Inner Dance retreat 2nd day

July 5, 2009 at 6:41 pm | Posted in GuaGua adventures, The journey within, The Miracles | 4 Comments

It’s the 2nd day of retreat and as Pi said, I did wake up surprisingly early though we were given the liberty to sleep for as much as we want, after a long day yesterday where we had a 4 hour flight in the middle of the night (and too noisy and bright to sleep properly) and power naps here and there.

Though it’s 6 am, the sun is already up. For those who don’t know, I’m in Tagaytag, Philippines, and we are staying in Maryridge Convent, which is located on a volcano. The interesting thing about this volcano is that it has a very large crater which is filled by a lake, and in the middle is another smaller volcano. Fire, water, fire. Yang, yin, yang. The fact that this is a place of great spiritual energy and many spiritual teachers have chosen to come and teach or even live here was one of the reasons that drew me to this retreat. I told Mr Gua Gua, “If you don’t go with me, when I come back, we are going to be very far apart.” So he came, partly cos of what I said, partly cos HE was drawn to the ancient Philippines martial arts that would be taught in this retreat as well, I was interested in all the other parts – raw food detox diet throughout the retreat and different workshops that teach crystal healing, sound healing, body movments, inner dance, past life regression, etc.

The 14 of us, including Lee who organized this trip, arrived at Maryridge Convent yesterday at about 6 am. We were all stupendified by the amazing scenery from the convent, and of the serenity and beauty of the convent itself – a simple building that is surrounded by much flora and fauna. Wooden signs with excellent quotes can be seen everywhere – one of my fave is “If you want to be a contemplative, you need to learn to mind your own business.” (roughly quoted). J

The first thing we started off with was a body flush. Recipe: 5 freshly squeezed limes, 1 teaspoon of salt, warm water. We made our own cups and some decided to go with less salt. Being gungho as usual, I put in a full teaspoon. Then I spent the next half  hour forcing myself to sip it down. It was only a little more tolerable when someone told me it reminded her of preserved plums, and I told her, “yeah, I like it too but this is the first time I’m taking it in liquid form.” And even that slightly increased tolerance lasted for a few min. Finally I had Mr Gua Gua finish the rest for me cos I was starting to feel like puking!

Thank goodness that was the most horrible thing we had to ingest that day. The juices were SO yummy, since they have the freshest fruits. Our first juice was a mix of spinach, apple, ginger and lemon. The 2nd was pineapple and orange – and it’s the sweetest concoction I have ever tasted in my entire life. So when there was a chance for seconds, I jumped at it. Nature‘s goodness at its best!

Pi, the main facilitator of the retreat and founder of Inner Dance, knew that we would be tired and so organized a spa treatment for all of us. I have received full body massages perhaps 6-7 times in my life. This one wins hands down. Every single muscle of my body was well kneaded and stretched… by the end of it all, my body was in total bliss. The spa place is also beautiful, and we had our lunch at the spa restaurant, where we had DIY salad, DIY pasta and tiny slices of chocolate cake and spring rolls with banana slices inside. We all thought that salad was going to be the main course and so stuffed ourselves with the food. So when the pasta came, we were like, “Oops!”. Thankfully I have a very stretchable stomach (*grin*) and because the foods are so fresh and natural, I felt full by the end of the meal, but in a very pleasant and satisfying way.

Onto the workshops! We had a little intro to the martial arts, facilitated by Joemar, a witty and friendly Filipino with very dark eyebrows and bright eyes. He was also our informal tour guide on our way to the spa place, and I learnt a no. of interesting facts from him e.g. Tayagtay actually means something like “drink it up”, the local word for toilet is “CR” which stands for comfort room, the term for the local language is Taglish (similar to our Singlish!) and if you ask a Filipino for directions, he would point not with the fingers but with his mouth pursed in the direction you should head towards! Joemar is a really fun and interesting fella. He shared with us that martial arts is the highest form of meditation and combines the flow (feminine) with the intention (masculine). To him, it is less about self-defense, and more of self-expression. And if you are truly in harmony with your sword, you can strike yourself with the sword and not get hurt, since the metal in the sword is no different from the metal in your blood. To me, this is yet another practice of oneness – so now I’m looking forward to the hands on workshop!

We also had a body movement class led by Riza, who is a renowned crystal expert and wrote many books on crystals. She led us in feeling different types of music in our bodies and moving in ways that we normally don’t move e.g. sideways, backwards. My most memorable experience in this session was during the C-U exercise where she taught us to first lean over, with our heads and arms loosely hanging and feet up on the heels. In this C posture, we need to shake and vibrate our body, as if emptying out all the garbage in us (reminding me of turning a ketchup bottle upside down and shaking all the ketchup out). Next we stretch our bodies backwards, hands up in the air, as if opening up the abdomen, heart and throat, and in both movements, she encouraged us to make any sounds we liked. When we have tried this exercise a couple of times, she asked us to do 6 consecutive rounds at our own pace.

In the past I would have done this exercise only half-heartedly cos I would be feeling self-conscious. Thanks to my newly developed thick skin (a result of walking around like a female pirate for the past few days), I was probably one of the loudest in the class. And my body really responded. By the 2nd C-U, I was crying with sadness and loneliness from an unknown source, and when I stretched my body backwards, I was softly wailing with grief. By the 4th C-U, I was coughing and making regurgitating noises. I was all sweaty and my throat had a sea-water feel, as if I have just thrown up sea water. By the last C-U, my left eye was stinging and itchy, and my whole body buzzed with energy and life.

That was the most amazing experience for me, yet, I had an even more amazing experience during the Inner Dance session, the last part of our day. I have experienced Inner Dance only once, and it was mostly swaying my body and arms in circular motions. Today I decided to let Spirit just take me, and the part of me that was still very much conscious, was observing my motions with a mix of surprise, amusement and interest.

First it was my whole body moving in figure 8s, then my partner guided my arms up to join the dance, and that’s when the action started. My arms, hands and fingers took a life of their own and started a whole series of movements: weaving, gathering, kneading, spinning, blending, moulding, brushing… and what you may ask, well I don’t know. Energies probably. I was just letting my arms, hands and fingers do what they needed to do, and it felt like work to me. Joyful work. I say work because it felt very skilful and professional, and PURPOSEFUL. Yet, while there was this efficiency feel to it, the movements were also delicate and graceful. At certain times, I was aware that my fingers were positioned like mudras, or what you see in Indian dancers. The whole time, while my conscious mind was observing with great interest what I was doing, the other part of me was in total bliss, as I could feel energy running through my body, and it was almost as if my soul was saying, “Yes! This is what I have been wanting and needing to do.”

When the lights were switched on, I was forced to open my eyes, worried that I was the only one still doing the Inner Dance… otherwise, I would have been happy to go on like this for the whole night. I wondered if my “performance” was the most interesting one, cos I felt a lot of camera flashing in my direction, but during sharing, it seems like everyone went into his or her own space and experienced something equally mystical and amazing. So next time, I will allow myself to completely forget whatever is going on around me and be fully involved in the Inner Dance.

And that was just the 1st day! I get this feeling that I’m going to return back to Singapore, perhaps looking a bit different from the detox program, but being a completely different Lena on the inside. Let’s just see… J

PS: We had very interesting dessert for dinner – a pudding like mixture of avocado, cocoa powder and honey mixture, that tastes great with banana. Very yummy, and of cos, very healthy too. Gonna try this out at home!


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  1. Hello Lena,
    The Philippines……..
    I’m very fond of that country. It’s home for five people I love. Five poor girls named Rovelyn, Jinky, Regine, Clarizze and Nicole. As I read your blog entry, I kept thinking on what I would do before or after that retreat whether I’d go there; visiting my sponsored girls. I even would go to the Philippines just to visit them.

  2. Hmmm, that was interesting. Looks like somethings will always remain mystery.

    I myself has been trying to solve the mystery of the legend that forces you to have “earn it before

    having it”, for a wile now. Could not understand much though.

    Let me know in case you get to understand the mystery of the Old Hound and the Legend

    By the way, good writing style. I’d love to read more on similar topics

  3. “If you don’t go with me, when I come back, we are going to be very far apart.”

    This is funny.. lol. You two are such an interesting couple! 🙂

  4. Well i have a very interesting husband… hehe… 😛

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