After a pretty arduous journey undertaken by Steven, which made you doubt he was traveling from Italy to Romania (well, Merigar West to Rome, Rome to Bucharest, Bucharest to Merigar East), we finally started the retreat with introductory explanations and preliminary practices on presence and emptiness.
The big weather variations, ranging from very hot hours to wrathfully stormy afternoons, added to the underlying emotional intensity of our courageous undertaking beyond hope and fear.
I personally had a few driving school sessions during the retreat, and one of these days the instructor led me through a driving exam simulation in the middle of a downpour, so I had the experience of going through a waterfall of fears of doing the whole driving by myself, mixed with not being able to see much on the road, the heavy sound of the water drops on the windshield and the conventional urge to move ahead in traffic through this all-pervading water curtain and sloth.
It was tiring for many of us participants, and we almost struggled to have our daily evening parties – but we somehow managed to end every day with a treat.
The participants were from Bulgaria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Latvia and Romania and although our cultures may be somewhat different, we were thankfully united by the easily recognizable undercurrents of ego-clinging running through our mindstreams.
Among the experiential milestones of our retreat, I will mention our collective outing to Efendi Antik Cafe, a restaurant with Tartar cuisine which facilitated the exploration of our Asian side, especially the interesting state of mind when wearing a turban.
On the eve of our retreat end, Steven was kind enough to alleviate the pain of cutting through our attachments by offering a generous electric Sitar concert. Somehow, by special courtesy of Vlad and Maris, we were able to provide him with an amplifier and a sound engineer right here, in the middle of nowhere, between sky and earth.
Although Steven warned us the melodies are to be meditatively taken in, providing little physical kick to spring into dancing, most of us felt the impulse to move and immerse our bodies into the fertile resonances of the spring ragas. Our local experts are still investigating whether this was due to the rebellious Balkan spirit or due to the long hours of sitting through the retreat.
All in all, it was another intimate retreat in Merigar East, with bonfires, a lot of swimming in the Black Sea, drinking with the locals, late-night Chod practice led by Magda and human connections intensely sparkled by the contact with the vastity in and around the Gar.
So, dear Vajra sisters and brothers, if you feel drawn to a special mind-opening experience, we wait for you in Merigar East at any time. Upcoming are the following retreats:
27th – 31st July – The Three Paths of Liberation.
Introduction to the Practice of Presence And Awareness – with Fabio Risolo
(according to the instructions contained in “ THE MIRROR” of Chögyal Namkhai Norbu)
Explanation and practice retreat with Fabio Risolo accompanied by sessions and courses of Yantra Yoga and Vajra Dance practices and Khaita Joyful Dances!
Please see the detailed programme and register at: https://goo.gl/forms/cU5kJCcIGAHphlWH2
2nd – 7th August – The Song of the Vajra Retreat combined with the Practice of Gomadevi with Zoli Cser
Please see the detailed programme and register at: https://goo.gl/forms/2n4atlUARM9m1rdE3
22nd – 28th August – The practice retreat of Inner and Secret Rushen with Elio Guarisco
Please see the detailed programme and register at: https://goo.gl/forms/H6DjQ1pe40tIWIp42
Best sunny wishes,
Merigar East Gakyil and Geko