: lovingkindness, compassion, empathetic joy and equanimity. Mindfulness of these qualities strengthens and matures them, which leads to a constancy of thinking, acceptance and reverence for our bodies, as well as speaking and acting from the purity of these emotions.

During this silent weekend retreat, new and experienced students are encouraged to deepen their liberation practice in an atmosphere of relaxed affectionate awareness. The program provides meditation instruction, guided meditations and question and answer periods. Sitting and walking sessions are alternated. There will be Dhamma teaching talks and small group discussions with the teachers.

Please note: This is a non-residential program in Vancouver and as such, we do not offer accommodation. New and experienced students are welcome.

Two Ticket Options are Available:

Friday Evening Only: Register Here

Full Weekend: Register Here

Michelle & Steven offer outstanding teachings and create an amazingly kind atmosphere for us to grow. - Jill F., 2018

Looking for a more immersive residential experience? Michele McDonald and Steven Smith will also be offering Metta Vipassana on Cortes Island on April 28 - May 12, 2021.

Dãna (donations for the teachers)

Dãna is an ancient Pali word meaning “giving” or “gift.” Dana is at the heart of the 2,500 year old Buddhist tradition. Going back to the days of the Buddha, he and the monastic community offered the teachings freely to lay people, as a form of dãna. In turn the lay community, through their generosity, or dãna, ensured that their teachers’ basic needs for food, clothing, shelter and medicine were provided.

When the Buddha would give a public discourse, he usually began with teaching on the importance and the benefits of dãna. The act of giving itself is of immeasurable benefit to the giver; it opens up the heart, diminishes for a moment one’s self-absorption and places value on the well-being of others. The key is that the act of giving itself is the natural expression of a connected and loving heart.

The fee you pay to attend this retreat covers the basic retreat costs; none of your registration fee is payment to the teachers leading the retreats. Teachers offer the teachings with a spirit of generosity and trust that their lives and work will be supported by those who are receiving the life-giving teachings. This is a real expression of the truth of interdependence.

You may contribute cash, cheques or by paypal

Please make Canadian cheques payable to: Michele McDonald

Please make US cheques payable to: Vipassana Hawaii

Venue Highlights

Hollyhock sits on the traditional territories of the Klahoose, Tla’amin, Homalco Nations. We are committed to renewing our relationships with the First Nations peoples on whose territories we are guests.

Since 1982 Hollyhock has built upon the history of this land as a place of gathering, a pioneering homestead, and the site of an important human potential education centre. On this foundation of gathering, pioneering and learning, Hollyhock’s founders dreamed of creating a lifelong learning and leadership curriculum to inspire, nourish and support people intent on service to a better world.

Hollyhock became a not-for-profit in 2006 to strengthen carrying out our mission into the future. With your help we can keep this as a thriving centre for skill-building, lifelong learning and stewardship of the natural world, inspiring, nourishing and supporting people making the world better for another 30+ years.

Accommodations

A variety of accommodations are located throughout our lush campus, ranging in price to suit most budgets. Choose from private, beachfront or ocean facing rooms, dorm-style lodging or cabins that nestle in the quiet seclusion of the forest. Our beautiful campsites are also available, with a cedar bath house conveniently located for your use.

Room fees include all Hollyhock basics, like stimulating presenter evenings, delicious, organic meals, morning yoga/meditation classes, guided naturalist walks and tours of the garden, as well as luxurious soaks in our ocean-view hot-tubs. Telephones and wireless Internet are centrally located.

Room Options Include:
Single: 1 Person
Twin: Couple or Friends, 2 beds.
Couple: Couples or Friends sharing 1 bed.
Family/Friends: 3 or more adult friends or family /2 beds
Dorm: Up to 6 people/bunk beds
Tenting with full-service bath house (bring your own tent and bedding)
Roommates can be assigned, upon request, in twin and dorm rooms only.

Amenities

  • Free Wifi
  • Spa
  • Towels
  • Free Parking
  • Tour Assistance
  • Hot Tub
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Restaurant

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Organic
  • Dairy Free

Menu/Cuisine

A feast for the senses! Renowned fresh, sumptuous food has made our Hollyhock kitchen famous. Our French-Intensive garden supplies vegetables, herbs, fruit, and flowers to each meal, gracing your table with food that is nourished with care every step of the way.

Our healthy, organic, vegetarian fare features ingredients from our abundant gardens located just outside our kitchen door, and well as local BC foods.

Meals at Hollyhock are globally-inspired and prepared with love and skill in our Hollyhock kitchen. Enjoy weekly wild seafood dinners and beach-side oyster appetizer barbecues. We serve organic grains and organic produce sourced locally, whenever possible. Organic herbs, flowers, greens, and vegetables are harvested daily from the Hollyhock garden. Our orchard produces many beautiful fruits featured on the dessert menu seasonally and served in our 24/7 fruit bowl, offering. Our meals are created and served “family style”.

Directions

Our address is: PO Box 127, Manson’s Landing
Cortes Island, B.C. V0P 1K0 Canada

There are a variety of ways to get here. They include:

Seaplane:
1 hr from Vancouver
2 hrs from Seattle

Fly & Water Taxi:
2 hrs from Vancouver
3 hrs from Seattle

Roadtrip
Approx 6 hrs from Vancouver
Approx 10 hrs from Seattle

Public Trnsport (Ferry)
Approx 6 hrs from Vancouver
Approx 10 hrs from Seattle

Other ideas:

Rideshare:
Lighten your footprint and cost by sharing a ride with a fellow Hollyhock traveler – you might make a new friend! Create a free account on our secure Ride Share Board.

Electric Charging Station:
We are proud to offer an electric vehicle charging station on campus. Plan your stops with PlugShare.

Hollyhock Shuttle:
Complimentary for Onsite guests to and from ferry, seaplane, water taxi and ferries.

Reviews     To review this event, visit the page for the venue or retreat leaders (above).

  • S.Portico Bowman   September 24, 2019

      The Healing is Part of the Journey

    Do not let the planes, ferries, shuttles, or taxis required to reach Hollyhock deter you. This is part of the magic of the place. By the time you arrive much of what you need to leave behind has been untethered into one of those named transportation devices. The setting is astounding. The overall vibe is that everyone is happy to be there, and happy to have you among them.

  • Leslie Knight   September 22, 2019

      seriously funny, in writing and in life

    Great session! Not too large, not too small. Our group came together with just the right energy and the retreat centre provided the serenity and safety to let us be both serious and crazy. Hollyhock is well known for its beauty of location, but even better known for the delicious dishes its amazing staff serve up. And equally famous for its bread...both gluten and gluten free. Best of all...inter conversations between everyone attending concurrent sessions. Just pick a table and jump in. This is where lifelong friendships happen. In this crazy world it's reassuring to know that Hollyhock is there. Thank you. Did I mention the view from the outdoor Hot tub? Or the oyster roast on the beach? Yum!

  • Odette Auger   September 04, 2019

      connection, skill building

    The Podcast from Hear was an audio storytelling program at Hollyhock. How much honesty and strength a circle of women can have, multiplied by the setting. We shared and grew, our group of diverse identities and experiences. Young empowered women and courageous professionals and artists of decades of expertise. Poets, scientists, Indigenous artists, sound engineers, soundscape artists, audio storytellers, professors of journalism and writing~ we had it all, we shared openly and with great heart. I strongly recommend this amazing program! https://hollyhock.ca/p/909/podcasting-the-story-from-hear/

  • Tay Müller   July 22, 2019

      Excellent Weekend with Hollyhock

    1. Arrival experience - I was greeted by a shuttle during which the driver informed of us history and wildlife on the island. Upon checking in my accommodations were reviewed and explained. 2. Stay - All of my needs were met at Hollyhock. The room was clean - I was staying in a dorm and all of the beds were comfortable and well-equipped with extra blankets and pillows. The shower in the dorms is a bit small if you are a large person but there is a bathhouse as well. Meals were EXCEPTIONAL and more food than anyone could ever require was provided as well as 24/7 available refreshments in the guest lodge. Many beautiful places to enjoy your meals with a deck with an outstanding view. Hollyhock is right on the beach with access to many trails nearby. 3. Check out - Reception staff helped me find transportation off the island and checked with water taxis to see if there was room available for me. Overall, hosts and facilities were exceptional the entire time.

  • Claire Delisle   June 14, 2019

      Hollyhock Leadership Centre

    A wonderful experience. The staff is courteous, gracious, and hard-working. The garden is delicious. There is one person who volunteers at the Centre and she was rude to me. We had left our full cups at a table and gone to get dinner. When I returned, she was sitting at our table, and so I spoke to her. She then told me that she was trying to get some quiet time. And she seemed to think that I had welcomed myself to her table. It was an awkward moment. I think she maybe has issues with people.

  • Erica Køhn   May 28, 2019

      Namchi Bazaar's Core Matters Intensive at Hollyhock Retreat Centre

    I am two days out of my retreat with Namchi Bazaar at Hollyhock and am amazed at how that retreat continues to inform my daily life. Not only am I more aware of my alignment, but I am bringing more awareness and relaxation to muscles I habitually tense. I feel younger and taller in my body and my breathing is fuller than it has been in years. More than anything I feel so deeply relaxed. This was my 8th retreat at Hollyhock and the space was so supportive for diving deep. The hot tubs under the stars and looking out over the Salish Sea were the perfect support to unravelling my tensions and muscles. I loved the walk in the forest to our class and the beautiful skylight that allowed me to look up at the swaying cedars while I melted into the mat. May is the perfect season at Hollyhock, the garden is bursting, days are long and the hot tub is a welcome warm counterpoint to the brisk ocean. Hollyhock generously granted me a 'locals' scholarship which made my retreat possible. I am ever so grateful!!

  • Dustin Murray East   May 18, 2019

      Living example of the change we want to see!

    Arrived on a sunny day with big smiles and hugs in the reception area. Flowers and forest and ocean. What more could I ask for other than... Incredible garden sourced food, net level facilities, and a staff that truly cares about m well being. I feel alive and full of new knowledge to truly change the world and take my life to another level. Power spot. Go when you can, as life will never be the same. Bless you Hollyhock and all the people who have touched it.

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