There are some people whose company just sends you to sleep… and then there are the professionals like my pal SLM who put you into dreamland.
Travel and Yoga Nidra professional Sarah Lloyd-Morrison is one of those precious gems you discover on your life’s journey.
You know the type: chilled, funny and unstintingly patient.
And I’m glad to say that she’s not blocked me since we returned from Tobago www.tobago.gov.tt and https://www.google.ie/amp/s/jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/2020/03/17/ready-steady-goat-racing-in-tobago/amp/.
Or at least this is what she told me to write when she had me under…. in her meditation class.
And it’s just what I needed in lockdown and it’ll help me from killing my family.
Although there’s no guarantee that they’ll not kill me first if I say I’m meditating when there are chores to be done.
Of course now I can self-meditate I’m going to seek out a zen break.
Here are five of the best.
Rockies of ages
Shambhalah Mountain Center, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado: America’s hipster state where Brad and Dexter are so chilled.
Because of the Great Outdoors, the freestyle rock-climbing, white-water rafting, horseriding and maybe too the substances.
Where better then to zen out than Red Feather Lakes, 50 miles north-west of Fort Collins?
They’ve a variety of programmes from ‘Introduction to Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction’ to ‘The Path of Simply Being’.
And they also have nature-based programmes with astronomy.
Stay a month, week or weekend in a tent or lodge suite. Visit https://www.shambhalamountain.org www.colorado.comand The New Frontiersmen.
Shamballah, Sintra, Portugal: I’m reminded here of the friendly Wolverhampton masochist who had me contorted during yoga in the Algarve www.quintadolago.com, www.visitportugal.com and https://www.google.ie/amp/s/jimmurtytraveltraveltravel.com/2020/03/28/sportugal-2/amp/.
Shamballah puts on a Yoga and Meditation Retreat.
And you know that Portugal is throwing its doors open again.
Before all this kicked off they were quoting three nights single room €350 per person. See https://www.shamballahretreats.com/retreats.
O Lotus Flower of Scotland
Kagyu Samye Ling. Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland: And this is the first Buddhist retreat in the west of Scotland.
They have all manner of accommodations including retreat rooms, camping and camper vans.
And five golden rules including: no killing, no stealing, no lying, no drink or drugs and no sexual impropriety.
You will, of course, be so zenned out you’ll love everybody because you’ll love yourself.
Or in the words of Choja Lama Yeshe Losal Rimpache: ‘Meditation means simple acceptance.’
See https://www.samyeling.org and www.visitscotland.com.
Ireland’s Garden County
Bobbio Centre, Co. Wicklow, Ireland: Now Irish sisters and brothers were a fixture of my upbringing.
My Dear Old Mum had a family of cousins who all went into the Holy Order.
And they would regularly turn up on our doorsteps in their long beards and shawls.
The Bobbio Centre in my beloved old stomping ground of Co. Wicklow is run by the Columbine Sisters.
They have 11 bedrooms and one en-suite single, special needs bedroom.
You have your meeting room and prayer room as you would expect and also a beehive which has created quite the buzz.
See https://www.columbansisters.org/bobbio-retreat-centre/ and www.visitwicklow.com..
Vidya Niwas India Hotels, Himalayas: Hippies the world over will tell you that Dharamsala is where you need to go to find your inner zen.
And the Dalai Lama’s resident region in exile in India does have everything you need for meditation.
You can choose from the likes of The Rose Room, the Golok Princess Room, the Kotha Basant Room and the Sherpa Everest Room.
The views are gratis and the zen is guaranteed. See https://www.dalai-lama-dharma-dharamsala-miniguide.com/vidya-niwas.html
Where is your favourite zen retreat? Let me know and we’ll share.
And now we’re feeling all floaty here are some yoga guides… My Sporting Weekend International Yoga Day and Yoga-dabba-do – International Yoga Day.
And look out for my Meditation Diary with my Yogi Sarah Lloyd-Morrison in these pages.
MEET YOU IN NIRVANA