Setting in Einsiedeln

Black Madonna of Einsiedeln

Black Madonna of Einsiedeln

Einsiedeln is located in a rural area on a plateau surrounded by mountains. The area’s natural beauty is abundant and the wealth of walks and hiking trails makes it easily accessible. The atmosphere is rich with symbols, imagery, and history and is a special place to be for the two-week training program.

The village is built around the Benedictine Abbey. The name Einsiedeln itself comes from the German word einsiedler, which means ‘hermit,’ referring to St. Meinrad, the priest and hermit who built the original chapel in the 8th century. This powerful place has been an important pilgrimage site since the 13th century. The huge Baroque church contains within it a chapel for the Black Madonna, the heart of the church and the area. Hotel Allegro is on the edge of the village within walking distance of the church.

Einsiedeln is also an important place on the St. James’ Way pilgrimage route on the way to Santiago de Compostela in Spain. This is one of the oldest, largest, and most important pilgrimage routes in Europe; Einsiedeln is part of it.

Sunset at Hotel Allegro

Einsiedeln is the birthplace of Theophrast Bombast von Hohenheim, better known as Paracelsus. This famous physician and alchemist, born in 1493, was also a philosopher, whose work stimulated contemporary alchemy and brought it to a new flowering. He spoke of the light of nature, also hidden in matter. His work was of great interest to Jung who delivered a presentation, Paracelsus as a Spiritual Phenonemon, at the monastery in Einsiedeln in 1941.

The village hosts many visitors and pilgrims from all over the year every year. It also offers a wealth of interesting shops and intriguing cafes and restaurants.


“Thank you for choosing a lovely location that nourished my body and soul. I have thoroughly enjoyed the opportunities offered — I loved the walking, the swimming, the old town, the beautiful monastery, the friendly Swiss people. Thank you for taking care of all the arrangements and helping us to just sit back and enjoy. Thank you for holding a very eclectic group together without any disruptions.”

—Carina Conradie