Author: Ingrid, the owner of the Healing Castle
Buying the castle
Ten years ago, when we bought the castle Schochwitz, we knew there was something special about the place. We didn’t even look at the castle before we bought it. We bought it blindly. I knew inside that if I had started to look at things, my head would have taken over. Then what we have now would never have happened. I believe very strongly that everything comes to us, and it is really only our choice to say yes or no to what comes your way. So when we bought the castle, it was already a Yes to what was to come. I had been introduced to alternative healing centres while in Portugal, so when we arrived in ’09 my vision was to create something with healing. I didn’t know the area, I didn’t know Eastern Germany. I had also arrived completely blind.
Renovations and starting with volunteers
We started to renovate the castle, it had been a school before we bought it. The school had closed down, so we started to renovate the rooms. I wasn’t sure about which direction to go, but I knew from my previous profession in business that I had to get something basic running to pay the bills. We live on earth and I cannot pay the bills without money! It took us nearly two years to do the renovations, because we did everything on our own, with help from only one friend, Christine, and a person from the village. We opened Schloss Schochwitz as a guest house, but deeply I knew I didn’t want a hotel, that was only the beginning.
I had being trying during this time to get in touch with healers, and energy workers in the surrounding area, and many people came to visit me, but really nobody was giving their energy to the place, so I knew we would have to do it ourselves. I didn’t want any regular staff, firstly because we couldn’t afford it, and secondly because I don’t believe this is very healthy in a healing centre.
A friend suggested bringing on volunteers, and I started to advertise. I was amazed with the response we had and I knew then we were on the right road. In the beginning, we took nearly every volunteer, and that was a joke, because we had alcoholics, suicidal people, drug addicts, etc.. It made me so crazy and I soon realised this is not how it should work. I had to have a say in the matter. I made some rules, like meditation in the morning, and immediately found that many people had problems with the rules. They had no discipline. We had Peter from England arguing that 11am would be a better time to meditate. Then Marion from Australia preferred it in the afternoon. And Pedro from Spain would prefer 7pm because this is when the Spanish people feel most awake. Then we had others who cannot work without discipline. Often this is a case of them being controlled in the school system, military etc. My second realisation was that very few people can handle the routine of the daily life. They have problems maintaining their living space, to brush the floor, or clean the dishes, because they never did it in their lives, or they just looked after themselves, and washed one cup. So already it seemed an impossible task to start spiritual teaching when first I had to give them basic life training, how to survive, how daily life actually works. Sometimes it made me very frustrated, that I had to teach people how to use a brush and it took me a long time to accept the situation. I had Joseph from Florida, who had never done any housework, using a jug as a mop bucket to wash the floor!! When Jane from China was given some gardening work, she said that only poor people work in the sun, and she was afraid of her skin getting a tan.
Bernard, an American Harvard student, whose father had a private jet, would make a speech every morning about how people should change, but he was not able to change himself. His mother bought him a plane ticket to Norway to visit his friend, but it would take two hours by the bus to get to the airport. He complained that it was too far, so his mother paid 1000euro more for the airticket from the nearer airport!! He was very distant when he arrived, I couldn’t feel him at all. He told me he had taken Ritalin (a medicine used for attention deficit disorder or attention deficit hyperactivity) since he was twelve. After 8 days of vomiting he had cleaned himself and started to feel alive.
I realised the more I was getting angry, the more of these people I was getting. I was manifesting these people, I was asking for it, but I was not aware of it. This is referred to as natural law, I often talk about. After much trial and error, we are now at the stage where we have foundation, and the volunteer program works smoothly for the full season. With this foundation we are now starting our life school, which is something that has been in my head for 10 years, but needed solid basics, on which it can grow.
What volunteers are looking for.
When I ask the volunteers what their reason is for coming to the Healing Castle, the answer is mostly first I don’t know, second, I have no purpose in life. It is easy, I say, your purpose is to live, but nobody likes this sentence, because it is too easy. And there I realised how much influence our society like the school, the internet, our social media, have on our mind. The third answer is I am trying to find myself. I have to laugh about this, because why should you look for yourself when you are yourself. Our daily life at the castle is full with very practical tasks, like cleaning, repairing, painting, gardening. A lot of volounteers do not see the benefit of all this work. Very often I hear, I am working for you Ingrid. And there I realise what virus we have in the head, because nobody works for anybody, it is only perception of the thinking mind that we are working for someone else. You can choose your work, at least in the western society, and you have the freedom to do everything what you want. But you are blaming other people for doing a job you do not like, but this is your choice. And that is where the issue starts. A traditional way in India is to do karma yoga, that means that you are serving other people. The key thought behind is what you give out comes back to you. But what is truly important is the intention you are doing things with, i.e. if you want something back or not. I personally usually do not ask anybody to come to the Healing Castle to help, I believe that the castle calls you. When you are receiving this call, and you are the one who can say yes or no, you are already on a spiritual path. When you physically enter the castle, and you come in the courtyard with our world’s biggest wooden Maria sculpture, something energetic is already happening to you, this cannot be explained with words. It takes normally three days before people are settled in. The castle has a very high frequency energy and it gives a lot of troubles to the volunteers. The ego knows subconsciously that something may change here and it simply does not like it. Some people are running away, some people get very emotional, some people are shouting, and with every new volunteer we notice at the breakfast table that the energy is changing. The longer staying volunteers keep this energy in balance as much as possible. Sometimes with success, and sometimes not. It has not an easy ride here, and everyone has to work hard, sometimes physically, and definitely with the mind. But this is why the volunteers are coming, to change their lives, to make a difference in their current life.
Ingrid’s personal reflection.
It makes me very happy to see all the results that we have achieved. Creating a space where people are getting their life back give me my purpose of life. After all the years of working with volunteers, therapy clients as well as hotel guests, I am convinced that now it is the right time for the Life School project. Not because it is my personal goal but because I can see how necessary it is. Our young generation, even older people are lost. It can be because they are so stressed from the university exams, or about what they should do after the studies. Their thoughts take over completely. I personally believe the more you give out without thinking and without any purpose, more benefits you get. Our heart and our soul are also not asking for any purpose. We live here on the Earth, and of course there are some rules that have to be followed. But there are also natural rules that cannot be ignored. The key mastery is to combine both, our earth rules as well as the natural principles.
In case of older people there are often thoughts as “I am divorced”, “I am alone”, “I cannot have a social life”, etc. It is a pity that all this life experience and wisdom that older people have does not get passed on. The internet has taken over so much, but it can never replace the transfer of knowledge from generation to generation that was normal in past. The worst thing is that what is often found online is not questioned, it is taken simply as a fact. I am still dreaming of a long term community, the Life School, meaning that people do their karma yoga, use their talents and knowledge for six months a year while living at the Healing Castle. And volunteers? We still want to work with them, they create the backbone of the community.