Oh boy what did I experience. I just couldn’t help but capture footage to make a small video out of it. Me and my friend Agnetha went on a yoga retreat trip in Umbria, Italy. An Eat, Pray, Love thing that was quite an experience.
The day started early at 7 AM with a yoga class. Throughout the day there was workshops and meditation moments. All classes were given in Italian but I had a private English translator. The program that we followed was a Self Healing Therapy with readings about Life Therapy on how to heal yourself with a positive vibe along with some small energizing exercises to gain more positive energy in your body. With those exercises you take the breathe out of the small pit behind your neck figuratively of course and tight on every muscle group until it vibrates and then you let go, at the same time with your breath. Every class ended with a song in Italian, Latin or English, sung on an instrument that looked like a combination of a keyboard and accordion. All classes followed each other up so there was rarely any spare time. This was also because we took a 6 day program in 4 days due to that we had to go back to Holland.
I didn’t mind to get up that early those days. Just like I didn’t mind to eat completely vegetarian, or the lack of choice for a drink (there was only water or tea and coffee only at breakfast and lunchtime). I really liked all the food, real pure food that gives you power and saturation, really something for me although I might be craving for a piece of meat after a week I’m afraid…
So Agnetha and I are friends for about 20 years. She is the type of girl that you don’t want to look at in serious situations like in school when we had to be silent… when I took a peak at her… I automatically start to laugh!. So this is what happened when I looked at her all the time. Remember those tighten exercises? Whenever you reach for the neck, imagine how that would look like when everybody is doing that for real at the same time. Or when I had to move my choice of object from a basket (jar of jelly) towards my heart, back and forth. Or those songs… I’m glad I could use the breathing exercises I learned from my Mindfulness Course. It was all so serious (and yet so funny).
In every single room there was a portrait or photograph of the spiritual leader of the yogananda flow Paramahansa Yoganandaalong with Jesus Christ. It’s a lifestyle that the yogi’s in Assisi maintain. They believe that a clean diet, practicing yoga and meditation on a regular base, you can find your inner peace and your soul. I respect those who have many respect for nature and themselves and I like the way how they see the world but it’s just not for me, it’s kind of limited. Although I liked being offline again and not being confronted with the world news of today. However I do believe that I would probably not necessarily need medication if I would eat like them (getting medicine out of food), copy their mindset and live my life stress free for the rest of my life… “Avoid the Tamas (junkfood) live in de Sattwa (paradise), become master of your own destiny (we are our own doctor)”.
Those days went by like a dream. I can not deny how energetic I felt even though we ‘worked’ 13 hours a day, and they were all nice (“I pray for you”) but like I said it just wasn’t something for me. I’m too Dutch for this, meaning Dutch people tell you when you act normal you act crazy enough. Not mentioning singing chants to a God or spiritual leader. But I will bring the positive spirit into my life and I will try to meditate now and then. About the food, I think I was on my way already ;).
Got curious? Watch my vlog for some footage (in Dutch).