A place for shared spiritual unfolding
12. November 2023 – by Bettina Grepmair
“Rifugio Vita Luminosa” – even the name occupies me. It provides answers and questions at the same time. A sheltered place of retreat, of refuge – a refuge for a “luminous life”. How beautiful that sounds and reads!
But what does it mean for me? For us practitioners and our shared practice? What does it mean for our teacher Daniel? What does it mean for Brigitte and Sabine, who bought this house and are remodeling it in order to make it available for our joint practice? What does it mean for each individual who becomes a part of it either directly on site or through their experienced connectedness?
How much agreement is there in the answers to these questions? Is it possible to find a common direction, thereby focusing energy and using it in such a way that this place becomes a vibrant, luminous retreat for an enlightening practice? And is that even the concern of each individual?
For me, it is a permanent process of sensing and discovering. An inner process in which I am challenged to live into the answers through my connectedness.
From the very beginning, I become part of a field in which things come into existence easily, connected and at an incredible pace.
Only a few months pass between the first house viewing and the handover of the keys. A separate page for the house to make it visible on Daniel’s website, the first event on site and the newsletter to invite people to the first practice period are created in a few days.
At the same time, many helpers and Maureen in particular are planning the renovation. She also finds a name for the house. The lettering is created and the sign for the gate is ready a few days later and in the luggage for the journey to the “Luminosa”. The first practitioners arrive just two weeks after the keys are handed over!
Once here, everything goes “hand in hand” with ease and joy and in a very short time the place changes. It is freed from boundaries and things that no longer fit – that do not fit with what this place is now allowed to stand for.
A first common feeling materializes: It becomes visible in the house, in the garden, in the togetherness and in the common practice according to exercises and meditations selected by Daniel.
The field in and around the house clears, becomes finer, more harmonious, more permeable. Space is created that can be filled – through our alignment, our practice, but above all through Daniel’s words and the light-filled energies that come to us and into this house through him in the meditations and satsangs; and are allowed to unfold. You can still feel them days later – supporting, aligning, connecting.
Even though working and creating together is already a wonderful “practice”, Daniel’s impulses give it a different direction and depth. Among other things, he talks about how each individual can be with themselves and how we can be with each other in order to come ever closer to what this place could stand for. Daniel brings a very specific spiritual practice into this house and into our hearts that is suitable for the current situation, for our time together, but also for each individual. Patiently and full of light he guides us through group processes and personal experiences, while at the same time accompanying each and every one of us.
He navigates us through the most diverse levels – both the very concrete and manifest finds a place, as well as the subtle levels and the deep inner experience of the individual.
For the first time since I have known Daniel and practiced with him, his – our – practice can unfold in a place that is not provided by him, but by practitioners. A place where we can study his teachings, explore them and practice as well as live them together. A place that is accessible to people who want to live and deepen the same aspects and who long to be close to a luminous togetherness – an enlightened life. A place that can perhaps grow into a place where interested people can live with us and experience what is so important to us.
I am leaving with gratitude for the time we spent together – for living, creating, exploring and practicing together and for Daniel’s light-filled guidance.
I look forward to coming back – to a field that is dedicated to what is close to my heart – to practicing, deepening and realizing the teachings of my teacher and thereby radiating them more and more.
A home for our spiritual practice and the chance to make a difference
Interview with Sabine and Brigitte about the new house of practice in Italy
“What is your heart’s desire behind the Rifugio Vita Luminosa? What is your motivation for buying a house and building a place for shared spiritual practice?”
“For me, it is an opportunity to support what Daniel has to give the world. That’s what drives me. And of course I am also supporting myself, my own healing and what is good for me. Because being with Daniel makes a big difference in my life. I realize more and more how extraordinary he and my relationship with him is. Supporting him and his work just makes total sense.” (Sabine D.)
“My main concern is to create and have a place where we can practice and deepen what we have learned and are learning from Daniel, so that the teaching and also the very practical implementation can find their place. A place for seekers who align themselves with the highest. A place full of light that is dedicated to God.
In other spiritual communities, there was always either a missing piece or I had to abide by rules that don’t exist in our spiritual practice. Here, so much can finally come together – right up to the experience of pure light, God and all-connectedness. What we build here together is our responsibility, remains in this space and is allowed to develop further.” (Brigitte S.)
Experiences during the first two weeks of practice
“After just a few days, I feel alive and nourished. And above all: approachable and touchable. Not only for people, but also for myself and my spiritual practice. In the shared field, I can discover new sides of myself and get to know qualities in others that I haven’t seen in the last few years of being together. I feel that I am being strengthened more and more on my path here from day to day.” (Brigitte N.)
“I could sense how important it is for Daniel to create another place where people can find a healing retreat. With the new seminar house Rifugio Vita Luminosa, it is therefore a matter close to my heart to help create a wonderful place where Daniel’s teaching and the spiritual practice of the group can be deepened and experienced throughout the year. A place of security and comfort, for a future full of light.” (Maureen S.)
“During acting mindfully, I always focus on the inner processes. I give myself enough time to meet me where I am, to feel and, if necessary, to address unresolved issues. I now perceive the facets of the individual much more finely and I recognize a perfect learning field that supports me in getting to know myself even better and giving space to new, more light-filled ways of acting.” (Josef B.)
“I am not physically present at the practice weeks currently taking place in Italy. However, what my years of being accompanied by Daniel, my immersion in his teaching, my being with him, have taught me is: “experiencing everything in a space that is within me.” The encounter with others – within us. And I experience it the same way: I take part, I am connected, part of the community. I feel, I listen, I hear Daniel – beyond the physical space – in the space within me and I know that it is precisely there that a togetherness takes place, a subtlety and love IS that reaches me here in “everyday life” through my willingness, my open heart and my love for ME.” (Johanna T.)
“During our joint housework and gardening at the new practice site, a kind of subtle feeling arose in me, like a silent communication with the things around me. A feeling of: that which wants to be is already slumbering here, calling quietly, simply wanting to be uncovered. And this call emerged like a silent wish, as an immediate impulse to act, in my own inner self, which I simply had to give in to and follow.
While I was doing this, I was filled with coherence and I experienced a sense of connectedness in my actions – with everything I was touching, cleaning, trimming, shaping, clearing, designing, … – and in a way, I myself became more and more part of this action and experience.
In this way, things “on the outside” took shape more and more and what was already tangible now also became visible.
When I looked around me, it seemed to me that everyone else was moving and creating in a similar way in their work and actions. And in the process, something tangible and experienceable emerged or revealed itself, something common, greater, more extensive, which connected us all with each other and with everything around us.” (Christian B.)
“For me, the Rifugio Vita Luminosa is a place where everyone has the intention to practice and learn Daniel’s teachings/practice in everyday mindful and direct interaction, so that a field is created in which the soul is allowed to be, to heal. A place where conflicts arise, which we do not avoid, with the willingness to talk about them.
A place to consolidate my practice by practicing together and to experience in a practice-oriented field how much becomes easier and brings joy. So that the “how” in doing can be experienced more and more – instead of the “what”.” (Anita B.)
“Although I can’t be physically present during the first weeks of practice, I feel a strong connection with other students, but especially with Daniel himself! In meditation and through the practice of Guru Yoga, I often immerse myself in an infinite field of connection and love and feel the guidance of my teachers. Even in everyday life, I am repeatedly drawn into this field, into this pure awareness that feels like overflowing love for simply everything.” (Annette G.)
“Our relationship has developed over the many years of shared spiritual practice, the healing processes we have gone through and the support provided by Daniel. I experience trust, clarity, honesty and the courage to speak up and say things, and I sense the intention of each individual to use the shared field of practice.
In this protected place, far away from everyday life, we can meet each other attentively, respectfully and compassionately, give space and support each individual in processes of healing, of inner ascension. This is a gift that I experience in the Rifugio Vita Luminosa and that deeply encourages me on my inner path.” (Maria R.)
“Although I currently have little contact with the practitioners at Rifugio Vita Luminosa, I try to remember the shared light – the light and the field that can be experienced through presence. I focus on this in order to be able to go through physical, emotional and spiritual challenges.” (Jindra M.)
“What I experience at the Rifugio Vita Luminosa is an interconnectedness that takes place on different levels. There are the people on site and those who are not physically present. There are members of my spiritual family who, clearly perceptible to me, take part in the meditations and enrich the place with their presence. There is our master – embodied, divine love and connected to beings of light whose blessings are bestowed upon us. Plants, animals, stones, the house itself… What is not within us, part of us, one with us? Here I want to linger, breathe, feel, immerse myself in this love that connects everything and is everything. Being.” (Bettina G.)