in­ner jour­ney

Could med­i­ta­tion be the best way to get back con­trol of lives?

VOGUE Hommes International (English) - - CONTENTS - By frédérique ver­ley

In Paris

PSY MED­I­TA­TION At last, a med­i­ta­tion ses­sion for real be­gin­ners. Sit­ting on a cush­ion in a half lo­tus, eyes glued to some­thing three feet away, we con­cen­trate on breath­ing. And if a thought comes to mind, we don’t watch it drift by like a cloud in the sky. No way. We try to wade back up­stream to see how that thought be­gan to take shape. Ac­cord­ing to Alexan­dre Mal­brand, the idea is to take it on board: we can take part in our thoughts, not con­trol them. Hence the very in­ter­est­ing “step back” in the face of stress and our re­cur­ring sources of angst. Prag­matic, don’t you think? €29 / hour, Le Ti­gre, 17, rue de Chail­lot, Paris 16th, ti­gre–yoga.com.

SIXTH SENSE. Ophélie comes to your home to help you nur­ture your nat­u­ral instincts when it comes to mak­ing de­ci­sions. The ses­sion be­gins quite sim­ply, by fo­cus­ing on breath­ing — from deep within. Then, guided by her voice, we try to re­ally feel the dif­fer­ent parts of our body: tin­gling, shiv­er­ing or burn­ing sen­sa­tions un­der the skin can all be used to with­draw from our thoughts, re­con­nect with our feel­ings, and de­velop our in­tu­ition. The aim is to be able to keep a suf­fi­cient dis­tance from a given sit­u­a­tion so that we can make the right choices nat­u­rally. €80 € / hour, +33 ( 0 ) 6 15 97 48 52.

A SELF-HEAL­ING MANTRA. Peo­ple come here with a voice recorder, be­cause, beyond the rather con­ven­tional lo­tus and half–lo­tus po­si­tions and work­ing on our breath­ing, you have to lis­ten, re­mem­ber in­for­ma­tion and re­cite mantras at the same time as Sofia Stril–Rever, the Dalai–Lama’s bi­og­ra­pher. The choice of th­ese se­cret for­mu­las, all San­skrit in ori­gin, is de­cided at the be­gin­ning of each ses­sion and de­pends on the is­sue or prob­lem that needs to be dealt with. You are then re­quired to re­peat them at home, if pos­si­ble in the evening. The aim is to en­able the sound vi­bra­tions to heal an or­gan, reg­u­late an emo­tion, or re­lease a men­tal block and free the mind. In­trigu­ing. €88 / hour, +33 ( 0 ) 6 01 91 92 10.

WORLD­WIDE

IN­DIA — FOR THE PURISTS. Ev­ery year, the Ananda wins an award for the best spa re­treat. The lo­ca­tion is a heady ex­pe­ri­ence in it­self, perched 1,000 me­tres up in the foothills of the Hi­malayas, just above the Ganges. A ll spa pro­grammes of­fer a com­bi­na­tion of Ayurveda, yoga and med­i­ta­tion, with seven dif­fer­ent meth­ods, in­clud­ing pu­ri­fy­ing chakras ( Chakra Shuddhi ), the tech­nique of in­ner vi­su­al­i­sa­tion ( Chi­dakasha Dha­rana ), and mantra ther­apy ( Ajapa Japa ). The classes are run by pro­fes­sional grad­u­ates from the Bi­har School of Med­i­ta­tion. Ex­clusif Voy­ages, +33 ( 0 ) 1 42 96 00 76 and anan­daspa.com.

BALI — FOR AES­THETES. No–one comes to Como Shamb­hala Bali to be mol­ly­cod­dled, but rather to find in­ner peace. An ex­ten­sive pro­gramme al­ter­nat­ing med­i­ta­tion, yoga, tai– chi, spir­i­tual dis­cus­sions and Bud­dhist teach­ing. The cour­ses are held in a pro­tected en­vi­ron­ment in the heart of the jun­gle, where you can es­cape for a while from the disturbing face to face with your­self, follow a white– wa­ter raft­ing course, or cross–train­ing along the rice fields, where you may ac­tu­ally meet a tra­di­tional healer. co­mo­ho­tels.com

POR­TU­GAL — for the Mystics among us. The Penha Longa in Por­tu­gal is the only Six Senses to have a med­i­ta­tion maze! We move for­ward guided by a Master to re­align body, heart and spirit, and to see what we want to do with our lives. Once we find the an­swer, we follow a short Shi­atsu or Qigong class near the Sin­tra na­tional park, where you can cap­ture the fab­u­lous seis­mic en­er­gies of the place, a 14th–cen­tury monastery, no less. penhalonga.com.

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