This last weekend we had our May retreat in Pandavas Paradise. Though normally May is already the beginning of the long dry season in this part of the world, we had torrential rains for several days before the retreat and the first two days of it. This has never been seen here – I guess it’s just one more weird weather event to add to the global warming list!
We had a group of 12 people this time, smaller than our last Carnaval retreat. But, like the last retreat, there was a strong emphasis on bhakti throughout the retreat. People came to the retreat specifically either looking to deepen their practice of Krishna consciousness or to get to know more about it.
The group was composed of psychologists, journalists, a public prosecutor, an engineer and a humble baker. The baker, Alexildo, had been studying Prabhupada’s Gita with his brother, on their own, for some time now, but this was his first contact with a temple and devotees.
The schedule was quite intense, with about 3 hours of lectures, 30 minutes of japa, and one hour of aratik and kirtan, every day. I taught them my “Yoga Sutra Summary” seminar, and gave my “Mantras from the Center of the Universe” workshop with the Jambudvip prayers from the 5th Canto.
In the mornings, after japa, they had long yoga classes, led by Radharani DD (PGS). She also offered Thai and Ayurvedic massage.
After breakfast, on the last two days, we managed to get good enough weather to go on nice walks through our beautiful land, heading towards the waterfalls for a invigorating swim.
All the newcomers there bought their own japa beads and books, to continue their practice and study at home.
Click here to see lots more photos taken by my wife, Carana Renu Dasi.