“In order to understand the world, one has to turn away from it on occasion”
……. Albert Camus
The modern world has advanced in knowledge, education and technology, but at what cost to our spiritual, physical and mental welfare?
Living in urban areas with excesses of almost everything we are constantly subjected to sensory overload from electromagnetic frequencies and pollution in all forms; traffic, industrial waste, noise and even light!
The technological revolution of the new millennium has created an environment laden with electronic devices; a necessity for modern life but hey, we all need to take a break from these over stimulated environments from time to time.
Our bodies signal when its going into overload, with things like stress, burnout, allergies, brain-fog, diseases, mental and hormonal imbalances, chronic pain, fibromyalgia, MS and a whole range of undiagnosed symptoms. These indicate that it’s time for a change of environment.
In addition to this, the treadmill of the 9-5 job with little time for recreation with friends and family creates a relaxation vacuum in our lives. By the time we reach our mid-forties, symptoms begin to appear and unfortunately, sometimes even way before this, people in their twenties find themselves suffering from stress related conditions, infertility and cancer.
In Marsa Alam, it is common for the native desert dwellers; the Ababda people to live well beyond a hundred years, as this is considered the norm. They have few ailments and their hearing and vision far outperform those of people in Europe still in their forties.
Below are the top ten benefits of taking a desert retreat.
1. Break Away from The Modern World
Total relaxation, switch off your mobile devices and totally relax. Immerse yourself in the peace, calm and tranquility of the desert. Chill out and give your mind and senses a break.
2. The Sunshine Vitamin
The desert has an abundance of sunshine aka. Vitamin D. Natural sunshine has many health benefits. People who suffer from seasonal affective disorder (SAD syndrome) are aware of the healing power of the sun, it reduces symptoms of depression and deficiencies linked to depression. Vitamin D lowers blood pressure, and boosts your overall wellbeing, helps to strengthen your immunity, fights diseases and improves blood circulation, giving the skin a great summer glow.
3. Reduce Your Stress Levels
The warm sunny climate can do wonders for stress and anxiety leaving you feeling happier and also help you relieve tension.
4. Regulated Sleep
Getting the right amount of sleep is important for overall good health and positive mood, yet so many of us struggle to get a good nights’ sleep. Lack of sensory stimulation in the desert allows deep relaxation for better sleep so that your body can heal and regenerate itself.
Did you know that one night of camping in the desert totally resets your body clock?
5. Lack of Pollution
The desert remains a pollution-free environment. It is especially free of electromagnetic pollution which is known to be harmful to human health, as it causes degenerative diseases. It can be difficult to get restful sleep in cities due to the light pollution caused by street lighting. In the desert, you can sleep deeply under the soothing light of the night sky.
6. Alleviate Health Problems
Humidity and cold weather aggravates arthritis and osteoporosis. The dry climate of the desert has been shown to reduce pain, swelling and joint stiffness in people who generally suffer from these conditions. Furthermore, people who suffer from asthma and other respiratory diseases also benefit from the desert climate experience due to being in an environment that provides better breathing conditions and fewer or less severe attacks. Sunlight enhances blood circulation and may in some cases, be as effective as medication to reduce blood pressure.
7. Appreciation of Nature
When compared to other natural terrains, the desert appears to be barren at first sight. However, nature in the desert is subtle and requires your senses to be more acutely aware. After a few days in the serenity of the desert, you begin to appreciate the delicate plants and flowers you come across or sit under the shade of an Acacia tree whilst getting mesmerized by the beautiful landscape. You will catch glimpses of wildlife peeking at you curiously, then darting away.
8. Hiking and Trekking
Follow abandoned trails and find hidden ‘rooms’ with remnants of a campfire, or study the mountain forms and see the spirits of the desert revealing themselves in the rocks, challenging you to climb them. Hiking in the desert is physically and mentally rewarding.
9. Detox and Weight Loss
An additional bonus of engaging in desert activities is perspiration, drinking plenty of water each day will flush out toxins. This will give you a great detox, causing you to lose a few extra pounds, whilst leaving you toned and radiant.
When you disconnect from the world, you’re able to connect with yourself, hear your own thoughts and experience your senses like never before. This should be a welcome change from the constant hustle and bustle of the city. Meditation in the desert is an awesome experience, it takes mindfulness to another level. The serenity and solitude is perfect for drifting into deep meditation, and experiencing the purity and essence of divine consciousness.
A wise Ababda Sheikh was asked.
“Where would you like to be buried when you die?”
He replied. “A place where there is no sin.”
When he died they buried him in the Desert.
Marsa Alam Desert Retreat – Recharge and Energize Your Senses