They came from Canada, USA, Venezuela, Algeria, Netherlands, UK and Czech Republic as well as fromSouth Africa. Thirty people arrived at Bodhi Khaya in March to attend the first South African retreat held by Jeff Foster.
Jeff Foster studied Astrophysics at Cambridge University. In his mid-twenties, after a long period of depression and illness, he became addicted to the idea of ‘spiritual enlightenment’ and embarked on an intensive spiritual quest for the ultimate truth of existence.
The spiritual search came crashing down with the clear recognition of the non-dual nature of everything, and the discovery of the extraordinary in the ordinary. In the clarity of this seeing, life became what it always was: intimate, open, loving and spontaneous. Jeff was left with a deep understanding of the root illusion behind all human suffering, and a love of the present moment.
During his retreats he points directly to the deep acceptance inherent in the present moment. He helps people discover who they really are, beyond all thoughts and judgments about themselves, even in the midst of the stress and struggle of modern day living and intimate relationships.
Jeff’s teaching style is direct and uncompromising and yet full of humanity, humour and compassion. He believes that freedom is everybody’s birthright. He belongs to no tradition or lineage, and makes his teaching accessible to all.
Bodhi Khaya offered a home away from home as the guests joyfully tucked themselves into the cosy nooks and crannies of this beautiful centre. The weather was fine and sunny with a cooling breeze so there was plenty of opportunity to swim in the sea or in one of the lily ponds.
The theme of Jeff’s retreat was ‘The Deepest Acceptance’ and at this time and in this lovely place, as we got to know each other and warmed to our new found friends from all corners of the globe, it was not hard to accept what is.
But Jeff took us ever deeper and deeper, to that acceptance which has already happened, and helped us to recognize this despite all that might happen on the outside. As clarity grew and the group bonded, we had the courage to go ever deeper with Jeff. To the point where, once the truth of who we really are, is seen it can never be forgotten.
We left with the certain knowledge that our lives can never be the same. In the realization of this deepest acceptance, even in our darkest hour, we will know that everything is OK.
Supplied by Nicky Vernon
Jeff is planning on visiting Bodhi Khaya again next year.