~9/11~ Of course the media made a big splash about the tenth anniversary of 9/11. I think it is very important to respect the past and learn from it – but I also feel it is unhealthy to inflame the American people with repetitive videos of the events, interviews and emotional discussions.
Rather than helping with healing, forgiveness and higher awareness – often this type of reporting keeps people locked in a place of unending anger and deep feelings of injustice. Honestly I often feel that, the only thing we have learned from 9/11 is how to be more afraid of others.
In the end, anger and injustice do not lead to peace – case in point, right now we spend around 1 trillion dollars a year on war. Imagine if those funds were used to create a stellar education system, jobs, better infrastructures, healthier food, and dare I say it – PEACE!
I recently read an interesting blog article by author Tom Wright who wrote:
To quote the words of Michel De Montaigne, we are “drunk with malice.” We are addicted to war. To violence. To bloodshed. To greed. To hatred. Our leaders believe that we can bludgeon the world into obedience. There is no question that can be posed, no query submitted, to which Washington cannot answer with bombs, missiles, tanks, guns and mechanized death.
I have to say that there is truth in his words. Take a moment to read his post and let me know what YOU think about it….
~TIME TO REGISTER FOR OUR OCTOBER JOURNEYS~
Need a special trip for you or your family? Let Ales in Custom Travel design something for you!
EGYPT: Remembrances, Exploring the Mysteries – March 8-18th, 2012
A great time to experience Egypt!
On this spiritual journey to Egypt we’ll have the opportunity to be in the presence of sacred space designed for the purpose of spiritual alignment and for remembering and exploring the ancient mysteries of Egypt. Truly these temples serve a special function, to stir and encourage the divine to awaken within us – to illuminate the way to enlightenment.
During this heart-opening journey with facilitator Samvedam Randles, we’ll dream our own spiritual transcendence just as the ancient mystery school initiates did thousands of years ago through ceremony, meditation and group process.
Using the mythology, stories and archetypes of the ancients we come to understand who we really are – the limitless consciousness that creates the very fabric of this reality. We’ll experience the powerful energies at these sacred sites – compelling us to transcend rather than being enslaved by the old stories and mythologies of our ego-minds.
The 2011 trip cost is: $4995.00 USD per person double occupancy INCLUDING international flights from JFK, internal flights to Abu Simbel, plus ALL meals (early bird special!)
Sign-up by December 1st – the trip price is going up to $5395.00!
Details for Egypt here!
~Sheri is taking a little break! ~
Bhutan – Peace, Unity & Happiness
I recently had a friend who lives in Singapore return from a trip to Bhutan, a country I have been fascinated with for years (and I travel to Asia often!). Looking at his pictures I was in awe of the sheer beauty of this little country only the size of Switzerland, a little gem hidden in the Himalayan Mountains.
Bhutan, also called the land of the Thunder Dragon, became an official kingdom in 1907, and until the ’70’s their doors were closed to foreigners. How lucky we are to live in a time where we experience its beauty and be able to visit such untouched beauty and strikingly pristine blue skies.
Even today, the Royal Government of Bhutan is approaching tourism cautiously in an effort to avoid any negative impact to its culture and environment. Last year the number of visitors was a mere 27,196 people! In 1999, the government lifted a ban on television and the Internet, making Bhutan one of the last countries to introduce television.
As I was looking through his pictures, one especially caught my eye of a banner which said: “100 Years of Peace, Unity & Happiness” as my friend disembarked from the plane. It amazed me how different their priorities are from ours – according to their philosophy the happiness of their people precedes the Gross National Product!
Everyone I know that has visited Bhutan has come back touched by the hearts of its people, the philosophy by which they live, and the endless beauty of its landscape. Wherever you look you feel embraced by the warmth of the Bhutanese people; their happiness is contagious as it is part of their nation’s belief in Gross National Happiness.
There is a beautiful picture I recently saw of monks gathered in a square in Bhutan, bowing to each other with big smiles, exuding love, gratitude and reverence – to me this picture perfectly reflects the spirit of this nation.
Journeys to Bhutan are an intimate experience with its people as you will experience them interacting in their daily lives, whether your are receiving the blessings of a Buddhist monk or watching one of the country’s best weavers and dyers creating a beautiful piece of art. The majority of people in Bhutan still live in small rural villages and small family farms are the predominant way of life.
Literally hanging off the side of a mountain, the highlight of every visit to Bhutan is a hike or pilgrimage to Taktsang Monastery (also called Tiger’s Nest) – one of the most sacred places in Bhutan. The legend says that in the eighth century, Guru Rinpoche made his trip from eastern Bhutan to Western Bhutan on the back of a flying tigress to subdue the evil spirits who hindered Buddhism. After defeating them, he blessed them as guardians of the doctrine.
It is also said that Guru Rinpoche meditated for 3 months in a cave where the monastery was later build, and according to legend this cave is to be the origin of Buddhism in Bhutan. Today it is the only country in the world to retain the Tantric form of Mahayana Buddhism as its official religion.
There are so many opportunities for you to take advantage of the beautiful energy and spiritual atmosphere here. And if your body is aching and needs some loving care, there are now several amazing 5 star hotels offering wonderful spa treatments, yoga and healing massages to help you relax and rejuvenate.
Some of my favorites are: the Aman hotels in Paro, Thimphu, Bumthang, Gangtey and Punakha and also Uma Paro (pictured on the left) and Taj Tashi (in Thimphu). These hotels have gone over the top to create architecture and an atmosphere that will have you feeling like royalty.
At Journeys of the Spirit we offer a journey to Bhutan almost every year but if you prefer traveling at a different time I’d be more than happy to make arrangements for you to do so. Our Bhutan: Reawakening to our Deeper Purpose journey – Dec 5-21st, 2012 is being facilitated by author and aikido master Wendy Palmer. Her trip is a sacred pilgrimage of meditation, chanting, prayer and ceremony – where we will be expanding our consciousness and cultivating the compassion of Buddha within us. If you want to get an idea of what we can create for you – I suggest exploring this itinerary for this trip so can get a feeling of what is possible!
Blessings & love, Ales Stuna, Director of Custom Travel Services.
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TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OUR EARLY BIRD SPECIALS!
~BOLD OCTOBER EXPEDITIONS~
SANTORINI, GREECE: Inspire Your Creative Soul!
Trip Leader: Linda Jacobson
October 14-21st, 2011
DHARAMSALA, INDIA: The Dalai Lama & Tibetan Buddhism in Exile
Trip Leaders: Lama Buga Tire & Lisa Tully
Oct 21-Nov 7th
~NOURISHING NOVEMBER RETREATS~
MAYAN RIVIERA: 11.11.11 Women’s Prayer Beads & Altars
Trip Leaders: Sheri Rosenthal & Kathy Benson
Nov 9-15th, 2011 (price goes up Sept 15th!)
~HEART-OPENING DECEMBER TRAVELS~
TULUM, MEXICO: Atmananda Yoga Retreat NEW!
Trip Leaders: Jhon Tamayo
Dec 3-10th, 2011 (price goes up Sept 1st!)
PALENQUE, MEXICO: A Shamanic Portal to 2012
Trip Leaders: Fu-Ding Cheng & Linda Jacobson
Dec 8-13th, 2011 (price goes up Sept 15th!)
~HEART-WARMING JANUARY ADVENTURES~
ANGKOR WAT, CAMBODIA: Unconditional Love in Action
Trip Leader: David Ault
January 30 – February 9th, 2012 (price goes up Oct 1st, 2011!)
~REFRESHING FEBRUARY RETREATS~
DELRAY, FL: Honoring & Healing the Goddess Within!
Trip Leader: Shanti Gilbert
February 9–12, 2012
~SUCCULENT MARCH VOYAGES~
MAR DE JADE, MEXICO: Trance Dance – Opening the Chakras to the Energies of 2012
Trip Leader: Ernesto Ortiz
March 3-10th, 2012
EGYPT: Remembrances, Exploring the Mysteries
Trip Leader: Samvedam Randles
March 8-18th, 2012
AGUA NICARAGUA: Soul*Full Sisters – Spirituality & Photography by the Sea NEW!
Trip Leader: Catherine Just & Sheri Rosenthal
March 29-Apr 3, 2012
~ENLIGHTENING APRIL TRAVELS~
TEOTIHUACAN, MEXICO: Skanda Yoga Retreat – Portals of Power! NEW!
Trip Leaders: Ken von Roenn III & Lina Vallejo
April 11-18th, 2012
SEDONA: Goddess Healing Spiritual Retreat NEW!
Trip Leader: Shanti Gilbert
April 29-May 4th, 2012
Want to see our whole line-up for the upcoming year?
Visit our Trips at a Glance page.