July 19 to 23 (2021) – From Hungry Ghost to Being Human

Event Start Date:
19th July 2021
Event End Date:
23rd July 2021
Event Venue:

Freely Given Retreats with Vince Cullen - Hungry Ghost Retreats - Nalagiri House

England – Newton Abbot

From Hungry Ghost to Being Human

No fee – by donation only ( Dana )

Organised by Freely Given Retreats

Monday 19 – Friday 23 July, 2021

Eden Rise
Sandwell Barns,
Totnes TQ9 7LJ,
United Kingdom

5-day Residential Mindful Recovery Retreat with Vince Cullen


Pre-registration is required for this event.
For retreat details and bookings, please go to www.freelygivenretreats.org

This retreat is offered freely by Vince Cullen and Freely Given Retreats.
Please ‘remember-to-remember‘ that a donation (dana) to support the teacher and the organiser will be gratefully accepted.

Vince will not be paid to teach this retreat. He offers the teachings freely on a donation (dana) basis as has been the tradition for the last 2,600-years. You are invited to bring along a donation on the day or to donate online at any time.

From Hungry Ghost to Being Human… Without Going Through Hell
Retreat Information

>>  Retreat Handout – Being Human Booklet
>>  Retreat Handout – The Forgiveness Workbook
>>  From Hungry Ghost to Being Human – Video Series

This Buddhist-inspired Mindfulness-based retreat is about creating and maintaining (Bhāvanā and Sati) an embodied intentionality (Karma) of harmlessness (Sila) through self-love (Metta), self-forgiveness (Khama) and self-direction (Sajja)

‘Being Human’ is a 5-day intensive residential retreat exploring ‘Buddhist’ practices that support our waking-up from cravings and aversions; that support our healing from addictions and compulsions, that support our recovery from greed and hatred and confusion.


Being Human - A Hungry Ghost Retreat for Freely Given Retreats

Being Human – A Hungry Ghost Retreat for Freely Given Retreats

‘Being Human’ is an encouragement to lift the veil and break the spell of universal cravings, aversions and confusions that so often manifest as addictions, compulsions; and harmful thinking and behaviours.

This is not a silent retreat but there will be periods of quietude including one complete day of silence.

Healing the Heart-Mind

This retreat includes a progressive investigation of self-views – through the traditional practices of Loving-kindness and Forgiveness – supporting the letting-go of hatred and ill-will for ourselves and for others.  We will learn to incline our minds towards kindness… there is no finer mindfulness!

It is important to note that you do not have to be ‘a Buddhist’ to practice any of the principles discussed, and meditation practices explored.

You should be kind to be a Buddhist;
but you do not have to be a Buddhist to be kind!

Each retreatant will be given a personal set of Tibetan Prayer Flags.  One side of each flag is decorated with woodblock prints of auspicious mantras, syllables and prayers – the other side is blank.

Prayer-flags at New Life Foundation

Everyone gets a set of personal Prayer-flags

  • Throughout the 5-days, as we progress through our retreat, we are invited to write the names – starting with our own name – of all the many people that we want to send the blessings of loving-kindness and compassion to on our personal prayer-flags.
  • We may also write our own personal aspirations, prayers and wishes creatively using words or images or symbols.
  • We may also write the names – starting with our own name – of the people from whom we might want to ask for forgiveness.
  • And lastly, we may write the names – starting with our own name – of all of the people that we may wish to forgive.

Hungry Ghost Retreats - I Forgive You Prayer-flag

“I forgive you. I forgive you now.”

Each day will start with mindful movement, then a morning reading followed by a 30-minute period of guided or silent meditation. Throughout each day there will be talks and discussions; and most importantly plenty of opportunities to practise sitting, walking and standing meditation.  The essential practices of Loving Kindness, Compassion, Joy-gladness and Equanimity will be central to each day’s practice.

Some potential learning outcomes of this retreat


• Learning to stay with the uncomfortable – Right Now It’s Like This
• Develop an appreciation of the liberating distinction between ‘abstinence’ and ‘abandonment’.
• A continued deepening of one’s own mindfulness meditation practice as a basic attitude in everyday life.
• A better understanding of the Buddhist principles and practices of mindfulness-based harm reduction, relapse prevention and waking-up from ‘addictions’ and compulsions.
• A deeper understanding and appreciation of the difference between ‘abstaining’ and ‘abandoning’ addictions, compulsions and harmful behaviour (i.e. the Training Precepts compared to the commitment of a Sajja [Vow]).
• The opportunity to take part in and/or lead Buddhist-oriented ‘Sit-and-Share‘ peer led support meetings.
• The voluntary and optional opportunity to make a Sajja [intention/aspiration/commitment/vow] as an outward manifestation of the heart’s desire to move away from suffering towards the end of suffering.

RETREAT COMMITMENT:  My commitment to each retreat is to prepare and share my formulation of these teachings for everyone’s benefit. However, we create a retreat together when we show up for ourselves and for each other. Retreatants are expected to adhere to the ‘Retreat Commitment’.  Just as our ‘waking-up’ requires our complete wholehearted commitment and our full effort, so does attendance on any Hungry Ghost Retreat.  It is a requirement on the retreat that you attend for the whole retreat and take part in all sessions. For example, if you are not an ‘early morning person’ then this retreat is not for you.

DANA: I offer this retreat freely in accordance with the Buddhist tradition of Dana (the cultivation and practice of the virtue of generosity) where you are invited to contribute financially to the teachings and the mentoring provided based on your individual income and the value that you place on what has been offered. My livelihood and the future of ‘Hungry Ghost’ retreats are dependent on the generosity of Dana. There will be more details of this during the retreat.


The end of another Hungry Ghost Retreat

The end of another Hungry Ghost Retreat

Please contact me if you want to need more information.