A Big Thing, I want to let go of!
Lessons from Australia
Jim Montrose, Ayurvedic Health Consultant, June 2018.
Last month, Dr. Zaida shared our trip to the Center of Australia (Ayers Rock) and bringing it home. She suggested that I also experienced an amazing energy and experience from the rock and yes, it was great! And there is so much more depth when we really let ourselves be renewed and influenced by nature and life around us. In reality we all have the opportunity to live life trusting it brings great insights and experiences in all situations. In Native American traditions and many cultures around the world, they experience the numinous in everyday situations as well as a specially prepared Vision Quest. This was my understanding of the phenomenal year we have completed.
It really started when we took the plunge, let go of resistance, and did a 10 day Vipassna meditation retreat in India near Bodghaya, where the Buddha received enlightenment, in April 2017. Up to this point in time we had meditated regularly and had done several meditations lasting 30-60 minutes but rarely longer. We had been interested in expanding our meditation practices and learning to turn inward and trust our inner vision as a way of life. Our first exposure to the Vipassna group occurred when we stumbled upon their Mumbai center four years ago. The time was right in April and we did it kicking and screaming yet finally surrendering. Learning a very important lesson in equanimity (the practice of non-judging witnessing in which we avoid craving or repulsion a form of letting go judgement and naming). Our practice became more centered and solid through the year trusting more and more on the internal reality. Famed spiritualist Krishnimurti said many do meditations for a bit of time and think they are done but true meditation is for 24 hours a day and this is what I experienced (momentarily in India and glimpse some days).
As we travelled to Australia we had a great desire to make it to the rock this time, I had previously been to Australia two times and was not able to visit the rock on both of those trips, I had to let go of my desire to see them. When we reached Perth we started to arrange our trip and were not able to go right away when we thought we would. In Adelaide after an active half day marathon with a travel agent we finally got our trip to the center arranged in ten days time and went off to Melbourne and Tasmania to explore. Getting to the center took three days for early white settlers and involved very sparse water and knowledgeable trackers who could find water. Our own trip was starting to become our own vision quest and a bit harder than anticipated.
When we got to the rock, the first glimpse was startling in its beauty, simplicity and power, as we enjoyed a fruit juice sun-downer watching the rock in the last rays of sunset. The next morning we woke before sunrise and started our 8.9 km hike around the base of the rock before the sun became too hot. The aborigines have long frowned on climbing the rock, which we honoured and had instead a wonderful silent walk around the rock where it talked with both of us and gave us a glimpse of the dreamtime reality the aborigines so value and for me was a real boon to experience for those short hours and is the joy of travel and life when I experience those magical moments. Even if you can’t get away from the house and travel to somewhere new you can do your own vision quest by taking a silent day or half-day, arrange the day when you don’t have to interact with others, and allow your partner to be the buffer with the insistent world of interruption. Be with yourself and perhaps go into nature or a new museum or something you want to explore and listen for your answers spoken or unspoken.
The process of allowing myself to let go and to then create the trip I wanted to the center of Australia was a vivid affirmation of this process. In Perth, we thought we would go directly to the rock only to be blocked by no accommodations or lack of space in the trips. Being a doer who had been rewarded by doubling up and working harder I kept looking and trying to arrange the trip as planned (action that is not aligned even in the face of the clear messages, “I was feeling resistance,” that this was not the way). I got the idea to switch our order of the trip during meditation in the face of frustrating attempts to arrange the trip (the internal GPS – negative emotions alerting me that this was not the way). By going to the rock a week or two later I found more accommodations and space in the trips and when I checked on going to Tasmania first I found accommodation and transportation available (alignment to our true desire to get to all our stops in Australia and have a great trip). We even manifested a great travel agent who had better access to trips and arranged everything for us. She clued us into the difficulty we experienced as the week we were trying to get to the rock was a big Australian holiday and everyone had already booked everything. By choosing to let go of our artificial time and order we aligned with our ultimate desire and found the available accommodations and travel. We created our trip by first becoming clear on our desire (to see both Tasmania and Ayer’s Rock – order not important) and then letting go of the resistance (in this case that we did the rock first) and allowing ourselves to rise in vibrational match to our desire by following what gives us bliss and joy.
For me, my Vision Quest question, even though I left it unspoken and unwritten, turned out to be what should I let go of and what can help so many people that are focusing on what they don’t want in their life. For me learning about equanimity and practicing it has let me hear about or see things I don’t want and pivot to what I want quicker (I believe a major benefit of developing a meditation practice). I recently heard a speaker refer to this equanimity as “letting experience pass through us but not change us” which I call the place of non-doing in the eye of the storm of life experience. This became clearer when I had a friend who was challenged last year with a heart attack and another with complications and slow healing from joint replacements. In both cases, these conditions were seriously exasperated if not caused by an overzealous focus on the media circus around Trump; instead of remaining focused on the type of world they want to create and pivoting (choose to let go) from the circus and focus back on what brings them joy and love.
We all have experienced this to some extent, I have a great day and come home revved up and I start to think about what I didn’t get done or some sad news on the radio or TV instead of choosing to let go and appreciate and celebrate a great day – centered and focused on the story I want my world to be. As nature demonstrates the old tree produces seeds, dies providing fertilizer for the seeds and a new tree appears – a new self emerges. We are constantly self-renewing and evolving or we are contracting and moving towards non-existence. For me I find I must let go of the habit of turning externally towards what I don’t want when I am triggered with sad news, or a thought of what isn’t here yet, or done. How about you?
We were asked to give a talk on “our philosophy to stay focused positively in a turbulent world.” Will this group had many people who knew the value of a positive outlook but didn’t know how to really create the life they wanted especially in the light of the constant barrage of the media circus around Trump that so occupied their attentions even though living in Australia they were not directly affected. We explained it has to go beyond positive thoughts to a way of living from a beingness that embraces and expects to be joyful no matter what (it must become a firmly accepted belief not an interesting philosophy – a way of life and we must make it our new dominant subconscious belief). A state of being that is reached when we focus on what we want and avoid the distractions when something appears that we don’t want. The world’s religious traditions often mention something similar, Abdu’l-Baha the exemplar of the Baha’i Faith says it in a very lovely way: “Speak thou no word of politics; thy task concerneth the life of the soul, for this verily leadeth to man’s joy in the world (of God)… Rather confine thine utterance to spreading the blissful tidings of the Kingdom of God… Tell thou of abiding joy and spiritual delights, and godlike qualities… tell of the blowing of the spirit of life into the body of the world (Selections from the writings of Abdu’l-Baha, pp 92-93). [Let go of intrigue, live in joy and bliss and share that with your fellow travellers.]
It should be noted although individuals with radically different focuses can be alarming and create fear that they will have a major effect, when we stay focused on the experiences we wish to have and align with our source and self we have the power to create worlds and ride out the ripples of others around us (who for the most part are not aligned and don’t really have a major impact on our life). As Dr. Zaida suggested last month: we can stay focused on our desires by aligning with something bigger than our self (source, spirit, God), aligning with our self and then aligning with what it is we truly desire not society’s role expectations or your families but your own.
Until next time stay in your heart center and be in Love, Joy and Bliss.
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P.S. Jim is available for an overall assessment and Ayurvedic balancing for your unique constitution in terms of diet, exercise, and lifestyle choices with the 7000 year old Ayurveda science of living – email “balancing plan/assesement” to organize an appointment or call 071 959 0786 now.
Copyright June 2018