Presentations, classes, and retreats

We invite you to join Tom live on his online mini retreats on the Zen Times Facebook Page. Click here.

The Sound of Bowls

The sound of bowls

Traditional historic singing bowls produce sounds that invoke deep states of relaxation; naturally assisting one in entering expanded states of consciousness and meditation. The sound of the bowls creates a deep level of communication with our inner world that opens us to the divine.  The sounds and vibrations of Tibetan singing bowls opens blockage to help us experience an inner calm and deep relaxation to invigorate our natural energy thus allowing our body-mind-spirit to quiet and find balance. Come and join Thomas Roberts for an evening of captivating renewal in the presence of ageless bell sounds. You are invited to wear comfortable clothes, as you will be able to sit or lay on the floor as is comfortable.

Click here to see Tom being interviewed about his Tibetan Singing Bowls by TV 19, WXOW. 

Click here to see a segment of The Sound of Bowls at the Spirituality Center in La Crosse, WI. (News coverage by TV 19, WXOW)






The Sound of Bowls

Date:  Tuesday, November 16th, 5:30-6:30 pm

Location:  Franciscan Spirituality Center, 920 Market Street, La Crosse WI

Click here for more information.


The Sound of Bowls:  Helping the Helper Series

Date:  Wednesday, Dec 8th, 1:00 to 2:00 pm  (Helping the Helper Series)

Location:  Franciscan Spirituality Center, 920 Market Street, La Crosse WI

Click here for more information.


Silent Night: An Advent Singing Bowls Experience (in-person)

Date:  Saturday, Dec 11th, 6:00 to 8:00 PM

Location:  San Damiano Chapel, Viterbo University, La Crosse, WI

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The Sound of Bowls

Date:  Tuesday, Dec 21st. 

Location:  Franciscan Spirituality Center, 920 Market Street, La Crosse WI

Click here for more information.




We will begin by exploring the important difference between human awareness and consciousness. Historically, an amazing shift in our awareness occurred between 4,000 and 6,000 years ago. This shift from mere awareness is thought to have ushered in the origin of consciousness. We will explore the ancient writings of the Vedas, Upanishads and the Bhagavad Gita as well as Lao Tzu, Buddha, Jesus, Talmud, the Desert Mothers and Fathers and the numerous prophets of our more present era. We’ll have ample time to explore our own personal work to discover how this shift from awareness to developing consciousness continues to define and deepen our spiritual journeys.

Location:  Spriituality Center, 920 Market Street, La Crosse, WI

Date:  Saturday, October 2, 2021 from 9 am to noon

Click here for more information.



A Beginner’s Eye:  A Visual Way Towards Wholeness of Being.

This retreat is a delightful blend of mindfulness/contemplation/meditation, photography, and Haiku. All joined together to enhance our connection with our true selves and the world around us; ultimately emphasizing our “being serene in the oneness of things.”

The beauty of Beginner’s Eye is for us to discover the fascination and beauty inherent the small and deceptively trivial patterns, colors, and textures that exist in the world that constantly surrounds us.

Beginner’s Eye is based on the Zen notion of “beginner’s mind.” That open and spacious place when we are completely receptive, fearless, totally present and connected to the wonder of each moment. A pure clear seeing awareness where everything is fresh and new.

This retreat will help remind us that everything that comes into our awareness we are experiencing for the first time!

By the end of your Beginner’s Eye experience, you will have a greater appreciation of the world around you and your wondrous place in it!

No photographic experience is necessary, nor is fancy camera equipment….cell phone cameras are completely acceptable! Really! This is not a competition but a way of using the photographic medium as a method of opening our senses to the way we relate to the world. It is not about what we see, rather how we see.

This event is currently not scheduled

Zen and the Art of Coming Home

“The art of living… is neither careless drifting on the one hand nor fearful clinging to the past on the other. It consists in being sensitive to each moment, regarding it as utterly new and unique, in having the mind open and wholly receptive.” Alan Watts

This retreat will provide us with the opportunity to cultivate the innate sense of returning to our spiritual home. We often feel that fundamental plea from within, inviting us to take stock of how far we might have wandered from our deeper wisdom, our deeper sensing true self; thus, creating a life that is chaotic and out of balance.

Zen and The Art of Coming Home will invite us to calm the frenetic looking and searching, born out our fear that we somehow are deficient and not good enough, and to return to our longed-for spiritual home. To re-mind ourselves that in order to be spiritually “at home” we must remember to secure our place in the world, to be at ease with ourselves.

We will explore the elegant Zen methods of re-minding ourselves of “coming home.” These methods will help us with re-aligning and to live from that place of spiritual depth and wisdom--embracing each moment with great patience, openness and compassion. The beauty of Zen methods is in the fact that Zen is a method, a method that can be easily integrated into any spiritual tradition.  

This retreat is currently not scheduled.  Watch for upcoming dates.

Compassionate Acceptance: A Mindful Path to Healing Life's Wounds

We all carry with us a store of life’s hurts, betrayals, and traumas. Much of the impact of these experiences resides deeply in our nerves and cells of our bodies, to be relived repeatedly throughout our lives. Too often, we develop a type of aversion to these hurts; a kind of wishing they would go away. Deep healing occurs only when we soften our self-aversion and begin to accept and relate wisely with deep compassion to that part of ourselves that need healing.

This will be a dynamic and refreshing opportunity for you to explore how the practice of mindfulness meditations will deepen your understanding of how your body and mind work together to generate lasting healing and well-being.

This retreat will provide a spacious and safe place to work on bringing mindful and compassionate acceptance to these difficulties. Through the exploration of Christian Contemplative, Taoist, and Buddhist teachings and healing practices you will finally be able to reach a kind of healing based on acceptance and compassion that is often overlooked. This depth of healing is integral to deepening the spiritual path.

You will leave this retreat with a lasting foundation to help you tap into the healing wisdom of your body.

This retreat is currently not scheduled.  

Mid-Life as a Spiritual Journey: What do I do? Where do I go?

Much is written about the Mid-life time in our lives, yet we remain confused and perhaps a bit fearful about what this time means for us. Where am I? Who am I? What is important? Roles are changing; children are leaving, health questions and concerns, financial uncertainties. It has been described as trying to drive through fog! Feeling an urgency to hurry up and get to where you think you have to go but not really being able to see clearly ahead.

This retreat will be an opportunity for you to explore your mid-life qualms, uncertainties and indecisions as being an integral part of your spiritual journey. We will look at the natural life shift from quantity to quality; from doing to being, from an expected life to a more genuine and authentic life.

It is your turn now. What have you put off? What didn’t you have time for? What will give your life a greater sense of depth and meaning? How do we live a life from a deeper place of spiritual awareness and wisdom?

You will proceed into your life with a richer, and more fulfilled sense of how to embrace yourself and your life with more patience, openness and compassion.

This retreat is not currently scheduled.

by R & T