- About Us
- IMS Turns 40
- FAQ about IMS
- Virtual Tours
- Current News
- Working and Volunteering
- Mission and Values
- Board of Directors
- Annual Report
- Contact Us
- Mailing List
- Meditation Retreats
- New to Meditation?
- FAQ about Retreats
- Food and Accommodations
- Retreat Center
- Forest Refuge
- Work Retreats
- Pay Your Balance
Three-Month Retreat (84 days)
September 12 – December 5, 2017 (Tuesday to Tuesday)
This retreat is full with a waitlist. To be added to the list, submit a registration and deposit.
All scholarship funds have been awarded.
A limited number of You Choose fee spaces are available for people of color, who might not otherwise afford the cost, for Part 2 of this retreat.
All You Choose fee spaces for young adults (18-32 year olds) have currently been awarded. If you wish to be placed on a wait list, email email@example.com to apply.
This three-month course, including its six-week partials, is a special time for practice. Because of its extended length and ongoing guidance, it is an opportunity for students to deepen the powers of concentration, wisdom and compassion. Based on the meditation instructions of Mahasi Sayadaw and supplemented by a range of skillful means, this silent retreat will encourage a balanced attitude of relaxation and alertness, and the continuity of practice based on the Buddha’s Four Foundations of Mindfulness.
Éowyn Ahlstrom will offer optional sessions of yoga once a week.
Silence and renunciation are at the heart of any IMS retreat, and a sincere commitment to honoring them has a direct and profound bearing on our deepening in meditation. The teachers of this retreat request, for the sake of your practice and your fellow retreatants’ practice, that you participate in the entire course, without leaving and returning (except in the case of emergencies or medical needs).
An intensive silent meditation course such as this can be a positive and life-transforming experience. At the same time, the practice can be strenuous and requires some stability of physical and psychological health.
If you have recently experienced considerable trauma, significant depression or anxiety, or are currently experiencing strong PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder), a silent retreat of this length may not be appropriate for you at this time in your life. Shorter retreats or daily life practice may be more beneficial meanwhile. To help you assess this, we urge you to discuss your situation with a therapist. Please contact our registration department if you have any questions or concerns.
The teachers also request that you agree, on registering, to refrain from using cell phones and other communication devices, for the duration of the course. This includes phone calls, emails, texts and other internet use. (Please notify our Front Office if arrangements need to be made for messages to reach you 24/7 from dependent or fragile family members. You can reach our staff at 978-355-4378 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
To further protect your retreat time, please also make sure that you schedule any medical appointments, fill prescriptions, and take care of financial or other arrangements before your course gets underway.
Prerequisite is two silent retreats of a week or more with recognized insight meditation teachers. Please document this experience, including teachers’ names, dates and length of courses when registering. You will also need to submit a questionnaire when signing up – your course participation cannot be confirmed until this is received and approved.
Special fees and deadlines apply for cancellations or confirmed date changes. 3MO and Part 1: up to July 19, 2017, $100; afterwards, $400 for 3MO and $250 for Part 1. Part 2: up to August 30, 2017, $100; afterwards, $250. Please note that transferring from one part of the course to another – i.e. any date change within this three-month period – is only possible if space is available; otherwise, you will be placed on a wait list.
Carol Wilson, an IMS guiding teacher, has practiced insight meditation since 1971 with a variety of teachers, including Sayadaw U Pandita and Ashin U Tejaniya, as well as spending a year as a nun in Thailand. She has offered metta and vipassana retreats worldwide since 1986, including the annual IMS Three-Month course.
Listen to one of Carol's talks: Perception of Impermanence given at IMS on October 22, 2006 – 60 minutes, 13.9 MB (Download, Stream)
Guy Armstrong has practiced insight meditation for over 40 years, including training as a Buddhist monk in Thailand with Ajahn Buddhadasa. He began teaching in 1984 and has led retreats worldwide. He is an IMS guiding teacher and teaches regularly at the fall Three-Month Retreat.
Listen to one of Guy's talks: Joy and Happiness given at IMS on October 23, 2015 – 59 minutes, 40.3 MB (Download, Stream)
James Baraz has practiced meditation since 1974, taught since 1980 and is a founding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. He leads an online meditation course, Awakening Joy, and has written a book by the same name.
Sally Armstrong began practicing vipassana meditation in India in 1981, and started teaching in 1996. She is a co-guiding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, and has also led Spirit Rock’s Dedicated Practitioners Program for 12 years.
Listen to one of Sally's talks: What is Mindfulness? given at IMS on September 12, 2011 – 57 minutes, 39.6 MB (Download, Stream)
Annie Nugent has practiced since 1979 and was an IMS Resident Teacher, 1999-2003. Her teaching style aims to reveal how all aspects of our lives can help us come to a clear and direct understanding of the Truth.
Listen to one of Annie's talks: Trust in the Unfolding Process of the Dharma given at IMS – 55 minutes, 23.2 MB (Download, Stream)
Andrea Fella has practiced insight meditation since 1996, studying with both Western and Asian teachers. With an emphasis on clarity and practicality, she is co-guiding teacher at the Insight Meditation Center in Redwood City, CA, and teaches retreats nationally.
Listen to one of Andrea's talks: Dependant Origination given at IMS on October 10, 2013 – 61 minutes, 43.2 MB (Download, Stream)
Greg Scharf has practiced with Western and Asian teachers in the Theravada tradition since 1992, and has been teaching residential retreats since 2007, including the annual Three-Month Retreat at IMS, where he is a core teacher.
Listen to one of Greg's talks: Renunciation given at IMS on April 8, 2011 – 54 minutes, 37.6 MB (Download, Stream)
Winnie Nazarko started dharma practice 30 years ago, asking, "Why does there have to be suffering in the world?" She teaches to help individuals realize their full potential for clarity, balance, kindness and wisdom.
Listen to one of Winnie's talks: Seeing the Good given at IMS on November 11, 2011 – 55 minutes, 37.8 MB (Download, Stream)
Brian Lesage has studied in the Zen, Theravada and Tibetan schools of Buddhism since 1988. He has taught meditation across the US since 2000 and currently teaches in the vipassana tradition. He also has a private Somatic Experiencing® practice.
Listen to one of Brian's talks: Faith given at IMS on September 15, 2012 – 53 minutes, 32.3 MB (Download, Stream)
Bhante Buddharakkhita was born in Uganda. Meditating since 1993, he was ordained as a Theravada Buddhist monk in 2002 and teaches worldwide. Founder of the Uganda Buddhist Centre, he is also the spiritual advisor of Flowering Lotus in Mississippi, and author of Planting Dhamma Seeds.
Jill Shepherd is a graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training. She divides her time mainly between the US, Australia and New Zealand, teaching insight meditation retreats and supporting local communities to explore the Dharma in daily life.
John Martin teaches vipassana, metta, and LGBTQI themed meditation retreats. He leads an ongoing weekly meditation group in San Francisco and is the guiding teacher for the LGBTQueer Sangha at IMC. He has had a dedicated practice while being engaged in the working world and emphasizes practice for daily life. He also completed the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training in 2016.
Erin Selover has been following the inner guidance of the Dharma since a dear friend tragically died in 1998. She is psychotherapist, rites of passage guide and lover of all things wild and mysterious. She is a recent graduate of the IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training.
Devin Berry has practiced meditation since 1999, and is a community teacher at East Bay Meditation Center in Oakland, CA. He recently completed Spirit Rock’s Dedicated Practitioners Program.
nakawe cuebas feels blessed to have started along the Buddhist path in 1998 with S.N. Goenka. Since then, she has continued practicing and studying under the mentorship of Gina Sharpe and various other teachers. She serves as a mentor for the Prisoner Correspondence Course, sponsored by the Buddhist Association of the US, and is a midwife in the Bronx community.