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This retreat will allow us to look at ways to help us cultivate a good heart, the mind dedicated to attaining enlightenment in order to benefit all sentient beings. It will be of great benefit to Ngondro and Mahamudra students, and those wishing to take time out for personal dharma practice.

“For a Buddhist practitioner, the goal is to develop this genuine compassion, this genuine wish for the well-being of another, in fact for every living being throughout the universe.”
Quote from HH Dalai Lama

Daily Programme

06:00 – 07:00  Green Tara
07:00 – 08:00  Meditation
08:00 – 09:00  Breakfast
09:00 – 10:00  Talk & Guided Med
10:00 – 13:00  Personal Practice
13:00 – 14:30  Lunch and rest
14:30 – 17:00 Personal Practice
17:00 – 18:30  Own Time
18:30 – 19:30  Soup
19:30 + Discussion and Chenrezig puja

To book, click here.

Subsidized retreat cost: R2200 for 8 nights (no further discounts apply).

Retreat Support

This retreat will be guided by Alan Muller, with both group practice and time for individual practice. Alan Muller lives in Tara’s Valley, next to the retreat venue. He took refuge in 1997 with Akong Rinpoche. In 2003, he completed a one-year closed retreat under the guidance of Lama Yeshe Rinpoche at Samye Ling Monastery in Scotland. During this period, he took novice monks vows. Alan remained a novice monk for six years and now presents courses and retreats as a layperson. He has formed Ngondro groups since 2004 around Southern Africa.Places are limited, so please let us know as soon as possible if you would like to join in.

To book, click here.

Tara’s Valley Retreat Centre

Tara’s Valley was chosen by Akong Rinpoche for personal practice retreats as a 4-year traditional retreat is out of the reach of most people leading modern lives. It is a great challenge for lay practitioners to find the time or place to complete such practices as the Ngondro – the foundational practices of Tibetan Buddhism. The retreats are not closed and people can go for walks in the surrounding areas.

The retreat area is sustainably built, and uses solar power for lighting and water heating, and wind power for water pumping. There are two adjacent buildings; a brick-built house, which contains four single retreat rooms, a kitchen/dining area and the shrine room, and a Lassak (mud)-built house with three single rooms.


“I have to report on the most awesome dharma talk I attended today. Alan talked on How to practise meditation more effectively. I have always known he is, probably our foremost South African Bodhisattva and have noticed how the advice he gives is increasingly deeply wise and compassionate.
His talk blew me away! I was totally transfixed the entire talk.. He covered pivotal advice of great masters and then drew it all together showing how it all applied in our daily lives. The talk was easy to follow and also very dense. It could have served as the outline for a longer retreat. The content was superb and the structure of the talk equally superb and aimed to get us to really understand what he was teaching us.
I think he is a teacher who can guide us magnificently. We lament that we don’t have teachers. But we have Alan, right here. He is gentle and humorous in his presentation and does not go for big drama. I appreciate this and I’m sure other people will do so.
I am so so excited and serious and believe that Alan is the teacher (or one of them) that we are looking for.
Maxine Fine