Despite the growing interest Spain has experienced in Buddhism, the heart and centre of the country lacks a retreat centre that genuinely meets the needs of practicing Buddhists. A retreat is a precious opportunity to temporarily suspend our day to day activities and live in an environment of peace and tranquility. Naturally the mind enters a state of calm that allows us to progress spiritually. After a retreat the mind emerges renewed and with greater inspiration, and having been able to increase our innate qualities, such as peace and clearance of mind, we feel happier and acquire a new perspective on life.
For this very reason, our master, the Venerable Lama Geshe Tsering Palden, has encouraged us to create a place that provides all the conditions necessary so that we are able to recognize and develop the true potential of our mind.
For a long time the Buddhist Community Thubten Dhargye Ling has been searching for the perfect place to build a retreat centre. With great delight we are able to announce that we have found a very special site to develop this wonderful project. The retreat centre The Garden of Love and Compassion will be built in the Caceres county of La Vera, just two hours drive from Madrid.
The Centre is located in a tranquil environment, surrounded by oak, olive and fig trees and adjacent to waterfalls, ravines and a reservoir. With wonderful views of the highest mountains of the Sierra de Gredos, the Almazor peak is visible from all parts of the estate. Carefully supported by the loving care of our masters, The Garden of Love and Compassion retreat centre will be a living expression of the richness of the Gelugpa tradition.
The Garden of Love and Compassion will be a centre for Buddist study and practice following the mahayana vajrayana tradition. Our objective is to provide the perfect environment, both auspicious and friendly, for visitors from whatever country, who wish to learn and put into practice the teachings of the Buddha. In order to do this we will offer regular events and courses in Buddhist philosophy, in addition to individual and group retreats.
The starting point for our project is the restoration of the main house on the estate, while subsequently our intention is to build a second property and to extend the amenities. Initially we will be able to provide accommodation for 40 people in our 29 bedrooms (11 double and 18 single). The bedrooms will be fully furnished with en-suite bathrooms and heating / air conditioning.
We will have, in addition, a camping area where one will be able to pitch tents. The gompa will be able to hold up to 70 people and we will also have communal sitting rooms and a small library. Furthermore the large estate will allow you to walk and enjoy the natural environment: the oak and pine woodland, stunning views and access to the reservoir, all of which will help naturally calm our minds.
Today we have the task of equipping The Garden of Love and Compassion with the infrastructure that will allow it to enter into operation and for this we need to raise funds with which to cover the necessary reforms. With the support of those who share our vision we can get the retreat centre that our teacher has visualised for us.