Personal meditation retreat on San Juan Island
Why a personal meditation retreat?
A personal meditation retreat offers the ideal circumstance to learn, deepen, and to connect more fully with the core of your being.
There is good reason why the adepts of every spiritual tradition in the world periodically took retreats away from the hubbub of daily living. It is absolutely vital to reconnecting with the higher meaning and value of your life.
But a personal meditation retreat at Samadhi House offers much more than just “getting away from it all.” Your personal retreat includes the additional benefit of profound meditation instruction. For those who wish it, I will personally guide your learning to deepen and expand your meditation experience, whether you have never meditated before or have practiced for decades. These profound meditation practices will multiply the benefit of your retreat experience.
Who can come to a personal meditation retreat at Samadhi House?
Anyone with a sincere desire to learn to meditate or to deepen their meditation on a retreat is welcome. If you’ve never meditated, by the end of your retreat, you will be a seasoned meditator. You will likely emerge with the level of experience that might be gained only after months of regular meditation at home. That is the advantage of a retreat.
Experienced meditators are most certainly welcome. If you wish, I am happy to offer guidance. That’s entirely up to you. Otherwise, you are invited to come and simply practice on your own in this extraordinary meditative paradise.
How long does my personal meditation retreat last?
Your retreat can last as long as you like. The minimum stay is 3 nights, but you can stay as long as you feel your retreat is serving you. You could stay a full week or even a month.
Note that at this time, personal meditation retreats are only available from September through May.
What can I expect on a personal meditation retreat?
The setting of Samadhi House
Samadhi House is located on the West side of San Juan Island, atop Mt. Dallas, the highest point of the island. Surrounded by forested hills, to the West and Northwest, Samadhi House overlooks Haro Strait, the Canadian Gulf Islands, and Vancouver Island. Only one other cabin is visible. There are no other houses in sight except across the water on Vancouver Island, no sounds of traffic or people, just the peace, beauty, and stillness of nature.
At night you’ll hear the song of frogs, and from dawn till night that of a large variety of birds, including bald eagles, hummingbirds, herons, and many more. Samadhi House also overlooks Lime Kiln State Park, said to be the premier spot in the world to view Orca whales from land. Between May and September, they may often be spotted breaching, cavorting, and blowing as they feed on the local salmon near the shores of the park. Having seen their play many times, I am convinced they consciously commune with their human audience. Note they are not visible from the house. The park is a 6-minute drive away.
Samadhi House is a 3000+ square foot, 4-bedroom home, fully remodeled about 10 years ago. It can accommodate up to 9 retreat participants, but more likely your retreat will be private. Rarely will there be more than 1 or 2 retreatants beside yourself. You can choose one of the two private rooms, which share a bath, or the dormitory with its own separate bath.
Focus and instruction on your personal meditation retreat
Most people coming for a personal meditation retreat will want to receive guidance and instruction in their meditation. At the beginning of your retreat, we will have a personal, individual consultation to decide what specific instruction is appropriate for your level of experience. Again, it doesn’t matter whether you’ve never meditated before or are a seasoned meditator. I’ll personally tailor a course of instruction specifically for you.
Most of the actual instruction you receive will be via video instruction from past courses I’ve taught for all the various levels of meditation experience, from beginner to advanced. Normally, there is a significant cost to access these courses, but during your personal meditation retreat, you will have free access to any of the courses appropriate to your level of experience.* These include every course I’ve ever made and videotaped, which could keep someone busy for months.
The heart of the retreat is practicing in private what you’ve learned. In other words, you will alternate learning with a dive into direct experience, taking your meditation deeper and deeper. I also encourage walks in nature to help integrate your experience of deep meditation, and for those who practice yoga, spending some time doing yoga every day. At least once or twice a day, we will meet together to answer any questions you may have and together continue to tailor your course of learning and experience.
* Access to the video lessons is for the duration of your retreat. If after your retreat you wish to purchase the course you were viewing, you can do so at a 50% discount and gain permanent access.
Can I take a silent retreat?
You can certainly take a silent retreat. If you wish to remain in silence, and also receive instruction, you can communicate with me by notes.
What about meals on the retreat?
Your retreat includes all meals. We’ll provide the food, and those present for the retreat, including Ajayan, will share in making the meals and cleanup. As it’s your personal retreat, you determine the schedule of your meals.
The Samadhi household is typically vegetarian and gluten-free, and for the most part, sugar- and dairy-free. However, we offer fish and dairy options and are happy to accommodate those who want to enjoy some sweets. Please email Ajayan with your dietary wishes or requirements.
- Private room: $345/night.
- Dormitory: $300/night. (You may have it all to yourself, or you may have to share it.)
Travel to and from Samadhi House
- Most access San Juan Island from Washington State via the Anacortes ferry. See the current ferry schedule. We recommend you make reservations. If you make arrangements with us, we can also pick you up in Friday Harbor if you wish to walk on the ferry.
- You can also fly right to the island from SeaTac with Kenmore Air and we can pick you up in Friday Harbor. These flights are reasonably priced and it’s a beautiful 30-minute flight. Highly recommended!
Note: As of summer of 2022, we require proof of a negative COVID test within 24 hours of your arrival. This can be a DIY at-home test. We do sincerely hope to drop this requirement in the near future.
How do I book my personal meditation retreat?
To book your personal meditation retreat, email Ajayan. Provide:
- Your preferred dates and type of room.
- Any dietary information.
- Your meditation history and whether you’ve taken a retreat in the past.
We do require advanced payment in full to reserve your room. You can pay via PayPal or with a credit card. Emails have been known to land in spam, so if you don’t hear back in a day or two, resend or text Ajayan at 425-677-5451.
Samadhi House is also supported by vacation rentals. When you book your retreat, we will block the calendar for the entire house for the time of your retreat, so cancellations can be costly for us. Vacation rentals actually bring in more than double or triple the retreat fee per day (depending on time of year). But we feel the highest and best use of the house is for retreats, and so we want to make it as easy as possible for you to come and meditate. For this reason, we’ve made our cancellation policy for retreats much more flexible than for our vacation rentals:
- If you cancel up to 30 days prior to the start of your retreat, you will receive a full refund.
- If you cancel for any reason within 30 days prior to the start of your retreat, you will receive no refund, but can apply 75% of your retreat fee to a future personal meditation retreat.
We hope to see you at a personal meditation retreat soon!