Common trip to Abkhazia2012
This summer there was a common outside trip of our Sangha aimed for having some rest and practicing. Retreats are usually carried out in some more secluded places whereas this trip was rather focused on creating a balance between Practice and Sahaja, inner work and leisure, than the space of intensive Practice. The place to choose was Abkhazia, not far from Pitsunda. One should mention that this country is really unique due to its nature.
Every day started with morning practices, such as meditation, repeating mantras, Falun Dafa or Hatha Yoga that were done outdoors at the see.
Specially for this trip some Sadhakas prepared and hold lectures on chosen topics that were perceived as a real following of regular seminars in our Center. Gulnaz and Denis were the first to start – their lecture was dedicated to the Great Epic “Ramayana”. Certainly, it was only the introduction to “Ramayana”, because within 3-4 hours one can only have a slight touch of this Narrative about the Lord Rama. They also initiated us into the Knowledge of ten Vishnu’s Avatars.
Sadhikas of the Center – Tatyana, Irina, Yulia, Polina and Maria - prepared and presented the biography of Sri Aurobindo. Each of them told us about a definite period of the Master’s life, focusing not only on His outer life, but on His inner experiences and realizations. Surely, such biography simply discovers some extern facts about the life of the Enlightened Teacher, as the real life and work are done inside, closed from people’s eyes. But the Knowledge, one perceives in a right way can bring one closer to the Teacher and make one understand His Message properly.
The Senior Mentor Georgy has conducted a seminar on mathematics and art of logics (concentrated on the development of buddhi thinking and perception). Most Sadhakas were surprised to see that the subject they know and in many cases don’t like from school, can happen to be such interesting and involving.
Sadhu Eugenia (Miriam) read out a lecture on women direction in Christianity basing on the example of Teresa of Avila and her Spiritual Way. The lecture was built up around the book of Teresa called "The Interior Castle” (El Castillo Interior). In this book the Catholic Saint tells about seven Mansions (also called dwelling places) of the Soul that reflect the experience of the Soul developing and forming-up. Eugenia also made several practices of our favored Sacral dances.
The Senior Sadhu Maria carried out a psychological training aimed to develop the ability of pointing out the essential details, find common points of view as well as just to have a good time together.
One couldn’t forget about outdoor amusements: Sadhus Polina and Yulia conducted “Funny sportings”. It’s not less important to be able to leave everything and feel like a child for a while then stay serious and focused. Tasks varied from physical ones - that required some power and endurance from Sadhakas - to those ones that called for Spiritual hardness and Unity.
There was also a possibility to express oneself: big sheets of paper were stuck on a stand and everyone could come up, take a brush with some watercolors and contribute to the creation of common picture.
Staying in a country with such magnificent nature and history, we decided to make two excursions: to the Mzy mountain lake and to the New Athos.
Starting from a definite place it was possible to get to the Mzylake (located 2000 m above sea level) only on foot, thus we had a chance to walk through the picturesque Abkhazian mountains and springs. The following pictures will tell about this tripin a better way:
Last but one day in sunny Abkhazia we spent in New Athos that is famous for its caves, lakes, bats, cold weather and a feeling of being beyond the time and space. We also managed to visit the New Athos Monastery, clime on to the Iverian Mountain to enjoy the ruins of the ancient cathedral as well as the New Athos itself and its surroundings.
Any common trip of the people that are engaged into own Spiritual development means much more than just trip, but a unique possibility to create the space of “Pure Land”, i.e. favorable space for practicing and Spiritual growth. It’s an opportunity to go altogether through different life situations: starting from various small things up to the sublime talks about Dharma and Spiritual Practices. Each one kept very worthy that helped a lot to build up the space of mutual support and unity.
We are very thankful to all the people who spent with us these magnificent 10 days!