Monday, November 01, 2010

new land and building project at Guhyaloka

For over 20 years Guhyaloka, a retreat centre high in the Spanish mountains behind Alicante, has served as the main venue for men’s ordinations into the Triratna Buddhist Order, with over 400 men having been ordained there. Besides their annual four-month-long Ordination retreats they run a full program of other retreats - but they’re now adding a significant new dimension to their facilities.

Late last year they purchased ‘El Collao Blanc’ (the White Collar), a beautiful piece of land nearby, with a vision to develop it into a venue for a one-year-long communal retreats for men. Although there’s a small building already on site, there’s more to do - building huts, a shrine room, providing electricity, composting toilets etc and of course some fundraising - about £40,000 - to fund the work.

The land has been described as “rather like a fat banana” - which doesn’t do it justice at all! It is a 15,000sqm strip of terraced land that follows the contours high on the side of the mountain on the way up to Guhyaloka itself - about 40 minutes walk away. The terraces have been lovingly tended, and produce over a tonne of almonds, and 200 litres annually of olive oil, plus much grape juice. There is also a ramble of small terraces around the house planted with a variety of fruit trees fig, plum, pear, persimmon, pomegranate, cherry and so on.

But perhaps the finest feature is a really magnificent 200 degree vista of the mountains that surround it on all sides. Everyone who has seen the land has fallen in love with it - Yashodeva, a local artist, being inspired to say it was “like a balcony in a god realm”.

 Now Achaladeva, an Order Member living at Guhyaloka, introduces it on video - just click the embedded player below or see it direct on YouTube at .

 For more information see

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