I arrive later at the festival than intended but all is well. My compatriot already set up our booth and is in full swing. We munch on snakefruit as attendees fill out forms for the free yoga retreat we are raffling off. There are dvds, cds, and yoga bags also for purchase and I do my best to share my personal yogi experience with those who inquire about the Australian program. Yoga styles range widely but the core is the same. Yoga means union, the connection with the true and divine self, the one heart of the universe. It doesn’t really seem to matter where one practices, in extreme heat or even on a mat, with a dog or a baby or together with a partner, with mantra music or loud modern tunes, whether one can stand on one’s head for five minutes or place one’s ankle behind one’s head. It can all be yoga with genuine intention.
An older man that is friends with the Aussie yogi connects me with holistic retreats in southern Thailand, an area I also feel called to return again to teach and do healing. He is in the process of opening a wellness center at an established hotel on Ko Samui and I feel as if I will be assisting in some form in the future. Ideas regarding the creation of community pour beautifully. He does regrettably have to return to his current position in Africa for the meantime, a job that brings him little joy in a traditional office setting. It is only temporary brother, I assure. He knows it too. His own transformation from a corpulent, chain smoking, party loving Australian into one who is attending yoga, spirit festivals and is organizing the creation of a health facility is extraordinary. We are all coming together to assist; we are architects called to craft a more harmonious world.
My table partner introduces me to countless others, studio owners, teachers, community. Ubud is a small oasis yet generously open to new members, assuming visas are sort out with the government. It seems as if all it takes is a few doh-ray-me and patience…and a quick border crossing that usually occurs via Singapore. I meet another from Singapore who too will host me for the evening. I almost feel as if I am playing with magic the synchronicities so strong.
I attend a portion of a lecture by Danny Paradise, Ashtanga shaman yogi with fluffy long (Jew-fro) hair and a hippy bandana. He is well versed in scripture, heart-centered, a total free spirit.
He talks of ayahuasca, the benefits of using of plant medicine, incorporating the wisdom of our elders and ancestors along with the realization that we are all teachers, masters, and need not seek others as gurus. All knowledge is within. There are deep healing properties of simply walking in the forest, by siting next to a waterfall, connecting with the elements as there is practicing yoga. Yoga and shamanism are in alignment and complimentary.
He does a bit of pranayama practice and I think fondly of Dharma Mittra. I opine he does it best.
Lazy yogis….jk. Just lounging:
Traditional batik making station:
Supper at a very local warung where I hope my body remains free from msg. There are no white powder shakers on the tables and I pray none in my gado-gado. Blessing my food first will keep it clean. I thank all who have prepared my fuel, to those who have picked and planted the produce, to the sun and of course to the water.
I receive an email from the Chakra, the farm director, who will sponsor me for a six month visa in exchange for assisting with the children’s program.
Living in the flow is a gift beyond words. The path of the least resistance is the one most blissfully to follow, the road where one is guided to be and will be forever supported. Let us all be granted freedom and fearlessness, overflowing love and light.