We will be walking and meditating together on a Buddhist-inspired pilgrimage through the ancient sacred landscape of Britain. We will travel along the Thames and the 5000-year-old Ridgeway path culminating at the stone circles of Avebury.
The Buddha's followers were 'Yatrikas', or wanderers; we will be evoking the way of life of the very earliest Buddhists - but "upon England's mountains green". We'll be aligning ourselves with the most ancient traditions of Buddhism as well as following one of the ancient trackways of Britain, at a very beautiful time of year.
This is a walking retreat and a mindful celebration of our land and its primordial energies. During the day we will walk in silence and in single file; allowing space for a deeper awareness of and harmony with our walking companions, the ancient landscape, and our own thoughts and feelings. Along the way there will be plenty of pauses where we can talk. Mornings and evenings there’ll be meditations, talks, discussions and rituals as well as the basic business of cooking food and making camp.
During the day there will be a van to transport our gear, leaving us free to walk with only minimum baggage. The van team will go ahead, set up camp, and cook food for that night. There is a small Buddhafield team helping to run the event, but we will ask for volunteers daily to be drivers, cooks, etc.
In total our travels will cover about 60 miles, averaging around 10 miles walking a day.
Our walk will end with an optional all-night vigil at one or another of the ancient sites surrounding Avebury - a chance to go deeply into meditation through the night, and to greet the morning Spring sunrise.
The route is from Reading train station along the Thames to Goring where we will join the Ridgeway, This will take us past such well known prehistoric sites as Uffington Castle, the White Horse and Dragon Hill, Barbury Castle and Weyland’s Smithy, and also to the less well known but atmospheric tumulus, Scutchamer’s Knob. We then leave the Ridgeway to descend to our destination - the earthworks, henge and stone circles of Avebury, revered as a sacred site and place of pilgrimage since Neolithic times. We will spend two nights in the area, visiting some of the many local sacred sites including Silbury Hill, West Kennet Long Barrow and the Sanctuary. This will offer us the opportunity to immerse ourselves, through meditation, ritual and imaginative exploration, in the myth and meaning of this mystical landscape.
Led by: Lokabandhu & team
Location: Reading to Avebury
Deposit amount: £60
Total suggested cost (including deposit): donation tier:520/ standard:320/ supported:225 (see our FAQ for an explanation of the deposit/ dana system)
Experience level: Open to all
Age group: Adults