Open: Meditators

Upcoming Meditators’ retreat

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The practice of meditation enables us to see clearly, to gaze without bias, into ourselves and the nature of reality. It sharpens our awareness, stretches our mind and opens our heart.

Committing to a spiritual practice can shape the course of our lives by providing us with new meaning and experiences that transform us, give us a sense of direction. It teaches us to work with life: to learn from it and dance with it, rather than merely get through it. The practice of meditation in particular gives us access to a vast pool of inner resources with which to meet the many facets of human existence. It can transform everyday confusion into timeless wisdom, and our ordinary consciousness into awakened mind. 

However, following a spiritual path isn’t without its potential pitfalls, especially while also seeking a sense of personal wellbeing and fulfilment in our fast-paced modern lives and relationships. At times, our practice gets ‘hijacked’ by our tender, fearful ego and conditioned personality structure: we use spiritual notions to protect ourselves from the most painful aspects of life. Fleeting transpersonal experiences become a means to avoid engaging with life and our personal wounds. Instead of opening up, we rigidify.

Other times, it is our modern culture that gets in the way of following our path and trusting our practice. We sit, we reflect, we meditate; insights and a certain clarity arise. And yet the moment we get up from our meditation cushion and start rubbing up against life again, it is as though all the wisdom thus cultivated had suddenly vanished, overpowered by our environment and conditioning. 

 

The Alalaho Meditators Retreat is a unique opportunity to explore the synergy between meditative practices, non-ordinary states of consciousness and therapeutic work.

In the company of fellow meditation practitioners and consciousness explorers who share your aspirations and your struggles, we will explore the many challenges of integrating an earthly life with the spiritual path, and of fully embodying a wisdom that must include yet transcends the personality.

Who is it for?

Our Meditators retreat is an exclusive retreat for people who have significant experience of meditation and/or dharma, be it through attending retreats or several years of committed practice. While it is open to practitioners from all spiritual traditions, the lead facilitator will mainly draw from her 13+ years of experience following the Tibetan Buddhist path, as well as her work as a transpersonal psychotherapist. 

Our OPEN retreats offer an accessible entrypoint into psychedelic and other forms of inner exploration and personal growth. They are available to all, regardless of prior experience of psychedelic substances.

Disclaimer

  • Our retreats are for people in good mental and physical health. We do not offer therapeutic or medical treatment.
  • Even though the vast majority of our participants have very meaningful and beneficial experiences, there is no guaranteed outcome from participating on a retreat.
  • The majority of research indicating the positive effects of psilocybin was done in a clinical setting, which is very different to that of a retreat environment. More research is needed to explore the benefits offered by the psilocybin experience.

What’s included?

PREPARATION SUPPORT

Giving due energy to preparation before the psychedelic journey not only reduces the possibility of anxiety and tension blocking the flow of the experience, it also enhances the probability of an enriched, deeper experience. Ahead of each retreat, you will receive reading material and suggested exercises to support your preparation for the retreat. One week before the retreat you will also have the opportunity to meet your lead facilitator and fellow participants via video call, allowing you to get to know each other and feel safe in the group, as well as ask any burning questions you might have.

On the retreat itself, we offer one-on-one sessions with the facilitators, and individual and group activities to help you feel well prepared and supported, as well as safe and bonded with the group before stepping into the unknown.

 

INTEGRATION SUPPORT

In many ways, the journey only really begins when the psychedelic effect subsides. In the days after the ceremony, we incorporate solo and group integration activities, and individual one-on-one sessions with the facilitators to give you the opportunity to explore the deeper nuances of your journey. We also offer 3 weeks of support following the retreat – through group video calls as well as suggested exercises – to help you weave the insights from the retreat back into your everyday life.

“The attention to integration was amazing, extremely impactful, and probably the main reason I’d recommend these retreats.” Li, 32 years old

GROUP EXERCISES & GROUP SUPPORT

On the retreat we can safely explore relating to one another in a held and loving space. Tremendous healing comes from being witnessed and accepted as who we are.  In traditional contexts, psychedelics have often been used in group settings, the benefits of which were recently explored in a research study. The group is also a major resource in the integration process. In a society that hasn’t yet incorporated the use of psychedelics and other peak experiences into its fabric, the community of fellow retreat participants plays a central role as allies and companions on this extraordinary journey.

“I learned so much simply from being in the company of fellow participants, facilitators and volunteers. It was so wonderful to feel part of such a supportive community.” Duncan, 35 years old

MEDITATION & CONTEMPLATIVE EXERCISES

By settling into the here-and-now of our present, embodied experience, the agitation of the mind subsides and gives way to a profound sense of presence and peace, from which love and compassion naturally arise. We begin to access deeper layers of ourselves, and sharpen our capacity for insight into the nature of reality. By learning to attend to, work with, and direct the flow of our awareness, we are more equipped to navigate not just the psychedelic experience, but the journey of life itself.

Embodiment practices

We incorporate different activities to start reinhabiting our bodies. We begin the journey of learning to better hear, understand and respond to the messages our body is constantly sending and receiving. Being more embodied also allows us to more fully enjoy the pleasures of being a living, breathing, seeing, smelling, hearing, tasting, sensing human being. Movement and embodiment exercises can also help us get out of our usual controlling thinking mind, and access more freedom, creativity and flow.

NATURE CONNECTION

We invite you on a break from the disconnecting effects of technology and city life and into an engagement with the natural world, which can make us feel more resourced, grounded, alive and remind us of our belonging to and interconnectedness with all of life. Observing nature, we learn about the way of life, and we learn about ourselves. Being immersed in it, we reconnect with our own life force and regain access to the creativity and resilience that flows through all life.

HEALTHY, EXQUISITE FOOD

“Let food be thy medicine” (Hippocrates). “We are what we eat” (folk wisdom). Food is one of life’s extraordinary expressions of love: full of abundance, richness and creativity. On our retreats we honour and celebrate that by cooking with the same spirit of love and creativity, and sourcing produce locally and organically where possible to do our part in taking care of the Earth in turn.

CREATIVE EXPRESSION

Creativity is our birthright. Many of us have been conditioned to believe that we are not creative and artistic, that we cannot sing or dance. At Alalaho, we believe that if we can speak, we can sing, and if we can walk, we can dance. Creative, non-linear expression has been a key part of what it means to be human across culture and time. Our retreats offer easy, accessible exercises to support each participant to let go of some self-limiting beliefs at their own pace, and to let themselves be guided by the creative life force living at their core.

RITUAL AND CEREMONY

“Ritual allows us to transcend passivity and become active agents in changing our own lives” (Caroline Casey). Rituals and ceremonies allow us to mark important moments in time, such as navigating big life transitions, processing grief, or setting intentions. We learn to gather our awareness and conscious energy and pour it into the moment, transforming a seemingly mundane act and imbuing it with power and meaning.

MEDITATION & CONTEMPLATIVE EXERCISES

By settling into the here-and-now of our present, embodied experience, the agitation of the mind subsides and gives way to a profound sense of presence and peace, from which love and compassion naturally arise. We begin to access deeper layers of ourselves, and sharpen our capacity for insight into the nature of reality. By learning to attend to, work with, and direct the flow of our awareness, we are more equipped to navigate not just the psychedelic experience, but the journey of life itself.

Embodiment practices

We incorporate different activities to start reinhabiting our bodies. We begin the journey of learning to better hear, understand and respond to the messages our body is constantly sending and receiving. Being more embodied also allows us to more fully enjoy the pleasures of being a living, breathing, seeing, smelling, hearing, tasting, sensing human being. Movement and embodiment exercises can also help us get out of our usual controlling thinking mind, and access more freedom, creativity and flow.

NATURE CONNECTION

We invite you on a break from the disconnecting effects of technology and city life and into an engagement with the natural world, which can make us feel more resourced, grounded, alive and remind us of our belonging to and interconnectedness with all of life. Observing nature, we learn about the way of life, and we learn about ourselves. Being immersed in it, we reconnect with our own life force and regain access to the creativity and resilience that flows through all life.

HEALTHY, EXQUISITE FOOD

“Let food be thy medicine” (Hippocrates). “We are what we eat” (folk wisdom). Food is one of life’s extraordinary expressions of love: full of abundance, richness and creativity. On our retreats we honour and celebrate that by cooking with the same spirit of love and creativity, and sourcing produce locally and organically where possible to do our part in taking care of the Earth in turn.

CREATIVE EXPRESSION

Creativity is our birthright. Many of us have been conditioned to believe that we are not creative and artistic, that we cannot sing or dance. At Alalaho, we believe that if we can speak, we can sing, and if we can walk, we can dance. Creative, non-linear expression has been a key part of what it means to be human across culture and time. Our retreats offer easy, accessible exercises to support each participant to let go of some self-limiting beliefs at their own pace, and to let themselves be guided by the creative life force living at their core.

RITUAL AND CEREMONY

“Ritual allows us to transcend passivity and become active agents in changing our own lives” (Caroline Casey). Rituals and ceremonies allow us to mark important moments in time, such as navigating big life transitions, processing grief, or setting intentions. We learn to gather our awareness and conscious energy and pour it into the moment, transforming a seemingly mundane act and imbuing it with power and meaning.

“We are not just humans learning to become buddhas, but also buddhas waking up in human form, learning to become fully human.” John Welwood

Sample Schedule

Day 1: Arrival – Landing
2.00 pm Meet in Amsterdam + travel by coach together
6.00 pm Arrive at the venue
7.00 pm Dinner
8.30 pm Opening Circle
9.30 pm Group connection activity
Day 2: Ceremony – Opening
9 am Morning Practice
10 am Breakfast
11 am Preparation activity
12 am One-to-one’s with facilitators
1 pm Preparation activity
1.30 pm Light lunch
3.30 pm Opening Ritual
4 pm Ceremony begins
9 pm Closing Ritual
9.30 pm Dinner
Day 3: Integration 1 – Unpacking
9 am Morning Practice
10 am Breakfast
11.30 am Sharing Circle
1.30 pm Lunch
3 pm Integration activity
4 pm One-to-one’s with facilitators
6.30 pm Dinner
8 pm Evening integration
Day 4: Integration 2 – Deepening
9 am Morning Practice
10 am Breakfast
11.30 am Integration activity
1.30 pm Lunch
3 pm Integration activities
7.30 pm Celebration Feast
9 pm Celebration
Day 5: Leaving – Emerging
8 am Morning practice
9 am Breakfast
10 am Integration Talk
11 am Closing Circle
12.30 pm Departure

Prices

4 Day Retreat — 2,150€ / 5 Day Retreat — 2,450€ /