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Meditation courses with a teacher

Meditation courses with experienced teachers provide indispensable guidance that is essential for a proper meditation practice. With years of experience, a good teacher can help you overcome obstacles in meditation and support your efforts.

45 day course with Beth Upton

45 day course with Beth Upton

10.01.2024 - 25.02.2024    
All Day
We invite you to a 45-day course designed for advanced meditators who have completed at least 1 retreat with Beth. Preference will be given to practitioners who sign up for the full length of 45 days. However if space remains available, we will allow a 30 ( from 10.1.2024 to 9.2.2024) or 15 day option (from 10.2.2024 to 25.2.2024). All participants must arrive on the first day of the course / part of the course. Registration is open from July 1, 2023 through July 31, 2023 Participants will be selected by lottery. Those of you who do not make the primary list will be placed on a waiting list. For the participants placed on the waiting list, it is important to be ready to arrive on a short notice. It has been our experience that a few spots become available a day or two before or on the day the course starts. As soon as we know of a vacancy, we will contact you by phone. Therefore, please include your current phone number with the international area code in the application form. Once you have registered for the course, you will receive an email confirming that you have been entered into the lottery. Once the lottery has taken place, you will be notified of your placement on the course or on the waiting list. If you need to cancel after being offered participation in the course, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can place a practitioner from the waiting list in your place.

Practical information

Practical information on courses for those who want to be well informed before starting their stay.

"You should meditate for twenty minutes a day - unless you're too busy. Then you should meditate for an hour."

Zen proverb

 How does a meditation retreat work?

Is it necessary to have previous meditation experience to attend the course?

There is no need to have previous experience of meditation. A sincere effort to surrender to the guidance of an experienced teacher is enough. It is true that some courses may be open only to more experienced meditators (so-called old students), such a course will always be visibly marked. Likewise, in the case of individual meditation (self-retreat), this is recommended only for more experienced meditators.

How will it all work and what if I can't sit still for that long?

The meditation classes follow the program that the teacher pins on the bulletin board on the day of arrival. The custom is to alternate sitting meditation with walking meditation. The program can be strongly structured or looser depending on the teacher’s approach. Meditation takes place primarily in the meditation hall, with the option to practice in the rooms or outdoors (depending on the weather and the needs of the meditators). Walking meditation (chankamana) can be done outdoors – in front of the building, on the grass, on the sand under a shelter (in the summer months), in the adjacent meditation room in case of rain, or in the corridors of the main building. Once a day (usually in the evening) there is a teacher’s talk (dhammatalk) and loving-kindness meditation (metta).

If for health reasons you cannot sit on a cushion, we have chairs available which you can place ideally against the wall in the meditation hall and meditate sitting down.

How does the teacher interview work?

Read how to describe your meditation experience when interviewed by Bhante Dhammajiva.

Will there be any physical activities or yoga classes during the retreat?

Some teachers also add yoga or qi-gong exercises in the morning before breakfast. In case the exercises are not included, you will have space to practice your own routine before breakfast in the meditation hall next door (you need to respect this designated time, as other participants may meditate there later – so make sure to wear appropriate clothing and keep a respectful silence during the exercises).

Karma yoga – the so-called yoga of action – is also a daily part of the meditation course – voluntary help to the centre. This is meditation in motion, in an activity in which you practice transferring the meditative state into everyday activities (helping in the kitchen by chopping vegetables, cleaning the common areas, outdoor chores: raking hay, watering flowers). Even during karma yoga, noble silence is observed.

What should I bring to the meditation retreat?

Comfortable, loose-fitting clothing, ideally in light tones (without large signs or pictures that might be distracting to others), that covers most of the body. Warm clothing even in summer. Waterproof clothing for the rain. A torch. A silent watch (as it is not recommended to use a mobile phone). Alarm clock, slippers for the main building.

No need to take jewellery, jingling ornaments that might disturb other meditators.

Will I have my own room during the retreat? Can I share a room with a loved one?

We accommodate 2 to 3 people in rooms, depending on the availability of the course. If capacity permits, there is the possibility of a separate room for an additional fee. We can usually only provide information about solo accommodation a few days before the course, when we send instructions for the course by email.

We accommodate men and women separately, requests for shared accommodation for friends of the same sex are accommodated, this request should be put in a note on the application form.

Should I bring my own meditation cushion or yoga mat?

No need to carry a meditation cushion – we have meditation pads, cushions, wedges, knee pads, blankets
If you practice yoga, bring your own yoga mat.

What if I need to leave early?

If you feel that it is too much for you, you can leave the course early with the agreement of the teacher.

Will I be able to use the phone?

It is not recommended to use a mobile phone during the meditation sessions – it is recommended to keep it switched off or put it in the organisers’ safe for the duration of the session. In case you need to contact the organizer, give your loved ones the organizer’s phone contact (which will come in the course information by mail). We will pass on the message to whoever called you and make the phone available.

You may have your phone with you by appointment with the teacher (in a mode so as not to disturb other meditators).

What kind of food will be provided during the retreat?

We cook vegetarian food, in case of intolerances we also prepare gluten-free and lactose-free version.

Intolerances to certain ingredients must be informed to us in advance – in the course application form.

If you need to bring some smaller amounts of food that need to be kept cold, we have a fridge available (keep in mind that there is one fridge and there can be 30 participants).

Can I bring my dog or other animal?

We do not recommend taking dogs or other pets with you on the tour. Remember that you are going to enjoy yourself and should therefore be as little disturbed as possible by your surroundings (as well as your fellow participants). At the same time, you’ll be spending a large part of the day meditating, so your pet would be alone for most of the day (and would probably show it, which could disturb other meditators and ultimately you). Dogs are not allowed loose around the grounds (due to consideration for other meditators practice).

What clothes should I bring to the retreat?

Comfortable, loose-fitting clothing, ideally in light tones (without large signs or pictures that might be distracting to others), that covers most of the body. Warm clothing even in summer. Waterproof clothing for the rain. Quiet slippers for the main building. No need to take jewelry, jingling ornaments that could disturb other meditators.

What if the courses are taught in a language other than the one I speak?

Some courses are taught in Slovak or Czech, others in English. If necessary, we interpret English into Slovak or vice versa.

Information about transport

How can I get to Javorie?

All transport information can be found here.


Vipassana is a Pali term that refers to the meditation of "insight" or "clear seeing". It consists of objectively, dispassionately observing the inner manifestations of the physical body, emotions, and mind as they are - in their state of nature - allowing for a deeper understanding of the nature of reality.