The body’s thoughts
The mind dances
The world into being
The body is an integral part of the monastic practice. As a living, breathing, thinking ‘thing’, it opens up a mind space that goes far beyond the discursive or linguistic. The technologies of the body are gateways to different orifices for practicing. For creating pulse, rhythm, expansion, for allowing direct access to the non-material. Paradoxically, it is through the body that we often have the deepest experience of immaterial expansion. Like the smallest particles of matter seem to turn immaterial, the immateriality of ideas creates bodies that move, and materialise consequences in the world around them. The body is part of the mind, as the mind is part of the body. Beyond the dualist segregation lies a whole world of realities.
In that sense, the spiritual practice is also very much a ‘material’ practice. A practice that is intuited by bodies, by the spaces we work in, the sounds produced by cars outside, construction works, the water cooker. Situated in an apartment and studio space in the centre of Brussels, visited by different participants taking part in workshops and classes, the practice of the Monastery is as much a consequence of material circumstances (its city location, the limited space available, the lack of private rooms, its accessibility to the inhabitants of the city) as it is conceptually grown out of the ideas of the monks.
Our bodies and minds are objects, temporary products of circumstances. Which in their turn connect to other objects to create larger wholes. Like a family, a country, a forest or a Monastery.