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João Pedrosa

How did I get here!? The first contact I had with the ALP was at a meditation retreat at the place that nowadays goes by the name of Avidanja. Back then I had no idea of what a meditation retreat would be like, nor had I a profound interest, that I could recognize, in the mysteries of non duality or spiritual awakening and spiritual freedom. I was driven by the question “Who am I, really?”, because I was not happy, and I didn’t know why and I felt I was missing the point of it all. So for some time then I was determined to expand my range of experiences to try to find “Who was I really supposed to be”. What was driving me was a pursuit for a meaningful life and at a certain point I saw the advertisement for a meditation retreat, and my curiosity – both for meditation but mostly for the Awakened Life Project and what it represented – drove me into it and it was an amazing experience. A series of events that followed began to shift my attention and my whole understanding of life. I opened up, my partner got pregnant, I realized my life was a hoax, I left my job and any prospect of a career and fell into existential crisis. It was the beginning of a new “me”…

Now I look back and I see cycles, some repetitions with different flavours, and an increase in complexity. I’ve learned a lot about patterns and conditionings and relatively speaking I recognize how much I’ve freed myself from some of that bullshit… and it keeps coming! Every new stage, every new day, every new circumstance, there’s demand for Presence. That’s Life!!

I’ve learned that there’s no point on trying to figure out what I am supposed to be doing or what my purpose is, because as long as I’m awake and respond with authenticity this is IT and there is nothing more to seek! Seeking was the main issue creating the discomfort, but just realizing it doesn’t simply make it vanish. The thought process running somewhere in my awareness is a very consistent illusion that creates with the “story of João”, telling me I am flawed and incomplete for whatever reason. This is why it is so important to rely on a trusted community, such as this Sangha of the ALP, as inspiration, as an empowering medium to help us keep dissolving the ego's story and leverage our True Self into the whole of life, with faith, trust and surrender!

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About the project

The Awakened Life Project is situated in a beautiful and wild ecological reserve in the mountains Central Portugal. We offer volunteer programs, courses, events and retreats to support the liberation of the human spirit in a context of evolutionary emergence and communion with the ecological web of life.


Quinta da Mizarela
3305-031 Benfeita
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