Statement on Portuguese School Development
As many of you may well know, I have now relocated to the South of Portugal. Though I continue to travel and teach around the world Portugal is where I consider home. I have a place to live and some of my more senior students are now also relocated to the same town as me in order to continue their in depth training in various aspects of the Daoist arts.
Many people have been asking me about teaching which may take place in Portugal now that I am there. The answer to this is that there will indeed be a school established there and this will most likely happen during the first few months in 2017 as for the majority of 2016 I am now travelling through Europe, America and South East Asia. Alongside this school I will also be holding extended retreats in Portugal as well. This means that there will be the following types of training available in Portugal:
Extended Courses and Retreats
Over the last 12 years I have been holding courses and workshops around the UK and abroad. In the future some of these courses will be relocating with me to Portugal. The first of these is a public Lv1 Taijiquan course in November 2016 and this will be followed by an alchemy retreat in March 2017. These courses would previously have been held in either Sweden or the UK but I wish to move them nearer to home. I will be holding these retreats in existing retreat centres and venues which I hire for the duration of the course. These will essentially be courses advertised as per usual on the website.
The Public Portuguese School
We are not 100% sure of the exact location for our main school in Portugal but the city of Faro in the South East of the country is our most likely option. We will be looking to obtain a property which will become our main place of teaching for weekly, ongoing classes focusing on slightly smaller groups than we tend to see on our retreats. These classes will be overseen by my senior students with Roni Edlund overseeing the teaching there with Jason Smith providing much of the day to day teaching. Classes will most likely be for a couple of hours per day though we don’t know the exact format it will take yet; we are holding discussions and figuring out how best to approach this project at the current time.
Due to being on the road a great deal of the time I shall be teaching as and when I can at the school in Portugal but cannot guarantee that I will be there each week. This means it is likely that only one or two public classes in a week will be run by myself when I am there.
We are aware that there are quite a number of students within Lotus Nei Gong who are planning on moving to Portugal to train with us full-time at the school. This is fine with us and Portugal is a great place to live, affordable, pleasant and it has great weather. Faro is an affordable place to stay for longer periods of time making it a good place to establish the school. As we see it, it is likely that we will have students coming to stay for periods of a few months or even longer and so in these cases we will endeavour to establish a structured training pattern for those involved. Students will train with all of the teachers who run the classes and should note that the basis of what we are teaching in this school will be Taijiquan, Baguazhang and Xingyiquan. Though we will also be providing instruction on Nei Gong and alchemy, the focus of the school will be martial arts training.
We ask that students understand that the school is not yet established and so should not make any concrete plans to move to Portugal just yet as there is not yet anything established there and so consequently no tuition will be provided! Please wait and see how the project progresses as we will keep you informed on the website. If you would like to stay informed then just drop us a line and let us know.
Damo’s Private Training Hall
About 30 minutes down the road to the Faro school is Damo’s private training hall. This is attached to his and Roni’s house. Just to clear up confusion, this will not be the main location for the public school; the public school will most likely be in Faro city. At this location Damo will be teaching small classes for either Lv3 students within the school or those who have been through the Bai Shi ceremony. This means that it will be a place of teaching for inner door students only. In line with classical guidance, inner door students will have access to their own training place as well as closer tuition from Damo within this space.
Basically, we have plans to build the school in Portugal and we will have ways of teaching which suit every student coming. Those staying for protracted periods of time will receive high quality tuition in the traditional internal arts. We will organise sensible training fees and syllabus structures for those staying with us but realistically we will have a much better idea of how things will progress towards the start of 2017 so watch this space!