About this IMS Online Retreat

Tuesday, May 09, 2023 - Wednesday, May 17, 2023

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This online retreat experience will be a livestream of the onsite The Path to Awakening Retreat with Joseph Goldstein, Winnie Nazarko, Bart van Melik, Cara Lai and Roxanne Dault. Meditation instructions and Dharma talks will be broadcasted live from the IMS Meditation Hall. There will also be group practice meetings with support from teachers on zoom, as well as online affinity groups. Please note: The onsite teachers will not offer practice meetings to online practitioners.

Insight meditation (vipassana in Pali, the language of the original Buddhist teachings) is the simple and direct practice of moment-to-moment mindfulness. Through careful and sustained observation, we experience for ourselves the ever-changing flow of the mind/body process. This awareness leads us to accept more fully the pleasure and pain, fear and joy, sadness and happiness that life inevitably brings. As insight deepens, we develop greater equanimity and peace in the face of change, and wisdom and compassion increasingly become the guiding principles of our lives.

The Buddha first taught vipassana over 2,500 years ago. The various methods of this practice have been well preserved in the Early Buddhist tradition of Buddhism. This silent retreat, suitable for both beginning and experienced meditators, is rooted in this ancient and well-mapped path to awakening, and draws on the full spectrum of this tradition’s lineages.

This retreat begins on Tuesday, May 9, at 8:30 am ET and concludes Wednesday, May 17, at 12:00 pm ET. A full home retreat schedule and instructions will be offered. 

This program will be recorded and made available for on-demand viewing after the live sessions. On-demand videos will be available to registered participants for 90 days.

Meet Your Teachers

Joseph Goldstein

Joseph Goldstein has been leading insight and lovingkindness meditation retreats worldwide since 1974. He is a cofounder of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts, where he is one of the organization’s guiding teachers. In 1989, together with several other teachers and students of insight meditation, he helped establish the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies. Joseph first became interested in Buddhism as a Peace Corps volunteer in Thailand in 1965. Since 1967 he has studied and practiced different forms of Buddhist meditation under eminent teachers from India, Burma and Tibet. He is the author of Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Awakening, A Heart Full of Peace, One Dharma: The Emerging Western Buddhism, Insight Meditation: The Practice of Freedom, The Experience of Insight, and co-author of Seeking the Heart of Wisdom and Insight Meditation: A Correspondence Course.

Winnie Nazarko

Winnie attended her first meditation retreat in 1981, after a co-worker convinced her that it would be interesting. And it was interesting, just not in the way she expected. After that long weekend with Stephen and Andrea Levine, she knew she had touched something deeply truthful, although she couldn’t quite describe it. It did, however, seem to do with transparency of being, equanimity, and lack of fear. This was the beginning of a period of intensive dharma search and practice, bringing her into connection with many outstanding teachers. Among these have been Joseph Goldstein, Sharon Salzberg, Steve Armstrong, Kamala Masters, and Jack Kornfield. From their diversity of teaching styles, she came to appreciate the very individual ways the Dharma is expressed through the prism of specific personalities and life experiences. While the truth is universal, the expression of that truth is personal and uses the language of direct experience. Winnie’s own orientation to practice is rooted in a background of human service work and the desire to relieve human suffering. After years of work with issues of violence, and hunger, it became apparent that the largest single impediment to collective human progress is the level of development of the average human mind. In 1998, she was asked to teach the Dharma by Joseph Goldstein. She does so to help people open their full potential, in the interest of their own happiness and well-being and for the benefit of others who their lives affect. Winnie’s teachings are rooted in the Eight Fold Path taught by the Buddha, with particular emphasis on aligning motivation with the student’s highest and wisest aspiration. Letting go (renunciation) and self-compassion are taught as essential, foundational attitudes supporting practice. Meditation instructions draw on a variety of approaches, and emphasize grounding, embodiment, and equanimity which can be carried into daily life. When appropriate, students are given customized instructions which work with the actual experiences they are having, rather than insisting one method of practice works in all cases. The emphasis is on “skillful means”, understanding that students come to meditation from many different circumstances and experiences.

Bart van Melik

Bart van Melik has been teaching meditation since 2009, with a special focus on diverse communities. He brings the practice to juvenile detention centers, homeless shelters and NYC public schools, and is passionate about supporting people finding new ways to relate to life’s stresses.

Choose your enrollment fee

As one part of our ongoing effort to expand access to the teachings of the Buddha, all IMS Online programs feature sliding scale registration fees and the opportunity to self-select a low-cost scholarship rate. No-fee enrollment is available for those who request a fee-waiver via email. Our system supports the cultivation of a dynamic and inclusive community and is made possible by our generous donors and those who choose to support other students by contributing at the “Benefactor” level.