Touching Our Roots
"Bowing Formally" A snowy heron where the wintergrasse is unseen hides itself in it's own figure. by Dogen, a zen master.
Through contemplating and coming into the experience of our body and mind, we will explore allowing ourselves to slow down and touch the earth, to really honour this world of form. The formedness of our body, our thoughts, our feelings, our mind states…we will explore how our form relates in the world, our comforts & discomforts with this shape of being…
Touching also into the formless, the non-programmed, we will explore recognising this & feeling how it could heal & help our being, our form-shape in belonging. Embracing all of our aspects.
In this retreat we will explore together the many dimensions of what we are as living beings, how we manifest in the world, and the magic of bringing these aspects of our lives into conscious connection.
The meditation techniques we practice are over 2,500 years old and are mostly based on the Theravada Buddhist tradition. Taking part in the retreat does not, however, require an adherence to Buddhism or any adaptation of personal faith.
Why take part in the retreat? What happens on a retreat?
The retreat is suitable for both beginners and experienced practitioners. Beginners have a chance to become familiar with basic meditation techniques and to see their effects clearly in practice, so a retreat is a good way to begin a meditation practice. For experienced meditators, a retreat is a great opportunity to deepen and clarify their practice under the guidance of qualified teachers.
Teachings are offered mainly in English. Sumedha & Noon will offer guided meditations, dhamma talks, one-to-one meetings, walking meditations & some chanting. The daily routine includes also a working period. The retreat is held in silence.
The retreat includes a daily breakfast, lunch and light dinner, all vegetarian. Participants stay in 2-4 person rooms. The retreat will take place at the Friendship Inn, which is located in Kruusila, near Salo, on the shore of beautiful Lake Pernjärvi.
Who are the teachers?
Noon Baldwin is an ex circus artist & street performer who retired from the circus in 2004 to dedicate her life to spiritual practice, living in dhamma centers (France & South Africa) & Amaravati monastery, (UK).
She co-created Ekuthuleni rustic retreat place in 2011 with Sumedha. Ekuthuleni is a back to basics meditation center in the foothills of the french Pyrenees. The emphasis is on meditation & ecological awareness, & bringing these two together. Her main influence is the buddhist tradition of Ajahn Chah, with an interest in all spiritualities, (she has been following retreats & courses with Jaya Ashmore from Open Dharma since 2008). She enjoys how the traditional & open spirituality practices meet as one in her heart. Her varied life experience brings a listening with vibrancy, an alive practice she loves to share.
Connecting with curiosity & energy, with a sense of embodying spiritual practice through in depth body grounding meditations, are Noon’s fields of exploration. She is transgendered….a two spirit person all in one.
Sumedha (Hannah Bagshaw) grew up in the wilds of the Outer Hebrides. Inspired by this and the Forest tradition of Ajahn Chah tradition she is passionate in exploring our interconnection with nature: the different perspective this creates on ourselves, and the care it brings to how we live in the world.
Sumedha graduated in Comparative Religion from Manchester University in 1997, and spent the next twelve years practicing in the Forest tradition, as a novice and then as a nun. She was based at Amaravati and Chithurst monasteries and later Aloka Vihara in California. After disrobing in 2010 she spent a year managing Dharmagiri Hermitage in South Africa with Noon Baldwin and in 2011 they co-founded Ekuthuleni retreat place in France. The emphasis on living simply, close to the wildness of nature, and on cultivating embodied, connected awareness are all important elements in her practice. They link with cultivating a stability and warmth of heart that enable an ongoing exploration and opening to the unknown – a curiosity in keeping practice alive and real and open to all comers, inside and out.
How much does it cost? How can I sign up?
The base price is 205 €, but it is also possible to pay more or less than this. You can sign up to the retreay by filling in the registration form and paying the registration fee. More information about the price, registration and other details.
Anna Backholm (+358 40 536 2946)
Tuulikki Hukka (+358 50 432 9241)