The European Institute of Applied Buddhism opened a center in Waldbröl, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany, and two weeks later it was visited by Thich Nhat Hanh.
The building was originally constructed in 1897 for the treatment of the mentally ill. But on November 14, 1938 many patients were taken out of the hospital and were sterilized or given lethal injections by the Nazi regime. Later, the building was used as a hospital, and then as a NATO military academy.
During Thich Nhat Hanh’s visit he led a four-hour ceremony to put to rest the suffering that had occurred in the building. Many monks and nuns from Plum Village took part in the ceremony.
The community hopes that ongoing Buddhist activities in the institute will give rise to compassionate healing for the spirits of the building. The town of Waldbröl is very supportive of the building’s new occupants. Monks and nuns have been invited to speak at the local churches.
The Institute offers three-month winter retreats. To prepare a retreat for your sangha at this location, email [email protected].