June 8, 2024 Meditation Retreat: No Self, No Problem – Exploring Anatta


The word anatta – which means no permanently abiding self – is at the very heart and core of Buddhist meditation practice, yet it is one of its most misunderstood concepts. 

When we explore anatta through our meditation practice, it doesn’t mean we’re trying to get rid of who we are; it means we’re becoming more and more willing to see through the small, false, often negative ideas or beliefs of what we call “self.”

In actuality, we are so much bigger than who or what we think we are. In fact, we are not only vast, but constantly fluid and changing: new in each moment, and dying in each moment … much like waves on the ocean.

During this silent meditation retreat, we’ll be exploring anatta through various teachings, along with meditations designed to help us loosen our tenacious grip on the ego and sense of “self,” so that we can experience more freedom, peace, and ease in our lives.

Grace in The Plains

We’ll be gathering for our retreat on Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5:00 p.m in the beautiful, peaceful sanctuary of Grace Episcopal Church in The Plains, VA. Best known for its lush, rolling landscape and equestrian traditions, The Plains is located about one hour west of Washington, DC, and about a half an hour from the Shenandoah Mountains.

The sanctuary includes big padded pews, and the quiet church grounds include a large, sunny Parish Hall, and several different natural places to sit and walk. *There are very limited spots on the floor if this is your preference for sitting; please let us know of your interest in one of these in the form below.

The format will include both guided and silent meditation, a dharma talk, and walking meditation both inside and on the lovely, spacious church grounds. Lunch will be in silence, and participants are asked to bring their own.

Please note: These daylong retreats usually fill with a waiting list about 3 weeks prior to the day of retreat. Meditation experience is recommended, but not required. These retreats are not recommended for those under age 18.

New to retreats? Read: What Is A Retreat Like?


“As a newbie, I was unsure if I would be able to hang in … When it was over, I didn’t want it to end and was in deep, deep gratitude for the experience; I know it will marinate within me for a very long time, and the impact will be shared forward and outward.  The cadence of the meditations was wonderful, and I surprised myself when tears flowed at various times – such a gift to sit quietly and emote naturally. I look forward to attending again, and again …”

“Shell, thank you for a beautiful and powerful day. This retreat was transformative for me, truly a day of awakening. Thank you for your loving and compassionate guidance.”

“Thank you for leading such a beautiful retreat. I felt completely wrapped up in the comfort, safety and structure of the day. It was pitch perfect.”

“As always, it was a pleasure to experience another one of your retreats; each one is a gem and I cherish them. I really feel blessed to have experienced so many hours of your excellent teaching, you really are an expert at what you do and I truly admire the way you hold the space for us as you lead class and retreats.”

“Yesterday was awesome! Seven hours of silence and meditation, just what I needed!! Great leader, great people, great view, great day!! I feel so refreshed! Looking forward to doing it again in the future! Thanks so much Shell.”

“Thank you again for the fabulous experience, and for your expertise that you are imparting to curious minds such as mine. I am grateful for the exposure, and realize I have much to learn about the art of meditation. Thank you for making my first experience pleasurable.

OUR RETREAT LOCATION: Grace Episcopal Church, 6507 Main St., The Plains, VA 20198



Fee: $85 In-Person Registration; $40 Private online streaming. Late registration is unavailable the day of retreat. Once you’ve registered, you’ll receive detailed instructions, suggestions, and directions.

Cancellation Policy: The administrative fee for cancellations made up to two weeks prior to the retreat is $35. Full payment is forfeited two weeks prior to the retreat, and we can no longer offer refunds for any reason, without exception. We also cannot offer credit or transfers, including transfer to live-streaming. If you register for online attendance, we are unable to transfer your registration to in-person.