Since I completed my MBSR course I can go on a 1-day silent mindfulness retreat when they hold them for graduating students several times a year.
I felt drawn to attend one recently and it was just what I needed.
It was just as nurturing and centering as the first one I attended. Fabulous to have a refresher and spend the day with kindred spirits.
Some amazing things captured my imagination…
The grounds were just as calming and tranquil as I remembered them. I especially love the vegetable, herb and flower beds and that the flowers were chosen to attract bees.
The biggest message for me came through the introduction made by one of the leaders, to allow ourselves to arrive at the venue and the day, to notice things around us, and then let them go so we can fully embrace the silence and the day.
For me it has been a message I’ve taken with me, and find myself saying when settling into a mediation, and also if I get distracted by a noise or thought in a meditation – Arrive – Notice – Let Go.
During one of the walking meditations I got transfixed by the buttercups.
At lunchtime I walked over to an area of the grounds I hadn’t been in before, which I found out was a conservation marshland. The Pukeko, native New Zealand marsh birds, were wonderful and I got to eat lunch with a few that were brave enough to get up close.
Butterflies have played a special part in my life recently and they were with me that day. One sat still long enough for me to fumble for my phone and snap a photo.
The trees were majestic. Magnificent. I especially liked the star-like seed pods of the sweet gum trees which I had never seen before.