From Paris to Provence, spirituality without confession at the Sésame center

An hour has passed and the last clear vibrations of the ringing of the bell fade away. On the large colorful carpets in the meditation hall, people who had their eyes closed open them little by little. Some get up and leave, others stay a little longer to enjoy the silence. Still sitting cross-legged and with his back of his hands on his knees, Damien, 43, feels “reconnected” to himself. “It does me good to meditate: I empty myself, I let my thoughts flow. »

These “quiet time” an hour, that Inès Weber, 34, and Abdennour Bidar, 51, creators of Sesamecenter of “spiritual culture”observe every day, morning and evening, reflect in practice the spirit of the place, “free together”. “This allows each person to connect with others and with themselves while investing their silence in their own way: some pray, others meditate in full consciousness, others recite mantras, others concentrate on their breathing or reading “, enumerates the young woman. Hajar, 27, sometimes even takes the opportunity to draw: “It’s my own meditative practice”smiles the artist. “Here, there is no obedience and silence connects us”summarizes Damien.

Affiliated with any particular religion or spirituality

Inès Weber and Abdennour Bidar, respectively psychologist and philosopher, invested in 2017 in a large house in the Provençal scrubland, between Avignon and Arles. Open all year round to anyone who wants to benefit from a space of silence or a spiritual retreat, it also welcomes, each season, around twenty people during the Sésame Provence weeks, stays organized by the founding couple with a team of stakeholders.

Also read the interview: Article reserved for our subscribers Abdennour Bidar: “I don’t think that we can, in a human existence, do without the spiritual”

The goal : “Feeding and sharing your quest for meaning” enjoying a peaceful setting surrounded by nature. “We do not offer spiritual accompaniment but companionship”, warns the couple who presents this space as a “a resource place” where each person works “to build one’s own path” based on collective exchanges.

The particularity of Sesame is not to be affiliated with any particular religion or spirituality. The doors of the house are open to everyone: believers and believers of all religions, atheists or other agnostics.

These retreats are motivated by the conviction that there is something “that goes beyond us”, “invisible”, “beyond the body”

In the meditation room, a hanukkiah (Jewish candlestick with nine branches), rosaries, statuettes of all kinds or even a portrait of Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950), an Indian sage close to Gandhi. On the shelves of the “library of meaning”, we find the Koran, the Bhagavad-Gita, the Bible, Plato, great philosophical and religious texts of the Jewish, Hindu, Christian, Buddhist or Muslim traditions. Next to the door, papers hanging from a cord display drawings, quotes, thoughts or questions: “Does God exist? Does God Exist? »

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From Paris to Provence, spirituality without confession at the Sésame center

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