to Sep 5

Universal Spiritual Teachings: Asian faiths

How well do these profound practices and beliefs - Hinduism, Buddhism and Taosim - fit with, and confirm, our own religious/spiritual experiences?

We will read passages from the Upanishads and  practice Hindu absorptive meditation, experience Hindu chanting, and maintain a simple yoga routine. 

We will study passages from the Buddha, and great teachers past and present, and engage in a daily practice of the three core aspects of Buddhist meditation: “calming,” “insight” and “lovingkindness.” 

In order to experience the subtle way the Taoists saw the natural world we will practice simple Tai Chi daily and spend time in nature. We will become familiar with writings from Lao Tzu and Chuang Tzu, and see how Zen Buddhism is essentially a syncretism of Buddhism with Taoism. Zen is the main way that Taoism has been brought into our modern world.

Cost:  Six day course $850 (single) or $675 (shared room/ concession). The price includes all meals and accommodation.

Download more detailed course information here.


Arthur Wells is an elder in Christchurch Meeting in New Zealand and a Zen Buddhist teacher.  He retired eight years ago from counselling and leading stopping violence programmes for men, in order to focus on teaching meditation.  He has led countless meditation retreats including some for Quakers interested in Buddhism. He has degrees in English, Religious Studies and Social Work, and taught literature and Religious Studies in universities for many years.

Helen Gould has immersed herself in Quaker writings and practice with a strong interest in interfaith relations. She practices tai chi and yoga, and has a great interest in Aboriginal spirituality, Buddhist meditation and participation in Jewish religious life. Since the early 2000s she has led many Experiment with Light sessions (a re-interpretation of early Quaker practice) in Australia, Korea and Norway. She holds degrees in philosophy and law and gave the 2009 Backhouse Lecture, entitled “The Quaking Meeting: transforming ourselves, our Meetings and the more-than-human world”.

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Celtic Spirituality
to Oct 6

Celtic Spirituality

Led by Nila Chambers

In the Celtic world, wells were seen as sacred places, thresholds between the deeper unknown and the outer world. They were special places where divinity flowed forth from hidden depths. The Celts knew that to have knowledge we must drink from the sacred well which lies within us. It links us to the divine heart of Spirit, and is the source of intuitive knowing.

In this retreat, we will work with Celtic imagery, text, music, and verse as a springboard to get more in touch with our heart’s knowing; our intuition. Ritual, meditation, artwork, and structured exercises will help participants to get out of the rational mind and seek the knowledge that only the heart can reveal.

Nila Chambers (BA(Hons Psychology), Dip Ed, MA (Religion Studies)

Nila is a lifelong meditator and spiritual seeker and is passionate about helping others to discover the intuitive wellsprings within. She now facilitates retreats, workshops and groups and has taught in tertiary, secondary and primary school settings. She helped to found Ghilgai Steiner School in Melbourne the Steiner school in Cairns.

Nila is currently working on her first book about the spiritual experiences of ordinary people. She has worked consciously with intuition for some time now and has many confirmations that our lives are enriched and deepened when we learn to recognize and follow the voice of the Divine.

Cost: Three day course $420 (single room) / $280 (twin share/concession) includes all meals and accommodation

Register here or contact us if you have any questions

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Listening to the Landscape: Earth's stories at Silver Wattle
to Nov 24

Listening to the Landscape: Earth's stories at Silver Wattle

Led by Anne Felton and Peri Coleman

This course is for people wanting to connect more deeply with the land that sustains us. Meet the soils, rocks, and landscape features around Silver Wattle, including Weereewa (Lake George). Hear the spirit and substance of what rocks tell us about how they were formed, and what has happened to them before and after they appeared at the land surface. Learn how plants are uniquely adapted to different parts of the landscape. Visit a mother tree, Elder trees and rare plants and find out why they are so special. Discover and appreciate the Rock-Soil-Water interrelationships that sustain all plants and animals, including us.

This course is suitable for all ages, young and old. Adaptations will be made for those who have difficulty with mobility.

Locals who are not Quakers are encouraged to attend to get to know their own landscape.

Cost:  Four day course $585 single room or $465 (shared room/ concession). The price includes all meals and accommodation.


More detailed information here

Anne has had a long professional career in geology and Peri is an internationally renowned botanist and restorer of salt marsh environments. Both are long time Quakers. Their backgrounds enable them not only to interpret earth history from a western science viewpoint, but also to connect with the wonder of creation.

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End of Year Retreat:  Reviewing the Old, Dreaming the New
to Jan 4

End of Year Retreat: Reviewing the Old, Dreaming the New

Led by Sue & David Woods

This “End of Year Retreat” provides a space for you to reflect on the year that has been and the year that is to come. The retreat will take a contemplative approach embracing communal worship and meditations on scripture and poetry. There will be daily walks on the property to ground us in the earth's wisdom and in our own bodies. There will also be ample use of silence, allowing as much time as possible for connection with the land, personal reflection, journaling and rest.

Cost: Six day course $850 (single) or $675 (shared room/ concession). The price includes all meals and accommodation.


Sue and David Woods manage Campfire in the Heart Retreat and Conference Centre in Alice Springs.  As a part of their life in Alice, they have facilitated Wide Skies and Open Hearts Retreats at Campfire in the Heart over the past 10 years. They are steeped in a life of communal Hospitality, Scripture and Prayer through their shared life previously in leadership of the community of St Josephs House of Prayer in Goulburn.

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