The first of the 16 vows a person takes in the ceremony called Refuge goes:

I take refuge in awakening

 So… I will find my refuge in my awakened mind. Which is to say… The ultimate safe harbor is inside my mind, always available, always here.  Sometimes that can seem unlikely, but when I’ve tried everything else, everything I can grab and hold, and everything I can renounce and turn away from, it gets clearer: What I need must be here, not somewhere else.

“Your expression of the actual body is the harbor and the weir. This is the most important thing in the world, “ said an old teacher. Which is another clue. The harbor is my body, and the body of the world, of things. Armchairs and oxcarts and sandwiches, paperclips and badgers. Blink and look around and, unless you’re absolutely intent on missing it, you will see the light that’s suffusing everything, no exceptions.

This is a retreat where we will meditate and have both silence and conversation, where we will explore the ideas of refuge, the mythology of separation and homecoming,  and what it means to be at home in this world, the one that’s happening now.

Rachel Boughton

It’s both a personal journey, where new understandings can appear, and a chance to feel a deep affection for what’s happening now.  And you are invited to participate in a refuge ceremony at the end of the afternoon for two PZI members who have come to take the 16 vows. It’s a happy occasion and a good thing to share with other people.


  • A simple lunch will be provided. Bring something to share if you can.
  • Cost: $50 PZI members, $65 non members
  • Scholarships are available if money is a problem, just ask the registrar Corey Hitchcock.


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