Lonvla, Pune. 11 November 2010: Nine veteran educationists hailing from Mumbai, Gujarat and Pune joined to affirm their identity as Son of the Earth at a retreat in the picturesque Bandravilla in Lonavla.
The Retreat consisted of spending quality time with the divine earth, communing in her wisdom that rebuilds the earth every moment. Following the insights of the scientist philosopher of the earth, Teilhard de Chardin, Cultural historian, Thomas Berry and Mathematician Brian Swimme, the men spent hours outdoors. They sat around impromptu bonfires and recollected the stories of their lives.
Sons of the Earth: Retreatants among the trees in Lonavla
Bruno D’Souza S.J from St. Xavier’s Mumbai co-ordinated the coming together. Fr. Robert Athickal S.J led them through nature walks and open air liturgies into the inter-connected celebration of living.
Patna 23 Nov: Six women from the hills of Darjeeling joined for an eight day Retreat at the Tarumitra Bio-reserve. Known as a Holiday time with God in Nature, Tarumitra retreats are organized for groups on their requests.
Consisting of a PowerPoint presentation of a specific theme every day morning the Sisters spent their time under the trees, around the ponds or basking in the glades, communing with God in Nature.
The group was fascinated by the giant Wood spiders at the Bio-reserve. These orb-making Spiders were originally introduced into the bio-reserve five years back from Hazaribagh. Some of the campers brought them inside bottles and left them among the trees. Over the years they have multiplied.
Natualist in Hazaribagh, Bob Billings SJ used to say that every spider gobbles a large number of mosquitos every day. Marina Thapa and Josbin Lepcha, two of the retreatants noticed that the ubiquitous Seven Sisters (birds) flit through the webs eating the giant spiders. Therefore Tarumitra volunteers started placing bowls of rice for the birds to eat and in the process hope that the birds would spare the Spiders!