Days of Thinking & Doing
Miraval Resort & Spa, Arizona
Host: Steve and Jean Case
The Arizona desert in late spring was the setting for a recent PathNorth Experience which gathered seventeen people for two and a half days of conversation and renewal. Miraval is a resort known for its focus on healthy and sustainable living and its philosophy of mindfulness. PathNorth Experiences are ways to bring people out of their comfort zones and get them to enter into conversations of consequence for their lives. Steve and Jean graciously hosted us for these days. They acquired Miraval six years ago as a special place for refreshment and perspective.
We began our time together with hilarious introductions at an informal cocktail hour followed by an outdoor dinner with great food and conversation. Guests were then treated to an evening of amazing star gazing, led by Miraval staff.
The next morning started with a guided sunrise hike through the flowering desert. After a healthy breakfast, we gathered to learn from two thought provoking speakers. First was Tony Schwartz who spoke about the natural cycles of energy and attention that are often ignored to our detriment in today’s culture. Second was Dr. Victoria Maizes, a leading expert in integrative medicine who recommended more informed decision-making on medical procedures and prescription drugs, tied more closely to healthy life-style choices. Both sessions featured great question and answer discussion.
Following a free afternoon, we met again for refreshments in the home of our hosts, Steve and Jean Case. We then had a group dinner under the stars where we participated in Native American drumming, led by Tony Redhouse. Such experiences challenged us to look at our lives differently!
Our final day together offered a choice of one of three signature Miraval experiences, which encourage you to challenge your fears and discover your strengths: the equine experience, the desert zipline, or the “quantum leap” which is jumping from a 25 foot tall pole to re-discover trust. After lunch, the PathNorth members said goodbye to each other and to Miraval.
In all, this Experience combined the striking setting of the Arizona desert, the mindfulness and renewal for which Miraval is well known, and deep conversation and sharing of our life stories which PathNorth fosters.
Leadership Council Member ~ PathNorth
Other reflections from attendees:
For both my wife and I it was wonderful. The stories of the different participants will always be remembered. I have never felt better or more alive than I did when we left. Also the equine experience has changed me in several ways all to the good. Thanks.
There is something about being in the desert - hard to define, maybe the sky, the stars, the landscape so different from that which we experience every day. Perhaps it was the setting, but whatever the reason, we got to know some truly fascinating people as we shared thoughts, ideas and experiences on a wide range of topics. Opportunities like this come all too rarely these days, but when they do, they are special. This was one such time, and my wife and I thank you.