How to live? What to do? – Buddhist Ethics for the Contemporary World

  • Nov 07

    Thursday Nov 7, 2024 - Tuesday Nov 12, 2024

    (Start time Thu 16:00 CET - End time Tue 14:00 CET) John Peacock, Yuka Nakamura
    • Please click on Register to select any options available.
    The fee does not contribute towards the livelihood of our teachers. You will be invited to offer teacher dana at the end of the course.

Price Options:

1. Single room: €700

2. Shared room: €630


The moment we begin to ask questions about how we are to live and act we are in the territory of ethics. Buddhism, despite being seen primarily through the lens of its contemplative practices, is an ethical path with meditation being one of the foremost ways of supporting that path. Early Buddhism offers not an ethical theory but a way of raising ethical questions and of attempting to live the reality of those questions in the quest for a free, virtuous, non-violent and compassionate life.
In this course we will examine questions such as: Is Sīla the same as 'ethics', as we understand it in the Western world? Is Buddhism a moral psychology or a contextual ethics, or both? Why are hiri (self respect) and ottappa (shrinking back from doing wrong) considered ethical 'guardians'? Why is the ethics of 'selflessness' so important? Can the Brahmavihāras be considered an ethical foundation for living with others? How do speech, action and intention impact our lives? In this course, we will also examine moral problems such as assisted dying; social inequality; racism; suicide; meat eating.
Along with the study element of the course we will engage in dedicated mornings of practice and have the opportunity for questions and reflections in the evening. This course is suitable for those that have meditation retreat experience.

Event Details


  • This retreat is offered on a dana basis – you will be asked to make an additional monetary donation at the end of the course to support the livelihood of the teacher.
  • If paying a deposit – balance to be paid no later than 4 weeks before the module start
  • A limited number of Bursary places are available for this course.

Additional Information: 

  • For experienced practitioners. 
  • Participants are asked to contribute 1 hour of work a day, in order to help with the running of the retreat
  • Periods of silent meditation practice, as well as teachings and study
  • All meals included – vegetarian food with the possibility of catering for special diets


is both an academic and a Buddhist practitioner of nearly fifty years. Trained initially in the Tibetan Gelugpa tradition in India, he subsequently spent time in Sri Lanka studying Theravada. After doing a doctorate in philosophy, he taught Buddhist and Western philosophy and then Buddhist Studies at the University of Bristol. He went on to be Associate Director of the Oxford Mindfulness Centre, co-direct the Master of Studies programme in MBCT(Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy) at Oxford University, and teach Buddhist psychology on the same course.  John is now retired from academia and continues to teach meditation, as he has done for more than thirty-five years.

YUKA NAKAMURA has practised Buddhist meditation in different traditions since 1993, has a PhD in Developmental Psychology and is a certified MBSR-teacher. Trained as a Buddhist meditation teacher by Fred von Allmen she teaches meditation at Beatenberg (Switzerland), Gaia House (UK), Insight Meditation Society (Barre, MA) and other places. Yuka offers MBSR-courses and MBI-trainings at the CFM Zentrum für Achtsamkeit (CH).