Meditation on mountain by moonlight

Peter Mittermuller and Tessa Clarke have organised a full-moon meditation atop Mt Taranaki this Friday night.
Peter Mittermuller and Tessa Clarke have organised a full-moon meditation atop Mt Taranaki this Friday night.

The top of Mt Taranaki is set to be the perfect place for a full moon meditation.

On Friday night New Plymouth couple Peter Mittermuller and Tessa Clarke plan to set off on a midnight climb of the mountain so they can meditate on Taranaki's highest point.

The journey will include 15 other people who want to find peace atop the peak.

Once at the top, the group will begin meditating, guided through an iPhone by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, founder of the The Art of Living Foundation.

Ms Clarke, who has been organising the trip for three months, said it would include people from across the country, led by a Taranaki Alpine Club member.

"Meditation helps to still the mind and everyone is looking for that. This is easy, it doesn't cost any money and it's accessible to everyone," the yoga teacher said.

Mr Mittermuller, from Germany, has been involved in The Art of Living Foundation since he quit his job as an environmental engineer so he could teach meditation to prison inmates.

The not-for-profit organisation was founded in 1982 by Sri Sri Ravi Shankar and has since helped with disaster relief programmes following 9/11, and Hurricane Katrina.

In New Zealand the foundation offers trauma relief in Canterbury and prisoner rehabilitation.

Mr Mittermuller said working with inmates was a challenging, yet rewarding task.

"Meditation helps them to let go of their past traumas and seeing the change in the inmates is wonderful.

"Sitting together and meditating helps to bring peace within yourself," he said.

The pair said they have made contact with local iwi about the summit climb.

Soraya Ruakere-Forbes is of Te Atiawa descent and will be there before they head off to give a karakia and explain the cultural significance of the mountain to the out-of-town visitors, Ms Clarke said.

"That's so everyone knows not to take anything from the mountain and not to stand on the summit rock. Respecting the mountain is very important to us."

The climb and meditation will be followed by a vegetarian feast on the Saturday night in the Egmont National Park.

"The whole weekend is more than the climb. People are coming to enjoy the national park and camp together.

"We've got everything crossed for good weather and a beautiful sunrise," she said.

● Anyone interested in joining the hiking group or learning more about meditation can phone Ms Clarke on 021 057 4011.

Taranaki Daily News