Teaching – New Zealand



Ongoing: Monday Morning Online Sitting

Start your week well by joining Auckland Insight for a regular Monday morning Zoom sitting hosted by our Guiding Teacher, Jill Shepherd
Mondays 7:30- 8:15 am NZT. Everyone is welcome.

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/3011573331 Meeting ID: 301 157 3331


Ongoing: Thursday Evening Sitting and Talk

Feel free to join Auckland Insight for a regular Thursday evening sitting and talks by our Guiding Teacher, Jill Shepherd or regular facilitators from the group.
Time and date: Thursdays 7:00-8:45 pm NZT. Everyone is welcome.
Location: 175 Garnet Road, Westmere 1022 Auckland (entry off Faulder Ave)
You can find previous talks in this series given by Jill to Auckland Insight here:
https://aim.dharmaseed.org/talks/
Please email aucklandinsight@gmail.com for any questions.


July 10: one-day Insight Dialogue workshop

registration now open

Introduction to Insight Dialogue

Insight Dialogue is an interpersonal meditation practice that brings the mindfulness and tranquility of traditional silent meditation into our experience with others. Resting on the foundation of traditional Buddhist teachings, this practice offers a way to integrate wisdom and compassion into our relational lives through mindful speaking and mindful listening.

In this one-day non-residential workshop, we will use the power of relational meditation practice to understand the habits of heart and mind that lead to stress and distress, and how to free ourselves from those habits so that we can live together with greater ease and happiness.

Working together in pairs and small groups, we will explore the six guidelines of Insight Dialogue in conjunction with the classical Buddhist teachings on Wise Speech: speech that is “… spoken at the right time … spoken in truth … spoken affectionately … spoken beneficially … spoken with a mind of good-will.”

For more information about the practice of Insight Dialogue, please see https://insightdialogue.org/relational-practices/insight-dialogue/

This workshop is best suited to people with an established meditation practice, but previous insight dialogue experience is not required.

Time and date: 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Sunday 10 July 2022
Location: Westmere, Auckland
Teacher: Jill Shepherd
Cost: $50 + dāna*  
To register: here


June 28 – July 3: five-day study retreat 

FULL – please apply to be on waiting list!

The seven factors for Awakening on the Buddha’s Path to Freedom

The Seven Factors for Awakening provide a pathway to the goal of spiritual practice: complete enlightenment. The Seven Factors are: Mindfulness, Investigation of States, Energy, Joy, Tranquility, Concentration and Equanimity.
The cultivation of these Factors also gives a way of discerning in the here-and-now what is needed in response to our moment-to-moment experience. The Factors enable us to upright our hearts in the present moment and establish a conducive relationship to whatever is arising.
Mindfulness is the primary Faculty, practised throughout. From this foundation of mindfulness we learn how to balance the restless, anxious mind (cultivating the factors of Tranquility, Concentration and Equanimity) and the flat, dull mind (cultivating the factors of Investigation of States, Energy and Joy).
When these Seven Factors are all present the mind settles into its natural state of pure unalloyed awareness, free of suffering.

This five-day dharma study and practice retreat offers an opportunity to explore and develop this primary framework in the Buddha’s teaching.
The retreat will be grounded in noble silence, to support your deepening understanding and integration.
The schedule includes:

  • shared enquiry into core texts and teachings;
  • guided and silent sitting and walking meditation;
  • relational practice, contemplating together in pairs and small groups;
  • optional individual meetings with the teachers; and
  • a period of optional, gentle mindful movement.

This retreat is best suited to people with an established insight meditation or mindfulness practice. 
Location: St Francis Retreat Centre, Hillsborough, Auckland
Teachers: Willa Reid, Elizabeth Day and Jill Shepherd
To register: here


August 26 – September 4: nine-day retreat

Healing the heart, refining the mind, finding freedom

In the Buddha’s teaching, going on retreat can be understood as a powerful form of “taking refuge,” by temporarily retreating from our external responsibilities to take care of our inner life.
The peaceful natural environment of Te Moata supports deep rest and renewal, which in turn, supports the strengthening of our inner resources, our connection with sangha/community and our capacity to live with more ease and freedom in whatever circumstances we find ourselves in.
Over the course of nine days, we will explore a variety of foundational Buddhist practices, including the Four Establishments of Mindfulness that orient us to deep freedom, the four Brahmavihāra practices of kindness, compassion, joy, and equanimity that open the heart and mind, and some relational practice meditating together in pairs or small groups, to strengthen our sense of sangha/community.

Location: Te Moata Retreat Centre, Coromandel
Teachers: Jill Shepherd and Di Robertson
To register: here


*Dāna: In most Buddhist traditions the teachers are not paid to teach. Instead, the teachings are given on a ‘dāna’ basis – dana being the Pali word for generosity or giving freely – so there will be an opportunity to offer a donation for the teaching at the end of the event.