This has been my third visit teaching in China. I must admit I never really had China on my bucket list of places I wanted to visit, let alone places I wanted to teach. However, somewhere along my own spiritual journey towards awakening I had cried out to the Universe, “please guide me I am here to be of service” and so be it, the word became manifest!!
Note to self: Careful what you wish for!! And even if I have had glimpse of an Awakened state of consciousness, I am far from Awakened, and sip on banana peels often!
After going through my own dark night of the soul, I realised I was in a state of non-acceptance with what life was offering me. I was in total resistance when my relationship of 21 years was coming to an end. Suddenly I was pulled from the shore of all I had known and, kicking and screaming, I was thrust into the river of life. It was a sink and die, or float and swim kind of moment!
My life, without all the false identities I had built up about who I thought I was, mother, partner, African Dancer, Shamanic Priestess, community networker ect ect. I stood naked at the threshold of my own rebirth, and was forced to surrender to the death of what had been and was no more.
At some time during that period of my life, I watched the movie The YES MAN! After, I was inspired to give myself a challenge - what would happen if I just simply said yes to everything that came to me and approach life with the curiosity of a child again. What would happen if I started trusting in something far bigger than I could possibly comprehend with my little ego mind?
Through that process I was invited to India, another place I didn’t really want to return to, but I stuck to my challenge of saying YES and ended up teaching and facilitating workshops from Delhi to Goa, exploring the temples, and meeting one of India’s top fashion designers and Tantra masters, who became my private client and friend.
Many magical experiences happened there but that is another story. One of the things that happened led to me being invited to Goa, to teach at the first Health and Wellness Festival, where I led a beautiful women’s workshop for the first Red Tent. The Red Tent is a global women network providing a safe space for women to come and connect, heal and celebrate not only our blood rites, but being woman! This led to me being invited to teach at another woman’s retreat in Goa, which because of my deal, I had to also say what the heck why not!! YES!!
The woman’s retreat was very badly organised and I didn’t even think anyone would show up. To my surprise some 250 international woman showed up! Real women of all walks of life, and seeing the festival was organised by a man, I just stepped up and brought all the women together and offered a powerful Shakti Activation. Amongst those women was a beautiful woman from China.
She approached me immediately after the workshop and invited me to China to her retreat center. I said yes sure, and gave her my details and she gave me hers, which I lost shortly after as I really wasn’t keen to go to China. Shortly after returning to Bali, I received a letter of invitation with a formal letter from the government to come to China. I surrendered to the flow and honoured my challenge and said to myself, looks like we are going to China!
That first trip I had no idea what was expected of me. In fact, I remembered asking my translator to translate the poster with my picture and a big write up about me in Chinese. My translator said it means sort of to go beyond duality- so basically you can do whatever you want!
That first time I stayed for one month and ran 3 week long groups called Tan Dao. I sat and meditated and opened myself up to receive…to go beyond duality, what processes are needed to get there with the tools that I carry in my basket of life experience?? What occurred surprised me and blew them all away!
I realised I have been running groups my whole life, just the themes have been different and I actually was able to find the way into the heart of the Chinese men and women.
Now here I am, just finished my first group for the 3rd year. When I first got here I was a little exhausted and had promised myself…ok enough saying yes to everything that comes your way. Now that is not serving me anymore and I was already counting the days to when I was going to leave. Resistance is a funny thing and creeps into my ego and tells me all kinds of stories about the wrong choices I have made! Surrender is always the better option, so I decided to just let go, be happy, make the most out of it, while reciting my mantra that got me through the hardest times in my life…this too shall pass!
The theme this group was called LOVE and INTIMACY!
I thought how have I ended up here teaching love and intimacy?? Bearing in mind I have not been in a solid intimate relationship for 5 years now since my divorce. Yet I have been diving deep into the world of Tantra which for me is not so much about the other as it is about myself and my intimate connection to myself and then how I relate in all my relationships including my intimate relationship with my Mother, the Earth. I regularly find myself falling in love with everybody when I have an opportunity to get to know them.
Well it has never ceased to amazing me the depth of the human spirit and no matter the race, colour or religion at the end of the day WE ALL BLEED BLOOD and we all cry tears, feel pain, suffer from dysfunctional families, long to be free of conditioning and the human heart longs to blossom and to give and receive LOVE.
I now relish the opportunity to teach people of completely different cultural norms and backgrounds to learn from them as much as I share with them. Dance, movement, the wisdom of the Elements and of my own life experiences are my universal language tools. It is so powerful to witness people move and embody whatever is moving through them, whether it is pain, joy, anger, grief, sensuality or just plain crazy excitement- such a great reminder how the dance floor is a place that can activate so much and how human beings need places to express themselves.
I used every possible metaphor, story, drawing and physical exercises to educate them that they and none of us are, victims! That they like all of us are powerful creators, that we have choices, that we can change our perception of how we perceive the events that have happened in our lives and bring ourselves back into a state of gratitude so we don’t miss any more miracles that are right here in the moment by believing our drunken monkey mind which is convincing us otherwise! I listen to Spirit speaking through me and I get excited!! My womb is the voice of my intuition, which has saved my life, my children’s lives, and my ex-husband's life, on several occasions, as well as taking me on a super exciting adventure of life. I thank Her daily for the constant reminder!!
At the end of a retreat to see the participants with their eyes shiny with a new perception of life and to hear their kind words and appreciation for the wisdom that has been shared touches my heart deeply. Some of them too have been sexually abused as children and it leaves the same scar as anyone who has had that experience but to see them rise above and step into their joy, reclaim their power…simply brings tears to my eyes!
I don’t judge them for all the things they do differently I simply see how they can inspire me and I them! It’s hard for me with all the meat they eat, instead they see me not eating it and being healthy, relatively young looking for my age and dancing them under the table, they ask questions. They ask me about my blue glass water bottle with a huge flower of life sticker on it and they see me refusing plastic water and they ask and I share.
One day during our smaller intimate session, a group of 50 people arrived from one company who had never done any Spiritual work and the organiser asked me if I would be willing to let them join my group. Normally I would never do this but the old challenge of -just say yes and see what happens, got the better of me.
What happened was extraordinary!! Another opportunity which would have been missed had I said no to what was being presented. I decided to throw them into the deep end and do the Shiva Shakti ceremony to drop both groups into the collective consciousness while having a personal experience. The ceremony is intimate and works on healing the collective psyche of the wounding that has happened between the sexes and heal the brother and sisterhood.
Imagine walking into a Chinese restaurant and getting those people to look into each others eyes, to touch each others hearts, and to express all the rage that is held in their hearts for being repressed…. especially when most of them do not even know they have been repressed! CHALLENGING!! But it happened, my smaller group who seemed so dense when I first met them in comparison to my normal reality of people who I am surrounded by, suddenly seemed like beacons of radiant light in this sea of density of numb human beings. Some choose to stay, some felt betrayed and left not wanting to interact with these numb, unconscious people.
It was phenomenal what happened also for my young translator who I have developed a good relationship with over the years. At one point the men were not accessing anything, like a bunch of limp Barbie dolls going through the motion and overwhelmed with self-consciousness. I finally encouraged my young translator to get in there and activate them.
Suddenly the pure energy of the dark masculine manifested in him and he activated those men and they stated to really go for it. Many cried, and I had so much love and compassion for these brave men to stay there and feel their emotions, maybe for the first time in their lives!!
The next day when our small group reconvened, I opened the circle for sharing and so amazing to see what was triggered for them. Each person had their own experience and for me it was another opportunity to approach the subject of reflection. One woman who really didn’t want to stay, and yet she did, and she said when she looked into this man’s eyes, who she really didn’t want to see at all because she thought he was so ugly. She suddenly saw beyond the hardened exterior and felt all his pain and sadness. Then she put her hand on his heart and felt compassion…what had happened to this man to make him so hard, so numb, so ugly on the outside? This triggered her to feel her own numbness and in that moment she melted softened, and she cried the tears of compassion, which in turn opened his heart to do the same.
Her big realisation of how she had betrayed herself for something that happened when she was young, and held hatred towards both the masculine and the feminine and just existed in a numbness hiding all her pain by judging everything and others so harshly … ah, the power of Tantra, the power of presence and willingness to feel, accept and move beyond it all!!
So for all the tears, the laughter, the joy, the expression, I can only be filled with gratitude for the opportunity to open my heart even wider to include all of humanity in it! It’s time we make a change for Spiritual Oneness and I am glad to have the opportunity to play my part and support others in the Universal unfolding as we spread our wings and fly to a higher state of consciousness ,one that holds respect for another as the highest form of spirituality.
In changing realities like most people change their underwear, I am constantly reminded we exist in the Dream Time with as many parallel realities happening as there are people. It is all in our shifting perception. ALL this shall pass but what remains is the light, the seed of love the purity of silence. I am super humbled again and again by the beauty and love in the human heart and deeply grateful to my Chinese family for their generosity and hospitality, and all my participants for showing up, opening up and sharing with each other.
I have been doing this work for the past 25 years. It came natural to me. I remember when my second son was born and 10 days later a woman from America turned up very pregnant and needed somewhere to stay and give birth. Seeing we had a huge house and had birthed in our cozy tipi, we generously gave up our tipi and birthing nest so this other young couple could give birth. I remember feeling we should be doing a blessing for these new children coming in. Even though I did not receive one for myself, my friend and I organised the first blessing way for this couple in our little tipi in Northern NSW Australia. That tradition has continued and has spread globally now amongst , not only the alternative community, but also the mainstream. This is how we change the world we want to live in. We EMBODY THE CHANGE WE WANT TO SEE AND IT BECOMES OUR REALITY!
After 3 years of saying YES I have also learned that NO is also a very good word when used with discernment! My new challenge is to cultivate discernment to choose what is for my highest good and find those healthy boundaries balancing everything I do. The yin cannot exist without the yang and visa versa.
What would you do if you just said YES to the Universal Unfolding and inspirations of your own Heart of Hearts longing?
I realised this morning while getting the best hydrotherapy being pummeled under our spring fed waterfall here in Bali, that I am happy with my life, I am so grateful for the richness of my life and I love sharing that tapestry with others. Nothing makes me happier than being witness to others awakening and homecoming!
When I returned from the river today, there was a troupe of large monkeys in my tree that fills my view and I thought everything is as it should be! When I opened the computer there was the invitation for 4 retreats in China. Now what was the note of discernment again?? However I now look forward to going back and sharing as I deepen into the mystery of my own sacred feminine and my own womb wisdom I love the deepening I experience in China. But before I share deeply in China again, I would like to continue to share here in Bali first and now with the proper working permit in place I feel liberated to do this.
So if the wisdom of your own womb speaks deeply to you and whispers COME TO BALI! Treat yourself to the Elemental Goddess Retreat, I hope you will trust and follow your intuition, I promise you will have an experience of a lifetime that will put you on track for the most precious embodiment of your lifetime …. The embodiment and awakening of YOUR AUTHENTIC SELF!! Go here to Elemental Goddess Retreat.