From here onwards
As i gather myself for my return to the routines and the normal ...
... i'll be bringing along something new, a richness of color and experiences, a new flavor of sweet and salty.
In exchange, i leave behind a little part of me in the mountains, in the ocean, in the Southern California air. A friend told me once, "Be mindful, California has a way of casting a spell on you, you can never leave without falling in Love, you will be leaving a piece of you heart on the beach". And that's the way it shall be.
Of course, being immersed in the teachings, with fellow searchers, committing to solitude and quiet, enhances ones perceptions once one comes out of the cave. Many things will feel like the first time occasions. And, they are.
I have repeatedly had occasions to go out of my comfort zone. Obviously this is easier when one travels. One of my strengths, i think, is being in control (as far as that goes), having things in order, being confident about my next step. The interesting challenge, is bringing these qualities into the new situations that arise, being steady, clear-headed and courageously explore those new territories. Both outside, and on the inside.
In class, Ravi spoke about allowing oneself to move towards the unknown, with a mindset, of "i don't know". This is not ignorance though, it is openness which requires a practice of non-attachment and non-identification. We bring with us, all we have learned, all we have become in the process of self-examination and relationship, without letting all that we have learned restrict our clear vision, but rather, assist us in exploration.
Where do i go from here? How do these weeks of solitude, of study, and adventurous exploration play out in ordinary everyday life? What spices to bring and use?
Nothing of importance will endure without practice and insistence, and without releasing that which once was, to allow for that which wants to come. Every wave will withdraw again into the ocean, as if to receive a new Breath, a new beginning for yet another new, exhale. Every moment brings its newness, its lessons with it, touched by the moment before and giving a nuance to the moment yet to arrive. If one listens attentively, you can even hear it. Clearing the head of expectations.
California, you are certainly a cradle of challenges, joys and adventures. Thank you for the Love. May we meet soon again.