So, it’s the holiday season and I’ve been perusing different options. I will of course stay home and grumble, but had I wanted adventure, I might require more than Thomas Cook. For a truly modern experience, I require the services of a ‘spiritual concierge’.
What does such a company offer? Let’s start with visualisation sessions, reiki, brain softening and personalisation ceremonies. Instead of just yoga and a trip down the Ganges, you’ll get your own shaman and a tour guide into your inner psyche.
My personal favourite is the ‘Not Knowing‘ retreat. Tagline ‘there is nothing to know and you’ve known this all along’. This is not a joke.
Unmani, the chief guru, describes her own Awakening;
“I broke my ankle during a therapy session attempting to kill the anger I felt towards my Mother by punching and kicking padded walls and mattresses. The following month spent in bed staring at the ceiling was almost unbearable – but it allowed me to meditate on what Dolano, a teacher from India had told me about ‘Awakening’. Suddenly a veil fell away, and I was resting in a state I can only describe as ‘not-knowing’’.
What’s most interesting is that many people are paying for the privilege to join Unmani on this journey.
Writing a glowing review of her ‘nothingness workout’, one participant says this;
‘By lunchtime on the second day, the atmosphere was heating up, with anger, resistance and even doubt about the whole process we were being led through bubbling up to the surface. This boiling pot Unmani was creating boosted my empathy towards others as I felt their emotions rising long before any tears or laughter erupted…Within all of this Unmani kept her cool and paid no heed to any personal dilemmas that could steer attention away from the bottom line of ‘not knowing’ – until, of course, everyone had well and truly got it. .. Wiping the slate clean of ‘mind’ allowed many of the old disguises and tricks to be seen for what they are when they arise again…
Unmani warned me that I’d have a tough job on my hands trying to describe exactly what happens exploring ‘Not-Knowing’. What I do know is that she was correct in saying that we got more than was bargained for … we were graduates from a spiritual boot camp – with hearts fortified from a staple of ‘chicken soup for the soul’ … we were ready to play hard in the world again.’
I think I’ll stick with Eastbourne.