Casa da Terra or Earth House is an artistic collective in Espírito Santo State, in the south-east of Brazil. Near Pico da Bandeira, the third highest mountain in Brazil, this is a space of coexistence and exchange of experiences, which proposes reflection and dialogue about art, Earth, life, mind-body integration, consciousness, collaborative work and collective processes.
In January 2014, Casa da Terra opened a calling inviting artists and collaborators to attend its I Artistic Residence. Peace Revolution’s Peace Architect, Raphaela, was selected to attend this event to lead meditation sessions and give Thai massage workshops. She presented Peace Revolution’s approach using ppt presentations and guiding a few meditations for the group. This immersive format was good to go deeper into the practice and to make them experience different situations in their own meditation practice, ask about their doubts and curiosities about the Thai culture and Peace Revolution Program.
The group was very enthusiastic about learning a different meditation technique from someone who had lived in Thailand for a while. One of the participants said: “ I learned with this meditation to perceive my center, that shines brighter than a thousand suns and is serene as the moonlight ... and controlling the breath, as the moon controls the ocean waves… (…) The consciousness in behind all this: peace, softness, love for yourself and others”.
Being an immersive experience made it a very special experience because during all the Artistic Residence the group was practicing being centered and mindful about their own actions and speech.
Yoga was being practiced every day, collective meals were made by the group. Sharing the chores like taking care of the organic composter, the cleanliness and organization of the house were also opportunities to put in practice what their were aiming to learn practicing meditation: staying in peace with yourself and others, respect and be respected, collaboration, letting go, patience, discipline, being flexible and responsible.
Participants were co-responsible of the space of the house during the period of residence, collaborating with self-management, organization of spaces, carrying out tasks and participating of the activities.
The other residents arranged activities which were somehow in the same purpose as meditating, balancing body and mind: Yoga Dance, Mahaleela (Ancient India Game), Tibetan Rites, Poetry and Music circles, Biocentric Education and history of life circle and others, juggling, permaculture garden and others.
Casa da Terra had a common Library, with many books about spiritually and education, a painting and drawing studio, a wood stove, shared rooms for accommodation. The Food was vegetarian and mostly healthy and fresh food. It was a great opportunity to experience the integration of meditation practice into their daily life once they were working and living together, at same time sharing dreams, fears, talents, knowledge and common challenges they have in their lives.