Pārami: Practices for Freedom 2022
January 14 - January 16
Weekend Retreat | Jan 14-16 2022
How do you act in the world with compassion, clarity and kindness? Discover the ‘Pārami’ or ‘Pāramitas’, ancient qualities or ‘perfections’ that open the gateway of freedom in one’s being.
- Due to travel restrictions, this retreat is available In-Person at Clear Sky or Online as a Home Retreat.
- Please consider flight insurance when booking for this retreat. We welcome you to spend additional nights at Clear Sky, especially if traveling from afar.
Our main priority is to offer a retreat that is accessible and supports your health and safety.
We currently intend this retreat to be offered in person assuming the January COVID situation allows people to travel. We will keep reviewing this – if travel is not possible we will offer online alternatives.
Why Study the Pārami?
The Pārami are Practices for Freedom
We all have habits. Habits are comfortable! We do them every day, usually on auto-pilot. The difficulty with habits is that we’re not present. True freedom and well-being come from the degree to which we are present in each moment. By practicing the Pārami, or the ‘Perfections’, we can experience new ways of engaging with the present moment that bring greater awareness and clarity. This interrupts our habits, which tend to be self-focused and unconscious.
When practiced in earnest and with curiosity, we learn to apply the perfections in more and more situations. Over time, our experience of them deepens and we grow into richer states of freedom. The pārami serve us well for our entire lifetime, and beyond.
What Will I Learn?
In this course we will study the Six Pārami of Mahayana Buddhism.
There are countless translations of the Paramis, and they can be practiced in any order:
- Generosity (Dāna)
- Ethics (Śīla)
- Patience (Kṣānti)
- Effort (Vīrya)
- Concentration (Dhyāna)
- Wisdom and Insight (Prajñā)
Meet the Teacher
Catherine Pawasarat Sensei
Catherine Pawasarat Sensei is a contemporary Dharma teacher, attendant, consort, co-teacher via Planet Dharma and co-founder of Clear Sky Retreat Center.
She has trained daily with Acariya Doug Duncan since 1998 in an intensive spiritual apprenticeship that is rare in the modern West. She received lay ordination from Namgyal Rinpoche in 2003. In addition to Buddhist philosophy and its applications to daily life, Catherine also draws on generative living and the arts.
Time and Location
It is possible to attend the course in these ways:
- Online Retreat
- In-Person Retreat at Clear Sky
Each of the classes in this retreat will be held live at Clear Sky Meditation Centre. There will also be a video streamed live for online participants. The current class schedule is as follows.
- Friday Jan 14th: 7pm MST
- Saturday Jan 15th: 8am MST, 2pm MST, 7pm MST
- Sunday Jan 16th: 8am MST, 2pm MST
We have arranged class times to be comfortable for most time zones. However we understand that some class times might occur after midnight in some regions, so please contact us if that is the case for you, and we will provide a recording so you can catch up on that particular class.
What Does the Course Cost?
This course is offered based on the unique combination of 1) dāna and 2) a course/administrative fee. For online participants the Online Admin fee is $100 USD. Click here to learn more about dāna, and see below to learn more about the admin fee. Accommodation and meal fees are separate if retreating at Clear Sky Center.
About the Online Admin Fee
In a traditional model of in-person teachings, a retreat center or urban meditation center invites teachers to visit. In these cases the centers have infrastructure and organization costs to cover, which might be covered by an admin fee. For the teaching itself, dāna to the teachers is offered in a bowl. This honors both the sustainability of the teachers, and of the supporting center.
We’ve tried to recreate this approach online. The teachers’ time and the teaching themselves are offered on the basis of dāna, separate to the admin fee. With our dāna offering we are making a direct gift of generosity to the teachers to support their teachings and livelihood.
The admin fee* goes to support the infrastructure and organization necessary to support them to teach. As anyone with an online business will know, it can be surprising the costs of setting up a good infrastructure to support effective teaching and connection online.
*We also do not wish to exclude anyone from the Teachings, so if you are not currently in a financial position to afford the admin fee, please contact the course Registrar via [email protected] so we can support you to attend.
Below are a few of the work and benefits that your admin fee payment is supporting:
- high speed internet (to allow interviews and classes on-line)
- online class systems (Zoom)
- registration / admin systems (Eventbrite, Basecamp)
- communication systems to keep everyone informed, share connection details, teachings and other resources (Mailchimp)
- online storage (for example, Dropbox, to allow us to let students watch recordings, and to store and share selected teachings in other forms such as podcasts and video later, and Amazon cloud)
- quality sound, video and editing equipment (both for live teachings and to provide good enough quality for later sharing as podcasts and video). We are regularly updating our equipment to improve your user experience.
- online calendar booking system to allow students to book interviews
- website hosting and maintenance for sharing upcoming courses, teachings, blogs and other resources.
We welcome any questions. May all our efforts be sustainable, abundant and for the benefit of all beings!coure
Why Retreat In-Person?
Retreating in person at a retreat center is the best way to retreat – why?
- You can’t beat live interaction with the course Teachers. Being in the same space with clear beings ‘tunes’ you to more wholesome states.
- We create a welcoming environment and follow a supportive retreat schedule, based on decades of hosting successful retreats worldwide.
- Wholesome and delicious food is provided so you don’t have to spend time cooking for yourself.
- Breath-taking and restful, natural environment puts your body and mind at ease and resets your nervous system.
- Retreating at our center gets you out of your usual home environment and routines – they can be distracting.
- Retreating with others (your co-retreatants) is incredibly supportive and energy building.
And, we work hard to support the online retreat experience.
We have been delivering online offerings since 2014, always optimizing your experience.
- You will be provided with recommendations for making your retreat supportive and generative at home, where there are usually many distractions.
- Classes are live-streamed with recordings available for a certain time.
- Group sits with your co-retreatants are streamed to support your practice routine.
- HD cameras providing high quality streamed video.
- Professional audio equipment providing you better sound.
About Clear Sky
Located in the BC rocky mountains, we offer over 300-acres to deepen your practice and reconnect with nature. Founded by Doug Duncan and Catherine Pawasarat, we are home to students from around the globe who are dedicated to co-creating a supportive and innovative space for awakening in our modern world.
To help you get acquainted with us, some community members made this short video during our 2019 Buddhas in Action retreat. To learn more about us and our incredible community, click here!
Dana: This course is offered by Catherine Sensei through the ancient principle of generosity, or Dāna. The retreat fee covers the cost of food and accommodation, whereas the Teachings are offered by generosity. Learn more about Dāna here.
Pricing: As a charitable organization, we strive to provide locally sourced organic meals and comfortable accommodations at an affordable price. Fees vary depending on your accommodation choice and early bird pricing.
Arrival is Friday, January 14 at 4pm. We highly recommend arriving a few days earlier if you are traveling from abroad.
Departure is Sunday, January 16 after dinner.
Airport pickups can be booked when you register for the retreat. On the rare chance that this retreat is cancelled, we highly recommend purchasing travel insurance.
In order to give enough time to rest from travel before the retreat starts, we recommend that domestic travellers arrive one day early, and long distance international travellers arrive two days early.
After the retreat we also suggest staying for at least another day for integration.
Travel Restrictions, COVID-19 Policy: Please contact us – Email [email protected] or (250) 429-3929 for details/options for local participation.