Mens Healing Circle
About This Event
Our culture lacks opportunities for men to turn toward their own healing work in a supportive environment of other men. The retreat is an invitation to men who are noticing through the external circumstances of their lives, and their inner knowing, that something needs to change
In many traditional societies men turned toward other men when difficulties arose and healing was needed. It was recognized that men needed something of their own medicine to move through times of transition and change. Men needed to be held by the strength and knowing of other men.
Today we are more likely to believe that we must take care of ourselves, riding into the sunset of a rugged individualism that needs little from others. As a result many men are felling isolated, and cut off from the richness of what life can offer.
This 5 day men’s retreat is an opportunity to discover a new way forward. Together we can access a collective wisdom that supports each of us to engage in the growth work and healing that brings forward movement and change.
We will walk through the different doorways of experience, engaging body, mind, emotion, and spirit. Using a trauma informed, body-centered, map of the self, we will explore how personality arises as a form of habitual protection in response to the family holding environment of our past. We will utilize deep inquiry, group process work, and modern forms of Soma to illuminate and release the unconscious protective patters held in the body along with the thoughts and beliefs that accompany them.
We will take part in an ancient purification ritual, sitting on the earth in the dark heat of rocks and steam. Yoga, meditation, exercise and movement will be used as means to enter underneath the thinking mind, and feel the space inside each of us that holds your inner authority and deeper knowing.
The Men’s Healing Circle will offer you opportunities for deep conversation, laughter, self-reflection, and camaraderie. In these five days you will access an older wisdom held in your bones and step into the collective intelligence available in a healing circle of men.
In a culture that tells men to compete for power-over, we will instead connect to the sources of our individual and collective empowerment.
This retreat will include:
a therapeutically supported soma healing circle
Deep learning opportunities to shift perspectives learned in the holding environment of your family past
Mindfullness and meditation practices
Yoga and embodyment practices
Daily hikes into the West Arm Park and to wilderness beachs on Kootenay Lake
Naturally built persperation chamber for a sweat ritual
Organic garden grown meals
The following poem, by Jeff Foster, captures something of the spirit of this men's retreat..........
HOW I BECAME A WARRIOR
Once, I ran from fear
so fear controlled me.
Until I learned to hold fear like a newborn.
Listen to it, but not give in.
Honour it, but not worship it.
Fear could not stop me anymore.
I walked with courage into the storm.
I still have fear,
but it does not have me.
Once, I was ashamed of who I was.
I invited shame into my heart.
I let it burn.
It told me, "I am only trying
to protect your vulnerability".
I thanked shame dearly,
and stepped into life anyway,
unashamed, with shame as a lover.
Once, I had great sadness
buried deep inside.
I invited it to come out and play.
I wept oceans. My tear ducts ran dry.
And I found joy right there.
Right at the core of my sorrow.
It was heartbreak that taught me how to love.
Once, I had anxiety.
A mind that wouldn't stop.
Thoughts that wouldn't be silent.
So I stopped trying to silence them.
And I dropped out of the mind,
and into the Earth.
Into the mud.
Where I was held strong
like a tree, unshakeable, safe.
Once, anger burned in the depths.
I called anger into the light of myself.
I felt its shocking power.
I let my heart pound and my blood boil.
Listened to it, finally.
And it screamed, "Respect yourself fiercely now!".
"Speak your truth with passion!".
"Say no when you mean no!".
"Walk your path with courage!".
"Let no one speak for you!"
Anger became an honest friend.
A truthful guide.
A beautiful wild child.
Once, loneliness cut deep.
I tried to distract and numb myself.
Ran to people and places and things.
Even pretended I was "happy".
But soon I could not run anymore.
And I tumbled into the heart of loneliness.
And I died and was reborn
into an exquisite solitude and stillness.
That connected me to all things.
So I was not lonely, but alone with All Life.
My heart One with all other hearts.
Once, I ran from difficult feelings.
Now, they are my advisors, confidants, friends,
and they all have a home in me,
and they all belong and have dignity.
I am sensitive, soft, fragile,
my arms wrapped around all my inner children.
And in my sensitivity, power.
In my fragility, an unshakeable Presence.
In the depths of my wounds,
in what I had named “darkness”,
I found a blazing Light
that guides me now in battle.
I became a warrior
when I turned towards myself.
And started listening.
~ Jeff Foster ~
Venue Highlights-There is a peace and calmness that is present here at our Centre, in the built environment of the round archetecture of the lodge and dharma hall, in the beauty of the forest landscape, and gardens, that invites our guests to find their own natural rhythm and drop into the deeper intelligence of the right brain and body.
- We have a network of trails that lead into the West Arm Wilderness park that gives our guests access to great huckleberry picking, to pristine beaches on Kootenay Lake and wonderful vistas of Nelson and the Selkirk mountains.
- We have a large organic permaculture garden that supplies our kitchen with delicious nutrient dense fruits and vegetables.
- Our wilderness location is only 3 kilometers from the City of Neson. Giving you access to one of Canada's premier alternative arts, adventure, and wellness centres
AccommodationsMain lodge (9 Private Rooms)
1) Master bedroom with full ensuite bathroom and lounge space.
2) Private room next to master bedroom ensuite space has a double bed
3) 5 private rooms with a queen bed
4) 2 private rooms with a double bed
5) 3 full bathrooms with shower and 1 common washroom are accessible to the private room guests
5 Shared and private cabins
1) Hermitage cabin with a queen and double bed. Has a deck and separated downstairs bathroom with shower, vanity sink and compost toilet.
2) Upper cedar log cabin with a queen and double bed. Has a deck, washroom with vanity sink and compost toilet in the same space.
3) Lower cedar log cabin with a queen and single bed. Has a deck, washroom with vanity sink and compost toilet in the same space.
4) Firewood cabin with a queen and double bed. Has a deck, washroom with shower, vanity sink and compost toilet in the same space.
5) Homestead cabin with a queen and double bed. Has a large deck, kitchenette, shower, vanity sink and septic toilet in the same space.
- 7 camp sites with 2 outhouses
- Free Wifi
- Free Parking
- Hot Tub
- Yoga Studio
- Ceremony Space
- Gluten Free
- Dairy Free
- Nut Free
Menu/CuisineWe offer you healthy gourmet meals, fresh picked from our organic garden whenever possible, and locally sourced. Our typical retreat menu will provide you with delicious vegitarian meals along with naturally raised poultry and wild fish. We are able to provide gluten free and dairy free menu options when necessary.
DirectionsThe West Kootenal regional airport in Castlegar BC is 40 minutes from Nelson and has daily flights connecting to both Calgary and Vancouver. From Nelson, Mountain Waters is accessed via Svoboda road which connects the West Arm Park to the eastern part of the city
which is known as Fairview. Taxi service to Mountain Waters is available from Glacier Taxi.
ReviewsWrite a review - tell others about your experience.
Simon Vine September 23, 2019
I recently attended a Men's retreat at Mountain Waters, and had an amazing experience. The place is absolutely stunning, the staff were all super friendly and attentive, and the food was excellent. I found the retreat to be balanced, at once profound and lighthearted. Richard and Andrew who led the retreat, offered wisdom, counsel, and created excellent opportunity for introspection and soul-searching. Al in all, a fantastic experience.
Ken Trudeau September 18, 2019
Following the completion of a five day couples healing retreat with my wife at Mountain Waters called Keeping Love Alive, I was hoping the opportunity would present itself to go back there for more healing. My wife and I were felt so blessed from our experience, from the lush retreat grounds and cozy buildings, to the delicious and nutritious food, it was nurturing and it felt like the oasis we needed to do our work. We were so a blown away by Beth, Yogita and Richard, by their skills, wisdom, and heart. So when I saw the the offering of this men's retreat, I was confident this was going to be just as comprehensive, thoughtful, healing, and fun, and it was. The timing of its occurrence was impeccable and just what I was needing at that moment. The Men's Retreat was transformational. I had so many moments where I was pleasantly overwhelmed by pure tears of release and gratitude. Whether it was a hike down to the lake for a swim, sharing a meal, doing some yoga enhanced by healing sounds, sitting in a circle of men sharing, learning, laughing and crying, it all felt very sacred. The facilitators Richard, Andrew, and Kirkland were exceptional and Sebastian's accompanying healing sounds were grounding and playful. Jessie's food was delicious and James' presence on the grounds as always reassuring. As someone who works as a clinician in public health in mental health and substance use services and does a fair share of group facilitation, I have been so impressed by the quality of facilitators at this retreat centre. I have found Richard to be highly skilled and attuned to the groups he leads. I appreciate his training in not only in the somatic psychotherapy of hakomi, and other techniques, but his deep wisdom, groundedness, non-judgemental approach, his laughter, playfulness, his boundaries, his thoughtful use of self and self-disclosure and sharing of his lived experience. Mostly I am impressed and grateful for his humanness and how safe and respected he helps me to feel there. The sweat hut ceremony was one of the most profound experiences of my life and something I will hold dear forever. I am forever grateful to have been a part of, and bare witness to, the men who showed up and shared their strengths, wisdom, hurts, joys, anxieties, humour, and hopes as well as their commitment towards greater accountability to their own lives, their families, and their communities. I am forever grateful for having had the opportunity through this workshop Men and the Water of Life of sharing and holding space with great men in vulnerability, openness, and empathy. The cost of this retreat was so reasonable; thank you Mountain Waters, I will be back! Ken Trudeau
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