The Path to Awakening: Insight Meditation Retreat - Lottery Sign-up

Registration for this retreat is closed

Registration is closed for this retreat.
May 09 - May 17, 2023 (Tuesday to Wednesday)

IMPORTANT: Given the overwhelming interest in this retreat, Joseph has requested that we also offer an online version that will include remote access to all talks and sits in the meditation hall as well as dedicated practice support for online participants. The online version of this retreat is now closed to new registrations. An audit option is still available. Please click here for more information and to register. If you have questions about the audit option, email IMS Online at imsonline(at)

Due to the popularity of this retreat, admission is by lottery. All registrations were due by November 7, 2022 at midnight ET.

If you applied for this retreat both of the last two years it was offered at IMS (i.e. the 2019 and 2020 courses led by Joseph Goldstein) and were not confirmed, you are eligible for special consideration this time, provided you register and notify us prior to the lottery deadline that you missed out twice previously (email 'registration(at)

Because registrations for this course will be particularly high, we will conduct an initial lottery for a select number of spaces, specifically for those who have unsuccessfully applied twice before. We will then conduct a second lottery to fill the retreat from all remaining registrations.

On November 8, 2022, we will conduct the lottery including all registrations received by November 7, midnight (Eastern Time). Using the results of the lottery:
~Initially we will fill the available spots in the retreat through the lottery. Those selected will receive an email with further instructions and will need to complete the registration process within one week, as described below.
~Those not confirmed immediately will be randomly added to a waitlist and notified by email about their status, including waitlist number.
~Later, as people cancel, we will offer spots to people on the waitlist. They will need to complete the registration process within one week, as described below.

If you are selected either through the lottery or later, and a spot opens for you from the waitlist, you will receive an email message with further instructions on how to complete your registration and make a retreat deposit. These steps will be required within one week of notification in order to reserve your spot in the retreat. Because it is critical for you to complete this step, we recommend adding the email address we will be writing from,, to your email contacts list and monitoring your email closely after the lottery. We can't assume responsibility for messages not responded to in a timely manner. If we notify you that a spot is open for you, and you don't complete the registration process in the instructions we send within a week, we will offer your spot to the next person on the waitlist and cancel your registration. Because of the very large number of people interested in this retreat, and the limited resources of our department, we ask that you refrain from writing or calling about the retreat unless truly necessary. Thank you.


Insight meditation (vipassana in Pali, the language of the original Buddhist teachings) is the simple and direct practice of moment-to-moment mindfulness. Through careful and sustained observation, we experience for ourselves the ever-changing flow of the mind/body process. This awareness leads us to accept more fully the pleasure and pain, fear and joy, sadness and happiness that life inevitably brings. As insight deepens, we develop greater equanimity and peace in the face of change, and wisdom and compassion increasingly become the guiding principles of our lives.

The Buddha first taught vipassana over 2,500 years ago. The various methods of this practice have been well preserved in the Early Buddhist tradition of Buddhism. This silent retreat, suitable for both beginning and experienced meditators, is rooted in this ancient and well-mapped path to awakening, and draws on the full spectrum of this tradition’s lineages.

An optional daily period of mindful movement will be offered by Éowyn Ahlstrom.

Teacher Support: Most IMS teachers—like insight teachers around the world—offer their teachings freely, and rely on the generosity of students for their livelihood. Teachers do not generally receive compensation from IMS program fees. Click here to learn more about teacher support. There will be an opportunity to offer a contribution to your teachers at the end of this program, or you may donate now.

Payment Information: For this course, sliding scale fees are $665, $1050, $1390 or $2405. We also offer scholarship fee choices of $265, $310 or $350. No deposit is required to sign up for the lottery. If a spot opens for you, you will need to make a deposit of at least $180 within a week, and you will specify the sliding scale (or scholarship) rate that you would like to pay at that time.