The Fascinating History of Menla Retreat Center
And why it is the perfect place for our healing sacred dance!
375 million years ago, a half-mile-wide meteor crashed here, creating the oldest known meteor impact crater on Earth, equivalent of several hundred million tons of TNT and pulverized the bedrock, leaving a 6-mile-wide crater.
Over millions of years, Panther Mountain was gradually fored, a nearly perfectly circular mountain, surrounded by two rivers, one flowing North and the other South. The crater is approximately 1.5 to 2 miles beneath the surface of the earth. The local Native American peoples, including the Esopus and Mahicans, regarded this valley and region as especially sacred, a place of the spirits, used only for ceremonial purposes.
In the 1950s the land was turned into a hotel and then later in 1970s it became the Pathwork Center, a non-sectarian spiritual community and retreat center. By the end of the 1990s, the Pathwork Center had to sell the property. A non-profit called the Aesclepius Foundation purchased the land and started to renovate and upgrade the buildings with the intent of creating a healing center, modeled after an ancient Greek healing tradition. People with illnesses would travel to the Isle of Delos in the Mediterranean, hoping to have a dream of Aesclepius, the Greek god of Healing. In that dream, he would appear to them and reveal both the root causes of their illness and the cure. Phase One (of three) of the renovations was complete when the patrons of the Foundation very generously decided to donate the property to Tibet House, US in 2002 with the understanding that it would continue to be a healing center.