What kind of place could be on Mindfulness Road in Pine Bush? Turn onto this short route and you’ll find Blue Cliff Monastery, a mindfulness practice center. Founded by Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh, it's is also a monastic training center.
My friend Susan and I wanted to meet there and a quick visit to their website told us Thursday was a good day to visit. Every Thursday and Sunday Blue Cliff welcomes the public for a "Day of Mindfulness” which for us included a video presentation by the founder, walking meditation, lunch, bookshop access and a Dharma sharing session. Our group of about 20 was a mix of locals, travellers, and residents of all ages and with different spiritual goals and levels of knowledge.
A Day of Mindfulness is held 9:30-3:00 and is free, though a donation is suggested. The vegan lunch was amazing and consisted of salad, tofu, soup, rice, cabbage and tea.
I recommend a visit the center’s website before making the trip to familiarize yourself with mindfulness and the teachings, as well as for practices on relaxing and meditation. Besides being a good day trip, the center holds recurring events and retreats.
Blue Cliff Monastery: www.bluecliffmonastery.org