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JOÃO MACEDO

"The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it."

 

~ Thích Nhất Hạnh

Who Am I?

        My journey began in São Simão, a small town in the Brazilian countryside. My father, a healer from a traditional Brazilian lineage of curanderos,  was my first teacher. I grew up watching him find very concrete ways to serve -- by feeding people, by building a school to offer the most disadvantaged children in our region access to quality education. He also continues to help people on an energetic level, providing healing for emotional wounds, family problems as well as physical ailments.

     I earned a degree in International Relations at the University of Brasilia, a city where I first experienced transpersonal psychology - mainly through a body of work known as Core Energetics. During my university years, I came into contact with the ancient wisdom of South American indigenous people. Traveling through Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina and Colombia, I became fascinated by the beauty of this land and by the chants of its people. I traveled to the city of Pucallpa in the Peruvian Amazon for an experience with ayahuasca with Shipibo healers. It changed my life forever.

        After university and South America I left for India. In Bodh Gaya, the village where Lord Buddha sat under the famous Bodhi tree and became enlightened, I received deep learning as a volunteer and then coordinator of the Alice Project, a school teaching and researching meditation techniques with children from some of India’s poorest villages.

     In Asia I also discovered Insight Meditation, and trained in Vipassana meditation in India, Indonesia, Thailand and at the Pa Auk Monastery in Burma. In South India, I studied at Swami Vivekananda Yoga Anusandhana Samsthana, a yoga university where, in 2013, I earned a post-graduate degree in Yoga Therapy. During this time, I was able to realize yoga’s scientific aspects while working at a yoga hospital, a place that used ancient Indian techniques to help people to deal with different ailments such as depression, anxiety, chronic pain, migraines and cancer.

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           Back in Brazil I worked as coordinator of the “Living in Group” program at the University of Light, one of the most mature communities in Brazil, deeply inspired by Findhorn, in Scotland. 

      Today, I spend much of my time working in my home town and surrounding areas with a range of different experiential therapies including yoga, breathwork, acupuncture, chanting, dharma talks – and of course meditation. Twice a year, for two months, I take over as Director of the Temple of the Way of Light in Peru, a very unique place in the Amazon jungle, where I’ve spent extended periods over the past few years as a facilitator and yoga and meditation teacher.

    Observing my father as I was growing up, and seeing how healthy he was as a result of this work, I learned a deep insight. A key part of my work and process is not just to locate and support the healing of the emotional wounds that can act as blocks to our healthy mental and physical well-being. Through the process of going deeper, below the limits of the conscious mind, we can also locate the precious gems which exist in each one of us: those unique gifts that are waiting to be discovered – and amplified – in service to something bigger than ourselves.  

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