We work to protect the safety of all students. We reserve the right to remove any student from any class, sitting group, retreat, or any event if the student is disruptive to the safe learning environment we maintain for all.

Cancellation & Refunds

We reserve the right to cancel a class or event due to low enrollment or other circumstances which would make the event non-viable. If InsightLA cancels an event you’ve registered for, you will be offered a full refund. If an event has to be postponed for any reason, you will have the option to either receive a full refund or transfer your registration to the same event at the new, future date.

Donations are not refundable.


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  • Location Benedict Canyon Retreat House
  • Experience Levels All
  • This class is a donation based class. No one will be turned away for lack of funds.
  • Date Starts Friday, October 11, 2024
    Ends Sunday, October 13, 2024

    2 nights

Refund and Event Policies

This event is the in-person version of a hybrid  retreat which will take place both in-person and online. To register for the online version of this event, click here.

Concentration is one of the 5 strengths of Buddhist practice (along with faith, energy, mindfulness and wisdom). How concentrated is your mind?

Join InsightLA Senior Teacher Melissa McKay for a non-residential weekend retreat devoted to developing concentration and thereby, a steady and peaceful mind.

A Steady, Peaceful Mind

Our minds aren’t naturally concentrated.  It takes intention and practice to develop concentration as a habit of mind.  Doing so brings great benefit to our efforts in the world.  When our attention is focused versus scattered our work is more effective, our creative capacity broadens and deepens, we listen better and feel more connected and at ease in our life.  

Concentration also benefits our spiritual development.  When the mind is concentrated, the negativity of the mind is held at bay, making us serene, tranquil, joyful, and able to see more clearly.  A concentrated mind is quiet, clear and luminous, ripe for blissful states of consciousness.

Who is this retreat for?

This non-residential retreat is for anyone who would like to work on developing concentration, tranquility, joy, and bliss. We will learn about the 40 different concentration objects that the Buddha taught.

Expect both sitting and walking meditation practices, dharma talks, and space for optional sharing and discussion. 

Participants are welcome to sign up for one or both days of this retreat. The schedule is as follows: 

6:30-7:30pm  Introduction and Talk
7:30-7:45  Stretch
7:45-8:30 Meditation

Saturday and Sunday:
6-6:45am  Optional meditation at home
6:45-8    Breakfast at home
8:30-9:30   Guided meditation
9:30-10:15  Walking meditation
10:15-11    Sitting meditation
11-11:30  Walking meditation
11:30-1pm   Lunch and rest
1-2     Sitting meditation
2-2:45  Walking meditation 
2:45- 3:30  Sitting meditation
3:30- 4  Tea and optional talking
4-5   Questions and Discussion
5-9  Optional home practice on Saturday night

Where is this retreat located?

This event will take place in person at the Benedict Canyon Retreat House. Find directions, parking and accessibility information here.

Attendees are encouraged to carpool, as there is limited parking. To offer or join a ride, please click here.


“Melissa is one of the most experienced practitioners of the new generation of teachers.” -Jack Kornfield

“Melissa is so obviously immersed in the teachings and shares them with such grace and eloquence.  She makes herself so accessible and genuinely cares about her students.  I felt so held in the light of her awareness.” -Anonymous Student 

“Melissa is a thoughtful teacher known for her deep care of students and skillfulness in making  esoteric teachings accessible and relatable to modern day living.” -Lodro Rinzler (author and teacher)

Suggested Donation: $185


Melissa McKay Teacher

Melissa began her path of meditation in 1998 with a small group of dedicated practitioners in Oakland, CA with her beloved, though not known, teacher named Barbara Janus who introduced her to the teachings of Sayadaw U Pandita of Burma. Her first retreat was with Sayadaw U Pandita and the profound changes she saw in... Read more

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