The best answer I have found to this question came from Rob Preece in his book, The Psychology of Buddhist Trantra, “After a two-week intensive retreat earlier this month, I was contemplating the difference between daily practice and retreat. I mentioned this to music therapist Christine Stevens and she replied, ‘It’s the difference between taking a shower and immersing yourself in a long bath.’
Daily practice – the quick morning shower – refreshes mind and body, allowing moments that restore us to stillness and well being. It’s necessary maintenance that keeps us awake.
Retreats, on the other hand, whether they focus on meditation, yoga, or other modalities, allow for deeper immersion- the long bath. Here we can sink deeply into our practice. Retreats empower us to develop our meditation skills and rewire our nervous systems, shedding habitual patterns no longer useful to us. After a good long soak