Back to the Jungle!
Back to the Jungle!
...and gratitude for the Soma Immersion retreat
Just a few days ago I came out of the first Soma Immersion retreat set in the magical Willka T'ika Retreat Center. This special place has 7 one-of-a-kind gardens that cover the grounds with lush vibrant foliage, and are connected to each other by enchanting winding stone paths. Each garden is designed to correspond to one of the seven chakras (energy centers of the human body) and is graced with sacred sculptures and stonework appropriate to the respective chakra.
To be working there with a group of lovely people was such a blessing. We spent our time amidst the flowers and the beautiful structures, practicing yoga, meditating, dancing, sharing stories, making music, immersing ourselves in Sacred Ceremonies, in ritual and celebration, enjoying the delicious organic food and sitting
beneath the 1,000 year old Lucuma tree. The setting of Willka T'ika combined with the program of the Soma Immersion provided us the opportunity to relax, restore and to receive the powerful energy of the Andean Mountains. The 1000 year Lucuma tree was the ultimate setting for a Gong Bath!
Looking forward so much to the upcoming retreats there... so much gratitude for our time spent in that special, special place.
If you are looking for deep work in a beautiful setting with luxurious rooms
and delicious organic food, you might have a look at our upcoming retreats at this magical place..
Since coming out of the retreat, my time has been dedicated to packing and preparing for my return to the Amazon in Brazil. As many of you may know, last year I spent several months in the Brazilian jungle with my spiritual family, the Yawanawa Indians. In that time we forged a strong bond. I built a house, a temple and a kitchen next to one of their villages. I feel so fortunate and humbled to be the first Western person entering that village. Don Luis, the maestro of the village, opened up his sacred knowledge to me and together we started a medicinal garden.
Many things have moved in the last months there. We now have 5 houses, a bigger medicinal garden, and a strong intention to ground and record the vast knowledge that Don Luis carries. These plants hold so much information, so much wisdom, so much healing and opening this door to the Western world is something that the Yawanawa and myself have been working towards ever since we met in our dreams. For only when we work together, can we help each other. It feels so nice to be developing this relationship with the Indigenous people, and to be sharing in this way. I have received so many gifts from the plants of the Amazon, and am so grateful for this opportunity to help them to grow into abundance and to connect with the Western world in a responsible way.
Helping them see that their culture, traditions and way of living are not inferior or something to ashamed of, as others might have told them. The idea that the rainforest that they call home has a value infinitely greater than petroleum reserves or mahogany wood sourced to produce luxury furniture. The idea that their mastery of the rainforest does not make them primitive and backward, but rather positions them to be at the forefront of the global movement of conservation. These are all
seeds I am planting there.
May the centre that we are creating together help to renew the respect for the wisdom of the elders and may it become a repository of healing and a place of learning, both for the Yawanawá and for Western people truly interested in connecting with their wisdom.
In a few days I start again on the 3 day Journey from the Sacred Valley of Peru deep into the Amazon rainforest in Brazil, and am so looking forward to that time.
Taking a 24 hour bus ride from Cuzco, arriving at the big hectic city of Rio Branco. It's warm, sticky, chaotic... people are everywhere. Then an 8 hour taxi drive (airco... what is that??), to a tiny jungle village called Tarauaca. Checking last emails, messages, making some last phone calls to beloved ones. Buying a mountain of supplies for the upcoming 6 weeks. Sweating, running around, organizing, meeting Edgi (one of the sons of Luis.)
Then with others, embarking on a long flat boat. Sitting on the front of that boat, floating over one of the Amazonian rivers, the jungle lets us enter deeper and deeper. There in that boat, daily life will be washed away from my shoulders. Leaving behind iPhones, the internet, phone calls, emails and all other communication. Nothing to do, nothing to take care of...
Looking at the splendid blue sky, the beautiful birds. Looking back, seeing Edgi stand at the back of the boat, safely guiding us forward, sticking his right thumb in the air with a big smile on his face. WOW!!
I just sit there, letting life float off of my shoulders, breathing in the pure air of the Amazon. The trees all around me singing their songs.
Then we arrive. The entire village comes to the shore and the children are jumping in excitement... big hugs, shouts of joy, a deep look in the eyes of my maestro. Love pouring from our hearts, tears of gratitude coming up, humbled by it all. Louisa, the wife of Luis, makes a plate of simple jungle food. We sit in a circle and share laughs, hugs, stories and songs.
In the evening I walk to my house, deep in the jungle. I get into my hammock, take out the big cozy fluffy blanket with a big panther on it (jungle style...) Cuddled up in
the hammock, some of the boys sitting next to me on the porch. We laugh, and slowly we let the night encompass us.
We just lay there in silence. Listening to the arias of the birds, the symphony of the insects. I take a deep breath, look next to me and see Luis sitting there. Looking straight into each others eyes, he gives a small nod with his head, right thumb straight into the air.
Then I know...
I am home again.
Looking forward so much to that time.
Gracias a Deus
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