To offer insight to how such a course may manifest by Divine will is merely to rejoice in the mercy and give praise to the Absolute Reality ... and to inspire others to also keep a watchful eye on themselves and how things work in their world. Until now, I have been able to write about this particular episode only in poetry, however I will now attempt to recount the process more vividly.
To conquer Fear
To Flow Rooted
To dance with the Elements
To access Consciousness
To see beyond Form
To be Present in Self
To accept I and the Whole
To find harmony in Me and We
All That Is
As It Is
With total Surrender
To Love and to Serve
For It Is Perfect
Reality the Beautiful.
PART 1: Like seaweed in water
When I do not feel whole, the lack will give rise to neediness and a tendency to exploitation, is it not? When I feel disconnected from others and experience separation, ego identification and judgement is taking over love vibration and compassion, is it not?
I was at a dance therapy workshop - I love to dance and I am curious about my Self so dance therapy is really up my street. It is here that I realised the necessity of being grounded, connected to the earth, both physically and energetically, in a time when I was so much inhabiting my mind. Both spirit and thought are so volatile, fragile ... the earth gives stability and strength. Fluid movements yet rooted my body moved, like a seaweed in water. It was my first observation of how energy actually moved within my body and how it made me feel on the whole. I made a mental note to always be grounded in the here and now, to not get lost in thought and time and big ideas.
Later, we were in the middle of an exercise, moving gently with eyes closed and visualising. They told me to imagine a beautiful place, a place of tranquility and sense upliftment: I thought of the coast of Gozo. They told me to imagine being on a path, where does it take you? And it took me to a spooky house in the woods. What? Why? Noooooo!
The resistance - my aversion to the darkness was clear. And worse was the notion that I had created it. My psyche had created this image to represent something I was yet to understand, and I refuted it. With it came a song in my head: Black Dove by Tori Amos. It was a song I listened to in my darkest hours when I lived in drab grey London and wilted from lack of sunshine and smiles.
But why now? I had been thinking that I was probably at one of the best times of my life. I was content. I felt grateful. So what was this about? It would take me a few weeks to find out.
This was around the time of the Spring Equinox, as the dance therapy group went to Mnajdra Temples early next morning for the sunrise experience. This could be an entire story on its own, but this is where the lines from the poem, "To dance with the elements, To access consciousness" spring from. The seaweed experience extended, an affirmation that my human experience of consciousness and body is a bridge between the unseen and our multidimensional reality.
It was an experience that unified body, mind and spirit into a whole - the body and mind are no longer an obstacle to spiritual life. I suddenly realised that which is taught by Tantra: every aspect of all that is, is essentially of spiritual nature. My human form was finally embraced as part of the expression in the dance of the sweet Absolute.
But that's not it. There's more.
PART 2: The tree in the woods
As I came nearer, I noticed that, whereas all the trees grew haphazardly, this one stood right in the middle of a circle of trees. I entered the circle and I could perceive a heightened energy. My hairs stood on end and I felt overcome with a calm. I sat on the periphery and just observed. The tree looked majestic, like a king in the forest. Could it be? Could we humans really claim to know anything beyond the biology of these great creatures?
I stood and, immediately on leaving the circle, I was drawn to another clearing. From there, a passage opened up before me. It was not a clear passage, but the trees seemed to line it at equidistance far into the forest. I felt like Alice in Wonderland. Of course, I had to follow the white rabbit.
Deep into the forest I walked. The terrain got more rugged but I soldiered on. I was so deep into the forest I could not see or hear a hint of human intervention. Could I get lost? I disallowed the fear to take over and continued on - I wanted to reach the two trees I saw at the end of the tree tunnel.
Then I came to an edge. The forest was divided. A wide sandy road ran right through it. It had rained the night before, the sand was soggy and my feet sank. I couldn't come this far and not reach my destination. It would mean giving up! From fear! I put my best foot forward and ... it held. I walked across quite easily and came to the two trees. I looked back whence I came. I felt as if my crossing brought the two parts of the forest together. They were no longer divided or separated because a connection had been forged.
Satisfied that this was the scope of my spontaneous mission without a cause, I made my way back. It seemed that I was following the same way, but emerged somewhere else. I could make out where to go, however I noticed the oddity of having somehow "lost" my way back.
Now I realise I could never have emerged in the same place - something had shifted. I had unknowingly given the Universe permission to allow me to explore the dark house in the woods. The house was in me. The darkness was the illusion I was still hypnotised by, that was about to be seen for what it was. I had to emerge elsewhere, in a new place, from that Self knowledge.
When the festival had ended and the journey within was done, I returned to the woods. I wanted to go back to the tree - could I find it? It was easier than I thought. I saw it stand out the same as before, like you do a person that just grabs your attention in a crowd for no apparent reason but the way they are.
I moved closer and entered the circle. That energy again! But it felt different. It was gentle, embracing ... not as commanding as the first time. I felt better inclined to move all the way to it and placed my hands on its trunk. Then these words sprung from my mouth: "You are one in the many, but you are unique and special, just the way you are." And a tear rolled down my face. It felt as though those words were not mine, but for me.
It was exactly what I needed to hear. The magic that binds the universe and the language without words conveyed its message by the means it knows. I had felt quite lost at the time; I had just had my ego shattered completely one night on the dancefloor, only to be told that I should be exactly as I am.
This was known, I had even realised it, had I not? The lesson was evidently deeper than I thought. The question now was: "Who am I?" I didn't even know who I was anymore, then how could I be that? I later realised it was simple: it is not in the knowing, but in the being ... it is not in the mind but in the heart. But for now, the seed that was planted by the King of Trees was being nurtured by the Mother of Trees, and they are the same one.
PART 3: Life is like a dance floor
The dance floor was full of people living out their own story. The music was psychedelic trance, a music designed on shamanic principles and which is intended to help one tune into altered states of consciousness naturally. Having said that, my passion of salsa music and dance also allowed me to tune into surrender to the lead of another and language without words. I guess anything is what you make of it.
On this day in Spain, I was in observer mode. I was experiencing myself in my body, as I often do when I dance. When I opened my eyes, I could see the others sharing the space and could make eye contact. Earlier that day, when I felt full, I experienced how I could also travel around the dance floor and sprinkle sparkles of good vibes over everyone: Fill up - Shine - Serve!
But I was tired and depleted, yet I refused to go to sleep - I did not want to miss a thing! In this state of over-tiredness and a desire to enjoy and exploit, I was not feeling sparkly. I pushed myself and saw that I couldn't do it. It is not something you can fake.
From the crowd, a Spanish woman approached and told me something that suddenly sent me into deep introspection. Her own story, no doubt, and not mere chance she targeted me, no doubt - Universal Law works that way.
I stayed on the dance floor but, suddenly, rather than being the giver of happy smiles, I felt like I was drained and draining others. Without warning, I suddenly could see myself in the times in my life when my actions were spurred from a need - to be liked, to be appreciated, to be esteemed, to enjoy, whatever it may be. My ego fought the idea that I was not as sweet, kind and purely intentioned as I had liked to believe.
Continued introspection, amidst flashing lights and psychedelic music as my body moved with closed eyes, I observed the workings of my mind and the exploiting nature of the false ego that sometimes could take over my conscious presence. I saw it, yet the ego's fight through identification had the better of me and I identified with the loser, judging myself. I saw my mind, I saw my ego, I saw the dark house in the woods and, although I accepted it, I didn't love it.
For days I continued this process of observation. I looked within and around me, hoping to find some sort of appease to the question of how to balance the Me and the We, and the I and the Whole. Now you may see why the Tree meant so much to me. He/She was my teacher: "You are one in the many, but you are unique and special, just the way you are."
It was only on the first day back home in Malta that it began to make sense. My friend reminded me of the mantra "Soham" - I am That I am. She pointed out that it should have a comma, I am That, I am. Once our false ego collapses, divine identity persists only as an expression of the Absolute Consciousness. The original identity is as a servant to the whole. Yet we cannot serve on Earth unless we feel whole within ourselves.
Then I could see. Just as when I dance, I connect with Self, fill up, shine, serve. It is the same process in our relations in life itself. We cannot purely love and serve others and the whole unless we have Self-love and have our basic needs fulfilled. If we try to, it is motivated by a different intention; it is the difference between dedication and exploitation.
The rain does not fall on one tree alone, but falls upon the entire forest. The roots do not nourish one leaf, but all the leaves. As soon as the energy flow is directed inwards, towards a single benefactor, rather than the whole, it is behaving like a cancer towards the whole. Every cell is responsible for the health of the entire body.
PART 4: The homecoming
A trip to the beach led to an unexpected Satsang - what are the chances? I walked into the area where the spiritual master from Bali was meeting his students, just metres from my selected beach, and the sound of Hari Om and Om Narayana filled the room ... and my heart. It was almost a remembrance ... of the days spent practicing devotional service at the Ashram in India with full heart until I felt I had dropped one ego only to adopt another. This felt to me like a return to that practice with a deeper realisation and a more genuine heart.
When the Hare Krishna Maha Mantra came on, a tear rolled down my face. I was feeling full again, full of love and gratitude. The Maha Mantra hails and evokes Absolute Consciousness and Eternal Bliss. Out of the blue, in the most unexpected of circumstances, bhakti yoga practice reminded of divine connection, service and the inner fulfillment one feels from such connection and service ... this is pure and unalloyed love!
The language of love requires no knowledge or words ... it is a flow of energy, an outwards service flow towards the whole and all its fragment parts. And there are no obstacles to love, except our tendency to serve ourselves, an inwards pulling born of fear.
While the heart rules as love is divine power, the mind and knowledge are no longer an obstacle to heart and love. Maintaining a view of absolute perfect oneness and interconnection, everything can be useful for spiritual evolution with the right intention within the human experience, and lead us toward ultimate complete Self realisation, where the one serves the One and both are whole.
There is no good and bad, no right or wrong, no this and that ... just Absolute Perfection! And whether we agree or disagree on any perspective, it is exactly the way it's meant to be, and it's all good 🙂 Sharing is caring, imposing or making the other wrong is not, so all glories to our shared spiritual evolution and our intention to serve and support each other and the whole, with love, always.