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018 – The Seeker of Inner Retreat

Weekly reflections on creating stillness within:

An ashram, a place of paired back simplicity is often romanticized by the seeker as a place of retreat. Without distractions, the stillness of an ashram entices the seeker with a new rhythm, a rhythm cloaked as an escape from the discomforts created by modern living. Oftentimes, the seeker is invite into full surrender, where life’s irrelevancies are stirred up and stripped back towards unencumbered narratives. Offering up no place to run and hide, the revered sanctuary creates a potential for a new story to unfold.

In a world that’s recently been shaken and stirred, families have been called home (quite literally) to create a place of sanctuary and stillness from within. No longer can we run off to romanticized realities, escape to someone else’s rhythms, or play out our roles with naivety. The pressure cooker effect that is present within an ashram, now resides with the four walls of our family homes.

It’s time to take an inner retreat. Time to create an internal landscape that we can feel good about calling “home”. We need to become the inner study of our own design, where we give ourselves the grace and opportunity to heal, redefine and rebuild ideologies and practices that are no longer beneficial to our nature. We need to tend to the seeds of Self, knowing that our true nature is actually that of the contented one. We need to remember that our steadiest rhythms are innate and that the nectar we travel far and wide to obtain, conveniently lies within the present moment. Right now and right here.

So, how do we retreat within?

As you would within the confines of an ashram, you move about with respect and reverence for what is. You selflessly serve the greater good from a place of inner resolution, devoting yourself to the needs of others knowing that your efforts are cosmically reciprocal. You arrive at your inner altar (self-defined place of peace) with a spirit of grandmotherly love. By pairing back distractions, you observe with greater subtlety and surrender your attention towards the finer details. You’re grateful and in awe, even when things feel uncertain. You welcome the unknown like a guest within your home, knowing the mystery is ushering in something better than you could have ever meticulously planned.

Funny enough, the process is the outcome you are actually seeking.



This week’s journal prompt: Have you been seeking a retreat from the day-to-day realities of life during a global pandemic? Where/when have you tried to run and hide? Where can you tend to the forgotten corners of your own “home” with the spirit of the seeker?

Resources for your practice: My Soul Counselled Me – a poem by Kahlil Gibran, 6 Important Lessons from an Ashram on, and A Response: As Within, So Without on the Our Seva blog.



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Each week, expect a bite-sized personal reflection with accompanying journal prompt. My hope is that by sharing these reflections and prompts, you’ll be inspired into purposeful action and we’ll both be reassured that we are not alone in this process of unraveling.

Once a month, expect a curation of resources intended to inspire a deeper personal practice. There will be Q&A interviews to showcase how other women in this community navigate transformation, articles and podcasts that have made a lasting impression and practical mindfulness exercises to bring about sustainable change. If you’re a fan of mantra…there will be some of that too.

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