Welcome to Sudarshanaloka, the idyllic “Land of beautiful (or happy) vision.” The vision of Sudarshanaloka extends beyond the breathtaking vistas of hills, water, and native bush. It encompasses a vibrant spiritual community united in their commitment to practicing the teachings of the Buddha. Aspiring to manifest profound awakening and cultivate the beauty that arises within the sangha.

Sudarshanaloka is a beautiful forested property located near Thames on the Coromandel Peninsula in New Zealand. The retreat centre offers breathtaking views of hills, water, and native bush, making summer retreats a special kind of adventure. However, in order to become a year-round sanctuary for spiritual growth, Sudarshanaloka faces a significant obstacle.

Currently, only one room in the building is heated, rendering winter retreats impractical for all but the most resilient individuals. The cold and damp environment not only affects the comfort of retreatants but also undermines the centre’s ability to generate sustainable income. Moreover, it limits the invaluable opportunity for practitioners to connect with the sangha and deepen their spiritual practice.

Emma Mayhead, a GFR Mitra from New Zealand, who is currently on the Dharma Life course at Adhisthana. 

To overcome this challenge, the team at Sudarshanaloka is undertaking an essential upgrade that will transform it into a year-round sanctuary for spiritual growth. A new, efficient boiler and comprehensive heating system will be installed, unlocking the full potential of the retreat centre. It raises some wonderful possibilities; retreats that span every season, providing warm and cozy bedrooms, as well as a welcoming shrine hall, allowing participants to fully immerse themselves in their practice and connections.

Sudarshanaloka has a 20-year supply of wilding pines that can be utilised for firewood, enhancing environmental efficiency and eliminating the need for external firewood purchases. This initiative also aids in the regeneration of native plants and animals. Wood fire is known to be more eco-friendly than LPG, diesel, or coal.

With the upgraded heating system, Sudarshanaloka will break free from the constraints of seasonal limitations and offer transformative retreat experiences throughout the year. The increased accessibility and appeal of year-round retreats will attract a broader range of participants, ensuring a steady stream of income to support the maintenance, development, and future of this unique retreat center.

Zoe, a Mitra from New Zealand, explains why a boiler is so vital. 

To make this vision a reality, the Sudarshanaloka community invites individuals to join them in realizing the full potential of the center. The New Zealand Sangha has already contributed $28,000, for which they are deeply grateful. This is now the final push to complete this vital project and establish Sudarshanaloka as a year-round haven where beauty, practice, and connection flourish, nurturing the hearts and minds of all who seek refuge within its embrace.

Windhorse Trust and FutureDharma have generously agreed to match every gift, up to NZ$9,333 (£4,769) until August 1st. This incredible opportunity means that every donation made today will be tripled, significantly increasing its impact.

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If you would like to support Sudarshanaloka, your gift today will be tripled!

A TikTok video by Emma Mayhead filmed at Sudarshanaloka.