The Aja Retreat
Jivamukti Yoga Retreat
June 10th - June 14th, 2024
with Conor Byrnes & Eva Lucie Daniela
As we gather in the serene embrace of nature, we embark on a journey beyond the confines of the physical body, into the vast expanse of consciousness and its dream of existence. At the heart of our exploration lies the profound concept of the unborn and eternal nature ― AJA ― a theme that resonates deeply within the philosophical currents of yogic thought.
In the sacred texts and ancient wisdom traditions of India, we encounter the notion of the unborn, the undying and the unconditioned. These descriptors, seemingly enigmatic yet profoundly illuminating, beckon us to delve deeper into the nature of reality itself. The unborn signifies a state beyond birth, beyond the limitations of time and space. It is the essence that transcends the cycles of creation and destruction, existing eternally in its sparkling purity.
Central to our inquiry is the figure of Lord Shiva, the God of desire and the embodiment of cosmic consciousness. In his aspect as ‘aja’, the unborn, Shiva represents the primordial essence that is devoid of beginning or end. He stands as a timeless witness to the dance of existence, untouched by the ebb and flow of mortal life. In the feminine form of ‘ajā’, we encounter the eternal nature of matter (prakriti) and the dream-like veil of ‘maya’. Seemingly opposite, but as one they weave the fabric of creation, ever-present yet eternally unborn.
Our philosophical exploration invites us to contemplate the implications of these profound truths in our own lives. As we move through our yoga practice, we cultivate a deep awareness of the unconditioned nature of our being, beyond the fluctuations of the mind and the transient experiences of the world. Instead we uncover the eternal essence that resides within each of us, unblemished by the passage of time and resplendent with bliss and ease.
Through meditation, movement and collective introspection, we will come closer to realizing our innate connection to the unborn and undying reality that permeates all of existence and is our essence. In this realization lies the key to true liberation, a freedom that transcends the limitations of the mortal realm and unites us with the infinite expanse of consciousness.
As we journey together on this path of self-discovery, we seek solace in the timeless wisdom of the ages that can inspire us to live fully and fearlessly in this time.
Casa da Volta
Sitting atop 20 acres of undulating topography as far as the eye can see, Casa da Volta (quite literally, “Home of the Return”) is a contemporary redefinition of rural living and design in every sense, and one where every detail counts. Given the remote rurality and isolation of Casa da Volta, the composition of the house is created to echo the ancient traditional Portuguese practice of “Alcáçova”, fortification. Here, life is centered
around a walled courtyard, playing ode to tradition and to timelessness, while blending geometric modernism; leaving us inside with an overwhelming feeling of coziness and creating an enclave of tranquility. Created with elegance and comfort, furnishings exude soft minimalism; linen sofas, mid century modern pieces, simple, sculptural light fittings, organic ceramics, each element carefully hand-chosen.
Conor, a Jivamukti Advanced Certified teacher based in Paris, was raised in the United States and served two years in Senegal as a member of the United States Peace Corps. Conor’s love for yoga began at the age of 18 and it has been the great joy and guide. His teachers have instilled in him a deep belief in the transformative power of asana, meditation, pranayama and deep wisdom, as well as the expansion of compassion and insight through embodied experience.
Conor recently completed his Master’s studies in neuroscience at Humboldt Universität, Berlin. He aims to synthesize contemporary science and ancient spirituality by integrating them into the light of mindful practice. Conor continues his humanitarian work in Senegal and other developing countries with his non-profit organization Jango Project.
He has had the good fortune to study with many Jivamukti teachers namely Sharon Gannon, David Life, Yogeswari, Lady Ruth and his mentor Anja Kühnel. He has mentored the Jivamukti 300-hour teacher training in India and the 75-hour Jivamukti Spiritual Warrior teacher training at Jivamukti Paris with Ian Szydlowski-Alvarez.
Eva Lucie Daniela
Eva is a Certified Jivamukti Teacher & the Founder of Retreats Collective.
She believes whole-heartedly in a community that experiences unique immersive retreats for life changing transformation. She wishes to share these liberation practices for the heart as a pathway to recovery, transmitting the gifted experiences that helped her along the way.
She first became a Yoga Teacher in February 2016 and she has then started her studies at the Jivamukti Yoga School in February 2018. Over the last eight years, Eva has received transmission from many teachers to whom she is endlessly grateful and devoted —among these are Sharon Gannon, David Life, Yogeswari, Rebeca Recatero, Talia Sutra and Meghan Currie. She is currently completing her Apprenticeship with Conor Byrnes in Paris, hoping to take her teaching to another level.
We will be holding space as much as needed, honoring each participant in their fullness with individual guidance.
We invite you to be open for other unexpected twists and turns, creative explorations and surprising moments that will give meaning to this adventure.
Dive into our daily Itinerary.
Offerings & Additions
We believe we all deserve a life of joy, healing and connection, akin to the moments we share on our retreats. We invite you to customise your retreat to enhance your experience.
From Reiki sessions & Wellness treatments to Surfing & Longboarding lessons, we invite you to learn more about our additional offerings. From long walks or time to unwind at the beach, the nature surrounding has a lot to offer too.
The Food Philosophy
Beautiful simplicity and Earthly wholeness. Each serving is a result of considering the whole journey from the roots to the end of the fork.
You can expect a plant-based, healthy and cruelty-free diet that is sourced locally and grown sustainably,a tribute to small scale farming. Old recipes that carry stories with a Mediterranean touch will be delicately prepared by ‘Alma's OpenTable’. We cater for your dietary requirements, please mention any allergies or sensitivities upon booking.
You are invited to discover a slow & intuitive cuisine.
Come sit with us at the dining table.
questions & reservations | firstname.lastname@example.org
A non-refundable 450 EUR deposit is required to confirm your spot.
Remaining amount is due by May 1st, 2024.
The Early Bird offer is only valid until March 1st, 2024.
Before applying, please read our terms and conditions here.