I will make a limited number of places in the 2008 retreat available on a dana basis. You will need to register in the normal way (send the contact person a $300 deposit after 11 Nov '07) and then apply for a dana scholarship. If accepted, you will agree to make a dana offering for the retreat before 15 May '08. There is no set amount for that offering but you will need to declare how much it will be when applying for the Dana Scholarship. If you send in the amount agreed upon before 15 May '08, you will attend the retreat for that price. If you wish to make an additional dana offering at the end of the retreat, you may do so, but are under no obligation to do so. If you fail to send in the balance agreed upon before 15 May '08 or cancel after 15 May '08, there will be no refund. If you are not accepted for a Dana Scholarship for any reason, your initial $300 deposit will be returned.
Yes, go ahead and register. Your check will be held until your are moved from the waiting list to the confirmed list. After registering, follow the instructions above.
However, there was a downside to offering the retreat this way: although 36 people registered for the retreat, 21 of them canceled, including 10 during the last week and 4 on the day before the retreat started. This generated quite a number of headaches for the organizers - including the fact that the cook bought too much food. Also a number of people were told that the retreat was full and were put on a waiting list. But with the late cancellations, no one on the waiting list was able to attend since they had made other plans, couldn't get airline tickets, etc.
In June of 2003, I again offered a dana retreat, but with a dana registration fee (no set amount). 60 People signed up for this retreat, however 20 canceled before the retreat started. So again people were told that the retreat was full and even that the waiting list was full. Yet when the retreat started, there was still room for a few more people.
So now some retreats that I teach are offered with no set cost, but there a fixed registration fee of $100 for these dana retreats. This is necessary in hopes of really getting a commitment from those who indicate that they will be attending.
Of course, along with a registration fee comes the necessity of a refund policy:
I really want to continue to offer dana retreats, but I now find that a fixed registration fee is necessary to prevent undue hardship for those who organize the retreats I teach. And maybe at some time in the future, Western Buddhism will have reached a level of maturity where I can again offer dana retreats with no registration "fee".
If you have questions or comments about this policy, please feel free to email me at .
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