A hiking retreat is a time to connect deeply to oneself and to the energy of nature. It's a time to slow down, to feel wonder and gratitude, to detox and nourish ourselves.
How? We train to bring back our mind to the present moment. Every time we bring our attention to our breath, to our steps and our body, we are nurturing the energy of mindfulness. Mindfulness is the capacity to be with what is inside of us and around us.
The daily schedule follows the rhythm of a meditation retreat. We begin with sitting meditation and Chi gong/ body mindfulness exercises. We practice eating meditation to fully enjoy our breakfast. Instructions are given to practice mindfulness while walking along with exercises to amplify our perception. We walk in silence in touch with the earth so that each step becomes a seal of attention to the Earth.
Hiking retreats are the fruit of Anita's practice in the tradition of Thich Nhat Hanh whom she met in 1993 for the first time. In 2005 she organized together with two nuns from the monastic community of Plum Village the first hiking retreat in the Dolomites (Italian Alps). Offering a mindfulness retreat in a powerful natural context, where the woods are the meditation hall and the rhythm of the mountain becomes our rhythm, is a meaningful return to the past. The Buddha, like St. Francis, loved to walk with his disciples on his bare feet.
Since 2014 Anita has offered (together with sister Tue Nghiem and Kaira Jewel Lingo) retreats in various parts of Italy: Casentino, Island of Elba, Dolomites, Val d’Orcia, Salento….
“Whether walking on the via Francigena, the medieval pilgrimage route that leads to Rome, or on the volcanic Island of Pantelleria, I discover again and again the pleasure of traveling in across the region on my own feet. In the last six years the fertile seed of hiking retreats has grown within me joining the threads of my life. Today I offer my experience and enthusiasm, bringing greater awareness of nature and a sense of togetherness in concentration and joy.”
April 27 - May 3
The tree of breath, Hiking retreat in Salento
L’Albero del Respiro: in terra d’Otranto
With brothers Phap Luu and Dao Luc (Plum Village Community)