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I had a magical week. In less than 10 days, I found myself in 3 of Bulgaria’s biggest monasteries – the Rila Monastery, the Rozhen Monastery, and the Troyan Monastery. Such a concentrated visitation of holy places has not happened to me in a long time, and suddenly I felt how I start to relax, change and live at a slower pace.

Archangel Gabriel

A person visits such places in most cases as a sort of sightseeing or to pray. To send his deepest and strongly guarded pleas to God or the Universe in an attempt to free himself by transferring his problems onto the higher powers. They should deal with them! I thoroughly enjoyed everything – the visible, such as the beauty of the iconography, the churches, nature, the planted flowers.. everything – including the things that you do not see but feel instead – the humility, the peace surrounding you, and last but not least – your inner peace.

It is impossible to have that in the big city, with only noise surrounding you. So I planned myself a sweet escape! Then I started to think about why people don’t make intentional escapes weekly to recharge their batteries instead of slaving away to the habit of our daily routines.

Yes, of course, it’s easier to go out to a place in the city, get drunk and forget. Yes, it’s easy, but the soul wants something else – recognition. ‘Don’t drown me in your everyday problems! Give me what I need!’ – the soul is crying. We are constantly taking care of our bodies – eating, drinking, medicine, massages, cosmetics. We find it logical – that is what they have taught us since we were little. However, thinking about it – the body is the temple of the soul. So what is going to happen if we feed our soul first?

Rila monastery

Once in a timeless headspace by accident and in something completely different from just a day in the office, I felt reborn. I felt protected as if, in a way, someone up there is thinking about me and is shielding me. So I prayed. And I enjoyed the peace, knowing that it’s right for me. Independent from circumstances and conditionality. I surrendered.


For the grand finale of my magical week, a friend of mine called, inviting me to celebrate the inauguration of the temple she built in the name of the Holy Mother. I was amazed that, as an amazing coincidence, this happens in my already spiritually-filled week. Then I thought about it and concluded that if your soul and body are ready for that, it should be no surprise. Even if you are not ready in a somewhat natural way, the circumstances will arrange for it, and you will find yourself in magical places such as our beautiful orthodox monasteries—sources for the abstraction of freedom, energy, love.

It’s hard to describe; one has to live through it. I was grateful. And that is my idea of alluring life.