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Still point-turning world retreats

A series of residential international dialogues exploring the integration of spirituality in healthcare was first conceived in December 2010 at the Global Hospital and Research Centre, Mt Abu, India.  The plan was to hold them as retreats annually around the world over three years. So popular had the Still Point – Turning World (SPTW) retreats become, that six retreats were held.

The first was in New York (October 2011), the second in Sydney (March 2012), the third in Oxford (September 2012) and the fourth one in Mount Abu (September 2013).  The last two retreats were held in Oxford UK in 2014 and 2015. We are anticipating a seventh International SPTW retreat in October 2017 in the USA. Details and reports for each retreat can be found on the page Past Retreats.

The retreats have been hosted jointly by The Janki Foundation for Spirituality in Healthcare (UK), Point of Life Foundation (USA), Global Hospital Research Centre (Rajasthan, India), and the Brahma Kumaris (UK, USA, Australia and India).


The dialogues have been for healthcare professionals who are at the leading edge of integrating spirituality into their practice.  The retreats especially captured the imagination of those who are committed to exploring an approach that acknowledges the spiritual needs of the people they treat, care for and heal, as well as their own spirituality.

It makes no difference where we live; this is a critical time for healthcare everywhere in the world.  And we need to confront square on whether whole-person medicine is a fanciful luxury or an absolute necessity for us as well as our patients.  Is it just an appealing concept?  Or can it become a practical reality?  And if it is to become real, how can we make it so?

We believe that the only way for this to happen is for there to be a gradual and continual shift in the consciousness of healthcare providers.  And this is only possible when all those connected with healthcare learn to reconnect spiritually with their own deepest values.

The aims of the gatherings have been to:

  • 1 Create an opportunity to bring together recognised international leading health professionals who have a deep interest in exploring the intersection of spirituality with healthcare.
  • 2 Provide a place for people in positions of influence and responsibility to gather and reflect on what they perceive to be unfolding in the world of healthcare and spirituality, and to inspire each other to new awareness and to rejuvenated commitment and leadership.
  • 3 Inspire a collaborative community whose members would feel comfortable sharing their expertise in a variety of novel formats.

The questions arising in the retreats so far have been challenging and have required resourceful and creative ways of dealing with them. The processes have included facilitative methodologies such as open space, world café, dialogue, workshops, inner reflection and meditation. Particular consideration has been given to:

  • New ways of understanding and speaking of the extraordinary.
  • The challenges and opportunities of integrating the spiritual dimension into current paradigms and practices of health and healing.
  • The values and behaviours necessary for integrated healthcare delivery.
  • The transformational benefits of integrated healthcare personally, organisationally and globally.
  • Personal strategies to maintain an integrated approach to healthcare delivery.
  • How we build an international community of health professionals to enable ongoing spiritual, moral and intellectual support.

The overview article on the Still Point – Turning World: The dialogues – published in the Journal of holistic Healthcare, Dec 2012 can be viewed on

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