The story of Gede

We are sponsoring a youth up in the mountains and visited his house to establish the criteria needed for admission into our sponsor program This is for the senior high school student, Gede, who lives in most simple circumstances with his family. The parents do have primary school education only and wish to see their children to be well educated. They try everything to provide the money for the fees of the school. Gede was not able to join part of the last semester since the family had no money to pay for the fee.

Lagu Damai foundation is evaluating and will support Gede, after speaking now to this teacher at school. You can see in the photos Gede and his two siblings, a view into the kitchen where the family has no running water and has to get the water from 100 m below in the valley. They offered us a Jackfruit to taste and to savor.

Home of the dragon

Awan Damai is located on 800m altitude. Often the clouds cover and move slowly from the sea over the hills and mountains.  Awan Damai is the home of the dragon. She resides, of course in a different dimension then the visible one.

Cremation Ceremony in Bali

The grandmother of one of our team members died. The whole village takes part in the process of sending her body and ashes off. The whole process takes about ten days with members from each household in the village participating and preparing many offerings.

Dr. Margret from Jiwa Damai visited the compound and like other village members brought rice, coffee and sugar and an envelope with a donation. The people participating preparing, washing the body are all fed with the support of the villagers food donations.

On the first day, after many rituals, the actual cremation takes place. The Gamelan group playing their instruments and beginning the walk through the village to the cremation grounds. Man follow and carry the body in a special container, built according to the caste the grandmother belonged to. The women walk separately at the end.

In the cremation grounds, the priest again performs blessings and ceremonies before the corpse is set on fire. There are actually two fires, one for the body and the other one for the coffin looking like box in which she was carried on.

Most villagers will stay, talk and smile a lot while this takes place. After which the ashes will be brought by the closest family to the see, to be set free in the water.

I was dreaming about this and am so happy living my dream!

During my journey I met a lot of yogis that have this natural desire to travel and seek and understand the world we live in. Practising Karma Yoga and Seva (selfless service) is a great way to grow in your teachings and meet like-minded volunteers.

With delight and gratitude I’d like to share my experiences of the last four weeks, as a volunteer yoga teacher at Awan Damai, an Earthship inspired build project in the north of Bali, Indonesia.

Read the full story of  Sophie Nusselder , on


Visitors at Jiwa Damai

Some of Margret’s old students she taught in Java, Indonesia, now practicing  psychotherapists and lecturers at various universities, came for a refreshment seminar in HeartSelf-intelligence to Jiwa Damai in August. We are happy to share some photos with you.

A great cooking class

A great cooking class. Our yoga guests from Australia getting introduced into the secrets of Balinese cooking and delightful spices.


First they visit the gardens and harvest their own veggies before cooking.

Honoring Mount Agung, the Balinese Volcano

A multidimensional  approach to  the pre-eruption activities of Mount Agung

Bali, the island of the Gods and the Demons  
In Bali, the awesome raw power of the possible eruption of a volcano is a close-at-hand experience. Small rumblings and tremors, coming from deep within, reach far into the island as the shaking of the surrounding earth layers creates a pathway for releasing the gases and lava the volcano has held for the last 63 years in its deep caverns. Animals leave the mountain. Dogs bark throughout the night.

To the residents of the volcano’s hills and valleys hurriedly making their exodus while the volcano is trying to birth its inner being, the mountain is their nemesis.

Leaving home and livelihood behind and settling in camps, they panic, feeling their existence and livelihood are threatened. This generates a vast collective energy field of fear that interacts with its surroundings and, thus, with the volcano’s behavior as well.

It is an energy field that stimulates compassion and much active engagement of individuals and organisations to support those who left their homes and livelihood behind with food, love and care. This in turn creates a collective energy field of love and compassion in which the collective fear can be held and embraced. This loving vibrational field flows towards the volcano.

Just as each of us influences others through thoughts and emotions, so energy fields influence the individual. The vibrational field of love surrounding the mountain will allow it to go through its process more smoothly.

Balinese priests hold intense ceremonies high up, close to the crater and at the mother temple, an extensive conglomeration of buildings on a hill below the mountain. The mother temple is the holiest of Bali’s temples. The highest priests, the Brahmans, bless and soothe the mountain’s activities through various powerful rituals and animal sacrifices. They chant mantras and recite old texts in the original Sanskrit. They call strong rains to come, and, indeed, they come.

The ash released into the atmosphere and the lava flowing down the volcano’s green ravines, flanks and valleys bring life-giving elements from deep within the earth back  to the abused soils and surface of our planet.  The clouds of ash and fiery lava, once cooled and decomposed, will, in time, foster rich, nourishing soil, and flora and fauna will eventually re-emerge and thrive, healthy and strong. They are blessings in disguise. The whole island is a volcanic creation; its earth and soil are not independent of the rumblings of the holy mountain and the center of the Balinese world. The soil at Jiwa Damai originates from the many eruptions of the island’s volcanoes and the subsequent erosions of the fallout.

Eruptions are important from a permaculture garden perspective.

As conscious caretakers and co-creators developing permaculture and re-establishing a natural balance with the earth, we have a responsibility to engage in aligning with the cyclical process of renewal and the blessing the earth that allows values to come alive—earth care, people care ,sharing surplus, supporting the natural process of the growth of flora and fauna, allowing the soil to recuperate from abuse. Nature and the mountain are the teachers to follow for designing the garden.

Mythical Volcano

A relationship between humans and the mountain has existed for eons. Guardians of  volcanos who had special abilities and were chosen  at a young age by the reigning sultan existed in the Indonesian archipelago in olden days. It was a great honor to be  called. The guardian learned to live on and with the huge majestic volcano, to sense each of its slightest moves, outbreath and inbreath. He was in awe of the mountain but at the same time it became his closest friend. He knew each breath of the mountain intimately It was the guardian’s duty to inform the people when the volcano was going to move and erupt—to guide them to leave the mountain. Eventually, with age, the guardian was revered by the local people as a wise man.

Sometimes a guardian stayed on the mountain to embrace death in the fiery lava flow when his time came. He could be found later in a kneeling and praying position, having chosen to leave his  body on the much loved and revered mountain.

Expansion of consciousness

She-Soul, witnessing the funeral of the beloved guardian, experienced all of a sudden a huge expansion in her energy bodies, extending into an unknown deep distance with infinite peripheries. She was surprised, what was her relationship with this old man on the mountain? As she saw  the small body covered with a cloth, lifted on many  shoulders carried  past many more to his resting place in the earth, she merged with his incredibly deep dark and warm earthy vibrational field, which seemed to extend infinitely in its multidimensional expansion. Being one with this field, She-Soul became one with the old man on the mountain  as well. She became his feelings and perceptions.  His incredible deep love  for the mountain, whose majestic being he so honored, befriended and was in great awe of. She-Soul allowed herself to sink deeply into this sea of intense respect, greatly expanding the heart space, embracing the dark breath and warmth of the earth, all living beings—flora and fauna—at the same time. Ahhh! What a miraculous multi-dimensional experience extending and transcending space and time. A deep trust and homecoming, appreciation and awe of being held in this love energy field.

Deep insights ensue.  Tthe mountain is a conscious being, an expression of the movements of Gaia. It has a deep interconnectedness and continuous communications through channels in the innermost with all other volcanoes on the rims of the tectonic plates at the mantle of the earth. The volcano does not intend nor like to be the cause for human suffering.  It is an  archetypal and  physical expression of Gaia, created in the distant, ancient beginning when  time had not been invented yet.  The mountain was ensouled at the beginning of Gaia’s evolutionary path, circling the outer rim of our milky way star system.

As a child of Gaia, the mountain is ever transforming and evolving in consciousness. Having witnessed eons pass and many civilisations come and go, it demands awe and reverence,  to have its presence honored and to be aligned with Gaia’s moves.

The mountain is surprised to have people living in the path of its possible expressions of  gas and lava flows.

“Why do they go there? They know I will eventually express through pyroclastic clouds, mud and lava flows. I am accused of bringing pain, when in reality settling on my slopes  is their choice. They forget that I have a different rhythm.”

Now is the time to witness this process of transformation being brought to the surface and seen by the world and to have the knowledge deep within us that the mountain  needs our love and acceptance for the work it is doing to support the earth in its  transition to the next density. A deep bow  o the mountain and its activities.

Dr. Margret Rueffler is a transpersonal psychologist, acupuncturist and permaculture trainer, and the founder of Lagu Damai Foundation and Jiwa Damai permaculture gardens in Bali.

Wood working at Awan Damai

Here is our wood working shed at Awam Damai, the Earthship inspired build. Diana form Mauritius and Sophie from the Netherlands have put up their tent and are now giving the first varnish to the already cut wood, to be used in the building. In the background are our three carpenters, Ignacio form Chile and two local helpers, polishing away on the wood. Lebong our local architect is admiring the whole procedure.

Incredibly inventive local Balinese team

Here you see how incredibly inventive our local Balinese team  is. The tires for the Earthship inspired building have to be unloaded by the large trucks on top of the hill and then loaded on motorbikes to be ferried down via a small path to the building site. Placing a stick across the back of the seat of the bike, tying them with string, he actually manages to take 8 huge tires with him on one bike and take them downhill .

What an art it is! The tires for the Earthship inspired building have to be unloaded by the large trucks on top of the hill and then loaded on motorbikes to be ferried down via a small path to the building site. Placing a stick across the back of the seat of the bike, tying them with string, he actually manages to take 8 huge tires with him on one bike and take them downhill . What an art!