With the right group you can create a space for authentic encounters, play, stillness, body and breath awareness, being connected with the belly, the head and the heart. I experienced a week in buddhist and christian retreats as such.
At the same time, it can be a lot to be together, overwhelm even with morning prayers or silence. The more people are together the fuller the field can become. Feelings of loneliness, insecurity, feeling full or feeling lost all can arise.
It’s important to focus on alone time apart from the group in order to balance yourself. to really feel yourself again apart from the group. Alone together. This group noise can be distracting and draining, and puts pressure on participants to work, consciously or unconsciously.
It’s a feeling of heaviness, being full, pressure on your head, brain fog, a restlessness and feelings of irritation. You enter into a survival mode: you withdraw from the noise by closing yourself off, retreating, or fighting it, trying to deflect it, ignore it or shout it down.
If the group works in shared surrender, the group energy is transmuted. One picks it up consciously or unconsciously.
It’s like a goodbye or cleaning ritual at the end, a song in church, a communal prayer, a bell or gong to close the space. It’s the same as closing the space in ecstatic-dance or nordic-larp sessions.