Friday 22 January 2010

Wanted: Retreat

A friend recently posted on her blog that she was looking for a retreat for the spring.

"Not Christian; not Buddhist; not tantric sex; not a B&B with pretensions; not a health farm," she said.

She has been on retreats before, to Oxenhoath, a country estate retreat in Kent, but fancies a different retreat centre this year. On her blog, she said:
"Oxenhoath is totally lovely, but I've been there three years in a row now, so I thought maybe a change. But I'm finding the word 'retreat' is often used as a euphemism for holiday, which means I keep getting 'Romantic Retreats in the Devon Countryside' or similar, which is a little frustrating. And I don't want anything involving angels or colonic irrigation, thank you."
I've never personally been on a retreat, although the idea of getting right away from my everyday problems to stay in some beautiful, tranquil place for a few days of peaceful repose and spiritual contemplation does sound appealing.

So, to see if I could help my friend and also to satisfy my own curiosity, I decided to do a bit of web searching on the subject.

I first came across . The Retreat Company seems to offer a huge range of retreats - and a lot of other activities too. The list of topics includes dreamwork, meditation, self discovery, healing, even an "Amazonian Ayahuasca & Authentic Shamanic Healing Retreat".

I had wondered why my friend specifically said "nothing to do with colonic irrigation", but I must admit I was surprised at just how many colonic irrigation retreats were on offer. Presumably people go on these for their health rather than as a spiritual experience, but I hadn't realised that having water pumped up one's bottom was such a popular pastime.

Another website I found (and one not offering any form of rectal intrusion) was Heartspring, a lovely looking retreat centre based in Carmarthen, Wales, says it offers three types of retreats: relaxation retreats, retreat apartments and soul connection retreats. The website says these "help you connect with the deeper side of your being, your intuition and to learn simple practical meditation to suit your own unique lifestyle and situation". Sounds good.

In the past I have found Neal's Yard Holidays offers some wonderful spiritual getaways, so I had a look on its website to see if it offers retreats. I didn't find exactly what my friend was after, but I was quite taken with the Cornish Tipi Holiday, recommended as "a great place to do your own retreat - a blissfully secluded nature reserve situated close to the coast yet away from the crowds".

The website says: "In this peaceful spot you can retreat from the city and reconnect with nature as you stroll through the woods, swim in the sea or in the beautifully still lake on site, and curl up at night under the stars in your very own tipi." When the weather warms up a bit, I could be very tempted to try that.

When I emailed all those website details to my friend, I re-read her original post and, ever curious, I couldn't help asking why she had specifically mentioned tantric sex retreats? Had she seen details of one?

Indeed she had. It was called Alto Sax she said, but it wasn't really her thing. I looked on the website, which says the retreat centre teaches "tantra, tantric massage and tantric sexuality to individuals and couples".

"Come and explore yourself in a wonderful, safe and sacred environment", it added. I bet that includes anal intrusion...

1 comment:

T Hanrahan said...

Hi Bad Witch,

I know it's a bit late. I just wanted to say, colonic irrigation is a total scam and can even be dangerous. If you feel like you need to 'clean out' your body, eat high fiber foods like fruit and veggies!

We organise a no-funny business yoga and Pilates retreat in Dorset.

It's set in a beautiful country house, a few miles from the sea. The diet is vegan, gluten free and organic (for detoxing purposes).

We're taking bookings for July 2012 on our website:

I know it's a bit late since this post was written in 2010, but maybe she can attend next summer?