Contemplative Observatory

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Contemplative Observatory?

It is a facility for long-term retreats where contemplatives of all Buddhist and non-Buddhist traditions can come to train their minds in the practices of shamatha, vipashyana, and the four immeasurables, and other practices which do not disturb the silence required by most meditators. Where meditators and scientists can collaborate together and where retreatants can follow the contemplative training presented by Alan, all the way up to its culmination at a very accessible cost or by scholarships and donations.

Meditators who have completed a two month retreat under Alan’s guidance are well trained to continue in long-term retreat, we would like to create the optimal conditions for this purpose .

Alan has commented “As for the facilities themselves, it’s imperative that they be well built from the beginning so that maintenance costs will be minimized over the long term, and they should be comfortably by international standards, so that even older aspiring yogis can meditate in comfort. Food should likewise be healthy, including vegetarian and non-vegetarian for those who need animal protein to maintain their health and vitality. We need to consider carefully whether a single lodge or multiple cabins is optimal, and there should be a meeting hall in which the yogis can gather for teachings, meditation, and meetings when necessary.”

Who can be a member of the CO Network?

Any retreat center who can offer a place for long-term shamatha practitioners to meditate.

How can you build a CO in your country?

You might want to contact us first to check if there’s already a group in your country working on developing a CO that you could join.

If there’s no initiative in your country, we can put you in contact with other people who also wants to build a CO there and we would like to offer any advice and help we can.