Meditation trip - Journeys to the inner center in Africa

Mediation on a jetty by the lake

Stress, worries, self-doubt. There are various factors that can disturb the balance of body, mind and soul. To regain this balance, the inner center, the proverbial change of scenery is a first effective step.

Meditation by the lake

largueitudoefui / Adobe Stock

A trip to completely foreign countries far away from everything familiar helps to leave everyday life with all its negative effects behind and to recharge your batteries. But that's not the only reason why Africa, with its incredible diversity, is ideal for getting back in tune with yourself and the environment. Instead, it's the fascinating landscapes that help ground you. It is the foreign cultures that make old beliefs disappear. It's the unique experiences of traditional rituals that can change the way you look at your own life - and that's not the end of the list.

No other travel destination is therefore better suited to literally come home a different person, as if reborn, so to speak. For this to succeed, however, the trip must be carefully prepared and properly designed. A meditation trip is an excellent way to do this.

Finding relaxation and inner peace

Inner peace is a feeling that many people in our Western world have lost. It is a feeling of contentment, serenity, freedom from worries, confidence, indeed a deep relaxation. Those who possess inner peace are at peace with themselves and their lives. Such people often have an almost magical attraction on their environment, because who does not find this inner peace (more) in himself, often seeks it in the outside. This is a mistake, since this form of relaxation can only be found or rediscovered on the inside. It is therefore worthwhile to take a closer look at this topic.

Break signpost mhp / Adobe Stock

What is inner peace?

Inner peace could be defined as inner peace in the sense of being completely unperturbed. It means freedom from worries, self-doubt or other stressful thoughts. Instead, optimism and trust prevail - in oneself as well as in one's own destiny. A person who feels an inner calm may not be sure that the future will be without challenges. But he or she is sure that he or she will be able to cope with them. Therefore, people with pronounced inner calm are often perceived by those around them as calm, self-confident and positive. Thus, excitement, anxiety, stress or nervousness are the counterparts of inner calm.

It is thus a state that is certainly desirable for everyone - and most people have already experienced it themselves. But modern everyday life often makes it difficult to maintain inner calm. Constant noise, pressure to perform at work or other stresses can disturb this peaceful state and thus upset not only mental but also physical well-being. Keyword: psychosomatics. Typical signs that inner peace is disturbed are, for example, sleep disturbances, a feeling of inner restlessness, anxiety or stress symptoms such as headaches. This list goes on and on.

Woman doing yoga Drobot Dean / Adobe Stock

Methods to calm down inside

If such symptoms occur occasionally, this is perfectly normal and not yet a cause for concern. Most people, for example, feel agitated before the first day at a new job or sometimes sleep poorly. However, if they occur regularly or unusually strongly, this is a clear warning sign. Then, on the one hand, it is important to go to the doctor to rule out physical causes.

On the other hand, it is important to look inward to find inner peace (again). Inner peace is therefore not a constant state, but finding and maintaining it is an ongoing process, a lifelong task, so to speak. However, there are methods such as meditation or yoga that help with this and thus improve the quality of life in many respects. This has also been proven by numerous studies:

  • Meditation has a positive effect on the emotional level as well as social relationships. It can alleviate anxiety and other negative emotions, depression and pain. Furthermore, it helps to reduce stress and brings more mindfulness towards one's own condition - on a mental as well as physical level. Mindfulness is therefore also a keyword that is often associated with inner peace. People who meditate regularly feel more calm and attentive in everyday life. In addition, improvements in physical health can be seen in the form of lower blood pressure, deeper sleep, increased immunity, and slower cellular aging. All of this is possible because meditating changes brain structures. What these changes look like in detail depends on the type of meditation. All the above-mentioned positive effects occur mainly in the so-called mindfulness meditation.
  • Yoga or the mixed form, i.e. yogic meditation, also has positive effects on the brain as well as physical and mental health. These include, for example, a stronger immune system, reducing pain, alleviating depression, increasing physical fitness, reducing stress, slowing the aging process, reducing anxiety, improving memory and brain function, and alleviating some chronic diseases. Furthermore, due to its great success, yoga is increasingly used in rehabilitation, for example after a stroke. Accordingly, yoga also benefits health and well-being in a variety of ways.

So there are various methods to promote physical, but especially mental health and thereby (again) find inner peace. Incorporating meditation or yoga into everyday life is a useful first step. However, they are even more effective if they are carried out intensively and away from the stressors of everyday life - for example, on a trip. This can be the classic meditation trip, but other methods such as silent seminars are also becoming increasingly popular as a way to take time out from everyday life.

What can a journey to the inner center look like?

Anyone who consciously plans a trip in order to find their inner center during it should therefore also consciously integrate methods such as meditation, yoga or mindfulness training - or even place them in the foreground. So it's less about seeing or experiencing the outside world, as is usually the case when exploring new countries. Instead, the focus is on the journey to oneself in order to advance personal development and subsequently master everyday life better, more mindfully.

Precisely because more and more people suffer from stress or other burdens and lose their inner peace, the demand for corresponding offers is increasing. This trend is also recognized by tour operators, hotels & Co, so that there is now no lack of appropriate opportunities, especially in well-suited destinations such as Africa:

  • In so-called meditation retreats, such as those offered in Morocco, meditation is the focus of the trip. It is actively planned into the daily routine, whether in the accommodation itself or in nature. The goal is to find complete peace and thus have time for oneself. Such meditation retreats are also an excellent starting point to integrate the learned techniques permanently into everyday life afterwards and thus to preserve inner peace in the long term. Hence the name: Retreat means retreat, which can be practiced particularly well in the beautiful landscapes of African nature.
  • A yoga vacation has a similar purpose, but in addition to mental well-being, it is also intended to strengthen physical well-being. This is because yoga exercises, for example, strengthen the muscles or improve stretching - combined with mindfulness training or periods of meditation. The natural landscapes in Africa are also particularly suitable for this, which is why yoga is now offered in the Sahara, for example, or a combination of yoga and surfing in Morocco. Accordingly, everyone can decide for themselves what significance yoga should have during the trip and in what form it should take place.
  • Silent seminars are an extreme, but thereby also challenging and effective method to find inner peace again. Here the healing effect of silence is used, because in everyday life many people are exposed to stressful continuous noise. Such silence seminars, as it gives it for example in South Africa, make accordingly possible an intensive argument with itself and a welcome break from stress or other loads at home. At the same time, it is precisely this silence and this intensive time with oneself that many people are afraid of and why silent seminars are so effective. It is a completely new, healing experience of life that can hardly be realized without an external "change of scenery". This is another reason why silent seminars are optimal for a journey when inner peace is their goal.

In addition to these three types of journey to the inner center, there are other ways to use the trip to Africa for personal development and the search for inner peace. These include, for example, workshops on various topics such as primal trust, intuition or acceptance. But also mentoring programs or accompanied solo trips are a popular option with amazing effects.

To have this life experience at least once is worthwhile for everyone. Of course, it is important to adapt this particular type of trip to individual needs and goals in order to achieve optimal effects. In addition to the choice of suitable programs ranging from meditation to the silent seminars, the destination also plays a central role.

Namibia sunset Samuel / Adobe Stock

Restoring inner balance while traveling

Making changes in one's own life or in one's inner self rarely succeeds in one's usual environment. A trip is therefore an ideal way to gain emotional and mental distance. New perspectives on oneself and one's own life help to find inner peace again and to further develop one's own personality. For this, stress, obligations & Co must be left behind, which is why a trip alone is best suited. Africa is a popular destination for this, because some destinations can be reached with just a few hours flight - but still seem like a completely different world. Morocco is an excellent example of this.

But other African countries are also becoming increasingly popular for such special trips. This is because their landscapes allow for intense experiences of nature that have a grounding effect and help people to focus on what is really important in life. Many people report such inner changes after being on safari, for example. Accordingly, there are now offers that combine such tourist highlights as a safari with offers such as yoga or meditation.

Of course, such trips can also be planned on one's own, for example a round trip through Namibia with safari, whereby fixed periods of time are scheduled for meditation, yoga or other mindfulness exercises. How someone best finds himself and (again) to the inner peace, it is therefore in each individual case to find out. A round trip through Namibia offers numerous opportunities for this: the African backdrop with its diverse cultures, its fascinating natural landscapes and its remoteness far away from everyday Western life.

Traveling alone but safely in Africa

As mentioned earlier, such trips, which are primarily for personal development, are particularly effective when done alone - that is, unaccompanied by family, friends or other acquaintances. However, there are concerns, especially among women, when it comes to traveling alone. This is especially true for exotic destinations such as those in Africa. In fact, special caution is required when planning such a trip on one's own and traveling alone. Not every African destination is safe for solo travelers or for unaccompanied women.

It is therefore important to choose a safe destination. In Africa, Namibia, South Africa, Tunisia, Uganda, Ghana and Egypt, for example, are considered to be well-suited for solo travelers. Nevertheless, not all risks such as robberies can be excluded with certainty. Therefore, it is important to observe certain basic rules and to plan the trip carefully. Alternatively, guided tours can be booked, such as round trips, safaris or special retreats. Here the travelers are not alone, but among strangers and completely focused on themselves. The largest effect have in this connection the before mentioned silence seminars. Whether an individual or group trip is to be booked, for example in the form of a special meditation trip, everyone can therefore decide for themselves.

Pay attention to the health

Finally, for the (meditation) trip to Africa, health care is an important issue. Because before and during the trip, some precautions must be taken to reduce risks such as malaria disease and to focus completely on the actual purpose of the trip. The following measures are therefore recommended:

  • Preliminary discussion with the family doctor to clarify general as well as individual risks and to find suitable solutions (vaccinations, medication, etc.).
  • Timely implementation or refreshment of travel vaccinations. Depending on the destination, this may include vaccinations against money fever, hepatitis A and B or diphtheria. This is another reason why an early visit to the doctor is important.
  • In some cases, a malaria prophylaxis is also useful as well as a precaution for the case of illness, because this can never be excluded with certainty in malaria areas. Here, for example, agents such as hydroxychloroquine can be used - but only after medical consultation.
  • Furthermore, a first-aid kit with basic medicines such as those against diarrhea or cholera should not be missing.

If you are well prepared, choose a safe destination and make sure that you eat and drink from safe sources, you can travel to Africa without any health worries. This security is even higher if an organized individual or group trip is booked, because then the tour operators already select harmless accommodations, restaurants, destinations & Co. Nevertheless, everyone is responsible for the measures taken before the start of the trip, such as vaccination protection. Accordingly, it can be an important lesson when it comes to paying attention to one's own physical as well as mental well-being - even after returning to everyday life. After all, this is an indispensable prerequisite for finding and maintaining inner peace.

Woman opens arms by the sea and enjoys freedom JenkoAtaman / Adobe Stock

Conclusion

Nowadays, traveling can take many forms and actively serve to promote health. This applies equally to physical and mental health. It is therefore important to set concrete goals for time out from everyday life and to plan the trip precisely. If the search for inner peace is in the foreground, a meditation trip or comparable forms of travel with yoga, silent seminars, workshops, etc. are recommended. They allow you to concentrate fully on yourself and to mature as a personality. The goal is not only to make maximum use of and enjoy the time on site, but also to take along concrete "learnings" for the return to everyday life.

So, if a meditation or similar trip is done properly, it brings lasting successes when it comes to well-being and inner peace. These successes are particularly great if the journey is carried out alone, that is, without familiar faces. Whether this happens on your own, as an individual or as a group trip, is up to your own preferences as well as goals. The security must stand with the journey to Africa however in each case in highest place. Because only in a safe environment relaxation is possible and thus the reflection on the inner center.

Nevertheless, no miracles should be expected. Despite the scientifically proven positive effects of methods such as meditation or yoga, these only occur after a certain amount of time and practice. Moreover, such methods cannot replace psychotherapy if there is a deeper cause behind the symptoms such as inner restlessness. The meditation journey is therefore only the beginning of an inner journey, which can be accompanied by permanent measures such as yoga or even by psychotherapy - even, or especially, after returning home. Then not only the memories of the impressive experiences in Africa remain permanently, but also more inner peace, health as well as happiness in life.

Editorial principles

All information used for the content comes from verified sources (recognised institutions, experts, studies by renowned universities). We attach great importance to the qualification of the authors and the scientific background of the information. Thus, we ensure that our research is based on scientific findings.

Olivia Malvani

Olivia Malvani
Lector

As a student of nutritional sciences, she writes magazine articles on current medical-pharmaceutical topics and combines them with her personal interest in preventive nutrition and health promotion.

Last Update

05.01.2023

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