History & Culture
Quinta da Mizarela is a non-traditional Ashram that is the heart of this daring experiment called the Awakened Life Project. It is not primarily an ecovillage nor a permaculture farm but a unique container dedicated to nurturing the delicate process of Awakening. Located in Central Portugal, the Ashram is a small eden surrounded by hills and crossed by a small river and its waterfalls. Here, life unfolds in a simple way and in harmony with the ecological web of life.

The seed that was to become The Awakened Life Project was sown when Pete and Cynthia bought the abandoned mountain farm of Quinta da Mizarela in Central Portugal in 2007.

This huge leap into the unknown was propelled by their shared vision to create a beautiful place dedicated to the liberation of the human spirit in a context of communion with the surrounding nature.
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While trust in the vision was strong, how it would manifest was completely unknown. Then the magic started to happen and with the inspired participation of an international stream of volunteers, some of whom stayed and became residents and co-creators, the Quinta gradually developed into a small thriving community, retreat center and, over time, a non-traditional Ashram.

The Quinta has hosted silent meditation retreats, women's and men's retreats, evolutionary awakening retreats, permaculture courses and residential intensives. Some volunteers and retreat participants who were lit up by their experience were moved to deepen their involvement together. As Cynthia and Pete created forums to meet this interest the Project gradually flowered and expanded beyond the location of the Quinta to form a growing network of people and related communal projects dedicated to discovering and manifesting the spiritual truth of unity in this world.

Foundational to the Awakened Life Project is the discovery of the deepest dimension of who we are as One Consciousness. This spiritual insight is approached through the guidance and teachings that draw upon the wisdom of non-dual awakening, a consistent practice of meditation and ongoing collective forums of inquiry that embrace all of the important aspects of our humanity.

Thus the Awakened Life Project is not a specific place, but has evolved into a collective organism. Most participants are Portuguese or foreigners living in Portugal but there are also a growing number of people joining online from other countries.

If you would like to know more about how the Project was born and how it was evolving during the first years, you are welcome to visit our old blog that describes development of the Awakened Life Project from 2007 to 2011.
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