The Diamond Tree Retreat – Jan 2014

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There’s a magical tree down at Martinsell and at this time of year it grows diamonds. The diamonds can not be seen by just anyone, to most people they are invisible. Only the initiates can see. To the uninitiated, there is nothing see,  it is just a damp tree, just a grey tree on a grey day.  But to those in the know, the truly initiated, it’s different.  They can see without words, they can look without concepts, and experience without criticism. They bring no past conditioning and no judgment into the moment, so they can really see. They see what is there, rather than what they think is there, and because their minds don't filter out the diamonds, they are plain to see.

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When the initiates see, they see with a quiet mind and when they give the tree their full attention without mental distraction, then that attention brings the tree to life. And in that moment the damp grey tree, comes alive and it’s diamond chandeliers reveal themselves and they sparkle in the glory of your attention. My job on these retreats is to show you the diamonds, and once you can see the diamonds, you’ll be able to see the sapphires the rubies and a myriad of shiny things wherever you look, because once you have learned how to see then the whole world shines back at you.

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We had the most fantastic weekend, another totally wonderful group. Some old faces and some new, there was a comedy car salesman, a strange synchronous reunion, a birthday boy, and muddy encounters. Some of our guests were explorers of consciousness, and others were hoping to find themselves, even looking to start a new life, and there were people looking for answers, and at least one who didn’t have a clue why they were there. A wonder mix.  The food was great and Nicola and Kelly’s  hospitality was as warm as the log fire. by Saturday morning everyone was settled in together like old friends.
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We started Saturday with Nicola’s special porridge and warm fruit bread, followed by meditation and a teaching session. Then it was time to walk the Dragon’s tail. The walk itself could be completed in an hour, but we did it properly and it took more than 3 hours. The art of mindful walking is to realise that there is nowhere to go. On a mindful walk, the walk is the destination. The team made sure that everyone was held in a mindful state of attention for the full three hours, the moment they lost concentration and slipped back into their heads, one of the team was alert to it and gently helped them back  into presence.  This is a far more powerful method of teaching than anything I could deliver in a classroom and by the time we got back to the centre the dragon’s tail had worked it’s spell. Every one of our guest was anchored in mindful awareness and the pump was primed for the rest of the weekend. As the weekend passed I watched our guests, one by one open up and flower and in that space of awareness, shift happens and there were life changing realisations.
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Martisell Hill

Sunday morning Chi King, facing the Sun rise and Martinsell Hill, was unbelievable. Chi Kung is a wonderful form of mindfulness training and a powerful form of meditation. The retreat centre sit’s on top of the Aylesbury ley which is one of the most important energy meridians in the country. Practicing Chi kung in this environment compounds many times over it’s effectiveness and once the chi was flowing nicely and everyone was in the right place to explore how the mindful art of  managing emotion.

Learning how to effectively manage your emotions in the body is the key to self control, you see, by mindfully observing our inner emotional responses in every situation it means we are always alert to how we are in any situation, with this awareness we can take steps to deal with ourselves so we can interact more consciously in the world and move away from reaction towards right action.  It’s a life time’s training to master yourself, but once you start applying these principles in your daily life, thing improve greatly . When you act consciously in the world, the world reflects that back to you. Simples

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