What you Gain from a Journey Retreat
I have just returned from a weekend Journey Intensive where I acted as a supporter for Deb Billet , one of the Senior trainers who facilitated the retreat. There were about thirty people there who were experiencing The Journey for the first time. Deb took them gently through the days, helping them to turn their attention inward and notice any pain that they were holding in their bodies. This may have been pain from past hurt or trauma in their lives, any guilt, sadness or anger that they were harbouring or any lack of forgiveness for themselves or others that was keeping them trapped in suffering.
She then lead the delegates through a series of guided meditations that allowed them to begin to heal and free themselves leaving, in place of the suffering, forgiveness, compassion and love. By the end of the weekend the room was filled with smiles and tears of gratitude as people opened to an understanding that their lives would never be the same again and they were now free to take a healthier path: they could begin a future with healthier bodies, more loving relationships and a fresh attitude to life.
I had my own deep healing experience. I was given a task which I felt I did not carry out ‘well enough’ and I was filled with remorse, self-judgement and shame. This was an old pattern of self-blame that I recognised, but this did not make me feel any better. Towards the end of the day I glanced at Deb, who was busy preparing for the final presentation before we all dispersed, but she stopped, looked deep into my eyes and seemed to see straight into my soul. She then gave me a completely open and loving smile, it was as if she was sending me love and gratitude for the service I had offered and she was in complete acceptance of who I was.
And then I realised the truth: yes, I had made a mistake and this had impacted on others but I had done my best and I was still worthy of unconditional love. I was OK, just as I am.
This is a central teaching of the Journey: to learn to accept and love ourselves, knowing that we each have our own struggles and challenges. Practising this leads to inner peace and joy that ripples out and influences all our relationships .