Fall Celtic Spirituality Retreat in Ireland with Mary Meighan & Seán

Fall Celtic Spirituality Retreat in Ireland with Mary Meighan & Seán

Sept 30th-Oct 4th, 2024

Celtic Spirituality Retreat on a wild and beautiful island off the west coast of Ireland.

Guided by Mary Meighan, founder of Celtic Journeys & Seán Johnson.

Renew your spirit, kindle your soul, and stir your imagination on this one-of-a-kind, intimate, spiritual retreat in one of Ireland’s most enchanting places. We’ll retreat on Inis Mór– a wild and beautiful island off the west coast of Ireland– where Gaeilge (Irish) is the native language and Celtic traditions flourish. The retreat is guided by Ireland native Mary Meighan, founder of Celtic Journeys, with songs and chants by Seán Johnson.

 

Celtic spirituality is the indigenous spirituality of Ireland. It is a gentle, nature based way of being that invites us to be our authentic selves and to live from our heart. Our Celtic retreats are unique, hand-crafted experiences designed for small groups of people.

 

It’s important to us to have an engaged group of people that share some common understandings and intentions for the retreat, to enhance the quality of the experience for all. With this in mind, our retreat is ideal for people who are seeking to explore a heart-centered lived experience of Celtic Spirituality in Ireland; are open to participating in the practices we’ll be sharing together including singing, chanting, pilgrimages to sacred sites on the island, listening to the daily Celtic themed talks including poetry, blessings, and stories; contemplative writing; meaningful Celtic rituals; connection with locals; gentle Celtic-themed yoga; free time to wander the island; and interest in exploring ways to integrate Celtic Spirituality into their own lives.

Register here. (If you have any technical issues with registration, please email teamlotus@wildlotusyoga.com)

(Photo from our retreat by Simone Lipscomb)

Your Guides

Mary Meighan, a native of Ireland, is the founder of Celtic Journeys who offers soul journeys steeped within her native Celtic Spiritual Tradition. Mary has traveled to sacred sites across Ireland for decades renewing, sustaining, and sharing her passion for the Celtic world. She also visits the U.S. and other countries introducing Celtic Spirituality through talks and retreats, sharing her lived experience of this mystical and earthy Spirituality.

 

Seán Johnson is a singer, songwriter, storyteller, and teacher of spirituality and yoga. He is the founder of Wild Lotus Yoga, Soul School Teacher Training Program, and The Wild Lotus Band. Seán’s love of Ireland and Celtic Spirituality goes back to his childhood, and he did an intensive undergraduate program in Irish Studies. He has traveled to Ireland over a dozen times to deepen his connection to his ancestral homeland.

Mary and Seán have been dear friends for many years and have guided many retreats together in Ireland and the USA. In addition to guiding retreats in Ireland, they also offer online gatherings throughout the year, honoring the major Celtic Festivals as we journey within the seasons of the Celtic Calendar, exploring how these ancient holidays can enrich our souls and deepen our connection with life.

 Testimonials

“The retreat with Sean and Mary exceeded any expectations that I had. 

Arriving in Ireland, getting to the ferry, and stepping onto the magical island of Inis Mor was so easy! Just follow all of Sean and Mary’s instructions on the website, and know that you will be guided in every way. The guest house felt like we were in an Irish manor home, the Irish breakfast was always fresh and abundant (you will eat well and enjoy a visit to the local pub too!) Right on the property were ancient ruins and gorgeous views of the island, down to the sea. Our time together was soulful and fostered a deep feeling of connection to the land, ancestors and the rich history of Ireland. Our outings and easy hikes and walks brought us to many sacred places. The story telling, songs, and yoga practices we shared were full of joy.  I recommend this trip to anyone…travel with a friend, a loved one, or come alone. You will leave Ireland with a full heart.” – Sheila


“The time I spent with Mary and Sean was nothing short of magical. The flow of each day was gently balanced in a way that kept me engaged and wanting more, yet still allowed for times of personal restoration and contemplation. The length of each session was thoughtfully planned to provide a deep meaning experience without moving into restlessness and some form of movement or change of environment was weaved in between sessions which was exceptionally brilliant to keep our bodies energized. I was deeply impressed at how seamless the entire week was. 

The spiritual journey they led us through had an open ended destination for each participant to discern for themselves. Their only agenda was to invite us into the joy of opening our hearts and falling in love with the Celtic tradition which appeared to happen for each one of us in very personal ways.

This was by far the most impactful retreat I have experienced. The ancient holy grounds we stood upon, being caressed by nature and kissed by the sea, storytelling, song, laughter, poetry, heart massages and gentle yoga were all more than I have ever imagined. I returned home with a full heart and a new courage to walk the path that is calling to me. Thank you Mary and Sean for gently leading us into a time of new birth and for sharing your wisdom and talent with the world.” – Lori

 

“Shared time with you two and our entire Pilgrim Family on the beautiful Island of Inis Mor has been heart soothing, mind calming and soul quenching. I came to the retreat open to its offerings and I leave the retreat more open to life, the internal stirrings and fire as well as the external. Feeling grounded, cradled and full of gratitude. Your guidance and this land – heartful blessings and full of gifts I cherish dearly.” – Tehroma

 

“Inis Mór provides the spectacular backdrop for this very Irish kind of retreat. Welcome and hospitality are key, as is the fluid rhythm of our days. Mary and Seán facilitate with a gentle but keenly felt sense of what it means to be present and connecting with our deepest selves, our ancestors and the surrounding extraordinary landscape. I found myself joyfully absorbing the Celtic Wisdom and way of being which Mary presented without any sense of persuasion or conformity. Seán’s beautiful voice brought the comfort of song. I found my heart expand and heal as we sang chants in Irish, and enjoyed some popular traditional songs together. Two of the evenings Seán provided an opportunity for a sweet gentle Yoga practice which seamlessly embodied the themes of our retreat. Our excursions to different ancient sites around the island were rituals of self exploration, as opposed to mere sight seeing. Our food was plentiful, delicious and nourishing. The people and animals of Inis Mór were so welcoming as we continued to bond as a group of Pilgrims. This was my second time participating in this retreat, and I learned many new things about myself and this island.” – Heather

“It would have been more than enough to have only experienced the abundant, luscious sights, sounds, experiences and ideas offered to the group on Inis Mor. Mary and Sean invite everyone to come in and keep close, when folks wish to. But for me, in addition, my sense of understanding subtly changed and I can’t for the life of me explain; its purview lies beyond thoughts and words. You have to come here and wrap yourself around that Celtic Spirit, and identify that sense for yourself.” – Karen

Making a Celtic Journeys retreat with Mary and Seán was a truly wonderful, whole-person experience.  Combining wisdom-filled talks, accessible chants and music, and simple yet profound rituals, Mary and Seán create a container for deepening one’s knowledge and experience of the Celtic world that is enjoyable, easeful, and eminently applicable to one’s life. Both the “newbie” to Celtic spirituality and the adept will find much here, as will all types of Celtic pilgrims.  The pace of the days is restorative and the excursions are meaningful and not too strenuous.  The beauty of the island, the good food, comfortable accommodations, and laughter and camaraderie that is built over the days together all add up to a beautiful experience of Celtic wisdom and arts as well as of the Celtic spirit and way of living (and enjoying!) life.  Make your Celtic Journey now–you will be glad you did, and you will come away with new tools for a joyful life!”  – James“Taking part in the Celtic Spirituality & Yoga retreat and spending time on the magical island of Inis Mor has been life changing!  I am so grateful to you, Sean and Mary, for the opportunity and for the wonderful experience you provided which has opened my mind and heart to a whole other world to continue to explore!”  – Delilah

“The trip was more than I could have ever imagined. The setting– our guest house– magnificent!! The food – delicious! The land!! The teaching — Mary’s wisdom, Seán’s sweet peace, their voices, between them both I am deeply and forever changed!” – Tony

“Sean and Mary are truly mystical healers working to uphold the high vibrations palpable on our majestic planet Earth.  Together, they weave the ancient splendor of spiritual traditions through the sensations of grounded humanity to create an uplifting, harmonious community that fosters great nurturing, healing, and growth, all in the most mystical environs of Inish Mor.  Go for your Soul! Go for your Heart!  Find your Anam Cara through expression of the wildness and rawness that is YOU.” — Sudha

“Thanks so much for the fully engaging and gentle retreat.  I was especially grateful to get to know you both in such a sacred setting along with the trips to ancient sites around the island.  I will take with me all of your gems of Celtic wisdom, stories , laughter, and Sean’s beautiful Irish songs which all are inside me.” – Mary

“I loved the retreat! The Celtic approach revealed the deepest, most poignant strands of my being that have been seeking manifestation for my whole life! I have done many retreats over the past 30 years and this one feels the most impactful.” – Peter

 

“For me it was the space created by Sean and Mary, the stories, songs, chanting, encouragement, shared experience, and genuine love for the Celtic way that allowed for such beauty to emerge in all of us. I keep looking at the pictures shared by others, the warmth in my chest, the quickening of my heart and joy in my soul are the result.” – Meg,

“A deeply rich and soulful immersion into Celtic Spirituality, with genuine Irish hospitality. It was truly transformative and healing.”  – John

“Mary and Sean held a sacred space that allowed us to connect with the energies of the land, sky and sea in our own, individual way while providing a beautiful group experience. Whether a seasoned practitioner of Celtic Spirituality or brand new to it, it was rich and inviting and powerful.” – Simone

 

“Thank you for creating this blissful , spacious retreat. Your guidance and teachings about Celtic Spirituality enhanced being on this Aran Island and living together.  I enjoyed every minute. Especially the singing and visits to sacred sites! It was one of the best retreats I’ve ever participated in and having lead a few myself, I know what’s involved in creating that kind of a safe and enjoyable space for people to be able to open our hearts.” – Lin

“From the moment I embarked on my journey across the Atlantic Ocean and set my feet on Irish soil, I felt I’d come home. With major career and relationship transitions looming, I was seeking clarity and direction. Through song and ceremony Mary and Sean gently guided me into exploring my desires, my hopes and dreams. I left feeling energized and trusting anew my internal navigation. The “It’s Good to be Alive,” chant is still dancing through my heart.” – Michele

 

“Joy! Gratitude for Mary and Sean’s  humility and ease ….expressed throughout the retreat, fostering the participants’ comfort and bonding. We felt Presence with nature during Inspiring rituals that blessed the wellsprings of being .Threaded throughout were the haunting tones of the harmonium…. Irish ballads and chants that wove the Celtic knot of relationship. And, a warm salute to the balance of laughter and heart centered connection.” -Shantima

 

Sample Itinerary

The sample itinerary below gives you a feel for how our days will flow and the kinds of experiences included in the retreat. Our plans may shift in the flow of the week.

Each day we will have a Celtic Gathering, our gatherings are ways to draw you deep into Celtic Spirituality, a way of experiencing the world that is ancient, yet very much alive. This time will give you an internal understanding and feel for the Celtic Tradition – a world filled with mystery and natural wonder. We’ll share Celtic talks, poems, music, stories, chants, blessings and prayers of this ancient land allowing the Celtic Spirit and Mystery to stir your imagination and nurture your heart.

During our days together, we’ll also be weaving in Celtic rituals at the sea shore, where we can ramble to from our Guesthouse.

Day One- Monday. 

We will meet you at 11:30am and give you a warm Irish Fáilte (welcome) in the small ferry port on Inis Mór Island, County Galway. We will go by bus to our Guesthouse which sits at the foot of Dun Aonghasa (A World Heritage Site) where the Celtic Retreat will begin.

A few steps from our Guesthouse for a little Celtic connecting time together in the remains of a beautiful ancient Celtic Church.

Lunch together in a lovely cafe nearby.

Settling-in time at our welcoming family run guesthouse.

In the afternoon we’ll have an opening Celtic Gathering beginning your introduction to Celtic Spirituality through Celtic poetry, music, song, blessings and chants, some in Ireland’s native tongue – Gaeilge (Irish). We will also share details of our time together. And an opportunity for everyone to share the call within and without that brought you here on this wild and beautiful Island for this Celtic Retreat.

Walk together to a nearby beautiful beach for a Celtic Elemental Ritual by the Seashore.

6pm Evening welcome dinner together.

A session of gentle Celtic-inspired yoga, Celtic chanting and Irish lullabies, to bring you towards sleep and dream time on this mystical Island…

Day Two- Tuesday.

10am Mary will offer a  morning Celtic Gathering to further unfold more of the natural gems of the Celtic Tradition. Be  introduced to the Celtic Calendar and how we can live more within this circular sense of time and the joy and care of living within the seasons.

Break.

Mary will introduce you to the Spirit of Brigid – our beloved ancient Goddess and Celtic Saint, The Divine Feminine of Ireland. Learn the importance of Brigid in the heart and soul of Ireland. Hear some of the myriad of stories, poems, songs, blessings and about Brigid.

Seán will introduce you to some of the beautiful Sacred Chants dedicated to Brigid that will offer another Celtic Way to connect you to Brigid’s Spirit.

Be part of a Brigid Ritual that is heart easing, heart warming and will fire your imagination.

Receive a Water Blessing from Brigid’s Goddess Well.

Hear about our Celtic Practices, opening your hearts to these, simple, yet powerful Celtic rituals and experience how you can bring them into your daily life to nurture, support and inspire…..

A little reflection time and a lunch break.

More of this island’s sacred treasures await us for the afternoon  We will first have a tour of part of the island and later in the afternoon a Pilgrimage Walk in to one of the Holy Wells on the Island where you will be guided in one of our traditional Celtic Holy Well Rituals and receive Water Blessings at the Holy Well.

Time for reflection to interact with this ancient Sacred Site hearing the stories of these sacred places.

In the evening our bus driver will take us to Kilronan, the main village on the Island, for dinner and traditional Irish music, experiencing the culture and conviviality of a local Irish pub.

Day Three- Wednesday.

10am Celtic morning Gathering with Mary bringing you deeper within the Celtic Spiritual Tradition and touching into the energy of Celtic Poetry and how Poetry can animate  our being and enhance our connection to our hearts.

During this Gathering you will hear Celtic Poetry, Blessings, Stories and Song.

After a reflective break join Seán and Mary for chanting and experience the essence of what chanting some words as Gaeilge (in Irish) can do for touching our Hearts and Spirit.

Participate in a Celtic Contemplative Practice, that offers you the opportunity of going within accompanied by a supportive set of principles and the comfort and nurturance and also vitality that such a Celtic Contemplative Practice can offer and it is a Celtic Contemplative Practice that you can bring into your life at home.

Time for Reflection and Lunch.

In the afternoon our bus driver will bring us to another part of this beguiling Island, sharing stories along the way about Island life and if the weather allows Seán will offer chanting outdoors under the sky and share some Irish songs.

5pm Dinner together.

Evening. Gentle Celtic inspired Yoga and Celtic Lullabies with Seán.

Day Four- Thursday.

Here we are on this wild and beautiful Gaeilge (Irish) speaking Island. We open our day with an early morning silent pilgrimage walk up to Dún Aonghusa Fort (weather allowing). Dun Aonghusa is perched spectacularly on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic ocean….. next stop the USA.

Here you can experience a Celtic Ritual including Song and Chant for the further opening of our hearts to the Celtic Spirit. Aonghus is the Celtic God of love and poetic inspiration

Walk back down to our guest house for breakfast and then time for taking a breath, and free time for yourselves until we meet again at the cafe for dinner.  There are many possibilities as to how you might like to spend this time…….

We will have shared with you how the very nature of Celtic Spirituality offers a guiding hand to turn gently within, offering you guidance to assist you on the inner journey within the Spirit of the Celtic Wisdom Tradition. This island offers peace and an expansiveness to journey deep within and as we are about an inner journey as well as an outer journey Celtic Spirituality offers the encouragement and inspiration. Relax and let this sacred landscape nurture and fire your imagination. You can walk to the beautiful nearby beach, take a guided pony and trap tour around the Island hearing stories while traveling slowing and absorbing this glorious landscape, bicycles can also be hired to explore other parts of the island, maybe Journal, or sit and be with what this sacred island of wild beauty on this Sacred Journey is offering you.

5pm Dinner together.

An evening Celtic Gathering of Celtic Song, Ritual, and Celtic Blessings and a Reflective Practice to deepen within the heart.

Day Five- Friday.

Following breakfast at 9am walk to the Beach for a Ritual at the Seashore.

Depart the guesthouse midmorning for a Farewell Ritual at a Celtic Labyrinth located near a beautiful beach on the other side of the Island. At this gathering we begin weaving together the strands of this Celtic Retreat with a Farewell Ritual and begin the harvesting of the treasures and making ready for the path onwards….knowing that the harvesting of this Retreat will continue to unfold as you travel in Ireland and homewards.

Celtic Blessings to be with you as you make your journey back to the mainland from the wild and beautiful Island of Inis Mór.

Take a brief 11:45am flight back to the mainland arriving at Connemara airport by noon, and you can take the return shuttle bus to Galway City and travel onwards with the Celtic Spirit whispering in your hearts and on your lips…

Registration and prices:

Spaces limited. The retreat is set up for an intimate group to attend so early registration is highly recommended to reserve your spot.

Cost:  

$2259. Register with payment in full or $700 non-refundable deposit. Full balance due by August 14th, 2024. Price does not include BrightStar processing fees, added at registration.

Price includes daily retreat sessions with Mary & Sean; four nights accommodations at an 18th century family-run guesthouse with shared accommodation (Limited number of single rooms available for an extra $75 per night – $300 plus BrightStar processing fees); lunch at cafe on day of arrival; four hearty Irish breakfasts; three dinners; buses on Inis Mór to and from the ferry port to guesthouse; bus excursions on the Island to sacred sites.

Price does not include airfare, ferry, and meals not listed above.

Travel insurance is strongly recommended to cover your costs in the event of any unforeseen changes in your travel plans, as we are not able to offer refunds under any circumstances. Once you are registered, attendance in the retreat you’ve registered for is not transferable to another future retreat. We cannot emphasize enough how important it is to have travel insurance to protect yourself should anything unexpected arise. 

In order to attend the retreat, for the health and safety of all attending, participants are required to email the results of a COVID test the first morning of the retreat before the journey to the ferry.

(If you have any technical issues with registration, please email teamlotus@wildlotusyoga.com)

Travel Advice

For those traveling to Ireland for the first time, Ireland is an incredibly hospitable place for visitors and easeful place to travel compared to other countries. The 5 day length of the retreat on Inis Mór offers a cushion of some time before and after the experience to have your own adventures on the mainland.  It may not be possible for everyone, but if you have the freedom to arrive in Ireland a couple of days early, it can be helpful to adjust to the jet lag and rest before the retreat begins. Similarly if you have the flexibility to stay in Ireland a few days after the retreat, you will find the retreat to be a wonderful immersion that will bring greater depth to your travels and adventures in Ireland afterwards. Below is some advice for traveling.

From Shannon Airport: Shannon Airport, on the west coast of Ireland, is the closest airport to Inis Mór, where our retreat is held. There are buses from Shannon Airport to Galway City (approx 1.5 hours). Buseireann is the national bus company and have buses running approximately every hour from Shannon Airport to Galway City and details are on their website www.buseireann.ie

From Dublin airport: (Dublin is on the East coast of Ireland and Shannon is on the West Coast). If you do fly into Dublin you need to allow time to travel to Galway City (approx 3-4 hours) and then on to the Ferry Terminal. Traveling to Galway from Dublin can be by bus or train – and car hire is available at the Airport and in Dublin City. www.irishrail.ie has all the details of fares and timetables of trains from Dublin City to Galway City. Buseireann is the national bus company and their website www.buseireann.ie has all the details of fares and timetables between Dublin City and Galway City. There are also many private bus companies that travel between Dublin City and Galway City.

Travel To The Ferry Landing To Begin Our Retreat

On Monday, please arrange to catch the 10:30am ferry one way from Ros a’ Mhíl (Rossaveal in English) to Inis Mór. We will meet you at 11:30am at the ferry landing on Inis Mór.

From Galway City there are buses that will bring you out to Ros a’ Mhíl (Rossaveal in English – as it is a Gaeltacht area the road signs are in Irish) Ros a’ Mhíl is 23 miles west of Galway City and shuttle bus from Galway is 6 Euro and the Ferry cost is 20 Euro one way. The bus takes about one hour from Galway City to Ros a’ Mhíl.

All details regarding the ferry and the shuttle bus from Galway City are on the website www.aranislandferries.com. Just to be aware it is not a car ferry – as cars cannot drive onto the Island. The only cars on the island are islanders’ cars and small buses.

After The Retreat – Travel From Inis Mór Back To The Mainland

Transportation back to the mainland is now by air instead of by ferry, as the Aran Island Ferries’ schedule is not offering a midday ferry that week. You can book the flight for 35 Euro departing Friday October 4th, 11:45am departure from Inis Mór Airport to Connemara airport at https://aerarannislands.ie/ To ensure your transportation to Galway, when you purchase the airfare, be sure to simultaneously book the noon bus to return to Galway for an additional 5 Euro.

To get a feel for us and a sense for what our time together will be like, we encourage you to attend one of our Online Celtic Spirituality Gatherings, that coincide with the ancient Celtic seasonal festivals . Visit the Events page to see when the next one is scheduled.

(If you have any technical issues with registration, please email teamlotus@wildlotusyoga.com)

Event Information

}  September 30, 2024 to October 04, 2024
  Monday, 11:00 am to 12:00 pm
n  EVENTS/TOUR DATES PAGE, YOGA PAGE EVENTS
  http://www.wildlotusyoga.com

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