Elba Rodriguez: Bonnevaux is inspiring, challenging and worth the commitment

Paola Di Pietro

In this article, we meet Elba from Colombia, a meditator and a member of the WCCM community since 2016.

Elba together with Mary Katherine a resident at Bonnevaux
Elba together with Mary Katherine a resident at Bonnevaux

Tell us a little bit about you, where you come from, what brought you to the world of meditation?

I am Elba Rodríguez from Colombia. I was introduced to the world of contemplative prayer back in 2002. It wasn’t until 2016 that I decided to lead a meditation group and got in contact with the community in Argentina in order to obtain information about groups and formats. Consequently, I got involved with small volunteer tasks such as translations and providing support to the WCCM website in Spanish.

How do you feel about the experience of meditation? How important is it in your life?

Meditation has become essential in my life. I came to appreciate how the practice started to permeate in the different aspects of my life. I gradually started to notice how I was becoming more aware and more observant, devoid of expectations, tranquil, so the quality of life was improving as well.

How long have you stayed at Bonnevaux? What have you enjoyed the most about being there?

I had been involved in the evolution of Bonnevaux from the early beginnings of the renovation project. I collaborated for a short period with the architectural and project management team, which means that I visited Bonnevaux regularly from the conception of the project and for the following eight to nine months. I spent nearly three months in Bonnevaux after we moved from Meditatio House in London. Interweaving periods of meditation, communal life, and time to work on projects for the community were formative. I also enjoyed fitting times in the schedule to explore the beautiful scenery either jogging or walking.

Elba Rodriguez going for a walk with other meditators
Elba Rodriguez taking walks with other meditators at Bonnevaux

How do you see the importance of being in a community?

Being in community gives meaning to the practice. There is growth and maturity that comes from relating consciously to others and practicing the teachings with others who share the same interests.

What would you say to others who are thinking to come and visit?

Meditating together and sharing time/silence/communal life in Bonnevaux is inspiring, challenging and worth the commitment.

Flower petals at Bonnevaux
Flower petals at Bonnevaux