As It Is. 

As of now its been about eight and a half months, but I’m just going to call it nine, because, really, it feels like an entire lifetime.
My decision to leave India was hasty, all of a sudden. Once my flight was booked, I cried and seriously considered cancelling it.

Only time will tell why my heart is insisting that I return to Canada. There is a strong and mighty pull bringing me back to the west coast, so, what to do but answer the call, eh?

So, what has Mama India taught me? I ask myself.
Above all else, she has taught me to flow.

To exist within chaos, breathe deeply and embrace the calm, steady movement down the river, through this life.

India imposes this flow state upon you. You must flow. You must.

Flowing is not an activity reserved for great musicians or artists or race car drivers.

No, in India, every human is well accustomed with flow.

It’s a means to an end, the ‘end’ being survival.

Most recently, driving through the steady rhythm of downtown Pondicherry traffic on a Saturday night brought me into a deep flow state. It was just me, alone, on my scooter, bright lights flashing everywhere, hundreds of cars and motorcycles pushing me onwards, around me in every direction.

Hesitate for a moment and you’ll cause a domino effect of disaster. No time to go slow. You must keep flowing, breathing, being still within yourself. Drop your shoulders and loosen your jaw; feel your breath rising and falling, bring light into your chest.

As we progressed down the main causeway into the city the other cyclists were nearly touching me and I watched as my thoughts entered into fear “oh god, I hope I don’t die”, I grimaced. I observed this thought and recognized it’s self-fulfilling prophecy. I consciously changed the thought to “I will stay alive, I will stay alive, I will stay alive”. I kept repeating this mantra until I finally took my turn onto a small street, silent and glowing in the heat and lights. Then my shoulders truly dropped and a sly smile drew across my face. I just did that.

I just did that.

I rode through the silent, colourful streets. Crickets buzzed along with the electrical wires. My scarf danced in the sweet, warm air.

I reached the promenade and found a place to park. As I turned off the engine, I came out of the dream and back to ‘normal consciousness’ – of course no streets in the city are silent and you can’t really hear the crickets, but, in that space of flow everything becomes blurred, but in a very focused way. It’s a very refined, trance of heightened attention and simultaneous release. And this is just one minor example – daily Indian life is filled with this crazy magic.

Beyond this, I’ve learnt of Love.

Love with a capital L; the kind of Love that exists in scripture and song. It’s been an ongoing and steady relationship between Love and I; slowly growing into a more powerful force than I could have ever imagined.

I see it now as the force that exists within me, around and far beyond me. It’s the kind of Love that beckons our journey home to the Divine, the kind that softly knocks and then wildly screams. Its that force that I see when I look in the mirror and don’t recognize myself, but rather, see light emanating from within, originating from another time and space. That light has been slowly burning stronger and stronger, rekindled with patience, compassion and adventure.

Beyond this, I’ve learnt acceptance.

I’ve learnt to celebrate. I’ve learnt to see myself more clearly and to celebrate my own very existence, on a daily basis. I’ve learnt about the power of words and thoughts, of mantras and affirmations. I’ve learnt to simplify (this piece of writing being an exception). I’ve learnt to open my heart more freely. I’ve learnt to take the time to recognize my own strength, to acknowledge how far I’ve come and to deeply believe in my ability to overcome whatever comes my way.

And so much more.

I hope to integrate my lessons into my life wherever I go. To bring this light to every situation, to every human I encounter, to as many moments as I can within this wild continuum of time on this magical place we call planet earth.
Oh look,
its already happening,
it has happened,
it is.

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