Here’s what participants had to say about their experience at our past “Time of Transition” retreats:
"The way I see it, there are several major streams contributing to this unique moment in human spiritual history. First is the unavoidable stream of so-called “fringe” topics that indicate there is so much more to our world and society than meets the eye, and that this conclusion is, in fact, quite logical. Second is the growth in popularity of personal inner healing, transformation, and integration, whose goal is to bring us as humans back to our true selves. Third is the massive expansion in the number of healing modalities – be they plant-based, energetic, physical, or meditative – available to facilitate that integration. Fourth and finally, the surging desire for tuned-in people to reunite with nature both inwardly, in terms of diet, and outwardly, in terms of their living environment.
Various healers, teachers, guides, and writers focus on one or two of these themes. Bernhard Guenther, through his remarkable work on his blog and Facebook, is to my knowledge the only person who unites ALL of these themes in his work. In doing so, he presents a more complete picture of modern authentic spirituality than anyone else I’ve encountered.
More than just showing the route, Bernhard provides a map. And more than a map and the route, he offers the critical reasons why to go on the journey. And more than a reason, map, and route, he paints a picture of the destination for us as individuals, and perhaps even the world as a whole.
This is true vision and leadership, in the best sense.
It would be sufficient for me or you to simply read his work. But the experience of it during his Time of Transition retreat provided an unparalleled picture into these four streams I mention, and how they feed us.
It’s one thing to read and conceptualize these ideas. It’s another to experience them bodily, surrounded by the thriving jungle, fed by delicious organic food, bathing in streams, being healed by the sounds of crickets, birds, and Fred Clarke Alvarez’s remarkable instruments, dancing freely in by candlelight, and more. The difference can’t be expressed in words, only felt.
I was profoundly impacted by my 9 days in the jungle with Bernhard, Fred, Javier and the staff at Chirapa Manta Ecolodge. During my time, I discovered how these streams feed ME, and I got a sense of how they will continue to, long after I’ve gone home. I encourage you to attend, and open yourself to experience the same."
- Will Spencer
“My girlfriend Steph and I have slowly been peeling back the sticky knots of the matrix in our lives over the past few years, however for a while now we knew that there was something deeper that we were missing.
Coming across Bernhard’s articles and videos around 8 months ago we quickly realised that if we truly wanted to heal ourselves then we must become more focused on the 4 dimensional aspect of the matrix. We also realised that we needed to stop focusing so much externally and instead turn our focus internally to reconnecting ourselves back to our body’s and it’s brilliant intelligence and also to nature.
We did this successfully to a certain extent but we acknowledged that we needed some support and so when we saw the Time of Transition retreat we knew it was exactly what we needed.
Shadow work can be intense and very difficult whilst still immersed in the frequencies of the city and with the stress of our every day lives and we saw this as the perfect opportunity to be in a completely supportive environment without any distractions so that we could focus solely on our personal healing.
Heading to the jungle in a foreign country with 7 strangers to do deep self work certainly brought up some fears, but we knew that it would take a leap of faith and an element of courage if we truly wanted to understand how to transcend the matrix.
We are so glad that we took that leap of faith because what opened up and was presented to us at the retreat was well beyond any of our expectations.
What we found when we got there was a family from all around the world who came together to support each other in our own personal healing, and although we were strangers, we felt like (and probably had) known each other for lifetimes.
Steph and I were in awe of how Bernhard and Fred navigated us through the knowledge and embodiment of how to heal our deep wounds and conditioning and how to transcend the matrix on both a 3D and 4D aspect. Their synergy was brilliant and they guided us with the perfect balance of compassion, love, and strength. To know that there are people in the world like this willing to support those who sincerely want it brought us to tears on a number of occasions.
What I feel has been given to us is a clear blueprint of exactly what the matrix is, how to stay connected with your true self, your body, and nature, whilst navigating through the matrix, how to find your souls missions for incarnating here in these tricky times, as well as some incredibly deep personal healing on a body and soul level.
This we now know was the sort of information and experiences our souls were yearning for and is exactly why we went to Peru and is exactly what we got out of the retreat.”
- Matthew Bate, Australia
“The Time of Transition Retreat offers a highly potent, transformational experience. It cuts through to the core of what is necessary to do true inner work.
I felt called to go deep, seeking to really connect with the Truth in and around me. I got the unique chance to do this embedded into an all-embracing natural grouping of humans as part of Mother Earth.
I felt the intensity of preparation and work Bernhard and Fred put into setting up this the retreat, thus merely forming the intention to go, my journey began.
Leaving the rectangular, willfully organized city of Salzburg, the journey took me across the globe, showing the impact our civilization has in various shapes and forms – airports, city-lights, monoculture, deforestation, mining, connected by streets and railways creating evermore separation. The air, the animals, the plants did not know about the borders I crossed, only we people had to show a passport and “let them do their jobs”.
A night in Lima, a flight to Tarapoto – I was still not in paradise, control all over, detachment a global issue. But I had found part of our group, and the anticipated experience became more and more real. Each of us felt blessed to be given the opportunity to be part of this, yet we came from such diverse directions!
Then, almost suddenly, mainly up but also down winding roads, the bus to Chirapa Manta Ecolodge took us deep into pristine nature.
The jungle simply is the jungle – breathing, alive. And thus, I began breathing with it, hearing and being heard by it, feeling and being felt, moving and being moved.
Everything responds, nothing reacts.
The rocks are, as is the water. Thus creating a waterfall, a pond, a riverbed – ready for me to conquer my fears and jump, while the group holds the space to watch it happen. Non-judgement. What a new feeling.
The trees moved by the wind, weaving a home for an abundance of animals in symbiotic cooperation with all the other plants.
Humans bent some of them to mark the path – they patiently adapt to the forced change of direction in their growth and accept being carved with arrows, so we don’t get lost even when the jungle wants to take over the man-made path.
The ground of the organic cocoa farm is covered with rotting leaves. Layer by layer of seasons gone by show the transformation to soil, now feeding the roots of the cocoa trees again for the circle to begin anew. The harvest is used with no left-overs – all parts of the plant serve a purpose, nothing is wasted.
Life is lived, death is died, rebirth shapes everything in a uniquely new way – inter-depending, connected.
The people at Chirapa Mantra Ecolodge and at Rio Bosque Magico Chazuta live as part of this abundance, and are beacons of light in simplifying and getting real. Taking part in their vision and the down-to-earth steps they take on a daily basis to serve on their paths holds lessons so deep. How easy it looks to see them truly following their souls’ missions, looking to balance ‘civilized’ humans’ needs for comfort and their effects on the whole system!
I was challenged deeply, and yet I felt safe.
There was a plan – diligently prepared, a path preconceived, just to let go of whenever the group or one of us had a need for it.
Bernhard took us deep into his learnings, showing embodiment practices, talking from the depth of his experience, patiently dismantling programs and preconceptions – a task a blogpost, youtube video or social media discussion and even a skype session is merely a shadow of – so we can have a chance to feel what it is like to squintingly leave Plato’s allegorical cave.
Fred’s music tuned into my needs, nurturing the healing potential within. It also captured my hearts’ melody, reminding me of the oneness deep inside my individuality in ways words can never express.
Peaking in the joining with the Medicine, I healed while witnessing my peers’ healing. I felt the pain of separation, of masks, of violence, of superimposed layers lovingly surfaced, met, reconnected and transmuted in many of us. I remembered the connection with everything around on a cellular level, and noticed the stiffness, the fakeness and the un-serving ways of body memories stored that were and are still blocking me. I let go of all I was ready for and could access, and lost the fear of “what, if I am done healing?”, replacing it with the will to remain wake enough to discontinue the ever-repeating cycles of suffering.
The group energy was uniquely beautiful, never have I felt so accepted and whole – I found a family member in each of them, especially in the integration period after the ceremony.
Each of us human, no gurus – not on a mission, but on a path: The Heroes’ Journeys.
The Time of Transition continues in and through each of us – and I am eternally grateful to Bernhard and Fred for taking the best out of all their Knowledge and combining it so gracefully – so seemingly effortlessly.”
- Veronika Gmachl, Austria
“And with a naive abandonment for all things perceived to be logical I flew to Peru to connect with a handful of strangers from all over the world. What was I thinking? There is no other answer than I was following a divine plan for a Time of Transition.
All of this "spiritual awakening" is new to me. I went through a phase of recognizing how different systems work together to keep us "asleep". I didn't know how I could possibly live out the rest of my life with the new ancient knowledge that I had embarked upon. But I knew I had to keep putting one foot in front of the other. I kept seeking, knocking, and I came across the work of Bernhard Guenther. I was drawn to his approach in being free, being sovereign. There was no talk of him being a guru or calling in spirit guides for help. We all have to do our own work and he was willing to be a vessel to aide in that process. I knew at this point in my journey that was exactly what I needed.
So I went to the jungles of Peru to be a part of a spiritual retreat hosted by Bernhard and Fred Clarke Alvarez. It was a time of deep reflection. No televisions, no traffic, no processed food, no 9 to 5 drudgery. We connected with nature, swam, hiked, visited a village by way of boat, ate wonderful cacao made by a beautiful Peruvian woman, and connected with one another over delicious, organic meals, sharing circles, dancing, Qi Chong, sound healing ceremonies, and a huachuma ceremony. It was beautiful how we were able to integrate and embody the first five days of self-work, workshops, and ceremonies with the four remaining days of the retreat. The logistics of the events were brilliant.
I was able to process repressed memories from childhood that no longer served their purpose for being hidden. I am still in awe of how the sounds of the beautiful music that Fred played touched us all to the core and connected with each of us on an individual level to orchestrate healing. The music danced with our pains and sufferings and helped us to leave them there on the dance floor with a forgiving "good-bye". With all of this stored trauma removed it left room for me to begin the transition of healing. I went through a lot of turmoil to actually make it to the retreat, but I am so elated that I made it. I will NEVER be the same. There was a part of me that was fractured, disconnected. I'm still on my journey of healing, but I can see a little clearer, and feel a little deeper. And I made some great friends along the way!”
- Nicole Hankerson
“The retreat was truly transformative…but I should explain what that means. While a few people had obviously transformative experiences as they faced old issues and let go of old patterns, the transformation I felt wasn’t obvious to me until I returned. My perceptions and feelings of everything in my life had changed. For a time I was faced with a profound sadness mixed with a profound joy. The joy came from the deep connection I’d made to Life, the sadness from clearly seeing the lack of that connection in the world around me in the place I’d formerly called home but now simply refer to as “base camp”.
There was one obvious level of transformation during the retreat that I felt. Being in the jungle, feeling the life literally pulsing from the environment, eating delicious local food prepared lovingly by local people, swimming in the river, and getting to know the other people in the retreat through the sharing of all of this along with the embodiment exercises, sharing of experiences, sound healing, and body work for days before the huachuma ceremony had me feeling like a kid again. It was a heart opening and embodying experience that created a loving and healing atmosphere for the ceremony.
This was real, deep healing that should not be missed…but only if you are serious about the transformation of your life. The healing you receive will be the healing you need from within yourself. Things you have hidden from will come to the surface. Your life will begin to turn toward the direction your soul desires, and away from the direction you have taken out of fear, programming, or conformity. Think about what that means before you asking to attend. While the retreat is very fun, this is serious work that should be approached with the understanding that your life is about to change in ways that that might frighten you to think about now.”
- Allen Branson
“Going into the jungle I didn’t hold very many expectations for myself other than the intent to heal. I had been following Bernhard’s work and writings for several years before the “Time of Transition Retreat” but that still couldn’t determine what would happen amongst a group of diverse individuals from all over the world. I guess you could say my attitude inwardly was “to go big or go home” in terms of finding my own healing and inspiration and boy did that happen.
Bernhard’s workshops were very enriching for me; supplying practical methods for thriving in my true authenticity and facing the darkest parts of ones true self. The group discussions during the workshops have honestly been some of the most raw and real moments in my life. I found much of my healing in the sharing of my story and even more in hearing others stories and processing together. I truly feel like the bonds made in the jungle are during those 9 days are more sacred than bonds that I have had with some for 10 years. Bernhard and Fred held space so intuitively and responsibly that every moment I felt supported and safe to be vulnerable.
One of my favorite aspects of the retreat was doing Qi Gong every morning, not something I regularly practiced. It really took me to the next level with feeling my own true embodiment. By the fourth morning during one of our exercises we were moving the light down from our crown to our hips (root) and my body began to shake so intensely the lodge was shaking with me. My body was letting go and processing trauma stored in the body. I had never experienced anything like it. “Letting go” seems to be the reoccurring theme from spirit for me.
Bernhard’s bodywork paired with Fred’s sound healing is something everyone should get to experience at least once in their life. I remember Fred was standing over me at one point and he was playing his wood winded instrument, and as he was playing I had an intense visualization and feeling of him pulling out years of rage, sadness and repressed feelings with every note. It was like the Cobra snake that is coiled and becomes uncoiled to the sound of the music. I never realized how much unnecessary baggage I was carrying around with me. This experienced surely cracked me open.
I already miss Peru and the wonderful circle of people I met and I know I will never be the same going forward. The jungle really transforms a person. There are some secrets I left in that jungle, and there are some secrets that came home with me, and none of it would have ever happened if I didn’t take that step in faith to find my own healing.”
- Zachary Hector
"Something deep shifted inside of me in the luscious jungle of Peru. Changes. Inside and out. I can see it on my face and feel it inside my body. Even my landlord noticed it. He said I felt stronger, less insecure, more myself. I didn't really noticed it at first. I was just having fun, playing with my new friends, dancing and laughing and swimming. The work we did went deep, but it was sneaky. It didn't feel like work. It felt like love. It felt like truth. It felt like seeing myself mirrored in the people around me. It felt like it was ok for me to be imperfect, flawed, vulnerable, open, and held as I cried out tears I had kept inside of me way too long. It felt like I was being held in a container made of love, and everything which was not love could drop away now. It was no longer needed. It no longer fit into my new skin.
It would be easy to extol the talents, gifts, and virtues of Bernhard and Fred, since they are numerous, but then it would miss the fact that each and every person who was there was equally special and beautiful. This was something we created together. A circle, not a pyramid. Each person was a necessary and important piece of the whole. We could have not done it without them and they could not have done it without us. We healed, laughed, cried, raged, and owned our own shit together and we are all better people for having done so.
If you have the opportunity and resources to go on one of these retreats, and your heart is singing a yes into your ears, I highly recommend that you listen. For me, I have been changed on such a deep level that it may be one of the most important decisions I've ever made in my life. I wish the same for you on your journey of discovery into yourself."
- Ellen Wisewoman