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This experience changed our lives – MRP Beginner Retreat

MRP Beginner Retreat: This experience changed our lives

Even after guiding many mindfulness retreats, each time is still as exciting as the very first one. This year’s edition of the 7-day MRP Beginner Retreat felt more exciting than ever after moving the retreat to Portugal for the first time.

In previous years, I hosted the retreat in the Buddhist monastery of my master in Thailand. Practicing mindfulness according to the Buddhist traditions and lifestyle is a unique experience, and the mindfulness energy is unmatched.

In the run-up to the retreat, my biggest concern was if we would manage to create a setting similar to Thailand where our group could fully engage in their mindfulness practice without disturbance and where the mindfulness energy would blossom.

I’m happy and confident to say that our retreat in Portugal exceeded my expectations by far and was a great success.

That’s why we have already decided to do it again in 2025!

Our team found the perfect location in Bodhi Bhavan, a secluded retreat center near the top of Picota mountain in the Algarve in Portugal. In contrast to the sober lifestyle of the monks in the temple, an accommodation that offers you a bed, a warm shower, and two daily meals feels luxurious quickly.

The house and the practice shala were as stunning as they were convenient, and the garden and the view over the valley were as breathtaking as they were peaceful. Although this was ideal and contributed to the retreat’s success, remember that, in the end, it’s all about our mindfulness practice.

If you want to make serious steps in your mindfulness practice, you have to practice seriously. For us, this meant waking up early to meditate well before sunrise and practicing until the sun was set behind the mountains already.

The practitioners who joined me on this year’s retreat can confirm the practice program was intense, but it’s intense for a reason. Let’s call this program the “real deal.” It forces us to fully engage in our practice and come to a deeper understanding of the most profound form of mindfulness and ourselves.

If you want to achieve this and bring something into motion for your life after the retreat, this retreat might also be worth considering for you.

“Before this retreat, I was at a crossroads in my life. I questioned my decision-making, life’s purpose, and professional career. It drained so much of my energy. I signed up for this retreat to understand how to regain that energy again. It was scary to start with this program and put so many hours per day into my practice. So, the beginning of the retreat was a bit of a struggle for me, but once the course progressed, I got used to making an early start and practicing for this many hours. I was amazed that this feeling was fading away so quickly. I started to feel much better and knew I was at the right place, doing the right things. Now, I feel I can take my time, not be reactive, listen to my mind better, and make decisions more consciously. If you—like me—have low energy, lost your motivation in life, or find yourself at a crossroads, I wholeheartedly recommend joining this retreat. It will help you to find new energy, new passions, and a trigger to change something. It’s for everyone who wants to move on, be happy and free of suffering.”
– Natalia

“I was looking to get to know myself better on a deeper level. When this retreat crossed my path, I felt I should go for it. Especially in the beginning, the schedule was a bit tough for me, but I was surprised to find out that I eventually enjoyed it. Every meditation was different, and I learned something new with each session. Results don’t come naturally, though. I’ve realized that it requires hard work, great focus, and a lot of practice. I now better understand what mindfulness is and that there is a way to calm my mind. Since my mind was always switched on, this was a great discovery I’ll take with me in my life after the retreat.”
– Rose

The 7-day Essential Retreat is for everyone, whether you are new to mindfulness and joining for your first retreat or an experienced practitioner who may have gone on many retreats before.

Mindfulness Teacher Training - Guidance by Master Niels

Our groups have an international character, with participants from many different countries. People who join this retreat come from all walks of life and are different in age, personality, professional background, and experience. During this year’s retreat, our youngest practitioner was 26, and the oldest was 72. The mix, however, is always fascinating, and the group’s vibe is always different. This year’s group was very calm, relaxed, joyful, and dedicated to learning.

Next year’s retreat in Portugal from 25 January until 1 February promises another wonderful adventure.

Did my message spark your interest in the 7-day Essential Retreat? For 2025, we can accommodate 14 individuals, and it would be lovely if you were one of them.

Register for the Portugal retreat in 2025

Click here to learn more about the retreat or request a brochure.

With love and kindness,
Master Niels

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