Contemplative summerschool

Living spirituality in our time. A pilot project with the Nordic "Folkehøjskole" model

Gomde, Denmark 17-23 July and 24 - 30 July, 2022.

What is Gomde Højskole?

The contemplative Summer Institute at Gomde DK is the first of its kind. It started as a pilot project merging the ideas of the danish "Folk High School" tradition and different contemplative traditions in our times - with tibetan buddhism at its roots. 

The summer seminars are now an annual tradition and will be held at Gomde Denmark, a Buddhist retreat center in the beautiful Nordic high summer at Helgenaes, Denmark. The seminars are particularly aimed at young adults, creative souls and anyone shaping their life. The two seminars can be taken separately or together. They will be an opportunity to

  • deepen your understanding and practice in meditation and contemplative philosophy
  • Explore how contemplative and active life can coexist and interact in our time
  • Hear inspiring lectures that open debates on green, social, aesthetic and everyday lifestyle dimensions connecting with contemplation, meditation and Buddhist insights
  • Participate in projects building or planting something that will stay at Gomde (orchards, greenhouses…) – projects that you will be able to return to visit at Gomde years later, and many may also take something home in the form of practical “green” skills.
  • Meet friends who share your interests in meditative / spiritual depths in life.
  • For those who want it, there will be an opportunity to articulate, reflect and present your own “contemplative project”. How can you describe the heart of your own study or career project? And how do we give sensitive, truly listening feedback to each others ?
  • Swimming, hiking, singing… Two weeks of  summer holidays in the midst of Denmark’s prettyest countryside. There will be much space and time for silence and contemplation – but also for celebrations, bonfires and music.

When contemplating, you are not occupied with accomplishing, being or having something - you rest or flow wakefully in deeper layers of existence.

An important beginning

The 2018 summerschool was the first of its kind although it does draw on experience and inspiration from enterprises such as the Mind and Life Institute. What is new is the connection between Gomde’s Buddhist roots and a Nordic “Grundtvigian” tradition of living dialogue and engangement in our time and its tensions – at many levels, from individual to cultural, political, ecological.


Since 2018 we have offered summer courses that open up to "the contemplative in our times". The seminars are for everyone with a living interest in contemplation and meditation - and curiosity about branches and roots of spirituality in our time - and the ways they are merging in our culture now. The two one-week seminars can be taken seperately or together.

Seminar 1:

Branches of Living

17 - 23 July, 2022

"Wakefuless, friendship and wisdom in crazy times"

More about seminar 1

Seminar 2:

Creativity and Love

24 - 30 July, 2022

"How we create worlds together"

More about seminar 2


We have found a “dream team” of teachers and contributors who will open explorations from some very different approaches to living spirit in our time. Some of them are buddhist teachers or people who teach within other contemplative traditions, others come from scientific and social engagements where the contemplative may be set in motion.

The team includes Anders Laugesen, John Dunne, Peter Elsass, Phie Ambo, Lone Fjorback, Khenpo Topka Tulku and Erik Pema Kunsang. See the list in this page – where you will also find links to small interviews with many of them, about spirit in our time – and about what they will contribute to a spiritual summerschool

You don't need to be a Buddhist...

…or lifelong meditator - in order to participate. The seminars are spaces for exploring and deepening some of the many ways that contemplation – rooted in Buddhist meditation and philosophy as well as other traditions – is becoming an essential part of our culture’s resources. This is for everyone. You can learn to meditate here, you can leave out the practical part for now, or you can deepen and share what you have practiced for many years.

Read more about venue and practicalities here.