An Alchemy of Love, Vitality and Relationship
at Gravito Retreat Centre in the lush Portuguese Countryside
September 3rd to 9th, 2017

with Marian Rose, Universal Tao Healing Love Instructor
& Barry Spendlove, Universal Healing Tao Senior Instructor

£690 for the week with an 'early bird' price of £630
if paid in full by July 15th a £100 deposit will reserve your place
cost includes accommodation in luxurious tepees, 3 locally sourced, vegetarian home cooked feasts a day
some short movies, a substantial colour pdf and mp3 meditations to support home practice
The cost doesn’t include flights. Transfers are extra and can be arranged upon request.

For more information or to reserve your place contact Marian
or Barry
retreat centre info

top of the page   to diary

We unite our inner and outer masculine & feminine, drawing upon Taoist and Shamanic Alchemy, with the help of the stars, planets, moon, sun & mother nature’s five elements. We use potent taoist tools for rejuvenation and empowerment that include - breath work, grounding & structure, sound, sexual energy & vitality cultivation, The art of relationship with everything, body work and play! We’ll dive deep into breath work as a means to purify and re-energise our bodies on a cellular level.Open to everyone - both single men, single women and couples.
Open to both seasoned practitioners of the Tao and newcomers alike!

This is for you if you’d like to join us in: Enhancing our health and energy levels like we’ve never done before. Connecting our inner masculine & feminine. Making friends with our emotions and no longer being victim to them. Developing harmonious virtues that support our life and our relationships. Feeling more sensual and more magically alive in our natural flow.
Deepening our appreciation of life and nature Cultivating more sexual vitality for our health, creativity and intimate relationships. Joining with like minded souls for an inspiring transformational week. Living on the land for a week of bare foot connecting with the earth. Learning about or expanding our knowledge and practise of qi gong.Simply enjoying ourselves amidst the simple pleasures of life! You are more than welcome to bring a partner, even if they are not sure about participating in all the retreats offerings. If you have any questions about any aspect of the retreat, do feel free to contact us - we’d be very happy to have
We’ll enjoy inner alchemy meditations, for self exploration, self love,
rebalancing and re-uniting our inner masculine and feminine.

We’ll be exploring our physical and energy body’s inner landscape. Forming new relationships with our yin & yang organ intelligences and cultivating a strong emotional balancing practice for life, using the Daoist practices of the inner smile, six healing sounds and microcosmic orbit. We’ll luxuriate in qi self massage and taoist body work in groups and/or with partners.

We’ll explore the taoist sexual energy and vitality practises that are so essential for vibrant health, creativity and fulfilling our potential both individually and with partners. We’ll enjoy a ‘Sacred Surrendering and Intention Setting Ceremony’ on the full moon - including cacao elixir and allowing our bodies to express the 5 elements of nature. Sound and music around the fire will help us release all that’s not serving our journey. We’ll practise taoist energy exchange to balance our yin and yang poles.
We’ll have some time set aside for mens circles with Barry and women’s circles with Marian. The men will explore the sacred taoist men’s practices, learning to conserve, cultivate and circulate their sexual energy and renew their bone marrow.
Men will start to understand the benign, penetrating, protective power of their sword.

Women will realise the magical receiving nurturing protecting power of their grail. Women have the option of enjoying feminine practises of Jade Egg, breast massage and ovarian breathing.
For more information on the Taoist healing art of the Jade Egg,  visit
The men will explore the sacred taoist men’s practices, learning to conserve, cultivate and circulate their sexual energy and renew their bone marrow.Men will start to understand the benign, penetrating, protective power of their sword.

Women will realise the magical receiving nurturing protecting power of their grail.Women have the option of enjoying feminine practises of Jade Egg, breast massage and ovarian breathing.
For more information on the Taoist healing art of the Jade Egg, visit

Total immersion in nature is one of the many gifts that Gravito offers us, as we journey together to remember and re-embody our own true natures. The land at Gravito is lovingly cared for by guardians Shobha and Miguel, who run it as ecologically as possible with solar electricity and a magnificent throne (compost loo)!
If you’re interested in permaculture, they love to share their journey to self sufficiency on this exquisite land.
Gravito is steeped in a peaceful valley surrounded by tree clad hills, with a cascading river for swimming.
Accommodation is in luxurious teepees - maximum 4 people to a teepee. (There is a supplement for single / couple occupancy)Tipi’s contain Solar bedside lamps, hanging storage and comfy mattresses.

We’ll journey one day to a large, exquisite lakefor swimming, practice by the water and relaxation.

A large, beautiful yurt in a wild flower meadow is a perfect haven for relaxing evenings.
The varied evening sessions inside the beautiful candle lit yurt, prepare us for deep, rejuvenating sleep.We will have a chance to review the day, ask questions, share experiences and enjoy some gentle, dao yin stretches, bone breathing and healing sounds. This beautiful river flows through Gravito’s land and there will be plenty of free time in the hottest part of the day for swimming in the river, swinging in a hammock or walking in the beautiful, forest clad countryside.
A stunning oak platform shaded by trees We visit this beautiful fresh lake for some play time holds us perfectly for some
of our daytime sessions We visit a beautiful fresh lake for some play time
We practice early morning qi gong (breathing, structure and movement meditation)
in Gravito's incredible Olive root circle as we embrace the rising sun.
We will connect with the earth, ‘stand our ground’ on mother earth and become one with her. Using certain standing postures and tendon spirals, we learn how to connect our internal structures, (bones, muscles, tendons and fascia) with the ground, connecting our own meridian lines with the earths dragon meridians, so that authentic rooting power is developed. We strengthen our tendons, joints and bones, allowing greater flexibility in our movements, We connect to our energy (qi) bodies and cultivate, strengthen and circulate our energy through our our micro cosmic orbit.
- The food is divine - local produce prepared and cooked with love.
We have a beautifully designed, luxurious eco shower block.
with solar powered hot water.

Marian Rose is passionate about us getting to know and love ourselves above all else as a means to healthy, happy relationships in our lives. From corporate life burn out, her own healing journey led her to the taoist arts in the year 2000 when she discovered qi gong, tai chi and acupuncture, She gained an honours degree in acupuncture from the College of Integrated Chinese Medicine where she studied both TCM and Five Element Styles and enjoyed a thriving practise in North West London. It was whilst on a personal pilgrimage of sacred sites of our planet that she came across the wonders of the five element based Universal Healing Tao tradition. It was then that the pieces of her journey’s jigsaw all came together. Before this discovery she’d practised and enjoyed many styles of women’s energy healing and ritual work, it wasn’t until she started integrating these new taoist practises into her life that she came to fully understand that we cannot ever be whole if we deny or neglect any part of ourselves - and that includes our sensual and sexual selves. Embracing this concept, she threw herself into further teacher training and sharing these powerful practises with others. She is a Universal Healing Tao Instructor and Healing Love Instructor. She holds circles and workshops in the UK and around the world.  Two of Rose’s other passions are dance and ritual and she combines these loves by offering intention setting space in the form of sacred cacao ceremony with 5 element dance. Her mission is to inspire others to up-level their experience of this precious life time; to inspire others to take charge of their health and trust that they have everything within themselves necessary for vibrant physical health, for a balanced emotional state, and to embrace and love themselves on every level. When this happens our experience of joyful relating falls more naturally into place. She has been mainly specialising in women’s self-empowerment through the Tao - and her calling is now expanding to mixed groups, for men and women to come together in physical, mental, emotional and spiritual harmony!  She’s really looking forward to co-creating with her wise, wonderful and highly experienced colleague, Barry Spendlove. Together they bring you a combined 45 years of immersion in and love of the transformative wonders of taoist wisdom and practice.
Barry first took an interest in the Tao in the sixties. He loved the idea of Tao, but in the sixties there was not much practice available it was a more a philosophy. As a hippie in the sixties and seventies Barry had a lot of experiences that weren’t really his own and in the eighties he was looking for a ‘practice’. He had a small company making Buddhas and other statues. He tried Buddhist meditations but they didn’t resonate with him. Then in a magical way, ‘Cultivating Male Sexual Energy’ by Mantak Chia and Michael Winn, fell into his hands, He loved the idea of connecting with and meditating in his organs rather than with deities and started to practice.  In the late eighties he went to a Mantak Chia workshop in London and continued with the practices. Over the years they transformed his life. He became a Healing Tao instructor in 1994 and a Senior Instructor in 2002. His teachers were Mantak Chia, Michael Winn and Dirk Oellibrandt; now his teachers are his students, he learns by teaching, his most difficult students are his best teachers. Barry loves the wholeness of Daoist practices, which include the branches of Martial Arts, Health, Sexual Arts, Alchemy, FengShui and Astrology. His core practice is Internal Alchemy and he brings the fundamentals of this into all his practices.  He has a very simple, physical, shamanic approach to Taoist Alchemy ,teaching with spontaneity from his experience of the present moment. He teaches at his small studio at home in Wales and in Somerset, Belgium, Holland, Denmark, Ireland and anywhere he is invited. His passion is in bringing the practices into everyday life so life becomes the practice and the practice transforms life. In the Winter he concentrates on Darkroom retreats in Wales and Holland and in the Summer his workshops are as much as possible in nature. He conducts these transformative, spiritual/energetic/physical practices with a ha ha ha, a hee hee hee and a ho ho ho, because thats what its all about.
Gravito Retreat Centre, 3270-351 Pedrogao Grande, Leiria, Portugal, Phone 00351 236 098082, Email
How to get to Gravito
By plane: Gravito is situated between Portugals main cities of Lisbon and Porto, (approx 2 hrs from each). You can take a train, bus or hire car. When you book your flight let us know your arrival time at the airport and we will link you up
with others arriving at a similar time and togetherr work out the best option.
By Train: The nearest train station is Pombal (trains fromLisbon, Porto and Coimbra)
50kms from Gravito. Transport, by arrangement, can be provided to take you from Pombal to Gravito
By Coach: The nearest coach station is Pedrogao Grande. 3kms from Gravito (coaches from Lisbon’s Sete Rios coach station, Castelo Branco and Coimbra. see
by Car: From Lisbon or Porto to exit the A1 at Pombal and take the IC8 until you reach The Mosteira/Troviscals exit. 100 metres or so after you have taken the exit you will see a track on your left with three post boxes at its entrance. Take the track, you will arrayve at Gravito after a drive of about 1km. For details of how to get there, see

We recommend arriving at least the day before in Portugal to enjoy the beautiful cities of either Porto or Lisbon
and to give you plenty of time to travel onwards to Gravito on the Sunday. (Porto is 2.5 hour bus ride to the nearest village Pedrogao Grande, and Lisbon is a 4 hour bus ride to Pedrogao Grande). Let us know your arrival time we will put you in touch with others to travel together. We can arrange for a car to pick you up from Pedrogao Grande. (and potentially, a mini bus from the airports, depending on numbers). We will provide more specific information and help once you’ve reserved your place, for local information you can contact Shobha on
wonderful weather, beautiful place, yummylicious food, lovely people, incredible practices

Barry Spendlove
0044(0)1492 515776 or 0044(0)7747 051311

top of the page   to diary