Spring One-Month Hermitage

Gone to seed 5

with Marcia Rose

April 12 – May 10, 2015

Columbine Inn, Taos Ski Valley, New Mexico, USA

Two-week options:
April 12-April 26 or
April 26-May 10


Guidance for Vipassana, Brahma Vihara, and Concentration practices will be available.


The Mountain Hermitage offers a uniquely supportive space of solitude and silence for qualified individuals who wish to undertake longer periods of intensive meditation practice.  This retreat will offer the opportunity for  Vipassana/Insight,  Brahma Vihara (Loving-kindness, Compassion, Appreciative joy, and Equanimity) practice, and Samatha/Concentration in the lineage of Venerable Pa Auk Sayadaw.  In consultation with the teacher,  students will decide upon a course of practice that may be directed specifically toward Vipassana, Brahma Vihara or Samatha practice or some combination of the three.

The Mountain Hermitage will offer its eleventh annual One-Month Hermitage at the Columbine Inn this year from April 12 –May 10, 2015, and invites experienced practitioners to join us for either the full four weeks or a two-week period from either April 12 – April 26 or April 26 – May 10.  A scholarship fund has been established to offer financial aid to those who would otherwise not be able to attend and to promote diversity.  Applications and deposits are requested by January 31, 2015.  Late applications will be considered on a space available basis.  Hermitage retreats are small and intimate  — maximum 20 people — so it is good to apply early.


Practitioners wishing to join us for two weeks: You must have sat three or more 5-10 day retreats. Practitioners wishing to join us for four weeks: You must have sat four or more 5-10 day retreats OR a retreat of one month or longer. (If you have questions about your qualifications, you can call and speak with Hermitage staff.)

These retreats must have been led by a recognized teacher. Details of the qualifying retreats, including teachers’ names, dates, location and length of theretreat, must be documented on the application form.



“There was an understanding by staff and teachers of the combination of structure, freedom,
and deep/simple
teaching supportive of the practice of liberation.”
–Hermitage Retreatant

Marcia Rose will guide The Mountain Hermitage’s One-Month Hermitage. The One-Month Hermitage is designed to offer experienced meditators the opportunity for more independent, less structured practice for an extended period of time. There is no fixed retreat schedule during this Hermitage time. The guidelines for each individual’s practice are worked out in consultation with the teacher. The program will provide a combination of independent practice with the opportunity to train with the guiding teacher in varying aspects of mindfulness, loving-kindness, compassion, appreciative joy, equanimity,  and concentration practice. This will contribute to a comprehensive deepening of practice and understanding.

Yogis are expected to maintain sustained and continuous practice during their time at The Mountain Hermitage.  Teaching support will consist of 3-4 practice interviews per week, 3-4  Dhamma talks each week, and 1-2 guided sits per week.  Before each Dhamma talk there will be a renewed yogi group commitment to the refuges and precepts. Yogis will undertake one hour of work meditation daily.

The Mountain Hermitage offers a unique practice opportunity.  In order to benefit from this environment, applicants need to be largely self-sustaining in their practice and be comfortable in unbroken silence and solitude. All participants must be mentally stable and physically able to care for themselves. Everyone must have health insurance or be able to cover their expenses in case of illness or medical emergencies.  Any special needs must be discussed and agreed to in advance, as the staff is very small and cannot accommodate high levels of support for any individual.

It is asked that retreatants commit themselves fully to their stay.  All business and family obligations should be taken care of prior to arrival so that practice can be uninterrupted.


Marcia Rose Dec.2011 04Marcia Rose is the founding and guiding teacher of The Mountain Hermitage and founding teacher of Taos Mountain Sangha. She has been studying and practicing Buddhist teachings and meditation with Asian and Western teachers since 1970, primarily in the Theravada-Vipassana (Path of the Elders) tradition. Her own teaching reflects a clear influence from the Burmese Mahasi Vipassana and Pa-Auk Forest Monastery lineages with authorization from Venerable Pa Auk Sayadaw to teach Samatha and Jhanas in his lineage. She has also studied and practiced in the Dzogchen Tibetan Buddhist tradition with Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, Nyoshul Khen Rinpoche, and Tsoknyi Rinpoche. Marcia was resident teacher for staff at the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Barre, MA from 1991-1995. She has been one of the teachers for the annual three-month retreat at IMS, and currently is an occasional visiting teacher at IMS and a regular visiting at The Forest Refuge in Barre, MA.  Marcia teaches Vipassana, Concentration, Brahma Vihara, and Creative Process retreats in various U.S. and international venues, and is dedicated to offering these ancient and timeless teachings in ways that make them accessible and authentic for contemporary culture.

The staff of the One-Month Hermitage will consist of a resident Retreat Manager (the point of contact in case of any difficulties) and a Retreat Cook.
There will be three nutritious vegetarian meals a day.


Columbine entranceTHE RETREAT FACILITY

The Columbine Inn, in Taos Ski Valley, is a comfortable timber- frame lodge situated among tall pines at 9000 feet elevation in northern New Mexico’s beautiful Sangre de Cristo Mountains.  The Mountain Hermitage will have exclusive use of the Columbine Inn during the period of this one-month retreat, enabling us to provide the privacy, quiet, and sense of harmony  most conducive to intensive practice.

There is a lovely meditation hall,  indoor and outdoor walking areas,  and full Columbine end from belowdining room.  All of the rooms at the Columbine Inn include a private toilet and shower. Many of the rooms are spacious enough to allow for sitting and walking meditation for those wishing to practice in a more secluded setting.

Information about transportation and what to bring will be sent to those accepted into the retreat in time for making travel arrangements and packing.


The general retreat schedule will consist of group events such as meals and talks plus a suggested schedule of alternate hours of sitting and walking.  Retreatants may choose to follow the suggested schedule or tailor it to suit personal needs in consultation with the teacher.Meditation hall chairs and windows

5:30 a.m. – Group sit and chanting|
6:30 a.m. – Breakfast
7:15 a.m. – Work period
8:15 a.m. – Group sit with short Dhamma reflection
9:15 a.m.- 12:15 p.m. Walk and sit alternate hours or personal schedule
12:15 p.m.- Lunch
2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. Sit and walk alternate hours or personal schedule
5:00 p.m. – Tea
6:15 p.m. – 7:15 p.m. Sit and walk half-hours or personal schedule
7:15 p.m. – Dhamma talks or guided meditations when scheduled (refuges/precepts are chanted before the talks)
8:30 p.m. – 10:15 p.m. Sit and walk alternate hours or personal schedule


Walking 3Fees are on a sliding scale to allow you to pay according to your means. Our actual cost for the month per retreatant is $2585. A portion of our scholarship funds is being allocated for this retreat to allow us to continue to offer the low range on the sliding scale. Please pay as much as you are able to allow others to attend who need to pay less.  Any amount above $2585 will be gratefully received and treated as a tax-deductible donation.

For participants joining the One-Month Hermitage for four weeks
– 28 days:

$2186 (low end)   $2586 (actual cost)   $2986 (benefactor)

For participants joining the One-Month Hermitage for two week-
– 14 days:
$1093 (low end)    $1293 (actual cost)   $1493 (benefactor)

Some additional scholarship funds are available, and there is no fee for monastics.   Please fill out the special scholarship application form and include this with your regular application form. The Mountain Hermitage will gratefully receive donations to our scholarship fund to enable those in financial need to attend this retreat. Donations are tax-deductible and should be marked ‘Scholarship Fund’.


The retreat fees only cover basic expenses and operating costs. The teachers offers the Buddha Dharma without any set fee, and totally depend on DANA – on the generosity of their  students and benefactors – for the support of their daily life needs.

DANA, an ancient Pali word meaning generosity, giving, or gift, is central to the 2,600-year-old tradition of Buddhism. The teachings of the Buddha have been offered freely since the time of the Buddha. There was and is no way to put a price on the teachings of the truth – they are valuable beyond any fee one could set. At the end of the retreat, envelopes will be provided for you to offer Dana to the teacher. Giving to the teacher, from the heart, whatever feels appropriate, is the practice of Dana. You may also wish to offer Dana to the staff or to the Hermitage itself to support operating expenses or future scholarships.Chris doing laundry

Another way to support the Hermitage is to donate all or part of the cost of a meal for the retreat.

USE OF FEESSurya cooking 4

Your fees for the One-Month Hermitage will be used to pay for: Rental of the Columbine Inn and attached expenses; other general retreat expenses; a retreat cook; a small stipend for the retreat manager; a small parsonage to the teacher to cover ongoing home expenses for the duration of the retreat; teacher transportation.


Please send your deposit with your application. The deposit is:Ven D & Sister D in lunch line
Practitioners applying for the two-week retreat: $350
Practitioners applying for the four-week retreat: $600

The deposit will not be banked until your registration is confirmed and will be applied to the total fee for those accepted to attend. The deposit will be returned in full to those not accepted, or to those who are on a waiting list at the time that the retreat begins.


The full deposit must accompany your application, even if you are requesting scholarship funds. No monies will be banked until you are accepted into the retreat.

The balance of the retreat fee is due when you arrive for the retreat, or you can mail the balance to us in advance. If possible, we appreciate you paying the full fee (deposit plus balance) at the time of application or on acceptance, as this improves our efficiency. However this is not necessary. Please pay by check or money order in US funds, drawn on a US bank. We cannot accept foreign cash or bank drafts, but we can accept international money orders in US dollars.Checks/money orders should be made payable to THE MOUNTAIN HERMITAGE.  (Sorry but we are unable to accept credit cards.)


Cancellation fees apply to all confirmed registrations.

Cancellations received on or before January 31, 2015: your deposit will be returned minus a $75 cancellation fee.

Cancellations received between January 31, 2015 and February 22, 2015: your deposit will be returned minus a $150 cancellation fee.

Flowers in forestCancellations received between February 22, 2015 and March 22, 2015: your deposit will be returned minus a $275 cancellation fee (2 week retreatants)/ $425 cancellation fee (4-week retreatants).

Cancellations received on or after March 22, 2015, including non-attendance at the retreat: your deposit cannot be refunded. If you have already paid the balance, then that balance will be refunded minus the $350 cancellation fee/deposit (2 week retreatants) /$600 cancellation fee/deposit (4 week retreatants).


In the event of specific, unusual emergency circumstances, the cancellation policy can be discussed with The Mountain Hermitage Office Manager after May 10, 2015, when the One-Month Hermitage is concluded. If you attend the retreat but for some reason decide on your own to leave early, the deposit and balance you have paid cannot be refunded to you.


Anyone interested in attending all or half of the One-Month Hermitage should read this document and the separate Practice Guidelines. Then complete the Application form and Waiver of Liability, attach your deposit, and mail to: The Mountain Hermitage, PO Box 807, Ranchos de Taos, NM 87557.

Applications and deposits are requested by January 31, 2015. Late applications will be considered on a space available basis. Applications will be accepted only by mail, not by phone, fax, or e-mail, because they must be accompanied by the appropriate deposit. Incomplete registrations, including those without sufficient deposit, will be returned for completion. Each application will be carefully reviewed. In some cases, a personal or phone interview will be conducted with the guiding teacher prior to determination of suitability for this type of practice. All applications are processed by date received. We will respond within four weeks from receipt of your application.

If your application is not accepted for this retreat, your deposit will be returned.

WAIT LISTMorning view of ridge

Places are limited to 20 practitioners, so early application is advised. Once the retreat is full, you will be notified and placed on a wait list, and we will contact you if a place opens up. If it does not, then your deposit will be returned.
If you are placed on the wait list and you then cancel your registration before a space has become available, your deposit will be returned.

If you are placed on a wait list and are unable to attend the retreat, please let us know immediately.  As long as your name remains on a list, we assume you wish to attend. If a space becomes available, we will automatically confirm your registration. Once you are confirmed for a retreat, you are liable for applicable cancellation fees if you subsequently cancel.

Printable Documents and Forms….Red and yellow columbines-2

Introduction (print-friendly version of this page)

Practice Guidelines


Waiver of Liability

Scholarship Application and Information Sheet

Retreat Flyer