The Beautiful Mind of Refuge

Weekend Retreat

How to Find Actual Protection from Pain and Problems

Friday – Sunday, October 20, 21 & 22, 2017
Bethlehem Centre
Nanaimo, BC


This weekend retreat is open to everyone and will be led by the Buddhist monk and teacher Gen Kelsang Zopa.

We all want a solution to our problems and spend much of our time and energy seeking refuge outside of ourselves – in our social life, our work, or indulging in meaningless activities. This is a fruitless search since none of these has true power to help us.

We can find true refuge from suffering only within ourselves, by cultivating deep experiences of love, compassion, and wisdom. On this retreat we have a perfect opportunity to discover and deepen our experience of refuge by connecting with Buddha’s blessings and receiving the encouragement of spiritual friends. Then we can quickly and easily make progress on the path to liberation and enlightenment.

This weekend retreat includes instruction, guided meditations, and chanted prayers. There will be time to enjoy the grounds and the lake and its trails.

Click here for a PDF of the schedule that you may download and print.


3:30 – 5:15 pm Check In / Settle In
5:30 – 6:30 pm Dinner
7 – 8:30 pm Session One


7 – 7:45 am Morning Meditation
8 – 8:45 am Breakfast
9 – 10:15 am Session Two
10:15 – 10:30 am Break*
10:45 – 12 pm Session Three
12 – 1 pm Lunch
1 – 4 pm Long Break**
2 – 2:30pm Afternoon Snack
4 – 5:15 pm Session Four
5:30 – 6:30 pm Dinner
7:00 – 8:30 pm Session Five


7 – 7:45 am Morning Meditation
8 – 8:45 am Breakfast
9 – 10:15 am Session Six
10:15 – 10:30 am Morning Snack / Break***
10:45 – 12 pm Session Seven
12 – 12:30 pm**** Lunch
12:45 – 1:45 pm Session Eight
2:00 pm Leave

*At all breaks coffee, tea, and snacks are available in the Main Building Entrance Lobby.

**The long break on Saturday gives you an opportunity for private meditation, exploring the grounds, contemplating, etc.

***Please have the linens off your bed and outside your room before the next session starts.

****Please have all your possessions out of your room before the last session starts. Please bring your key to the session to turn in.

Gen Kelsang Zopa is a modern Buddhist monk and Resident Teacher at Bodhichitta Buddhist Centre.

Gen Zopa has been presenting the profound and practical teachings of the Buddhist path to enlightenment throughout Canada for over 20 years. Renowned for his clarity and depth of his teachings, his warmth and practicality bring to life the ancient art of meditation.

The price for Standard Accommodations is $325 per person, all inclusive, which includes:

  • Bed in a Private Room with Shared Bathroom down the hall
    • Rooms have a single or double bed.. suitable for 1 person only.
  • 6 VEGETARIAN Meals (from supper Friday night through Lunch on Sunday), served buffet style
  • Snacks at breaks
  • 8 Sessions of Teachings with Meditation and Discussion
  • 2 Morning Meditation Sessions

The link to registration is at the Register tab, along with information on payment and cancellation policy.

Other Options:
There are two other possible options for attending the retreat. If you are interested in either of these, please contact the Registrar at or at (855) 752-9290 x2.

  • There is one room with a queen bed for a couple for 2 persons for the weekend, inclusive of all meals and snacks. There will be a discount for the second person.
  • We have room for a limited number of commuters at $200 each for the weekend, inclusive of all meals, snacks and sessions. This option is intended for local residents.

Registration is closed for this retreat. Please consider joining us for our special events in November (Maitreya Empowerment Nov 12 and Guest Teacher Day Course on Nov 26 – more details to be published on this site soon.)
Our next weekend retreat will be in Tofino at the end of April.
Subscribe to our newsletter to keep up to date.

Bethlehem Centre is a residential center specifically designed for spiritual and educational programs. They encourage and support the expression of beliefs and values about humanity, spirituality, healing, and peace. We have had many happy retreats at this Centre.

You can read more about them on their web site.