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Deck view of Mtns
Deck view of Mtns
True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.
William Penn

https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/silence-quotes

Sounds of Silence 2024
       a Silent Retreat

July 22-28

Choose your adventure- come for 2 or more nights.

Do you feel life is too busy? Too noisy? Too full?
Is it hard to find time and space for deeper moments for transformation, connection with nature, self or the Divine One? 

This semi-structured Silent Retreat encourages you to experience a digital detox, restrict talking and listen well: to yourself, to nature (it has its own sounds), and the Still Small voice.

There's plenty of time to reflect, discover more of your inner self, practice mindfulness, and refocus on your purpose, contributing to your total wellness.

A silent retreat has many benefits...

 Switch off the noise

Stop running... get off the treadmill.... step away from distraction... switch off your phone. (Hand it in or leave it at home.)

Take time to notice, go deeper, reflect, and help create calm, peace and contentment. Silence can also be a first step towards the awakening of more creativity, or the start of deep listening.

 Fresh air is good for you.

Breathe in deeply, send your gaze out over the acres of rolling hills all the way to the Barrington Tops National Park.  Become aware of the sounds, fragrances and sights around you, either during the day or under the stars at night.

 Be nurtured by nature.

Restore your connection with the beauty and wonder of nature. Listen to your heartbeat among our 101 acres.  Centre yourself as part of the environment, noticing the surrounding hillsides and mountains, local flora and fauna, waterways of creeks and the nearby river. All available while you retreat.    

         

 Discover a new path.

We won't lie to you, being silent and shedding distractions makes space for the deep work of transformation. Discover new thoughts, ideas and emotions (positive and negative). Of course this can be uncomfortable. Silence can help us stay with the 'uncomfortable' long enough to listen to it, learn from it and even befriend it. A chance to heal.

 Become intentional. 

Set a new path of choice and direct your life, with purpose, rather than just rolling along. "If you don't prioritize your life, someone else will" Geoff McKeown. (Read some of his story at see https://gregmckeown.com/if-you-dont-prioritize-your-life-someone-else-will-harvard-business-review-2/).

“Silence is a source of Great Strength.”   
Lao Tzu    https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/silence

What can I expect?

Your outcome will be unique but there will be common experiences.

You come with your own background, knowledge, beliefs and spiritual practices, while we provide opportunities to nurture your soul. Everyone is different so the schedule is semi-structured, with set eating times, and the rest set by you to suit your rhythm, including a collection of exercises to choose from and booking a reflective session with Max or Bronwyn,   Find out more about us on our page ......

Beginning......

Whatever day you chose to come, everyone starts by turning off their phone (if you even brought it) and do a walking meditation on one of our 4 labyrinths. Max will guide you in this. This helps you bring your inner and outer worlds into sync.

Choose your adventure......

Know how you want to spend youtr time in silence? Great. A collection of exercises will be available to choose from, so you can create your own rhythm, such as: sitting, breathing, creative, nature connection, using labyrinths- walking or handheld, body scan and sensory meditations.

Walk our labyrinths (see the wild one opposite)

Come find yourself on the path in one of our labyrinths, to ground yourself, contemplate, centre, pray, meditate- you can't get lost. Or, if walking is difficult use a handheld one. These practices are well researched as being helpful for well being, including Labyrinths!There are different ways to use these exercises, you can bring your own practices or we'll give you some ideas.

Meet one-to-one for some suggestions.

There are no group sessions, but you're invited to a face-to-face session with Max or Bronwyn, where we use reflective listening with contemplative practices of compassion., This can be planned to suit your rhythm: if you're a morning person, from 6am on. If you love afternoons, make it then. And if the night is where you go deep, anytime up until 8.30pm can be scheduled. You get the idea. How many sessions will depend on how many days you go on retreat and what you need (everyone can have at least 1).

Journalling.

Whether it is visual, or written, focusing on insights or gratitude, each person is encouraged to find some way to journal while on retreat. This is for you, unless you want to share it with us. Materials are provided so anyone can visually journal or incorporate colour and symbols (as used in mind mapping).

 

Finish well.

You might have come for any number of reasons: as a sort-of stamina test (less physically gruelling than a marathon but still with challenges), life changes, looking for direction, family difficulties, time for reflection, or.....

And while you were silent for the retreat we offer each person a post retreat session, again using reflective listening and contemplative practices of compassion, with a future focus, this helps consolidate and integrate your retreat insights and experiences.

A retreat isn't just a stand-alone thing, it's part of your whole life.

Silence is refreshment for the soul.

Wynonna Judd                      https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/silence-quotes

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Thankyou Philip for this lovely photo taken when you stayed at Fosterton Retreat.

Who is it for?

This is for anyone who:

Wants to make space to go deeper,

Are committed to the work of inner transformation,

Feels drained from life (but there's no medical cause for it),

Often find themselves distracted by the noise of life,

Wants to get in touch with a deeper self, a higher power, nature,

Likes to set themselves a challenge.

 

We need to care for you and everyone who comes, so if you have any mental health concerns we need to know about it and discuss these with you.

If you are under the care of a doctor, counsellor, psychologist or psychiatrist for any mental health issues you need to speak with them before attending. They might like to know more about us before advising you, please give them our contact details.

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Still not sure if this is a good fit for you?

Email or ring us to discuss it further.

Details below.

Retreat includes:

  • A boutique retreat experience with limited numbers (22 max),

  • Help yourself breakfast, afternoon tea,  supper, lunch, tea, coffee,

  • A simple evening meal per full day you're booked (if you want more you're welcome to use the facilities to cook as long as silence reigns and clean-up happens),

  • Night time under the stars, around the fire pit (weather permitting)

  • Sunset reflections- questions provided, silence observed.

  • Access to the swimming pool & spa,

  • Accommodation at Fosterton Retreat (see options below) with all linen provided,

  • Up to 1 one-to-one reflective session every second day (if you choose 1 day, you'll still get 1 session), including some suggested exercises, e.g: facilitated labyrinth walk.

Retreat does not include:

  • Alcohol & soft drinks

  • Transport to the retreat

Your Investment

Your investment for the retreat = $200 per day + your accommodation costs (see below).

Couples welcome, if both participating in the silence.

Early bird discount:

Book and pay the full fee before 3rd June 2024 to receive a 10% discount on the retreat cost.

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Choose your accommodation

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Fosterton House.JPG

Cabins

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Fosterton House

Valley View -up to 2 people in Queen bed, 1 bath, $ 160 p/night.

Mountain View -2 people in Queen bed, 1 bath, $160 p/night

In Mountain View bring a friend to stay in the single bunk bed (bottom bunk) for only an extra $50 ea p/ night.

(5 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms)

King room- 1 or 2 people in King bed, $ 120 p/ night

Queen room- 1 or 2 people in Queen bed, $110 p/ night

Double room- 1 or 2 people in Double bed, $100 p/ night

2 shared single bedrooms- 1 room with 2 people (single beds),  and 1 with 3 people (single beds), $70 p/person p/night.

Answering some of your questions

“My personal hobbies are reading, listening to music, and silence.”
― Edith Sitwell            
   https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/silence

Do I have to share a room?

No. At FR we have cabins people can be in just by themselves or a room to themselves in the house. However the cheapest option is to share a room with a couple of people- you might not know them, or you might come with friends. I went to a retreat (not silent)and shared a tiny room with a woman I'd never met before and probably never will again. The room was as small as the room I had on my own as a nursing student and we shared an experience by being there at the same time.

Can I speak at all?

Silence is a discipline, and we won't be following you around. We know a nun who at the start of her journey she used to get away and talk during 'the grand silence'. She is a deep, faithful, loving human being, so, there is no penalty if you have a conversation, out of the way, with someone who is also wanting a short exchange.

A face-to-face session with Max or Bronwyn obviously allows speaking. However, it is about your purpose and consideration of others, BUT meals, the accommodation and retreat spaces are silent spaces for this week and that we will keep an eye on.

 

Do I have to stay on the property?

No. There are some lovely walks nearby and the river with beautiful rocks (great for rock towers, a very centring practice). However, we do ask people to sign out when leaving, and sign in when returning. We'd hate anything to happen to you and us not realise where you were.

 

Will there be any television or media?

Television will not be turned on. but we will check the news twice a day and put up a notice about anything important. We were flying to the USA on Dec 26, 2004 when the tsunami happened, the world completely changed between leaving and landing, it was important to us to know this.

That is something we would put a notice up about.

If you don't want to know about such events, don't read the notices.

Anything personally important we will pass on to you directly.

Families can contact Max and Bronwyn directly if there is an emergency.

Find more FAQs about retreats in general 

Call 

0490663228 or

0439500909

Email 

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