healing

THE PAIN OF BECOMING: NO MUD. NO LOTUS.

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I’m struggling right now. Going through yet another stage of my evolutionary journey.

I believe in intentional #lifedesign and my life has been largely designed for a specific being who at a young age learned that in order to receive love she needed to “do great things”. As she grew, she continued to be rewarded for her performance. She developed leadership and communication skills and strived to be extraordinary. Unconsciously seeking attention and love by proving her worth. Her enoughness.

Over the last ten years that seeking has become a spiritual awakening and the last two years, an around the world adventure of the heart. On that journey, she discovered a very simple but powerful truth, that she was born worthy. Born enough. Just like water can’t be any wetter. She couldn’t be more worthy or more enough.

Imagine her surprise 🤷🏻‍♀️. The waves of impact on her unconscious tendencies 🌀. But while the insight is instantaneous, the deconditioning is a process.

The gravity is real. We live in a society that also tends to value doing > being. Striving + achieving > reflecting + becoming. Yang > yin. Outer work > inner work. The pursuit of power over the pursuit of love and peace.

While I am all for standing in our power and taking action and I recognize the over-commercialization of love and peace, I also see a dire need for REBALANCING.

From the inside out. Many of us call for world peace and transformation but that requires inner peace and transformation. We are always limited and unlimited by our consciousness. This is an inside job.

I see very clearly that I have a role in this change. I feel called to take part in teaching, creating, repairing, and healing. But for now, I’m working on me.

“No mud. No lotus” as Thich Naht Hanh famously said. Lotus flowers are known as symbols of transformation and rebirth because they grow in the mud and learn from the darkness. Slowly but surely, lotus’ use the mud as nutrients to grow and then they miraculously rise above the water, petal by petal, clean and pure. They are revered as one of the most spiritual flowers.

And while part of me feels stuck in the mud and afraid of the world. It is not my path to go hide in a cave, ashram or forest. Swami Yogananda says, “Walking away under the guise of renunciation or non-attachment is the easy path. It shows more spiritual fiber to live a Godly life in the jungle of civilization.” I chose to walk on the earth. With the people. In cities. In the world.

In my Mayan Dreamspell Chart this role is called, a Red Skywalker: the time/space traveller who can jump dimensions to assist in realizing heaven on Earth. They are angelic messengers connected to sky but who walk on Earth.

That said, my message to you is this, wherever you are on your soul’s quest, know that it’s ok. Trust that you are exactly where you need to be in pursuit of your true journey.

The world needs you, imperfect.

As you are.

And whatever needs to happen to support you in your evolution, it’s important. Make it a priority and know that you are guided and protected always.

Have faith divine friends 🙏🏽,

Mud&Lotus
#nomudnolotus #yearofdivinelove #healing #repair #selflove #souljourney

FIRST DAY OF THE REST OF MY LIFE

WRITTEN FOUR YEARS AGO  on May 26, 2015

"Today is the first day of the rest of my life.

I was reminded that everyday is a choice. There are two fundamental approaches to take: one of love, abundance, and "I can", and the other of fear, scarcity and "I can't". Nine times out of ten I choose the former.

Last night, I got caught in the latter. Questioning my purpose, my work, my identity. Socrates said, "Question your most precious beliefs." And John Woodens says “it’s what you learn after [you think] you know it all that counts.”

The thing about me is, when I am very clear on my direction, I am hellbent on making it happen. I am unstoppable. Philosophically I embrace change, spiritually I embrace life as a universe of possibility, and those beliefs create my reality.

But I have doubts too. I have internal monkey mind chatter. I worry. I complain. I can be uncertain and unclear.

Up until now, my lowest lows have come from moments where I have felt directionless. It usually happens just before I take that next leap. I'm seeing now that when you leap there's that hang time- in that moment you feel both fundamental emotions: love AND fear. That must be what I'm experiencing now.

I am one day over the one year mark of pursuing my dream to live in the Bay Area. I've become clear that there's no going back. It's one month over the one year mark of another dream: to do work that I love and be paid to be myself at Delivering Happiness. I am now working on the one project I have wanted to work on since I started - to activate our community and reimagine the movement. There's no going back.

As I cross the chasm between my current reality to the next, I also see that there is room for new dreams and a next level vision. I have exited the kiddy pool of adolescence and am swimming through an ocean of self-realization. Soon I will be at the point where I am not just reaching for my potential but realizing it.

What will I do with my life then? Who will I serve? How will I serve? What will I be hellbent on making happen?

Oprah said one of the best compliments she ever received when she was coming up as a news anchor and then talk show host was, "You haven't changed, you've just become more of yourself".

I hope years from now, I will be courageous, bold, and inspirational. A beacon of beauty, truth, and vision. And a soul that keeps swimming."

#yearofdivinelove

Photography: John Harris JJTechboogie Media


HEARTBROKEN. HEART OPEN.

You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens. — Rumi

You have to keep breaking your heart until it opens. — Rumi

Today, I feel homesick. Really homesick.

Why?

  • Maybe it’s because I’m growing and it’s scary.
  • Maybe it’s because I’m letting go and questioning everything I thought I knew.
  • Maybe it’s because I’m going farther than ever before, risking a good life for an unknown but potentially remarkable one.

Maybe it doesn’t matter why and it’s just okay to miss home.

I shared this feeling with my friend Tanya who said…

“Love. You are the deepest part of you all the time. I want you to bring history (herstory) forward. And your future back. And allow yourself to miss it. And to let it live inside you as part of your life. Part of your being. You are immaculately beautiful. And all the things you miss are with you forever.”

Damn, this wise woman is fucking right!

The people, places, and moments are woven into the fabric of my life story. Never to be repeated the same way twice. Furthermore, these people, places, and moments are rooting for me, loving and supporting me every step of the way.

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And after three months in Southeast Asia and seven months on the road, now is a good time to remember why I made this choice.

Why I nonsensically flew halfway around the world, by myself, to a remote island where I had spent less than a week and knew less than a handful of people.

  • I flew halfway around the world to show myself I loved myself. My body begged me to take better care of her. My spirit was suffering and my energy was depleted.
  • I flew halfway around the world to give myself space to be. My inner child asked me to BE with her, to PLAY with her, and to CHOOSE her first.
  • I flew halfway around the world to step into my womanhood. My divine femininity felt shut down. My sexuality and sensuality contained. My creative power and life force blocked.  

Here I have had the space to reconnect and revitalize.

  • To come home to my body.
  • To come home to my spirit.
  • To come home to my energy.

To enter a State of Grace where purpose, presence, and divinity meet.

To invite the vibrant, expressive, creative child within me to play.

To allow the wild, howling, untamed woman within me to be free. 

Above every sky is another sky. Beneath every ocean another ocean.

I’ve come this far only to see, I am only scratching the surface of my immensity.

And yet, I can't help but look backwards and wonder if it’s too late to turn around; to swim back to the sunny shores of my comfort zone. To return to the places and people who know me or at least who knew me.

Even if I were to turn back now I ask myself: Will I be accepted and understood as this newly revealed me? Will my past life fit anymore? Will I revert back to my old patterns? Will I lose myself once again?

Though these sound like fears, deep down they are expressions of love. Love for what I've found and love for what I've left behind. 

They say if you love something, set it free.

So today my soul surrenders. 

  • I surrender to heartbreak.
  • I surrender to homesick.
  • I surrender to vulnerability.
  • I surrender to the unknown.
  • I surrender to love and I set her free.

With gratitude and grace,
Lotus

p.s. this is a collaborative playlist I created called HOME. Feel free to add songs that bring you comfort on your journey. 

THE SACRED ART OF SHIBARI 縛り癒

How does one put words to an experience as electrifying, enlivening, and elevating as Shibari 縛り癒 Healing?

The first word that comes to heart is "Yugen" a Japanese word for describing the indescribable. Yugen is a profound awareness of the universe that triggers a deep emotional response.

That's what Bodhi Zapha's Shibari Workshop gave me.

Shibari 縛り癒 Healing  | Bodhi Zapha 
"A Shibari healing session involves working with ropes and meditative states to channel energy, feelings of surrender and connection with transcendental consciousness free from the limitations of the body." — Bodhi Zapha

In this sacred art form, Bodhi is a Shamanic Alchemist transforming what was once an act of torture and suffering into an initiation into conscious healing, pure beauty, and great fun!

Shibari 縛り癒 Healing has been likened to "a hot bath for your energy body", "meeting the edge of your humanity", "touching the void", "embracing the somatic landscape of vulnerability and surrender".

Shibari 縛り癒 Healing builds a bridge between the conscious and subconscious mind, the mind and body work together to bring a state of peace to the being. In this twilight place the mind is in resonance with it's own deeper intelligence, melting into source energy, the place from whence we all derive.

The singularity, the core of existence beyond duality. To experience oneness with this core universal energy realigns the individual with his or her own true essence leading to profound self evolution and reconnection to spirit.

My first experience with Shibari 縛り癒 Healing was completely unanticipated. Through the experience of being tied and un-tied, I was swiftly transported into a state of total surrender.

In that sacred space, I felt a soul wound hidden with me unlock and slowly come undone. I dove deep and discovered that under layers and layers, I have a profound feeling of distrust. Distrust for others, distrust for self, distrust in the Divine. Like no one and nothing can truly hold me.

Opening something like that can be quite startling and unnerving but the space was held so beautifully that it allowed for a gentle unraveling. My Shibari partner remained by my side and I was able to come to a place of wholeness and willingness to release this distrust and begin to rebuild my faith. 

From that session on, every experience we shared flowed. Each moment presented a new learning, teaching, and delight. Bodhi took us through various tying techniques and fun tantra exercises like "Predator and Prey" (aka Hunter and Hunted) where you take on different masculine and feminine roles to express and explore the wildness within.

Through Bodhi's Shibari workshop, I also learned more about the Wheel of Consent, a wheel that presents the spectrum of Doing/Not Doing and Giving/Receiving where there are four main actions of: Serving, Allowing, Taking, and Accepting.

Bodhi shared that in relationships it is often that one person is giving, say for example a man is giving his partner a massage. In this case, he is giving and feels he is SERVING his partner. She feels she is ALLOWING him to do what he wants to do. But no one is RECEIVING.

We practiced each of these and it was amazing to go full on into each. Particularly with TAKING. I've never been given permission or allowed myself to fully TAKE. It's been deemed as "selfish" and "wrong" and dependent on the context it can be. But in relationship where boundaries are clear and consent is given, it can be an opportunity to step into your power in a very sexy and invigorating way. It's also really exhilirating to be taken by your partner, to see them in their full power! 

This insight alone was worth the cost of the entire workshop. I now feel in-freedomed to introduce and practice giving, receiving, allowing, and taking in future relationships.

To conclude, the Shibari 縛り癒 Healing workshop was significant. I'm stunned by how much we covered in just two days together. 

I feel tremendous respect for this healing art and immense gratitude for the opportunity to explore Shibari as a new expression of sexuality, sensuality, and spirituality. 

Thank you to Bodhi for showing us the ropes (pun intended!) and to my fellow Shibari Initiators for a most transformative experience 🙏🏽.

Join the next 2 day Instructive Shibari Healing Adventure in Koh Phangan, Thailand on August 13-14th or treat yourself to a private Shibari 縛り癒 Healing session with Bodhi directly.

AHO!

With gratitude and lots of spanks,

Lotus 

READY TO BE A WATERFALL

Anna Maria Magdalena at the base of Les Waterfall in Bali, Indonesia

Anna Maria Magdalena at the base of Les Waterfall in Bali, Indonesia

A waterfall doesn’t hold back.

At her peak, she is powerful and mighty. Pouring down with full force, she doesn’t worry about whether she is too much or not enough. She radiates. She cascades. She overflows. Her liquid light reflecting the sun.

At her base, she is nurturing and healing. Running like a river, she is fluid, momentous, and abundant. She doesn’t judge, edit or criticize. She surrounds. She embraces. She gives life. Her unconditional love flowing freely from the Earth.

For so long, I've held back.

Afraid of stepping into my full power. Owning my whole truth. Expressing the immensity of my darkness and my light. Like so many of us, I have been contained and conditioned, repressed and restrained. Whether explicitly or implicitly, externally or internally I've been under control and made to play small.

In January, I was guided through a powerful clearing session when I had a vision. I saw myself at the bottom of a well, rain pouring down, in tears. I saw my father looking down at me, not able to understand my emotional waters. Not sure what to do, he walked away.

I saw others pass by, some filled their cups to the brim while others ignored me entirely. I felt an urge to bring them inside, express myself, share more of me, but I was afraid of being too much. I was afraid that if I showed them who I really am I might drown them or that if I gave them everything I might still not be enough. So for protection, I contained myself in a well. 

Fast forward to May, one of the lead facilitators who had guided me through the clearing session invited me to her women’s retreat in Bali, Indonesia.

The word facilitator does not do this woman justice. This super soul is a divinely appointed Shamanic Earth Priestess, Spiritual Guide, and Bringer of Light. Her name is Anna Maria Magdalena and through her Shamanic Shakti & Tantrika Arts women's retreat, she led 14 Women on what I like to call the "Shakti Embodiment Ship", a collective Goddessy to discover the divine feminine within. 

While the inner work was challenging, all in all, the entire retreat was like the 12 days of Christmas, gift after gift after gift. But the most generous gift Anna Maria shared was bringing us to her home on the sacred land at Les Waterfall in North Bali.

The intention with the Waterfall excursion was to release what is no longer serving us, creating space for calling in and manifesting our dreams. At the base of Les Waterfall there’s a large lingam shaped rock, which they call the “Pillar of Light”. When letting go, you face the Pillar, holding on for dear life. When calling in your dreams, you turn around with the Pillar at your back towards the light.

It was a deeply moving experience watching each woman go under the waterfall one by one. Some screamed, some surrendered. I didn’t know what each woman was going through but I could feel and see the transformation transpiring.

During catalytic moments like these I usually come in with a crystal clear intention. I am strongly attuned to what needs to clear and what I desire to invite in but this time, nothing came. Imagine, a woman who loves words and no words arrived.

I was the last Shakti to go underneath the waterfall. As I walked towards Anna Maria, she took my hand smiling and said, “Welcome to the Ship.”

When I went in, the waterfall engulfed me. She didn’t stop to ask what I wanted, what temperature I liked or how much pressure felt good. She beat down on me relentlessly. She didn’t hold back. I was so struck by her power, all I could do was lean into her and feel her full force.

As I did, my mind started racing, what should I be letting go of? This is an important moment, what do I have to say? I struggled. It was so intense. My mind went blank. The waterfall was so strong that my swimsuit nearly came off. I finally realized there was nothing I could do, nothing to achieve. Slowly, I surrendered.

Minutes felt like hours as I stayed still and listened. Then I heard a soft whisper, “I am done being a well.”

I heard it again a bit louder, “I am done being a well.” Again and again. “I am done being a well.  I am done being a well. I am done being a well.” As this happened, I began to play out all the micro-moments where I had been a well. Contained. Constrained. Repressed. Afraid of my femininity, my sexuality, my sensuality, my power. I felt the pain of holding myself back, controlling myself for years and I wailed.

Then the time came to turn around and face the light. Boundless water continued to beat down and I felt like I might drown. But rather than fight it or fear it, I drank it in and received it.

It was in that moment, drinking in her liquid light that I heard another whisper spring from inside of me,“I am ready to be a waterfall." Another time, clearer, "I am ready to be a waterfall." Again and again ringing, vibrating through my body, "I am ready to be a waterfall. I am ready to be a waterfall. I am ready to be a waterfall."

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Then it all came together.

I bellowed from the center of my womb to the top of my lungs:

I AM DONE BEING A WELL. I AM READY TO BE A WATERFALL.

Declaring my power. Owning my truth. Overflowing in love.

When I came out of the waterfall, Anna Maria was there. I looked into the ocean within her eyes. She held my feet to ground me. She blessed my body and received me into her loving arms. We laughed out loud.

And that’s when I finally understood, I was never a well, I have always been a waterfall. 

Stunning photography by Eva Kroes, Creatress at  Orgone Knights

Stunning photography by Eva Kroes, Creatress at Orgone Knights

Infinite gratitude to Anna Maria and the Shakti's aboard this Goddessy. Thank you for your bravery in crossing the chasm of this epic voyage together.

We are all light. We are all love. We are all beauty.

AHEY SISTERS,

Lotus