All conflict starts in the mind. If we do not invest time or energy into something, we will not gain a result. This is the same with the mind.
Most of us live in an illusion that we will be happy when things will be as we think they should be. We have many attachments – to physical pleasures, to people, to material, to money – but our biggest attachment is the reality as we think it should be. ‘When my health is perfect, when my kids do everything I say, when my wife or husband is like this and my company goes like this, I will be happy.’ But, we forget that we are the main character of our movies. If we do not have inner peace, conflict will come up in everything else.
Pain is nothing more, nothing less than an alarm ringing that something is wrong. The problem is not conflict, the problem is what is generating the conflict. The problem is not violence, the problem is what is generating the violence. Join us to change the paradigm.
“Doing retreat means you’re making war with your inner enemy – delusions.”
– Lama Zopa Rinpoche
Address: PO: Swargashram, Rishikesh-249304, Uttarakhand, India
Phone: +91-135-244-0055, +91-135-244-0088
Parmarth Niketan is a true spiritual haven, lying on the holy banks of Mother Ganga in the lap of the lush Himalayas. It is the largest ashram in Rishikesh, providing its thousands of pilgrims who come from all corners of the Earth with a clean, pure and sacred atmosphere as well as abundant, beautiful gardens. With over 1,000 rooms, the facilities are a perfect blend of modern amenities and traditional, spiritual simplicity. Parmarth Niketan is located in Swargashram, on the main road, just on the banks of the sacred Ganges River.
It is no surprise that pilgrims are drawn here from all over the world. The awe-inspiring beauty of the ashram, the clear flowing Ganga, the majestic mountains, and the lush green forests will embrace and rejuvenate your entire being. Parmarth Niketan offers comfort, inspiration and upliftment for your body, mind and spirit as well as a deeper connection with the Divine. As you stay in the ashram, you will feel your soul bathing in the peace of sacred energies, including those that emanate from nature and those that linger from the timeless healing powers of saints, sages and holy ones. Parmarth Niketan contains within it the voice and the spirit of divine communion.
The daily activities at Parmarth Niketan include morning universal prayers, daily yoga and meditation classes, daily satsang and lecture programs, kirtan, the world-renowned Ganga Aarti at sunset, as well as Nature Cure and Ayurvedic treatment.
There are frequently special cultural and spiritual programs given by visiting revered saints, acclaimed musicians, spiritual and social leaders and others.
Additionally, there are frequent camps in which pilgrims come from across the world to partake in intensive courses on yoga, meditation, pranayama, stress management, acupressure, Reiki and other ancient Indian sciences.
Address: WCCM International Office, St Marks, Myddelton Square, London, EC1R 1XX, United Kingdom
Phone: + 44 (0) 20 7278 2070
A new contemplative centre and meditation retreat to help to make the world more peaceful. In the past 20 years, the World Community for Christian Meditation and Meditatio, its secular outreach, have shown that meditation builds community. Bonnevaux, its new home, is an inspirational opportunity to take this work to the next stage.
Contemplative centres through history have always served as places of peace and reconciliation. A thousand years ago a Benedictine monastery was built in Bonnevaux, near Poitiers in France. On these ancient foundations we are going to develop a contemplative centre for the 21st century.
Bonnevaux will contribute to the peace-building and mutual understanding so much needed in our world now. As a meditation centre with its roots deep in the Christian tradition and yet open to all in an inclusive spirit, it will show the potential of meditation for people of all ages, beliefs and backgrounds to unify minds and heal divided hearts. With its focus on a simple and universal teaching Bonnevaux will deepen the contemplative dimension of Christian life and also bring the fruits of meditation to people of other religious or secular beliefs. A wide range of retreats and events will be shaped to address the needs of participants from diverse cultures.
Bonnevaux is a beautiful site which still retains parts of the original monastery built there in 1119. It is an ideal space, with a spirit of deep peace and beauty, for a contemplative retreat centre attuned to the needs of our time.
Address: West Ogwell, Newton Abbot, Devon, TQ12 6EWW, United Kingdom
Phone: + 44 (0) 16 2633 3613
Gaia House is a silent meditation retreat centre, a sanctuary of contemplative calm set amongst the gentle hills and quiet woodlands of South Devon.
Founded in 1983, we are a registered charity committed to preserving, protecting and enhancing emotional, psychological, physical, and spiritual health through meditation.
Through our year-round programme of weekend and week-long group retreats we offer meditation instruction and teachings drawn from a wide variety of Buddhist traditions. Additionally, we cater for long-term solitary meditators and work retreatants.
We warmly welcome all people of every age, ethnicity, cultural heritage and religious background, socio-economic group, ability, sexual orientation and gender identity. To benefit from meditation, all that is needed is an interest in inner exploration and development.
What is the purpose of coming on meditation retreat?
Buddhist meditation retreats are an opportunity to explore and develop serenity, wisdom and compassion through meditation and mindfulness practice in a supportive environment.
All retreats at Gaia House share the common aim of Buddhist contemplative traditions: to free the mind and heart from confusion, self-centredness and anguish. This opportunity allows us to cultivate moment-to-moment awareness that nurtures inner stillness and peace, insight into the nature of our experience and the fostering of emotional resources with which to respond more fully to suffering.
What sort of meditation is taught at Gaia House?
Our retreats are predominantly based in the Buddhist practices of Insight (Vipassana), Loving-kindness (Metta) and Zen meditation. Despite the varieties of meditation practice, all of our Dharma teachers share an aspiration to encourage a continuity of self-awareness and experiential learning.
The teachings and practices offered at Gaia House are founded in the spiritual teachings of the Buddha, who lived 2,500 years ago. Through his own deep interest in life and commitment to discovering freedom he came to a profound realisation of the understanding and practices that ennoble and liberate a human being. What is offered during retreats is the opportunity to experience this ennobling wisdom for ourselves.
Our experienced team has the character, courage and commitment to solving the world’s greatest challenges. We operate on the ground to facilitate essential research. Conducting large-scale interviews and clarifying risks and opportunities, we create engagement with community leaders to establish sustainable solutions.
Robert Smith entered Wall Street with lessons passed down from four generations of family members who worked in the investment industry before him. Over the course of his career, he managed sales and trading teams at leading financial institutions, and built capital markets and international equities businesses. In 2014, Robert founded ICV to bring together his networks of family offices and institutional investors to evaluate opportunities that create a social impact beyond a financial return. He serves as Business Strategy Advisor to New Frontier Bio, a multi-asset holding company, which leverages the long-term involvement of the Kennedy family in healthcare to identify, finance and develop novel medical technologies from inception through clinical proof of concept. Robert serves as a member of the President’s Advisory Board of Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health, 16th on U.S. News & World Report’s 2017-2018 Best Hospitals Honor Roll. He serves on the Sustainable Investing Advisory Board of the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), which makes public and private finance work for the poor in the world’s 47 Least Developed Countries (LDCs). Robert is Senior Advisor for Fundraising and Partnerships to the Permanent Secretariat of the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates. Carrying on the mission of his family to provide “inspirational and tangible help for young people,” he serves as a board member of the Chaeli Foundation, Childhood Cancer Kids, Children’s Village and Tuesday’s Children. He is Senior Advisor to the Africa Rising Foundation founded by Ndaba and Kweku Mandela, grandsons of Nelson Mandela. Robert is also President and a member of the Board of Directors of The Harmon Foundation, a private foundation established in 1922 by his great, great grandfather, William E. Harmon, who operated the largest real estate company in the world at the turn of the 20th century, created the mortgage and college loans, fueled the Harlem Renaissance and donated to thousands of nonprofits over his lifetime “to bring smiles and tender thoughts to the great in heart in high and low places, and to comfort and cheer those who do exceptional things or suffer.” In 2018, Robert was recognized as one of The 100 Visionary Leaders by Real Leaders Magazine, alongside Bill Gates, Muhammad Yunus, President Juan Santos, Mikhail Gorbachev, Leonardo DiCaprio and many others who are leading us towards a better world. He was also inducted as a member of Evolutionary Leaders, a network of people who feel a sense of urgency about the state of our world and are forging a movement for the conscious evolution of humanity. Robert received the Vajravali cycle, a collection of tantric empowerments and sadhana practices, including the Kalachakra Tantra, one of the most advanced Tantric systems within Tibetan Buddhism, from His Eminence Lama Nyitrul Tulku Rinpoche of the Longchu Monastery in Yushu, Tibet/China.
Shelley Lewis is the Executive Director of the Inner and Outer Peace Fund. Her will to effect positive change and empathic nature have led her to be at the forefront of designing forward-thinking lifestyle brands in publishing, wellness, and the arts with the mission to help people live well for close to two decades. Noted by her contemporaries as the Doyenne of Inner Calm, Shelley is well known for directing community based initiatives in New York City that foster compassion and authentic connection. She is a recognized thought leader in the field of wellness founding healing brand Sacred Space NY as a means to help New Yorker’s find their inner calm and discover practices for inner peace. She is the founder and host of The Equanimity Expert teaching a methodology for living based on wisdom based principles and Stoic Philosophy; mission based publishing company, Chocolate Sauce, devoted to nourishing the inner worlds of children; the Hedonic Lab a reflective laboratory for people pursuing their passion with purpose and is currently launching an empowerment fitness concept for tween girls called Wonder Gal. Her entree into the world of philanthropy came when she was appointed Director of new funding initiatives for a private foundation that worked closely with the National Science Foundation. The Sari Filtration Project in Dhaka Bangladesh for which she was appointed field officer was a trip which changed the trajectory of her life. Through her role she was privy to multiple early stage studies in the fields of neuroscience and mindfulness based stress reduction. Becoming well acquainted with many of the key academics in the field and their research, a particular interest at the cross section of insight and human flourishing led her to a six months teaching program at Teachers College, Columbia University designing socially and emotionally intelligent curriculum for children. She has made appearances on Al Jazeera, BBC News Worldwide, Deepak Chopra’s Sirirus Radio discussing her humanitarian endeavors and was a featured contributor for the social impact section of the Huffington Post. Originally from the UK she moved to London where she received her RSA diplomas at Christies. Once graduating she relocated to New York to continue her career at Christie’s and later on at The Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco before her trip to Bangladesh whilst working in conjunction with the National Science Foundation led to the creation of her first entrepreneurial pursuit, an award winning bi-lingual children’s book to help raise money to rebuild schools in Ghazni province Afghanistan. Blending her background in the arts, philanthropy, publishing and wellness, Shelley applies her holistic experience — she is a certified positive psychology coach, crisis counselor, and yoga teacher — with her creative talent and entrepreneurial drive. A quiet force of nature her formidable network of influencers make her well suited to spearhead the development of IOPF and cultivate its vision as a hub for impactful initiatives that help aid world peace by cultivating inner peace. Shelley holds a Master of Arts Degree from University of Glasgow and is a graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism.
At the end of the day, at the end of our lives, we will ask ourselves whether we could have done more for the health and well-being of the planet, of humanity and all living things. Leverage your charitable giving to create systemic change with ICV’s Catalytic Philanthropy.
As a tax-exempt public charity as defined by the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Sections 501(c)(3), ICV Group, Inc. is eligible to receive tax-deductible charitable contributions under IRC Section 170 and is qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers or gifts under Section 2055, 2106 or 2522 (EIN: 82-2698363).
“What you seek is seeking you.”