As someone who is valued for keeping in touch with me via my database, this is to inform you that after much consideration I have decided to retire from most of my public activities and to stop leading residential programs both at the Foundation, in New Zealand and elsewhere after next year's pre-Easter Yarra Valley meditation retreat.
As you might imagine, this has not been an easy decision to come to. This work began in 1981 with the formation of the Melbourne Cancer Support Group. The early meditation classes commenced soon after and residential programs began in 1984.
Reflecting on all the extra-ordinary people that have attended groups and workshops over the years, as well as all the dedicated and wonderfully capable staff and volunteers who were drawn to the work and enlivened it so much is all very humbling. Hard to express the depth of gratitude.
There is a part of me that feels reluctance to stop; given all that has been learnt from participants, colleagues and teachers. But we live in modern times and there are so many good people offering a wide range of programs and possibilities that there is confidence for the future.
Currently the plan is for me to continue some involvement with the Meditation Gateway app development project, maybe do a very occasional public speaking engagement and probably write some more. I have nearly finished a new meditation book, designed to be simpler than Meditation - an in Depth Guide, and based on the best from Peace of Mind and Meditation - Pure and Simple plus quite a bit of new material. Also, I intend to read, study and practice more; the garden will probably end up looking a bit better and I plan to draw and paint some more once again. Maybe see a bit more of family and friends too...
Ruth is considering how she could continue to run the residential programs she and I have been presenting together. If Ruth does go ahead, I may put in a guest appearance for her programs - maybe one evening or afternoon - to add my support along with some variety. More will come on the blog next week.
Anyhow, life is constantly changing.
Heartfelt thanks to all who have supported me personally and supported this vital work we have all been engaged with.
My wish is that you have a long and truly happy life - not short term pleasure; long term happiness ...
with my love