Photos by @fotoz_croatia

WATER FOR THE JOURNEY

Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo

I bow to the subtle and divine wisdom within all, surrounding all. I bow to the great teacher within my own heart.

From Plitvice to Kaprije

After retreating with Sierra Hollister for the ‘Water for the Journey,’ one needs to pause and absorb the intensity and beauty of the gathering.

Guided by the energy of water, we breathed air filled with ozone, felt fluid like water, robust like a waterfall, fresh like a spring, and light like sound.

The best part of facilitating retreats is meeting so many wonderful people, helping them prepare for the upcoming retreat, and creating connections through months of communication.

During the retreat, we spent a week together, engaging in unique rituals and mindful moments, ensuring everyone felt safe and supported. Despite our best efforts to anticipate every detail, there’s always an element of the unexpected. When blessed with good weather, it feels like a wish granted.

The farewell can be bittersweet, leaving behind a unique community with whom we’ve shared so much openness and connection. Returning to our daily lives, we carry a sense of refreshment and new intentions, hoping to live more authentically.

CONNECTING WITH ME IN OTHER

You realize again and again how much we are all alike, with our suffering and joy almost the same, though not always at the same moments. We all struggle to define our boundaries, soften our expectations, judge less, and tolerate more. We strive to enhance resilience, let go, and be ready to open up to new experiences.

We all endure the loss of friends, lovers, or close family and rejoice when love and abundance come our way.

What I most appreciate is the connection to the vulnerability we are willing to show when we feel safe. In a retreat group, we find the safety to share our experiences honestly. It is in these moments that transformation happens. By being honest with ourselves and freely releasing what we no longer need, we grow. Often, our past serves as our teacher.

Thanks to days filled with all aspects of yoga, from asana to philosophy, the community thrives, and new bonds are created. You may meet someone only once, but feel an exceptional connection after an intensive week of various energy rituals.

Retreats are about making new connections. It’s all about connections, after all.

The sense of unity grows when we escape our habitual routines, surrounded by friends and having time just for being.

We are open to connecting to…

Ourselves
Nature
Breath
Body
People
Experiences
Emotions
Energy

We slow down to observe, feel, cherish, and bless—to embody kindness and gratitude and to keep this emotional state longer.

GATHERING BLESSINGS

Thank you to all the souls who joined us; you are one of a kind. 

Without you, dear tribe, the retreat wouldn’t been at all. You are the heart of the community; the rest is your embellishment.

THANKS TO:

 

Annette & Chris 

Bo 

Danielle

Elisabeth

Hanna

Jennifer

Kyle

Mark

Lori

Valerie

Sonja, 

Stephanie,

Trish 

with special thanks to the star of the play, dear lovely Sierra!

May you all dwell in peace.

Sat Na

LOVE YOURSELF UNCONDITIONALLY

Auspicious moments often prompt us to confront new challenges, such as issues we may have overlooked along the way. Practising self-love can seem the hardest, yet it is not selfish. Loving yourself starts with small daily actions. Ask yourself, “What would Love do today?” Acceptance and love for yourself will naturally extend into all aspects of your life and relationships. Learn to refill your source of love and acceptance. Always return to yourself and share love where it feels the most challenging.

One of my solstice intentions is to be less self-judgmental and self-critical. Social media often fuels our criticism as we scroll through others’ seemingly perfect lives and try to emulate them. Letting go of the desire to be exceptional in every aspect can ease our lives. While we all aim for uniqueness, accepting the ordinary in some areas can be liberating.

Try to distance yourself from yourself and speak as if you have never met before. Listen to your judgments as if you are a third person, and you may find yourself genuinely insulted by your own words. Watch yourself as you would another person. Put yourself in others’ shoes. Observe yourself for an hour daily. Be mindful and alert to whether you are being too harsh or mocking yourself. Avoid thinking or saying, “Oh, how stupid I am!”

We often exaggerate our expectations, believing we should possess countless skills and abilities to achieve anything. Instead, put yourself in the context of real life, just as you do when thinking of others, and you will surely congratulate yourself on your accomplishments.

Make peace with yourself and show some compassion and love.

“What I want to say is that the past is the past ;

and the present is what your life is-

and you are capable of choosing what that will be-

So come to the pond or the river of your imagination,

or the harbour of your longing, and put your lips to the world.

And live your life.”

Mary Oliver, Blackwater Pond

Either way

takes courage; either way, wants you.

to be nothing

but the self that is no self at all.

want you to walk to the place

where you find you already know

how to give

every last thing away.

 

The Bell and The Blackbird, David Whyte

 

CONNECT TO YOUR HIGHER SELF

The practices of yoga and meditation can help us connect more deeply with our higher selves. Taking time to retreat allows us to profoundly understand ourselves, paving the way to the life we dream of.

Our dreams can manifest from imagination into reality. I invite you to bravely confront the parts of yourself that hold you back and join us at the retreat.

Your soul will thank you.

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