This is not the time to set goals or intentions, to travel and explore the outer beauty of this Earth, to connect with friends and loved ones, or to come up with my next inspiring idea.
There is a time for all of that, but this is not it.
This is scheduled time to do absolutely nothing. To travel and explore the inner realm of my Being. “Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
To sit with myself, for 14 days…without any distraction. No words to be spoken, no facebook, instagram, netflix, emails to answers, friends to connect with, work to be done, meals to prepare, clothing and dishes to wash…
This is the time to surrender into the stillness of my True Nature. To stare out into nature (and in this case out at volcanos on a lake!). To witness the thoughts, emotions, irritations, joy that comes up and not react to it, to identify with it as mine, or do anything with it. I will watch it all pass through me as a part of my experience and see them as a clouds passing by, and then come back to the blue sky. There is nothing to achieve. No experience to acquire. Nothing to add to my spiritual CV.
This is a gift to my highest self. Although every moment is an opportunity to live as Presence or the Witness Consciousness of our human experience, going into retreat really gives you that opportunity to really surrender, be still and be ok with that… (if not you will go crazy!).
Just “being” for 14 days, trusting the process and inviting in whatever wants to arise for me with no where to run, no words to express my drama, no phone to grab…Just “hanging out” with my True Self.
For the past 4 years, I have participated in one silent meditation retreat per year ranging from 6 to ten days. The retreats have had a daily schedule, were done in a group setting and have been guided by teachers. This retreat will be solo, self guided, and therefor calling on an opportunity to cultivate self discipline to sit in meditation for 1, 2, 3 and 4 hours or more a day. I will also do some gentle yoga practices to move my body and take one hour a day to read on various spiritual teachings inspired by the Masters… did I mention i’ll be in a tree house!
Why do I continue to do this? It is so important for me to challenge myself with this style of retreat to continue to connect with that eternal place in me that is Truth and Love. To continue to remove the layers of masks and societal conditioning that still remain which blind me from living freely and authentically. When teaching yoga and meditation, hosting wellness retreats and holding space in sacred women’s groups, etc, it is crucial that I remain grounded in the Self (vs the ego) and committed to my path.
I can only take people as far as I myself have gone. My true role and purpose is to inspire by living as an example. An example of the teachings and a way of living consciously from the heart.
This retreat will present a new layer…Kayakalpa, the dark room. I will finish my retreat with 5 days in complete darkness…back to the womb I go! Not only will I be silent, but my sense of sight will also have no distraction. This is going to be an intense time.. both of challenge, perhaps fear, but also of deep deep healing. I have no idea what to expect… I’m surrendering into the Mystery and Trusting Divine Will. I can’t explain to you why I want to do this, but ever since I heard about it 4 years ago, it resonated and I knew the opportunity would unfold in divine timing. Read more about the benefits of a dark room retreat.
Next week, I move into silence in this self guided silent meditation retreat at The Hermitage Retreat Centre nestled on Lake Atitlan in Guatemala. I will begin on the full moon, and as the moons wanes (shrinks) back to newness and darkness, I shall do the same. Releasing anything that no longer serves me.
My past experiences have all been so beautiful in their own way and continue to inspire me to “gift” myself this experience.
If you’re feeling inspired check out Pachamama Intentional Community in Costa Rica, Hridaya Yoga School in Mazunte Mexico and Shanti Retreat on Wolfe Island, Canada.