De-Tong Ling Retreat Centre (DTL) is a Buddhist retreat centre at the north-western end of Kangaroo Island in South Australia. We offer individual retreat accommodation in five self-contained earth-walled houses and hold two annual group meditation retreats, 4 days over Easter and 10 days in October.
The centre is under the spiritual guidance of Kyabje Thubten Zopa Rinpoche and is affiliated to the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition (FPMT). The separate FPMT Australia website is available here.
De-Tong Ling is located on 1300 acres of wilderness, 3 kms from the coast and with long views out to sea. The pure air and water of its pristine environment, and the deep silence of its remote location, provide ideal conditions for retreat.
We welcome retreat applications from all Buddhist traditions and other contemplative faiths. Experience in isolated meditation practice and willingness to abide by the Centre’s protocols are essential.
If you are considering retreat at De-Tong Ling please read all the information on our web site under Retreating before contacting the Individual Retreat Coordinator Katrin Rehder by phone on 83701193 or by email. To send a message please go to the Contact Us page on this website, select ‘Individual Retreat’ from the options listed below Who are you after? and complete the email details.
Group Retreat Centre Build starting in January 2016
After many years of planning De-Tong Ling is finally in a position to commence the building of the Group Retreat Facility. Set in a pristine wilderness environment at the western end of Kangaroo Island, this facility will be a wonderful addition to the individual retreat houses already built there. Retreat spaces of this quality are extremely rare in the world.
When completed the facility will accommodate up to 40 people, allowing the centre to host many retreats of varying lengths over the coming years.
The photo shows Lama Zopa Rinpoche inspecting the Group Retreat Facility site during his visit to the centre in May this year.
Skilled and unskilled workers needed.
We are looking for volunteers to come to De-Tong Ling and help for as long as they would like with the building of the Group Retreat Facility. The work involved includes: multiple building trades, general labourers, cooks/bakers, cleaners, Chai/tea makers, vegetable and landscape gardeners and many more.
To register your interest and find out more about this unique and rare opportunity, please go to the Contact Us page on this website, select ‘Building Coordinator’ from the options listed below Who are you after? and complete the email details.
The last year at De-Tong Ling has been a special time for all who have been involved with the Centre’s evolution. Again so many people made the journey at personal expense to the Centre to contribute in so many ways and achieve so much.
Much of the activity of the last year was to complete the many unfinished aspects of the Stupa and surrounds, so as to make the most complete offering of the Stupa to Rinpoche when he arrived. He was very happy with what was presented to him and made many favorable comments during his two day stay at the Centre. And most importantly, Rinpoche performed the consecration ceremonies and blessings of the Stupa and Padmasambhava statue.
At the last AGM in October an announcement was made of a large anonymous donation received by De-Tong Ling to build the Group Retreat Facility (GRF) which is situated on the other side of the lake from the Stupa. Rinpoche toured the site and is pleased with the overall layout. At the moment the plans for the GRF are with the KI Council and it is expected that all the required environmental and council approvals will be passed in the next few months and that building will commence in January 2016. When complete, the GRF will accommodate up to 40 people on retreat.
In early May De-Tong Ling launched a campaign to raise funds for the 1.5 diameter x 1.8 metre high prayer wheel that will be installed between the Stupa and lake. To date the campaign has been wonderfully supported but we still need to raise a further $11,000. The prayer wheel is being constructed from copper in Kathmandu and the beautiful house to accommodate it is also under construction on site using locally sourced stone. Part of the natural lighting of the wheel house will be from eight stained glass windows (offered by a student) depicting the Eight Auspicious Symbols. Once the wheel is installed all the pieces of advice on holy objects given by Rinpoche will be complete.
This Easter the second Calm Abiding retreat was held at the Centre . In late September the seventh annual Lam Rim retreat will be led by Venerable Dondrub. Refer to the poster below for details.
Thanks to ALL contributors to a wonderful year of service to the Dharma and De-Tong Ling Retreat Centre. Note that we send out periodic information emails so if you would like to receive them, please contact us. We are also quite active on Facebook. Will Abram
Lama Zopa Rinpoche Visit
The undoubted highlight of the year for the Centre was the incredible privilege of hosting Lama Zopa Rinpoche in late May. This was Rinpoche’s second visit, his last being in 1991 when the land was offered to him to be used as a dedicated Retreat Centre within the FPMT organisation, of which De-Tong Ling is an affiliated member.
About 70 people attended the very special day for the blessing of the centre and the consecration of the stupa. It was a time of celebration for everyone who has been involved with the centre over the years, especially in building the stupa, and a wonderful opportunity for all of us to be in the presence of Lama Zopa Rinpoche; a rare event that will be remembered for a long time to come.
Before Rinpoche blessed us with his presence we enjoyed a delicious lunch prepared by the very friendly locals and neighbours of DTL, Geoff and Marg. The weather was very kind to us on the day, being unusually warm and sunny, which was even more special as some of us were able to lead Rinpoche from his retreat house across the dam to the stupa, a 10 minute walk.
However as we came to the Padmasambhava statue near the stupa, Rinpoche gave us a teaching on Padmasambhava and asked for the statue to be blessed with a khata. All of a sudden and most unexpectedly it began to rain. Very auspicious!
The most devoted Ven. Roger took it upon himself to personally walk into the pond with a khata for Padmasambhava, as all the rest of us looked on in sheer amazement and slight amusement to see Ven. Roger walk into the pond in his robes.
It was truly amazing to see the gompa fill up with so many people, people who had came all the way from Adelaide just for the day and islanders who came to see the stupa and meet Lama Zopa for the first time. Being able to host Rinpoche at De-Tong Ling was the most beautiful experience to be part of.
We were also very honoured to welcome the sitar player Alan Posselt, who has been studying and performing Indian classical music for over 40 years. His offering to Rinpoche in the form of divine music was truly magical – Indian classical music in the presence of Lama Zopa Rinpoche on Kangaroo Island.
Rinpoche then gave a teaching on the benefits of building a stupa and on paying respect to holy objects. He also gave advice on the large prayer wheel house to be built at De-Tong Ling, next to the stupa.
Ven. Roger and Rinpoche stayed in one of the retreat houses that had been transformed into a beautiful home, complete with abundant offerings of foods and lights. In this way he had a taste of the peaceful isolation and surrounding nature of DTL.
The three days that Rinpoche and his entourage stayed were very inspiring and incredibly joyful for all of us, especially for those who were able to be part of the experience before and after the consecration. Some of us were even ‘lucky’ enough to go on a guided tour around the centre, always in Rinpoche’s presence.
Special thanks go to Cristina and Debra for helping to make the place look spotless, to Clasina for being ‘on call’ and available to do the odd jobs, Tim Eisemann, Tom Cousins and all others who helped on the day.