November Weekend Retreat: Time

The things we say about time seem to indicate that time is more than one thing:

“Time is like a handful of sand – the tighter you grasp it, the faster it runs through your fingers”;

“May you live in interesting times”Clock Mossbourne01

“There is no time like the present”

“Time and tide wait for no man”

“Time is a great healer”

“Time is money”


Is your time a scarce commodity or an infinite resource? Is your time marked by “deadlines”, “special events” or “time signatures”? Is your time a road ahead, an eternal river or a carousel? 

This weekend retreat offers “time-out” to focus on time and the beliefs, assumptions and biases that colour our understanding and experience of time. Retreatants will be invited to explore time through areas of personal interest, whether that be physics, cookery, music, history, science-fiction, religion/ritual, language/linguistics or cross-cultural experiences.   There will also be opportunities to consider our perception of time through experiential and creative activities.  Bringing together our different knowledges and experiences, we will attempt to negotiate a middle way which may challenge previously held beliefs!

There will be periods of meditation, discussion groups and experiential workshops during the weekend. There will also be opportunities to socialise, quietly reflect or to explore the Quaker village of Jordans (the burial place of William Penn). The weekend promises a friendly, informal and supportive atmosphere in the beautiful Buckinghamshire countryside.  

Where? YHA Jordans, Welders Ln, Jordans, Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire HP9 2SN. See this link for more details. The hostel will be exclusively hired by MWS.

When? Fri 4th November 2016 (6pm) – Sun 6th November 2016 (2pm)

Leader/ facilitator Nina DaviesNina Photo

I grew up at various locations on the Metropolitan Line and in Singapore. From the age of 6 I was set on becoming an archaeologist but in 1989, following a last minute swerve, found myself at Sussex University studying Social Anthropology in the School of African and Asian Studies. After graduating,  having been fully deconstructed by the post-modern epidemic, I sought to find some answers to the question of “me” by learning to mediate at my local Buddhist Centre. 

In 2004, now being the mother of a 3 year old boy and a baby girl, questions about gender and identity became paramount. I studied identity and gender studies first with the Open University and then at Leeds University. I developed a particular interest in how identity is constructed in relation to objects, especially inherited objects, and how these pieces of material culture are woven into narratives of personal and family histories. Archaeology had found its way back to me, giving the strange illusion that time had somehow completed a circle!

I work in the field of social care,  still meditate, still question identity from a feminist perspective and am now a mother of three. I am also happy to appear in narratives about myself as long as they are never complete and do not hold tightly to ideas about absolute truth!

Who is the retreat for? Anyone aged 18 or over interested the Middle Way. You do not necessarily have to be a member of the Middle Way Society (though we hope you will consider joining) nor from any particular religious or other background. Experience of meditation is helpful, but some support can be given to those who have not meditated before.

Cost: Total cost for this weekend is £105, including all accommodation and food. You can either pay this amount in full on booking, or pay a non-returnable deposit of £25, with the balance payable at the beginning of the retreat. If you would like to join the retreat but cannot afford this amount, please get in touch (see ‘questions’ below) explaining your circumstances: concessions can be discussed on a case by case basis, but depend on the financing of the retreat costs as well as your ability to pay.

Equipment: Please bring meditation cushions/ stool if you use them, and if you play a portable musical instrument, please bring it if possible.

Retreat conditions: To help create an atmosphere supporting integrative practice, people attending the retreat will be asked not to use electronic devices such as mobile phones, computers, radio or TV during the course of the retreat, except for the purposes of the retreat programme or for urgent personal reasons.

Travel: Jordans is easily accessible from London. Click here for a Google map.

By car: Leave the M40 at J2, A355 to Beaconsfield. At the second rounabout (A40) head for Gerrards Cross. After half a mile, turn left onto Potkiln Lane. After 1 mile turn right onto Welders Lane. From Seer Green station: through the car park, at T junction turn left on Long Bottom Lane, after 0.5 miles turn left on to Jordans Lane, then right at Welders Lane.

By train: There are regular trains with Chiltern Railways from London Marylebone to Seer Green, which takes about 25 minutes. From Seer Green it is less than a 1 mile walk to Jordans Youth Hostel. If you would have difficulty with this walk, please contact us and we can arrange a lift.

Accommodation: Accommodation is in shared dormitories which will normally be allocated on a single-sex basis. We will allocate rooms on arrival.  We will negotiate and check the sleeping arrangements with you to make sure you are comfortable with them. We cannot guarantee to meet requests for single rooms.

To book Please fill in the form below. When you submit the form, it should be followed by a Paypal payment facility where you can pay either by Paypal or by debit/ credit card.  Paypal charges us 2% per transaction, so as an alternative you are welcome to pay by bank transfer: Account: Middle Way Society, Co-operative Bank, Sort Code  089299, account number 65711376. Please use your name as a reference. Once you have submitted the form and your payment, your place on the retreat will be secured.

Questions: For any further questions about the retreat, please contact ninalaradavies (at) For queries about payment please contact barry (at) (Substitute @ for (at)). Alternatively you can use the comment function below for public questions or comments.

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2 thoughts on “November Weekend Retreat: Time

  1. I’m a frequent listener of the Podcast. Can anything be done to improve the audio quality on Mr. Daniels’ microphone? Inititially I thought the quality issues had to do with the Podcast’s overall production system/values, however a recent episode with Krista Tippett had her voice coming through cleanly and clearly, yet Mr. Daniels’ side of the conversation was marred by poor audio quality.

    Love the Podcast

  2. Hi Dave
    Apologies for the delay in replying, I’ve been away for a week. Thanks very much for your concern about the audio quality of the podcast which is much appreciated and also your kind words about them overall. I’ve checked the Krista Tippett audio and while Krista is a bit louder (which I could have corrected) the audio quality of my voice seems fine. We have heard before from another listener that sometimes putting it up on youtube can have an affect on one of the speakers although I personally haven’t experienced that on any of the devices I’ve used. How did you listen to the podcast, via youTube, the mp3 audio file or from iTunes? Have you ever tried more than one of these to see if the problem is just isolated to one medium? Has anyone else experienced problems with my voice quality?

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