About us

Our Mission

Non-Confessional Spirituality

Meditation and mindfulness are not dependent on culture or religion. At Benediktushof, this is what we believe and practice. Everyone interested in spirituality from Christian contemplation, Zen meditation, and Mindfulness is welcome to attend

A place of Silence

Benediktushof is a former Benedictine monastery in the Allbach Valley dating back to the 8th century. Due to its history, it is an ancient site of vitality and intense silence. Today, historical and modern buildings complement each other, surrounded by the austere aesthetic of our Zen garden and grass labyrinth, offering clarity of mind to those who enter. Silence is an integral part of Benediktushof’s setting: Either in the form of daily rituals or as the central element of our courses. The state of presence is supported through silence. Those who immerse will experience its healing power at the Benediktushof.

Our Classes

Our program includes classes in Christian contemplation, Zen, yoga, mindfulness (MBSR), self-development, leadership, research, and body- or art-oriented courses. Programs particular for students and families are supported through our Foundation West-Östliche Weisheit – Willigis Jäger Foundation.

Every guest is welcome!

Benediktushof is open for everybody, 365 days a year. Teachers from our spiritual advisory board from contemplation and Zen are always present and available for personal inquiries. In Addition, everyone can attend daily meditations, whether they are new to meditation, intermediate or experienced practitioners.

A community of like-minded people

Our bookshop and café invite you to stay for a while. Further, our store offers regional hand-made Benediktushof products. For programs with a high degree of exchange, our Bistro Troand opens its doors. Our teachers who excel in the technical and personal competence to guide you on your path are key to our community.

„In silence and trust lies your strength

Isaiah 30:15

The history of the former monastery

Benediktushof used to be a Benedictine monastery founded in the 8th century. At that time, monks felled the forest, built monastery buildings, and cultivated fields, gardens, and vineyards. Their work was embedded in the Christian life structured by the liturgical calendar. Further, the monks helped the poor and the sick, established schools, and elevated science and craft.

At the beginning of the 12th century, the monastery had its heyday, but no more than 200 years later, its decay began at the end of the 13th century. In an attack, multiple buildings burned down, leaving the monks scattered in the surrounding area.

In 1552 during the reformation, the monastery was suspended. After several attempts, a new sanctuary emerged two hundred years later. The ongoing secularization concluded the endeavor in 1802. The former monastery became a manor in the following period and had multiple proprietors.

In 1961 a public call to “save the monastery of Holzkirchen” raised money to reconstruct the buildings. Particularly the cloister was renovated, and additional apartments were built. Later a restaurant and a hotel moved in until 1995. Since then, the Benediktushof has been vacant again.

Today – a Center for Meditation and Mindfulness

In 2002, Gertraud Gruber, an entrepreneur and long-standing companion of Willigis Jäger, bought the estate to endow it to Willigis Jäger and his spiritual work. She restored, rebuilt, and expanded the Benediktushof. On the 1st of December 2003, Benediktushof was ready to open its doors and start operating as a seminar and congress center for meditation and mindfulness.

Benediktushof now offers a broad spectrum of meditation classes, management and leadership programs, and academic conferences on philosophy, theology, psychology, and health. As a non-confessional center, we offer a space for meditation and mindfulness, mainly from the East and West spiritual traditions. Since its opening in 2003, it has become one of Europe’s most well-known and biggest centers.

In 2007, Willigis Jäger named Doris Zölls and Alexander Poraj as successors responsible for the operation and spiritual board of Benediktushof. Today the spiritual board consists of Alexander Poraj, Fernand Braun, and Maria Kolek Braun, representing the Zen and Contemplation lineage founded by Willigis Jäger.

With the excellent development of our classes and program and the continued financial commitment of Gertraud Gruber, it was possible to expand the building complex of Benediktushof. In 2012 and 2013, the former stable and barn areas, today’s east wing, were renovated, creating additional seminar rooms and accommodation facilities. Further, the Bistro Troand, our bookstore, and the Benediktushof shop were built.

On 12th March 2022, Gertraud Gruber passed away. Her wish to create a place of spiritual practice continues to support the Benediktushof through the Gertraud and Josef Gruber Foundation.