I am sitting here, in San Pedro, at Lake Atitlan, reflecting on the past week in this crazy place. I’m looking out over this magic lake, at the face of a prostrate Mayan in a volcano, and feeling incredible gratitude for this blessed existence, as tumultuous as it has been the last few days. I have been in Guatemala for almost two weeks now. It feels like a lifetime. I came here seeking something, and I have found the following:
1. Whatever I seek I will find. I create my own reality. In the wise words of John Lubbock – “What we see depends mainly on what we look for.”
2. I don’t need to seek for anything outside of myself. I have everything I need. I know everything I need to know, and while the attainment of knowledge is interesting, ultimately it turns into wisdom during periods of silence and receptivity.
3. It is a worthy use of energy to cultivate a sense of confidence and certainty in my current wisdom and abilities, rather than constantly overwhelming myself with more information.
4. Synchronicities are everywhere. I see them as guidance and reassurance that I am on the right path. BUT, it is very easy to begin to see them in everything and look for meaning and connections where there may be none (See number 1).
5. I will continue to meet incredible people every day of my life. Everyone can be a spiritual teacher for some lesson we need to learn. And I may feel as if I’ve known these people all my life, or through many lifetimes. But in this life, nobody will ever replace my family. I am blessed with an amazing amount of love and support from my parents, grandparents, siblings, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends who have become family. Even if they don’t always understand where I am going or why I do what I do (and think I am a total hippie nut), they are the reason that I am free and strong to follow my path. I cannot take this for granted.
6. I must be strong and centered in myself to avoid being pulled all over the place by other people’s energies. We are all energy wandering around this planet in our body suits, bumping into each other all the time, connecting and disconnecting. There is a constant exchange of energies and a delicate dance of coming together and apart with all of the other energies around us. It is important to cultivate our own, so that we can share our unique contribution. It is also important to receive and learn from others’ unique contributions. It is important, and at times really difficult to avoid enmeshment. But it is essential. Homogenization is not the goal. As individuals we are essential to the whole, all part of the whole, but distinct and unique. Life thrives on variety. We must be strongly who we are. It is our only unique gift to the collective consciousness of the universe.
7. We all have a calling. The reason we came into this world. It is to do what we love. If we do what we love we are contributing our best. There are enough individuals to fill every niche on this planet, and every little thing that exists is loved by someone. The best use of our time is to do what we love. Nobody else can do what we love for us, and if we don’t do it ourselves there will be a niche unfilled. And we will be unfulfilled.
8. All life contains light and dark, yin and yang. Neither is bad nor good, it just is. The more I accept the reality of the duality of my nature, and the nature of everything, the more at peace I feel. Resistance to our dark sides creates suffering. Attachment to our light sides creates suffering. Acceptance and balance between the two is essential for wholeness and peace of mind. Seeing that there are countless shades on the spectrum, we can understand that there is no clear cut distinction between light and dark. Energy moves fluidly along this spectrum. People move back and forth between light and dark. When I understand this, I feel true compassion and let go of fear.
9. Life is constantly flowing through me and I don’t need other people’s energy. I can move inward to my source and cultivate that which arises naturally, so that I can share it with the world. I can feed life by practicing the things that energize me from within: yoga, meditation, writing, dancing, creating ANYTHING. Getting energy from outside of myself is taking. Cultivating energy inside and then sharing it is giving. If we all move through this world taking energy from outside of ourselves we will exhaust each other and the resources of our planet. We have the ability to energize through being what we are – creative consciousness. We energize each other when we are meeting as individuals who have cultivated energy to share. We must be conscious to do this. It is in our unconscious consumption that we begin to destroy. We can use the resources of our planet if we do it consciously, creatively, and minimize our damage. Essential to doing this is letting go of our ego and reconnecting to something bigger than ourselves. Our egos tell us that we own this planet, that it is here to sustain us. The Earth’s job is not to sustain us. Its gift to us is sustenance. We are taking advantage of that gift. We feel entitled to it because we have evolved to be such intelligent beings, yet we have moved away from the intelligence of connection, and continue to exist in a state of disconnection. Unsustainable disconnection from each other, from other life, and from our source. I’ve been taking a lot of jungle walks and seeing a lot of animals in their natural habitat. I am unable to ignore the truth that this is not our planet, even though we treat it like it is. Even if we don’t feel a personal responsibility to take care of anyone or anything but ourselves, we must acknowledge that we are overstepping our bounds if our existence violates the rights and needs of other living beings. My friend recently told me that jellyfish are so evolved that they go from polyps to adults and then reverse the process and go back to polyps. They have been here forever. They have perfected their evolution. And they recently clogged up a bunch of pipes in some nuclear reactor plants and people were pissed. People were pissed. Because a form of life that has been here forever and perfected their own evolution was clogging up the pipes of our dangerous nuclear power plants and DYING. I think this is a pretty solid example of our disconnection from nature, and our ego belief that we are entitled to do whatever we want without anything getting in our way.
10. I can think about things all I want and it doesn’t mean that I am embodying them. I can think about everything that has come up in my mind over the past week, all these thoughts I just wrote, and it won’t do me as much good as one hour of moving my body, or sitting still and breathing. Thinking about life is fascinating, but being life is where it’s at.