a project to root
Despite the fact that the facilities of our center have allowed us many rewarding experiences, it is evident that its configuration and the uses of the land greatly limit our activity, sustainability and growth. That is why, with the desire to establish roots in this exceptional place as Tavertet and continue to add value, in addition to wanting to grow -with respect and care-, both as a community and to offer our services to a greater number of people, we have commissioned a special plan.
increased interest in meditation
Since the founding of Casa Virupa in 2015, it seemed difficult to imagine that such a unique and atypical commitment to our times, led by three young people under the age of 25, could bear fruit and grow. But the project has evolved steadily and steadily, and today we have a stable base of about 100 students; more than 500 people have carried out activities with us and more than a dozen teachers from all over the world have visited us.
It should also be taken into account that the interest in meditation and philosophies that come from Asia has been on the rise since the 1960s of the last century, with some particularly notable moments, such as the pandemic and confinement. Google trends show that, between March and May 2020, searches with names such as "meditation", "mindfulness" or "meditate" increased, and is that many people have seen that, if they put aside the cultivation of su own interiority and mind, life's setbacks can be even heavier. This has led to the fact that, exponentially and in a very remarkable way during the spring and summer of 2020, many people have requested information about our activities and have wanted to participate in them. We have also seen how the demand has grown for isolated spaces in the main house and that allow people to have a place to retreat and enjoy nature in silence.
This without taking into account the growth of the community, which has gone from being made up of three people to being new, with a clear forecast of continuing to increase in the coming years: there are more and more people who, on a regular basis, collaborate with the project and that they have even rented houses in Tavertet to be close to the influence of Casa Virupa.
As Casa Virupa is not only a project focused on offering activities, but has at its core a commitment to a life in community, for us it is essential that we can take root in the place where we have established the Dharma center. Because we are a secular community, that is, without a vow of celibacy, we can have a partner, marry or have children and, although it is not an immediate plan, the members of the community are young and we anticipate that in the future there will be creatures
In addition, within our community there is a base of members linked to the educational field: ESO, Baccalaureate and University teachers, as well as infant teachers. For these reasons we believe that an upbringing based on Buddhist values can be very enriching and beneficial for society: we would like to teach our children and other children values such as attention, compassion, altruism or generosity.
Thus, with the possibility of expanding our facilities through the special plan, we could also grow as a family and help more people settle in Tavertet. Although Tavertet is an exceptional town of great heritage interest, its population is aging and runs the risk of being a town that, over time, becomes an abandoned town. We would also make Tavertet a unique reference in the country, since there is no Buddhist school in Spain.
a reference center
Although Buddhism is already considered a tradition of "notorious roots" in Spain, as we have explained in a previous section, in Spain there is only one Dharma center in Aragon that offers the possibility of long retreats and with optimal conditions for such use.
We consider that, being Catalonia one of the richest and most advanced regions of the territory, it is essential that it catch up with countries such as the United States, France, Germany or Italy, where there are consolidated Buddhist centers that have all kinds of facilities to spread the word. Buddhism as well as to guarantee extraordinary isolation and silence conditions for retreats.
optimal conditions to retire
As we have explained, there are many types of retreats depending on the tradition or level of practice, but undoubtedly the best formed is that of cabins that are focused on practitioners with a journey who want to do a much more intensive and solo spiritual work.
Therefore, they must have everything necessary to have a comfortable life: drinking and hot water, heating, shower and sink, kitchen ... Some strict withdrawals must be taken into account that involve periods of more than six months, in which the by withdrawing he will not be able to see anyone except his teacher. This is the reason why they must be able to guarantee maximum comfort and privacy to engage in such a demanding spiritual exercise as this.
In addition, we are very aware that we are in an incredible and very special place, so we want to take great care of the landscape impact: the design of the cabins will be fully integrated into the environment, in such a way that they go unnoticed by any hiker. In fact, it is something that interests us for two reasons: to ensure the image of the landscape, but also to preserve the intimacy and privacy of the retirees as much as possible. We do not want the cabins to attract attention, because this would imply curious people approaching the retreat space. And, as our tradition demands, retreat cabins need to be totally isolated from human trafficking.
Due to the awareness we have of interdependence and the weight of our actions on others, we want to prioritize the use of organic and ecologically-sourced materials in our buildings. In addition, the electricity in the house is supplied by solar energy, a non-polluting renewable energy. We believe that taking care of the planet and others is taking care of ourselves.