as his or her monastery.”
“A monk in the No Word Order
sees all of society
May 10 – 25, 2024
Become an invisible monk
A full day program: 6:00 am – 9:00 pm (CET)
A Special Retreat Led by Cuong Lu
A 16-Day Intensive Training for Invisible Zen Monastics
You will learn:
At this retreat, you will undertake a sixteen-day intensive training and receive formal ordination. The training includes the study in the Three Baskets of sacred Buddhist literature: Sutra, Sastra, and Vinaya (teachings of the Buddha, commentaries on the teachings, and monastic rules).
No Word Zen Invisible Monastic Training
A 16-day intensive course led by Zen master Cuong Lu

Our planet of 8 billion people and countless other species is in peril. It will take the wisdom of a million wisdom-keepers for our species to survive. A No Word Zen monk can inspire each person they encounter to join together in wisdom and skillful means to stop the many crises we face today, including global climate, which we humans continue to worsen with our emissions, plastics, and so many other pollutants to the air, land, and sea.

Cuong Lu is a lineage holder in an uninterrupted line, transmitted to him by Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh. He trained as a monastic at Plum Village, and he is now training invisible monastics to bring wisdom and compassion to the world through mindfulness and activism, creating a peaceful revolution.
An invisible monastic is always practicing. Every moment is an opportunity to be deeply present and share your wisdom and compassion invisibly, without drawing attention to yourself. This is a way of cultivating peace within and well-being in society.
It’s not the robes that make the monk. It’s wisdom that makes you a peaceful person. The No Word Zen movement is a seed, which when watered, will grow a million compassionate flowers engaged to help all who are suffering. 
May 10 - 25, 2024
Arrival Time: 2:30-5:30 p.m. (CET)
Departure Time: 1:00 p.m. (CET)

2, Le Mont
87190 Magnac-Laval

$ 1,568 (in double rooms) - $1,328 (camping), incl. accommodation, services, and food. Fees DO NOT include a donation to the teacher.

Learn more

Register now

May 10 - 25, 2024
Arrival Time: 2:30-5:30 p.m. (CET)
Departure Time: 1:00 p.m. (CET)

2, Le Mont
87190 Magnac-Laval

$ 1,568 (in double rooms) - $1,328 (camping), incl. accommodation, services, and food. Fees DO NOT include a donation to the teacher.

Learn more

Register now

Our Program

Our program helps an invisible monk benefit from our short-term and long-term support. Our center is like a home where you can return to strengthen your concentration. From the first moment you arrive at our center, you will feel the presence of the energy of the roots, and it is the food everyone needs to be solid.

The most experienced Zen master will guide you. Cuong Lu has practiced 16 years as a monk under the direct guidance of Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh. With this experience, he will transmit the most profound teaching of Zen to you. In 16 days, he will offer you the profound instructions from Linji Zen school that he has received from his teacher.

During his monkhood, Cuong Lu helped his teacher compose the book “Stepping into Freedom” as guidance for novices. He also has offered classes about Buddhist psychology in his temple. He was a senior teacher, a refuge place for Buddhist novices from many nationalities, cultures, and traditions.

An invisible monk is someone who practices engaged Buddhism. Cuong Lu has spent 14 years living in the world, outside his temple, to apply engaged Buddhism's teachings in our modern society. He is a unique continuation of his teacher because Thich Nhat Hanh was someone who brought engaged Buddhism to Western culture. Cuong Lu will transmit all his experience applying engaged Buddhism in the world in this course.

Program Details

  • The four positions to practice monastic fine manner: standing, walking, sitting, and lying.
  • Sutras which contain the words and teachings of the Buddha
  • Sastras which contain the teachings of the enlightened Buddhist teachers
  • Vinaya, which shows us the way to live as monastic members
  • Applied mindfulness in the temple and society.
  • Concentration on many levels to enter the depth of your wisdom.
Guidance with Compassion

Cuong Lu will guide you to be an invisible monk with each breath and step. You will get training that you have never seen outside. Your spiritual path will continue when you return home. You bring in your awakening energy and manifest the Buddha's teachings through practice. It is not the robe that makes you a monk but the compassion within you.

What would our planet be like if we didn't have compassion? Wisdom and compassion are not ideas that we can share. As an invisible monk, you share your wisdom with your present, and you will become the most beautiful gift you can share with everyone in your life and all future generations.

So, start being an invisible monk from today, and you will be an essential part of contributing to world peace.


$ 1,568 (in double rooms) - incl. accommodation, services, and food.
$1,328 (camping), incl. accommodation, services, and food.
Fees DO NOT include a donation to the teacher.


You can cancel up to 6 months before the start of the program. You then only owe € 35 administration costs.
You owe 30% of the costs up to 3 months before the start of the program.
You owe 50% of the costs up to 1 month before the start of the program.
Up to 2 weeks before the start, the participation costs will be 100%.
Even if you cancel participation during the course, you will still owe the total participation costs.


Our costs are pure for accommodation. According to Buddhist custom ‑ a donation is expected, and the offering is for the teacher. Please consider paying at the highest sliding scale rate you can afford (from 15% to 50% of the accommodation cost). Your generosity allows others to attend who might not be able to donate. This donation is to keep the Dharma alive and bring our society light.

Cancelation of an activity
If a group ‑ for whatever reason ‑ cannot take place, we will notify you as soon as possible and refund the total participation costs to your account. No Word Zen accepts no further liability for retreat cancellations beyond the retreat registration fee refund. For example, we cannot be liable for any funds spent on advance travel arrangements, such as flight tickets and visas.

Please email us
"I want to meet you. I am looking forward to practicing the path of insight and compassion with you. Together we can build a peaceful world. "
Cuong Lu