Tree in water at dusk

Join us on a five-day residential, silent retreat to explore purifying your mind to access its naturally spacious, illuminated beauty. Wednesday, October 24 – Sunday, October 28.

During the retreat you’ll be offered step-by-step instructions on using mindfulness meditation and Buddhist principles to rid your mind of the mental defilements that mar its essential Buddha nature. The Buddha taught that genuine enlightenment lies precisely in purity of mind, and a primary purpose of spiritual practice is to unburden the mind of its egoic conditioning in order to achieve liberation.

About the Retreat

The retreat, taking place over five days and four nights, will be led by AIM’s founder and lead teacher, Ronya Banks. As a Vipassana (Insight Meditation) silent retreat, the schedule will include periods of sitting meditation, walking meditation, daily dharma talks, Q&A periods, teacher meetings, and optional stretching and chanting.

The retreat is appropriate for both beginning to advanced meditators. The only prerequisite is a genuine inquisitiveness and a call to the spiritual life.

The Teacher

Ronya Banks

Ronya Banks is the founding teacher of Asheville Insight Meditation, an Insight Meditation community in North Carolina. She has had a daily meditation practice since 1985, and she has been a meditation teacher for over ten years. She has attended over a year’s worth of meditation retreats with more than 30 internationally known Vipassana teachers.

Ronya is a graduate of the Spirit Rock/IMS Community Dharma Leader training program. She practiced renunciation for a period as a Theravada Buddhist monastic. Her eclectic, easy-going teaching style is informed by her love for intensive meditation practice as well as the vast body of Theravada Buddhist teachings.

Retreat Details

Heartwood Refuge

Wednesday, October 24, 5:00pm – Sunday, October 28, 11:00am.


The retreat will be held at the beautiful Heartwood Refuge Retreat Center in Hendersonville, North Carolina. The retreat center offers both single occupancy and double occupancy rooms.

The dormitory rooms each have their own private bathroom/shower and are located in a building separate from the meditation building.

  • Meals: Vegetarian. Inquire about any food restriction needs at
  • Linens: Provided.
Registration Fee

The cost is for room and board only. The payment of the teacher is dana-based through your generosity.

Payment plans are available for those with financial need. Both credit cards and checks are accepted.

  • Fee: $356
  • Note: Single-occupancy rooms are available on a first-come, first served basis. Please arrive early (2pm) if you wish to secure a single room.

Register and pay for the retreat at the Heartwood Refuge website.


For more information or assistance, contact Heartwood staff at

View all retreats »

View All Classes and Workshops »

View All Upcoming Events »

Go to the Calendar »