Contemplative Cultural Pilgrimages in Europe Once- in -a -lifetime journeys through the sacred sites of Europe that have been cherished by seekers of wisdom. Each trip is unique, with a particular focus on the region's art, history, music and literary tradition. We offer three kinds of trips: ones that focus on spiritual traditions and history, one that are focused on the journey inwards through depth psychology practices, and journeys that weave together sacred and secular heritage
These pilgrimages are designed to both guide us to places that echo with history and to help us go inwards into our own depths as we build a sense of contemplative community. Pilgrims from all traditions are welcome, but please be advised that an essential part of each day's offering will be the experience of contemplative music, poetry and meditation. A practice of meditation or centering prayer is strongly recommended and a comfort with periods of silence is essential. Many of the trips will include moderately strenuous hiking and optional daily yoga practice
The Soul of France: Pilgrimage in Provence May 12-17, 2019 (co-ed)- waitlisted
A journey that celebrates the incredibly rich spiritual and cultural history of France with the charms of la belle vie. We will gasp in wonder at the beauty of Ile Honorat (the island off of Cannes where St. Patrick became a monk), thrill to the art and music of Provence, bask in Gregorian chant at Thoronet Abbey and savor the earthly pleasures of cooking classes, farmer's markets and wine tasting, all while delighting in our magnificent 4 star hotel and spa on top of one of the most beautiful villages in France. Learn more
In the Footsteps of Mary Magdalene Next offered in 2020
An unforgettable journey in the footsteps of Mary Magdalene as we weave together history, myth, art and music as a doorway to our own creativity and transformation.
Our home will be a former Benedictine monastery, adapted by celebrated French chef Alain Ducasse to become a renowned and luxurious Relais and Chateaux. We will be the only guests in this sanctuary of beauty, allowing us the rare opportunity to recreate the rhythms of monastic life on a site of historical significance.
Our days will begin in a 12th century chapel with morning meditations of poetry, Gregorian chant and Medieval pilgrim songs. After a luxurious breakfast in the cloistered garden, we will travel to sacred sites to learn about the rich spiritual tradition in France: museums on sites where Isis and Dionysus were revered, the Forest of Artemis, and the Grotto of Mary Magdalene at La Baume, the Cistercian Abbey of Thoronet, and the extraordinary French Orthodox monastery of St. Michel du Var bursting with exuberant art.
Afternoons will allow time to do yoga, swim in the pool, create a Soul Collage, spend time journaling or reading in the garden or indulging in a luxurious massage. After savoring a four-course Michelin starred dinner, we will sing Compline by candlelight in the chapel before drifting off to a gentle slumber in this oasis of tranquility.
The Soul of France May 12- 19, 2019 - we are taking names for our waitlist Next offered: September 2020 This co-ed journey highlights the spiritual and cultural history of Provence: the Forest of Artemis, the Cave of Mary Magdalene at La Sainte Baume, the Cistercian Abbey of Thoronet, the magnificent frescoes of St Michel du Var and the charming villages of Cotignac and Tourtour. Evening musical performances and a final feast at a Michelin starred restaurant in a world-renowned vineyard crown our celebration of the beauties of France.
The Dordogne: Next offered in 2020
The Dordogne Valley is one of the most stunningly beautiful areas of the world. Our 2020 journey in the region known as the cradle of artistic civilization, Heroines, is a pilgrimage to create a sense of connection to the deep past. Designed as a way to bring generations closer together, this is a journey for mothers and daughters, grandmothers and grand-daughters, sisters or lifelong friends. Our inner work will include identifying the core stories of our families, remembering the ancestors who have passed through rituals and celebrating the legacy of our family bonds. This is a perfect journey to mark a threshold (graduation, marriage or the passing of a parent) with the intention to come to a deeper sense of self-knowledge and connection. We will travel to Cro-Magnon caves of female initiation and marvel at the incredible cave art. At Beynac Castle, we will learn about Eleanor of Aquitaine and her glorious family- but this time focusing not on the war prowess of her sons, but the spirit of chivalry, literature, poetry and love that was the legacy of her daughters and grand-daughters. We will savor the sweetness of life through exploring charming farmer's markets, drifting down the Dordogne river on paddle boards or kayaks and through in moonlit strolls through exquisite gardens. Our final day will be a celebration of all the facets of womanhood through the incredible story of Josephine Baker. At Chateau Milande, the castle museum dedicated to her memory, we will trace her extraordinary life. From the slums of St Louis to her meteoric rise as the most celebrated singer-dancer-actress in Europe to the Croix de Guerre awards she received for her heroic resistance to Nazi occupation and her quest for world peace-- we will discover a heroine that can embolden each one of us in our own journeys.