- Bury them in the earth
- Soak them in salt water
- Lay them in the Sun
- Lay them under the full moon
- Pray over them
The sacred mountain has a call that, once answered, is impossible to resist.
And so we return, for the 9th time in this year of 2012, for a time of rest and rebuilding while we play a game of light & Spirit: 100 Layers from God weekend workshop.
As we head higher up and further into the mountain, we lose the vibrations of civilization (including cell signal& internet). We unplug from technology and plug into a higher vibration of nature & spirit.
For this reason, we will not be posting a daily blog until next Tuesday.
I think you’ll survive.
As I was searching through old e-mails, I found this one in the archives.
That’s when things started quickening and getting very intense. It’s only increased since then.
April 1, 2010
The last installment of this series is hopefully the best.
Tonight I will finish the story I began last Tuesday with Part 1.
To recap: last Fri eve I returned to my favorite part of the El Yunque rainforest. After a profound meditation, I hiked down to the river barefoot and without light. That was an incredible experience. In the darkness, my senses expanded beyond what I had ever known as I became a creature of the jungle.
That night was the first time I had slept out in the open, without a tent, in the rainforest. It was under a decaying tin roof of a long abandoned hacienda.
Such an ecosystem is abound with life, especially at night. The noise level is incredible. Coqui tree frogs and crickets create a musical vibration that fills the night and envelops you completely. When you add the exotic jungle night birds, you get a true tropical soundtrack that serves to awaken and enliven ones senses and energies. It really is awe inspiring, but without a tent you are also completely exposed to any and all jungle creatures that come across your scent. Fortunately, there are no large or particularly dangerous animals in Puerto Rico. I was glad I didn’t need to worry about jaguars or poisonous snakes.
The most dangerous creature is a scorpion, but the most problematic are mosquitoes. Surprisingly, I have spent nights here where they were virtually non-existent. On this trip they were not bad for most of the night. Not until I climbed into my bed did they start to harass me. With no tent or netting to keep them away, all I could do was retreat under the blanket, with only a small hole to breath through. Even like that, I ended up getting a mosquito bite on my upper lip.
It was a rough night. Didn’t get much sleep. Stayed in the protective cocoon of my blankets until the powerful tropical sun drove away the diminutive pests.
I did have another visitor buzz me early in the morning. A hummingbird spent all day checking out the strange new visitor in her territory.
Hummingbird medicine: “It is said that Hummingbird brings love as no other medicine can. Follow Sister Hummingbird and you will experience a renewal of the magic of living.
Hummingbird is loved by the flowers and plants, for as it sucks the nectar from the flower, the plant reproduces and more of its kind are created. Its presence brings joy to the observer watching it. The hummingbird is the only creature that can stop dead while traveling at full speed; can hover; or can go forward, backward, up or down. Great Spirit created Hummingbird to be slightly different from other feathered creatures. Hummingbird lives on nectar and searches for the sweetness of life. It’s purpose is to pollinate the flowers of the world. Its long “nose” lets it bypass the often tough and bitter outer layer to find the hidden treasurers underneath. The song of hummingbird awakens the medicine flowers.
Hummingbird’s message is adaptability in life’s many situations and being able to “roll with the punches”. If you have hummingbird medicine, you adapt easily to whatever situation you may find yourself in, and make the most of your new circumstances. You don’t waste time looking back and wishing for “what was” for you are concerned with making the most of “what is”. ” http://www.birdclan.org/hummingbird.html
I spent the whole of the day at my camp, doing Yoga, meditating, sleeping. Set up a yoga swing from the rafters. I could hear and smell the people who were visiting the river down below, but I was not feeling very social on this quest. So I stayed in my space until the end of the day, when everyone had left.
I headed down to the river with not much daylight left. I wanted to go earlier, but it had been raining. That sometimes happens in the rainforest.
The sound of the river had increased, and I was excited to see how high the water had got with the rains. Sometimes the rains cause intense flash floods that turn the tranquil streams into raging torrents.
I made it down to the river just before dark, and immediately began to pray and meditate at the ceremonial altar. Shortly after I arrived, I could hear the roar of the river change its pitch to a higher frequency, with an intense hiss from the waterfall that told me the water was rising still.
I wanted to look at the waterfall, which is not visible from shore, but was concerned about the rising water levels. Every year in El Yunque, dozens of souls are lost to flash floods.
I am an adventurer, but I am also careful and cautious. I have 2 children who need their father still, so I try to not be unduly reckless.
Being a Cancer, a water sign, I am at home in this element, and have played in it my entire life: Swimming, sailing, canoeing, whitewater kayaking, surfing, snorkeling, etc. I’ve had a few close calls, but have made it through some extraordinary situations.
In this case, I mad a careful evaluation of the area and determined that even if a flash flood came, there was a safe place to exit. And so I entered the muddy, swollen stream and made the short swim to take a look at the waterfall. The water was higher and more powerful than I had ever seen it. It was exciting and exhilarating.
This was the same waterfall that had called me to swim under it and enter the cave behind it on my very first visit there, in the black of night (Part 2). Since that time, 2 years ago, I had been to the cave many times, including the night before, when the water had been low and it was not much of a challenge at all.
I was not even considering it this evening. Too dangerous. It was getting dark quickly, the water was too high and rising. I doubted it was even possible because the current was so strong.
But still there was this small voice inside that was calling to me. I brushed it off as my ego trying to be macho. No, I said to myself, there is no shame in knowing when nature is too powerful to toy with.
But still, the voice persisted. Calling me to the cave behind the waterfall.
I thought, maybe – if I had a little more daylight – then I would try.
The voice told me it would only take 30 seconds to swim under – if I could.
Just the thought of it brought up so much fear. But the voice persisted.
After studying the current, the river and the waterfall, I concluded that it was probably not possible. The current was so powerful and the river so narrow at that point. But it was also not terribly dangerous. The worst that would happen is that I would get pushed back.
Eventually I gathered my courage, overcame my fear and made the decision to give it a try. I climbed up on a rock beside the torrent and dove straight into it, towards the waterfall. I felt the current grab me immediately. I know there was no fighting it and the only possible way was to go deep, under the current. So I dove down to the rock overhang about 10 ft underwater, a route that I usually take that brings me to my destination. But this time I was met with a strong current that pushed me back downstream. I knew better than to fight the current, so I surrendered and let it carry me downstream to the place I had dove from.
There. I was satisfied that I had tried. It took some courage. I tried and failed, but that did not bother me.
But still the voice was there. Maybe if I go down deeper, the current wont be so strong. Fortunately there was another voice present: the voice of reason! It told me that I had tried the impossible and that was good enough. Plus it was continuing to get darker and the river continuing to rise. At this water level, the cave behind the waterfall my be flooded anyway and there might be no place to surface and get air.
The call of the challenge was more convincing than my reason and fear, so I decided to try one more time. This time, when I dove into the rushing current, I went straight down, maybe 15 feet deep. Because of the silt of the high water and the fading daylight, it was really dark under the water. Even with my eyes wide open under the water, it was pitch black at that depth. But the current was indeed less, so I swam upstream toward the waterfall. Just as I was almost there my body was grabbed by the rushing hydraulics of the swollen waterfall and once again I was swept downstream.
Surely that was enough to satisfy the small crazy voice that kept pushing me. 2 attempts is more than anyone else would ever do in these circumstances. But no. The voice was not satisfied. I did not go all the way to the bottom. Plus 3 tries is such a nice round number. And you know what they say: 3rd time’s a charm. Just as before my arguments of reason and common sense could not overcome the call. So I answered. One more time.
For the last time I dove in, and swam hard for the bottom. This is a very deep part of the river, where the canyon walls get narrow. It was a spooky feeling going deep into total darkness. It went deeper than I imagined, but eventually I touched the bottom and began to swim upstream. Sure enough – there was no current on the very bottom and I was able to swim right up to, underneath and behind the raging waterfall.
It was glorious!
I couldn’t believe that I had actually made it there.
I stayed there in the cave for just a few minutes, feeling the thundering vibrations of the water echoing off the stones and shaking my bones. So much power! I took a moment to be still and take it all in. Absorbing the primal life force energy of the elements. It was then that I realized that the small voice was that of my spirit or my soul. It KNEW what was possible for me, even when I did not. by following the call I achieved something so extraordinary that fed and strengthened my spirit more than anything else I could imagine.
I left my fear in the river that night, in the cave behind the waterfall.
And my spirit soared.
What is your inner voice calling you to do?
Please do answer in the comment section below.
“The greatest human quest is to know what one must do in order to become a human being.”
– Immanuel Kant
In part 1, I began the tale of my quest to the rainforest last week. Part 2 told of the magic & power of El Yunque and my first trip there. Now in part 3, I will continue the tale, but I cannot promise to finish tonight. There is much to tell and precious little time.
As you may recall, I was called upon to spend a few nights in the rainforest just 1 day after guiding a group there, last Thursday. I was dropped off after dark without food, tent or sleeping bag. After setting up camp, I made my medicine wheel and began my meditation, in which I connected deeply with the earth and all her elements. It was a beautiful and profound meditation, after which I knew what I must do in that moment: go down to the river.
I was camped up above, just a short distance off the trail in an old abandoned hacienda. In the daylight is is about a 1o minute hike down the trail to the sacred ceremonial site on Rio las Tinajas. But in my meditation, I was called upon to go down with nothing. No shoes, no clothes and no light.
I have hiked many times in the rainforest barefoot, sometimes for great distances. It is challenging, for certain, but invigorating. It creates a powerful bond with the earth that is unlike any other. But i have never gone without clothes. Or light.
This is a remote area, where no 2-leggeds are known to tread at night, at least before this one. So I had no fear of running into anyone. Only running off an unseen cliff in the dark.
The half moon was beginning to rise in the east, so the was light in the sky to illuminate the trail, but not directly. I descended into the valley towards the river. The darkness enveloped me completely as the trees covered the trail. All of my senses were heightened. I crept along the trail, cautiously, cat-like, as the jungle rang out in a high decibel symphony of life. When I couldn’t see the trail, I looked to the sky to see where the trees parted for a clue to where I should step next. It had been raining that day, so the trail was wet, muddy and slippery. Some places had deep puddles that I tried to avoid, but in the darkness it is difficult to avoid that which cannot be seen.
This hike was an exercise in patience. As long as I moved slowly and carefully there was no real danger and little fear. It was like a game. Or a test.
The most challenging part was the steep final descent to the river. With a thick canopy above, the darkness was complete. But I knew the path I had taken many times before. Moving slowly, using hands and feet, I made my way down, all the way to my sacred spot beside my beloved river.
I made it!
Another meditation at the ancient altar, followed by a swim into the cave behind the waterfall. The water level was still low, as it was the day before, so it was easy. One of the few times I was able to reach the cave without a big jolt of fear and adrenaline. This was my reward for making it down alive.
To be continued…
My first time to the El Yunque Rain forest was not typical. As the only tropical rain forest in the US National Forest Service, it is a force of nature that is breathtakingly beautiful, but also developed to accommodate many visitors. 600,000 people visit this place every year. There are a couple of main roads to take you up the mountain to a network of developed sites and trails. That is only on the north side of the mountain, facing the North Atlantic Ocean. The mountain is vast. At 28,000 acres, the parts that are developed and accessible to most of those people is just a small fraction of the entire area.
This is a true tropical paradise, by any standards. It has rich shades of green, more than you knew existed. All types of beautiful and exotic plants are there, some enormous. Tropical flowers abound and it is not uncommon to see wild orchids peppering the landscape. The multitude of freshwater streams that spring forth from the mountain are pristine. So pure and clear, never touched by the hand of man. With an abundance of waterfalls and deep pools, this virtual Garden of Eden is a place to cleanse and refresh.
It is no less beautiful and exotic than the fictional planet of Pandora in the movie Avatar. The only difference is that there are no large or dangerous animals here. It is a gentle giant with many magnificent secrets and a life force energy that is off the charts. For over a thousand years, the indigenous Tainos considered El Yunque to be a sacred area, “Home to the Gods” .
On one visit there, I spoke to a tour guide who told me that there are many ancient trails through the mountains, that somehow have been determined to be 3-4 thousand years old, used long before the Taino ever arrived on the island. Puerto Rico is said to be on the western edge of the Empire of Atlantis. Could that be where the trails originated? There are many legends that have existed for centuries here about strange being seen on (& above) the mountain. Some not from this world. It is common to hear about interdimensional gateways or portals here, and also about the many people who have been lost here and never found.
I had been coming to the island for several years before I made it to El Yunque. Of course, I had heard about it, and everyone here raves about it’s magnificent beauty. But sometimes I have an aversion to tourist areas. Sometimes, however, they are tourist areas for a reason: the power & beauty are so great, it cannot be overlooked.
In February of 2010 a friend told me of a guided tour sponsored by the Sierra Cub of Puerto Rico on the south side of the mountain, away from the tourist hot spots, to a place called Las Tinajas. We met at 7am just off the highway and caravanned up into the mountain on narrow winding roads, heading deeper into the rainforest. We drove straight up into the mountain until the road ended. From there we hiked for hours up the mountain into the heart of El Yunque. Sometimes on a trail beside the river and sometimes through the river itself. After 2-3 hours of hiking, we found a stunning spot to stop for lunch and a swim, before we hiked back down. Even a 20 ft cliff to jump off of!
It was a wonderful time, but with 15-20 people there, and our busy schedule of hiking & eating, I didn’t feel like I really got to connect very deeply with the nature or spirit of El Yunque. As I was hiking down, a crazy idea began to formulate in my mind: I could spend the night there on the mountain! I had all of my camping gear in the car, and we had passed by an old abandoned Hacienda on the way up that would make a perfect camping spot (see part one). After speaking with my guide and the adjacent landowners, permission was granted and I found myself racing the sun to get camp set up before dark.
The rainforest comes alive at night. So much energy, sound and activity from all of the jungle creatures: crickets & other insects, Coqui tree frogs, Owls and other exotic night birds all performed a symphony expressing the great circle of life in full manifestation. Alone, I was able to tune into the frequency of El Yunque and and finally connect intimately with this special place.
That night I had one of the most profound spiritual experiences of my life, as I was guided down to a sacred ceremonial spot on the river that we had not visited that day. Spirit Guides (or Guardian Angels) led me into the water, to a cave behind the waterfall that I never knew even existed. In the dark of night, at an unknown place, I had to let go of my fears and open my heart to trust the spiritual messages I was receiving. When I did that, I was led to a place so magnificent, beyond what I could have imagined. I had achieved an impossible task, and it felt to me that I had been through an initiation of sorts, with beings that I could not see, but could definitely sense.
When I returned the next day, I found a place of great beauty, yes, of course. But I also found a large, ancient altar with a Taino pictograph. That told me this very site has been used for ceremony & initiation for thousands of years. In my meditation there the following morning more was revealed regarding my spiritual mission on the island and in the world. I was also instructed to gather people together and bring them to this site, those who are ready, for their own initiation and energy activation.
Since then, I have been back many times. I have brought friends, loved ones and about half a dozen groups for sacred medicine wheel ceremonies, Vision Quests and initiations. Each time has it’s own magic and wonder, lessons and gifts. But the last time was certainly one of the most powerful and significant times, as I spent two nights in the jungle without a tent. I began to tell that tale in part one, and still have not finished it. That will have to wait for part three.
To be continued…
The hand of Spirit guides my life in such strange and beautiful ways.
The next day, after I led a group into the rainforest, on a 1-day quest, quite unexpectedly I returned to the same spot by myself to spend a couple of nights in solitude.
It is a common practice in many traditions to share the visions received and lessons learned with the rest of the community. In that way, the vision is brought forth into the material world to manifest.
So that is what I’m doing now.
As mentioned in my previous post (Vision Quest), this has been part of my spiritual practice and my life for almost 30 years. Recently it has become even more intense and powerful.
In this case, something unexpected came up that enabled me to take a couple of days to get out of the city and take some time for myself. It was a true blessing.
So I returned to this sacred part of El Yunque that I had been to many times before. It was such short notice, that I did not have time to find a tent, a sleeping bag or even any food. That’s ok though. I am going on a vision quest. I don’t need food or water. I have a blanket and know of a place to give me shelter from the rains, which are common and can be torrential at times.
My good friend Carlos was able to pick me up and take me there. It’s about an hours drive from San Juan, and I arrived at about 8:30pm on Friday night. Don Basilio and his wife Blachie were not home to open the gate for me, so I had to hike up a steep, muddy trail to gain access to the rainforest. Another 25 minutes of hiking brought me to a long abandoned hacienda way up on the mountain, where I had spent many nights before. it looks to have been built in the mid 1900’s, then abandoned perhaps 20 or 30 years ago. It has been gutted and nothing remains but the bunk beds that are fixed to the floor. The jungle is encroaching and slowly reclaiming what was once someones home. The roof is falling in, in places, but there is still a section that has not rusted through and can provide shelter from the tropical rains. This would be my home for the next few nights.
The trail to the Hacienda was overgrown and difficult to find at night, but somehow I managed. By the time I found it, cleared the space and set up camp, it was approaching 10pm, and I was considering just climbing into bed and calling it a night. But this was my vision quest, and there was work to be done.
I had brought my most powerful crystals and stones. Soon the medicine wheel was complete and I was ready to begin my meditation. I always begin with the same core meditation that I have been practicing in some form or another since I was 20 yrs old. Visualizing myself sitting upon the surface of the earth, I use my mind and breath to connect to the core of the earth, draw the powerful life force energy up into my body, filling my chakras, then send it up into a star at the center of our galaxy. I then bring the fire energy down from the star, through my body & chakras, and send it down into the core of the earth, giving the mother an injection of pure pranic energy from the heavens. The stones and crystals of the medicine wheel also help me to bring in the energy from the air and water, which is very pure & potent in a place like El Yunque.
All of that elemental energy comes together in my Hara. My belly Chakra: Svadhisthana. From there, I begin Bhastrika Breath, or Breath of Fire to build the energy. When it is stoked and intensified enough, I engage Maha Bandha the three body locks used commonly in Kundalini Yoga to contain, focus & purify energy in the body. Then I bring all of that concentrated prana from all of the elements up my spine to the Ajna Chakra (3rd eye), and send it out in a series of prayers to the universe:
1) Love, Thanks and Gratitude to every one and every thing in all of creation. Thank you for the part you play in the great web of life.
2) A prayer sending divine love, comfort and healing to everyone I have ever known and ever will know in my existence.
3) Tree of Life Prayer, where I visualize my life as a great tree. My birth is at ground level and the end of my life is at the very top of the tree. My current position is about halfway up. I build the prana in Svadhisthana with bhastrika breath, then send the energy up the trunk, all the way to the top of the tree, to the point where my life on earth ends. In this way I project my consciousness forward in time to the point of my death, which I face with my eyes wide open and heart filled with love and longing to finally be freed of this dense body and reunite with my Divine Beloved. There is no fear whatsoever. Only intense joy and love permeating every cell of my being. But before I depart, I ask one final thing of my maker: to send down a beam of pure love and light down the trunk on my tree, filling my past selves with a great love, comfort and confidence that all will be well, all is well and in perfect divine order. I feel this now in my current self, but also all the times in my past where I struggled in fear and pain. When I was a young man, a teenager, a child and even an infant with so much fear and helplessness. When that wave of divine love washes over me, I cease my struggling, relax, take a deep breath and smile. I feel safe and secure. Wrapped in a warm blanket of love, confident that I will be ok and looking forward to a great future.
This was how my quest began. It only gets better from there.
To be continued…
Traditionally, a vision quest is a common rite of passage in most native cultures around the world. As such, it can help the transition from childhood (or immaturity) into adulthood (maturity) by helping one to understand who they really are and what their life purpose is. It is also used later in a person’s life. Anytime one feels lost or in need of direction or guidance.
Often it is done in a secluded place, in nature, where one can tap into the powerful forces of the Earth and other elements to help on their quest.
What is sought, is a vision providing answers for some of the core questions of life: Who am I? Why am I here? What is my purpose in life and how can I achieve it?
Ultimately, the source of the answers is the Source of Creation, ie: Creator (or God).
Depending upon the culture and the practice, it can last anywhere from one to four days. It usually includes prayer, fasting and meditation. It is understood, universally, that these are the most powerful ways to go beyond the veil of the material world and gain access to the wisdom and vision of the spirit realm, where the answers to all questions exist. Sometimes the aid of helper plants is also enlisted: Peyote, Mushrooms, Ayahuasca, etc.
“Though the Vision Quest is associated with Native Americans traditions – it is practiced all over the world. As an expression of the archetypal “Hero’s Journey,” the vision quest has been enacted in religious pilgrimages, mythological tales (including the story of the search for the Holy Grail), and our own daily pursuit of truth and purpose. Today, there are companies that sponsor these journeys. They provide a wilderness area in which it is to occur, and they give instructions and guidance before and after the event. It might take a day, a week, a month – whatever is necessary to complete the transformation and get the answer one seeks.” http://www.crystalinks.com/visionquest.html
We are living in an age now, where the wisdom and practices of indigenous cultures are spreading and gaining popularity in modern societies around the world.
This is because we are all spiritual beings, and as we reach the end of the Piscean Age, many souls are awakening to the fact that material life without a strong spiritual connection & purpose is empty, meaningless and ultimately unfulfilling. So they are looking for answers, and this is a way to find answers that has been tried and proven for thousands upon thousands of years.
My personal practice
I have been on many vision quests in my life, beginning as a teenager, over 30 yrs ago. Some guided by Shamans or teachers, but most have been inspired by inner guides: Guardian Angels or Spirit Guides. A few have been up to 4 days, but many are just one or two days. Always I pray & meditate. Sometimes I fast. Sometimes I do an overnight vigil without sleep. Sometimes I work with helper plants. It all depends how I am guided, and what is required. This has become a regular practice in my life.
I have noticed that as we come closer to the end of the cycle, life becomes more intense and my spiritual processes more powerful. It is said that the energy of the earth is “quickening”. This means that the vibrational frequency is raising. As a result, it takes less time to accomplish even greater results. Something that may have taken 4 days in past times can now be achieved in 4 hours – or less, if one is open – and capable of processing great transformations in a short time. That is a skill acquired through years of practice. Or a gift bestowed upon those who are ready.
The calling to guide
Several years ago, during a meditation on Lake Michigan, in Wisconsin. I was called on to guide others through this process.
In fact, I have already been doing that for many years, in a way, with my healing work. In my massage/energy healing sessions, I help people to let go of their stress, pain and fear so that they can open up to the divine vibrations of love and healing that exist all around us, at all time. When that happens, they are open to all sorts of blessings and guidance from the spirit realm, and that only takes 90 minutes.
So now I take people out into nature and teach them how to tap into the spiritual energy that exists there and how to interpret the signs and messages that they receive. We all know the saying “God works in mysterious ways”. So the answers can and often do come in all sorts of strange ways. Sometimes they do come in a straightforward dream or vision that is clear and easy to understand. But often the guidance comes in a message that needs to be pondered and meditated upon.
We all have a purpose in this world, and we all have a mission to achieve. A spiritual destiny.
When you discover that destiny, your passion will ignite and your life will become a joy and a grand adventure. You will face your problems with courage and a resolve to overcome them, whatever it takes. You will also have the confidence that you are not alone. There is great love and support for you in the unseen realms of Spirit.
A Vision Quest is a great way to bring that into your life and keep it strong.
El Yunque Vision Quest Oct 4, 2012
I awoke at 7am this morning.
Guided 7 souls on a quest into the rainforest.
We cleared, balanced and opened the 7 primary chakras.
Remained in the jungle until well past 7pm
It’s 12:07 now and I’m tired.
Too tired to write a proper blog.
There’s a saying in Mexico that I will use, even though I’m in Puerto Rico:
77 Days to go:
Here and Now“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, today is a gift from God, which is why we call it the present.”
Have you ever found yourself in a situation or place that you’ve always wanted to be? Or perhaps with a certain thing that you’ve always wanted, only to find that it wasn’t as great as you imagined it would be?
Why is that?
Let’s back up a little to take a look.
First of all, why do we look forward to things at all?
It is usually because we are not all that thrilled with how things are going in the present moment.
Think about it.
Do you look forward to, and wish for things when you are having an awesome time and loving life in the moment?
You are enjoying the moment.
If anything, you may wish it never ends.
So you can see how we look forward to something better when we are not happy – or not fully present – in the moment.
But WHY are we not happy in the moment?
This is a common human condition that has inspired many spiritual discourses. And there may not be one single – or simple – answer for all.
I would venture to say that the reason many are not happy in the moment, is due to all of the things we carry around with us. Negative thoughts and feelings that we hold onto in our bodies (stress), our hearts (pain & fear) and our mind (disappointment and regret). Of course the list goes on to include sadness, anger, guilt, shame, etc. Things that build up over a lifetime, most of us carry with us without even realizing. These are the infamous “100 layers”.
Most of us have so many layers that weigh so heavily upon our consciousness, that if we are not constantly distracted by entertainment and other stimulation, then those negative thoughts and feelings creep into our awareness. And they are not pretty.
It can show up as fear, sadness, confusion, anger, depression or a myriad of other conditions. It can also be projected upon others, such as our family, our workplace and all of our relationships.
You can see then, why we are not so thrilled about being present (in the moment) to such unpleasant and uncomfortable thoughts and feelings.
The traditional solution to such states of unhappiness is a wish or desire to change ones situation in life. Get a new job, a new house, a new car, a new spouse and/or move to a new place.
Money is the big answer most people seek to solve their problems. Certainly, more money can provide plenty of entertainment and a great deal of distraction, as can a new home or car. A new love can be the best of all!
As I write this, I feel that it is important for me to state that I am not immune to, or above this very common condition. There are many times that I wallow in the muck of my layers as much (or more) than everyone else.
That brings us back to the point we began with: Attaining a goal, dream or desire, only to find that it was not the solution you had hoped for. After the novelty and excitement wear off, you find that you still have the same fears, doubts, sadness and pain that you had before.
So what is one to do then?
If a new job, home & car won’t fix it. More money won’t fix it. Even new/more love won’t make things better, then what in the world can we do to get some relief?
An answer can be found, among other places, in the ancient teachings of Tantra, where we are told that the answer is to become present to the moment, and all that exists within us and without us.
Central to the teachings of Tantra, is the philosophy of complete and total acceptance of all that is. It is a knowing that there is a reason and a purpose for everything in all of existence. Only if you accept something and stop resisting it, can you discover what that reason and purpose may be, and gain the priceless gifts (or presents) that they hold.
What does that look like for you and I?
It means that we can stop running from our pain and fears. Stop trying to avoid the uncomfortable thoughts and feelings that lurk in the dark corners of our heart, and let them be. Let them come out and express themselves.
It is not an easy path, but it is a way to be free from the constant yearning for something else. Something better.
If we can reach that place of acceptance of all we hold and all we are, then perhaps we can find that everything we ever want or need exists right here and now, in this moment.
All of our wildest dreams have already come true.
Aquí y Ahora