A week long transformative retreat for men
Facilitated by Estera Saraswati with Team
Facilitated by Estera Saraswati with Team
Guest voice space holder Fredrik Swahn
Extract the diamond within to shine even brighter
Let’s co-create a New Earth
Join a week long transformative journey into self discovery, taking the next step into male self-empowerment. You are invited into a deep space of wisdom of Tantra to find inner freedom, peace and wholeness. It is a unique offering for men who are ready to be vulnerable, honest, raw and fully alive. It is a call for the New Man to wake up through us and be brought back into the collective. Expanding consciousness, taking the rag from under our feet to find home in a vastness of human experience. What does it mean to be an awakened man in the ocean of dormant beings? What responsibilities does it bring for a warrior of heart? How does the process of building a New Earth relate to owning a phallus power? How can the embraced inner feminine empower the inner masculine, to know when to take conscious action and when to take the position of a sacred witness in silence? There is a new land to discover for men and you are wholeheartedly invited to be one of these pioneers.
About the retreat
The vision for this retreat is to call in an ancient wisdom, the noble spirit of the Shambhala Warrior and the Green Man, which are dormant in our collective psyche. It can serve us as a spark to ignite searching for a new response to confusion, suffering and truth seeking for modern men. It is an expedition to dig out noble values in manhood. It is a remedy for the new age man, superficially spiritual but impotent in taking direct action. It is a call for the Warrior of compassion without boosting the own spiritual ego and neediness to show off. Humanity and Earth need men who stand up for the Earth, for the sacred, for the power of vulnerable connections, who share and spread love with consciousness and awareness of their own actions. A New Man who turns to another man to be held with love and mirrored sharply, yet softly opening to his own blind spots. A New Man who celebrates mature masculine in a woman and his own feminine within, without projecting it outside anymore. Therefore, he can be truly free of a neediness for sexual connection. He is on the search within to extract golden nuggets of inherit wisdom, simplicity, courage, kindness and tenderness, power of not being afraid to fall down and being vulnerable, cutting through bullshit with a sword of clarity and compassion.
A New Man can be a union of a Shambhala Warrior from Eastern buddhist tradition and a Green Man from Scandinavia and Anglo-Saxon pagan cultures. It is a descendant of Vikings, though evolutionary upgraded by refusing to use violence, seeing each life as sacred and valuable. He is not afraid of his own power and taking an intense yet conscious action if needed.
As we can foresee a New Man is a vast, unknown territory to discover together without expectations, but with curiosity and an aspiration to help building a new world together, thus becoming the change that is needed. Stepping into simplicity, connection and vulnerability is the ground for it.
A men’s group led by a woman can be a great opportunity to open some new horizons, a challenge to face and a deep look within mirroring blank spots in the own psyche.
Can I trust a woman as a leader and a guide into the unknown?
At what stage is my relationship with my mother? Do I subconsciously project unresolved issues with her on women?
Where is my value coming from? Do I still need to prove myself?
Can I see a masculine principle in a woman? Can a woman be my brother or reflect a father principle to me?
Do I allow my feminine for sisterhood connections with women?
Is my sight clear or I am misled by appearances and projections?
We have been living in an exciting and intense time, full of suffering and thus potential to liberate oneself and awaken to the true nature of reality. Men have been facing big challenges now. Women have done significant personal and collective work, healing themselves and stepping into self empowerment for the last 30 years. Most men were busy with fighting for their own and family survival, making careers, proving to be worthy of love etc. Some men have done their personal growth job in order to step in now, to help their brothers to rise up and go through the storm.
Some women have gone into a dark dead end valley of blame and guilt towards men. Revengeful feminism, cutting off men’s balls, castrating their masculine power and yet, entangling in toxic relations with them. However, some women have done their personal growth around healing wounded, broken hearts and owning the shadow of dark masculine within, that allows them to stop projecting and open up to a real heart connection with men.
How to proceed from this point?
Phallus power reclamation
It seems like the time is ripe to reclaim phallus power in the world. Yet, it is not enough to have a penis to own phallus power. It does not really belong to any gender as well. It is as important to be claimed by men as by women, which requires from the latter to finally stop projecting their inner masculine on men and take responsibility for themselves and their own feeling of safety, clear direction and being loved.
Saying all this, men do have a significant role in reclaiming a phallus power. It does matter what body we have been inhibiting. A penis can bring both light and darkness into our life in very tangible ways. Masculine essence expresses itself differently through the male or female body and it needs adequate and wise handling.
Phallus energy has the power to heal, open up and awaken. It is the primal power of light of consciousness on the way of descending. It can be called in, gathered with a focus and directed through a body for the selfless sake. It does not serve ego’s desire to conquer, posses or increase self value. It is not subject to any manipulation or ego bribe.
Next step in Men’s work
It is important to first heal oneself among people of the own gender as one can share similar experiences and a journey. The significance of men circles can not be overestimated. Thus, the moment comes to proceed with healing and evolution. Surrendering to the feminine essence within, is the next step after constituting a healthy ego structure. In Tantra, the feminine core is described as a dark all pervading vastness, an abyss of the unknown, the Great Mother as it gives birth to all phenomena. Heart sutra expresses it: Form is empty and emptiness is form. Prajnaparamita is a sanskrit name for it. The Mother of all Buddhas, which means wisdom gives birth and is the essence of our true nature. Wisdom is not knowledge, the former is non conceptual and comes from within, the latter is gained and acquired from outside.
Unloading a patriarchy heritage
The feminine principle is usually projected onto women in a patriarchy, which is a culture and a system of justified violence and separation risen out of fear. We can investigate how the feminine principle is treated by looking into women’s roles and the evolution of that in different societies. We can also look at how the Earth is exploited, abused and raped without any consideration, which no living being deserves.
To bring change, men need to step out of entangled relationships with women – mothers, lovers, sisters and their own feminine projected outside. It would be helpful to realise the own ego gains from subconsciously running games of victim-savior-perpetrator, needy-avoiding relationship patterns, fear of intimacy, fear of being suffocated and absorbed etc. Embracing one’s own feminine means reconnecting with a deep trust in life, innate space of wisdom, intuition, inner guidance, the ecstatic current of life, fiery creativity, sensual and sensitive self, powerful vulnerability of heart.
Recommended article to read more about this topic: “Mistrust to the feminine – wound of patriarchy”.
Healing feminine in men – the Priestess
We are wanderers who have been changing clothes countless times in a cycle of birth-life-death and rebirth. Grasping and clearing the past embodiments of the feminine that unconsciously run us from the shadow, is a vital step to become a New Man.
Heritage of matriarchal Temple arts rests within us. In order to release our life force wisely and consciously within, it is vital to transform the dark side of priestesshood, in male bodies as well. Temple arts had a very noble beginning as they were based in understanding of sexuality as a sacred power of creation, a healing force, a door to our divinity. Sexual energy was worshiped by whole communities and centred in the middle of them.
It got degenerated through centuries though, along with the development of the human ego, an individualisation and a growing separation process. We left long shadows behind us, still alive in us: Misuse of power and sexuality, sexual manipulation and seduction for personal gain, sneaking out of responsibility, lying, withdrawing protection, revenge, gossiping, toxic relationships, abandoning children, sexual abuse towards children for a “higher” sake, broken sisterhood, betrayal of love, mistrust to each other, more to be named.
What is my wound to be healed?
Road map for a self-redesigning process
Why not reach out and be inspired in our own thinking process by some noble archetypes while expanding our own horizons and redesigning ourselves? How do we call them back, embody and express our own version of them? Thus, before looking for new horizons, it is essential to empty the personal self as much as possible, heal self value, not to treat it as another unreachable expectation to meet, „to become a man” as a goal to achieve, but as a touch of magic igniting sparks of our own awareness. Our core is ready to be fully revealed and manifested.
Green Man Archetype
It feels like the archetype of the Green Man has been awakening in our human consciousness from a long dream. It was partially resurrected by Scandinavian men and their caring for nature and children, yet cut off from animalistic penetrative powers.
The Green Man to come is deeply connected with nature, an earthly man walking barefoot through the forest, listening to nature devas and spirits, making fire in the woods and sitting alone in the darkness praying to its spirit, bridging modern and ancient realities. He loves to celebrate, connect and self-express through his body and voice. He deeply cares about others – women, children, brothers, nature. His wild untamed bodymind and spirit is fulfilled with life itself, thus he is not needy of any woman. He can bow and recognise the feminine essence within and outside. He knows that there is no life without her as she is life itself. He is deeply connected also with the water element as the essence of life. Therefore, he can openly cry, be vulnerable, broken and yet powerful, with nothing to prove or to become. He knows he is enough. Magic is his reality, igniting sparks of joy as he is free, not bound by illusions, yet a vulnerably human. He loves kids, playing with them as equals, seeing them as powerful manifestors of magic and flow of creativity. He fully surrenders into love making, sexuality is his prayer. Nature can also be his lover. This is an archetype.
What wants to be revealed through me?
Shambhala Warrior Archetype
In ancient Far Eastern cultures, buddhist tales speak of a magical Shambhala kingdom of enlightened society living in peace and happiness together. Who is a Shambhala Warrior nowadays? There is a great book on that by Trungpa Rinpoche, a precious one to read. My understanding is to bring back the noble values to our human existence. To stand up for them, even if there is no gain and also in lost cases. We miss the power of truth in words in the present world, clarity of communication, courage to speak up, chant out, to take unpopular decisions, to contain our own power if it does not serve a common good, transparency, radical honesty, stability while facing emotions or attractions, presence and mindfulness, deeply listening to the space and to unspoken voices of the ones who can not have a strong voice yet, putting our own gain and interest aside for the sake of the whole.
What wants to be revealed through me?
What can happen during this retreat?
The process will be designed to a particular group of individuals which will show up. Modern practices include all levels of existence of body-heart-mind-spirit coming from an understanding of wisdom of buddhist Tantra that aims to embody the awakened mind. Fully owning sexual energy, bringing it into the core, emboding the masculine and feminine as well as establishing a stable, peaceful mind and opening a powerful, vulnerable space of heart. This will be the fundament for all practices.
- vision quests
- sitting meditation
- temple arts including intimate touch, self or others, depending on personal boundaries
- lingam and energetic yoni pujas
- voice work
- insight and truth seeking
- circles of radical honesty and compassion
- inspirational teachings
- intimate sharings
Who is this retreat suitable for?
It is for men of any sex orientation or age who deeply care about our common future and want to embody the New Man. For men who:
- have already done some men’s work in men circles and are ready to be led by a woman
- are already on the path of self growth and spiritual development
- have connection with their own sexual energy
- have healthy ego structure and the ability to set up and communicate their own boundaries
- healed major traumas
- are free of mental illnesses
- do not have severe addictions
Predominant aims of the retreat process are to deepen a process of self-discovery as a man, awakening and integrating different parts of oneself on many levels.
Authenticity, transparency, safety, trust, mutual support are core values in this retreat.
It is an advanced Tantra (awakening) retreat. After reading a completed registration form and sometimes having an additional short call, we can suggest a more adequate retreat or an individual session first. We also reserve the right to refuse admission based on our best knowledge of the content of this retreat for the sake of the participant and the group.
Please make yourself familiar with the initial participation requirements, and after a fair self-assessment please decide whether it is the right retreat for you. If you have any doubts, we are here to help.
Everyone is responsible for the nature of their own experience and journey. We support everyone to follow their own process gradually without group pressure or expectations.
There can be nudity and intimate contact, energetic or physical, with oneself or others based on individual boundaries stated in the moment and personal choices made by participants.
After completing and sending the application form for the retreat, next steps of the registration process, like the agreement of participation, terms and dates of payments, will be sent by email.
Venue: Sweden, 776 74 Stjärnsund, Fridhem Vandrarhem
Price for retreat: Early bird 950 euro (deposit paid until 31 May 2019), Normal price: 1150 euro. Price includes accommodation and veggie food
Registration via the registration form (in the Detail box on this page). After registration and acceptance of participation, further registration steps will be sent (participation agreement, deposit payment, refund policy etc.)
Registration is closed two weeks before the start of the retreat.
All details are available with the organiser (contact in the detail box on this page)