Lessons from Bali: the art of allowing + receiving.
It is my my fifth day in Bali, and I spent last night amongst throngs of Balinese people attending a huge Barong temple festival. Everyone was all dressed up to their finest, watching the massive puppet God on stage enacting a creation myth, people hanging around long steps in the the gorgeous dipping ravine, water and flora and fauna flanking the crowds. What I was most taken aback by, was the relaxed attitude of the Balinese people, and their constant beaming smiles while even doing the most laborious work.
Staying open, being in the Flow
The big lesson here for Westerners like myself, who have been raised in a different culture– a culture that praises productivity, external markers of success like fame and fortune and material goods, a culture obsessed with being ‘busy’ and over-doing, the big lesson here I feel is to STOP, and release the gripping, forcing, grasping that can so often happen as built-in reflexes for us Western folk. Not an overnight change for sure, but is so possible with an intentional, conscious daily practise. Why were these people NOT in rush? There was no anxiety, it’s as if they were all moving as one. Yes, they are a people deeply connected to the feminine way of being and doing– meaning value is placed on inter-relations, and staying in the FLOW- open to things changing, open to working together to achieve a common goal–
The art of allowing
Are we so focused on trying to get something, go somewhere, be someone, that we are missing a major ingredient in the recipe for deep fulfilment in Life? What happens instead, if we were to loosen the grip a bit and tune into our Inner Being, instead of the focus constantly looking OUTWARDS? Witnessing, noticing, observing, non-reactivity, deeply feeling, deep peace and calm are all states that arise naturally and spontaneously when we are connected to Nature and our own inner wisdom and Soul. This inner relaxing is also a form of self compassion– we are letting ourselves off the hook and pulling away from the inner self critic, the inner judge and victim. Ironically, I feel the more we let go of forcing things to happen, and staying tuned in to what we want, our desires manifest even faster! This doesn’t mean that to receive these openings and realizations you have to be in Bali, but that the very essence of Earth IS everywhere and Nature medicine is available to all of us, even living in tight quarters within a city. It is a choice what we turn our attention to, for as we give something more attention is GROWS within us ( fear-mongering on News, focusing on the problem as opposed to a solution of any given conflict, not enough-ness, lack consciousness, blaming, complaining, criticizing but also DEEP LOVING, affection, trusting, knowing, acting on intuition, positivity, positive groups of friends and family, seeing the BEAUTY in every situation…ETC ETC) and THAT, that ability to turn our attention to anything we want, is a freakin SUPERPOWER! So– a key piece to allowing, is to let go of how we thought or expected things to be, and be OPEN to the magic and mystery of life as it is happening before our very eyes, and as we are creating inside of ourselves moment to moment. Allowing is about choosing what we look at, and at the same time, letting go. A deep let go……always letting go multiple times a day….deep sighs, breathing, going for walk…..this takes practise I know and working in the folds, working in the exact moment you can feel contraction coming up..is where the gold lies.
It just dawned on me recently, observing the beautiful flow of Balinese life, that allowing is linked to how deeply we can receive anything– a moment, a deep breath, an actual gift, a compliment, a hug, the manifestation of a dream long prayed for….Deeply receiving IS the gift back to the giver and makes the exchange complete. It’s as if there’s a shame, a guilt , often WOMEN we do this, a tendency to pull back and not be TOO receiving of anything. WTF? Why do we do that? I feel it’s because there’s a social program built into the psyche of the collective consciousness of Women– that to do so would indicate you are greedy and selfish. This is a lie perpetuated by the Patriarchy to keep us small. We are grand, we are luminous, we are SO FULL! when we receive anything deeply and in no way does receiving deeply detract from our ability to give, be caretakers, be generous, and love others like crazy. Indeed– it strengthens the whole cycle of giving and receiving. Bali is teaching me so much in this time to let go, allow and DEEPLY RECEIVE. Nothing to do, nowhere to go, just present and OPEN. Again, this is not just a practise found in Bali, but a 5 minute concentrated meditation on receiving and letting -go that you can do ANYWHERE you are in the World. Nature is always speaking potent wisdoms and truths to us, if we are really listening we can hear. What does that look like for you? Potent medicine!
Receiving to Express: Drum as activator
I recently remarked to the group of women drummers this past weekend in Gabriola island, that in the past whenever I’d held a ceremonial drum, that it felt as if the drum itself acted as a tool for me to RELEASE + EXPRESS MY TRUTH, my heart-song and voice. I knew it was time for me, to release my voice and no longer hide in the closet. Singing has always been so dear to me, but I secretly judged it and was ashamed so much of my life. No more. It is time. If we have gifts, we must shine them. There is no shame in that. What are you still hiding? As women, we are waking up and VOICING all kinds of creations, expressions all over the world. What are you ready to release and express, chant, hum, holler, CRY up to the heavens? Join me on April 11th Wednesday from 6:30-8:30 in Vancouver, for the 5th class in the Chakra Healing Series, THROAT– to drum up our voices, using the recent Elk drum I birthed last week. We will be exploring any blocks in our expression within a safe space with other woman, and moving, shedding the cloaks that no longer serve us our fullest expression. Explore the range of your creative expression and deep truths you’ve kept silent about in this workshop. Hear the resounding DUM of your own voice from shooting straight out from your Womb. We will also explore non-violent communication in partner exercises while staying integral to our Truth. Self Expression, songs are channeled, they are received. What happens when we relax our Being, shoot our antenna up to the Heavens and RECEIVE + ALLOW whatever to come through? Come discover your edge with me. Link to reserve your spot here.
In a compassionate soft light,