MLE Retreat 2019 - Exploring Contemplative Life: Integrating personal, professional and spiritual aspects of our path

Welcome to the online registration site of the first Mind & Life Europe Retreat (MLE Retreat). A Mind & Life Europe retreat for younger scholars and professionals (by application only, limited number of participants).

In the original vision of Francisco J. Varela, the integration of wisdom traditions and science hinges upon the emergence of a generation of scholar-practitioners who have existentially succeeded – to some degree and each in their own way – in giving adequate space to their contemplative as well as professional training and practice. By nature, as both life and contemplative development are unpredictable, the process towards integration of these dimensions necessarily involves continuous adjustments, choices, and reorientations. It brings rewards, but also exacts a cost. For all of us who feel drawn or compelled to this type of existential project, the path is strewn with challenges.

This retreat offers an opportunity to systematically explore our individual trajectories, motivations, challenges and opportunities using contemplative practice and other tools for self-exploration and self-development. Which choices and circumstances have brought us to where we are? What is it we are striving for and why? How might we move forward towards this goal? What might be the cost, and are we willing to pay it?

Francisco J. Varela

Emphasizing individual and group work and employing an intensive contemplative and dialogic approach, the retreat is facilitated by experienced scholar-practitioners. As exploration of contemplative practice and its role in our present lives will be a key element for the retreat, younger and/or early career scholars and professionals who have an established, regular meditation practice are encouraged to apply.

Following the ESRI tradition to support young scholars in the context of contemplative science, this retreat takes place directly after the Contemplative Science Symposium 2019. Attendance of the CSS is a prerequisite for the application to the MLE Retreat. 

Submit application

Attendees of the MLE Retreat are eligible to apply for the Francisco J. Varela Awards for Contemplative research. Click here for more information.

For any questions, please email us: