Spiritual simplicity

“My soul is from elsewhere, I’m sure of that, and I intend to end up there.” — Rumi

+++Every Friday I go to my meditation class in Brampton. I practice Raja Yoga to contemplate my life and myself as a spiritual being and soul. In our superficial and patriarchal society many of us obsess about our outer appearance. We become attached to the body and youth and limit our worth to the way we look. As academics we devote much of our time in acquiring  and producing knowledge outside of ourselves. I have a love/hate relationship with academe but most of the time I find it a perfect fit for my over-thinking.  Yet is is easy to get lost in the mind and in our thoughts. It is easy to be seduced by the illusion of lack, disconnection and worthlessness. It is easy to get busy, addicted and obsessed to external stimulants of all sorts to sedate the senses.

Ever since I came back from my work in Central America in 2001 I felt like something grave within me shifted. I attached myself to the suffering of others. My heart was broken and never fully recovered. I used to be a warrior, an over-achiever and a pioneer within my family but then it all came to a halt.

This painful impasse lead me to a fascinating and intense healing journey to find myself again. Oh I have done it all. The list is long and I have seriously lost track of all that I have done and tried.

Let me give you an idea…

I have traveled up and down all of Chile with only my backpack to find my roots. I have done Mayan ceremonies in the heartland of Guatemaya. I learned Reiki and other energy healing modalities in attempt to heal myself. I have done intensive body work of the Eastern, Western and Global South indigenous traditions. I have visited ancient indigenous cities throughout mesoamerica to hear what my ancestors have wanted to tell me.  I have done meditation courses where I could not speak, read and write for 10 days in Coast Salish Territories and Ontario. I have consulted with shamans, healers, angels, Santeria priests and more. I have been part of diverse healing ceremonies with First Nation communities in the North and South such as sweat-lodges and limpias and temazcales in the traditional way with curanderas in the deep sierras of Mexico. I was contemplating finding the curanderas in Oaxaca who Lila Downs spoke of who healed her from all sadness with pure agua de rosas. But enough!

It hurts me when I abuse my time. It hurts me when I do not create and give to the world with all my potential. It hurts me when I settle in my intimate relationships in avoidance of deep intimacy. It hurts me when I value the external over myself.

I have reached the point of spiritual simplicity; spiritual maturity. I do not wait for every Friday to contemplate my life. Life after all is a daily practice–a gift that we are given breath by breath. I know now that wherever I go there I am.  Moving to New York City, San Francisco, Vancouver (again) or to Mexico (again) would not resolve any internal pain or disconnection.

I once  lived in Cuetzalan, the most magical place I have ever felt and experienced in my life. I had a house all to myself but there I was with my longings and delusions.  If I am living in disconnection with my very being then paradise, lying beside my lover, the turquoise oceans of the Caribbean or the Highlands of Guatemala will never grant me the peace and joy I seek.

It is one thing to be told that we are the ones we seek but then another to truly embody this wisdom and this is where I am right now. Every day I meditate and connect to myself, my gifts and wisdom. All the answers are truly all within us. We just forget them along the way and cloud them with our insecurities.

We are the universe and universe is within us. Imagine that we are made of the same substances of the stars. We are magical and miraculous beings. We carry the wisdom of the universe and of our ancestors within our DNA.  But we are not always present to the sacredness that we are, that we have within us.

I teach my students that knowledge is just information if you do not apply it. Now I have to live my own learnings and the teachings that have been imparted to me by many beautiful and powerful souls along my life, including those who have broken my heart.

So this week and the rest of my life I seek to be coherent with my values and virtues. I seek to express myself soul-fully in this world. I was given this life and it is up to me to make it a beautiful one.

I found this timeless prayer to guide my intentions and interactions from here on out…
It is pure spiritual simplicity…

May I be in peace.
May my heart remain open.
May I awaken to the light which is my true nature.
May I be healed.
May I be a source of healing for all beings. [Metta: Buddhist Prayer]

My soul, body & spirit in pure bliss--Coast Salish forests/rivers

My soul, body & spirit in pure bliss–Coast Salish Territories rainforest


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