Highs and Lows

Yesterday was Mary Magdalene’s memorial and my desire to spend it in a women’s circle came true. I went to an Indian sweat lodge at a friend’s place. It was held exclusively for women and each and every one of us felt the strong, natural, raw feminine energies that are present when women gather in a circle, sing and share. The feminine energy has a lot to do with the feeling of support that I was talking about yesterday, and it has nothing to do with shame, comparison, or jealousy. The sisterhood means we are all equal in front of The Great Spirit, Wakan Tanka, God and/or Goddess, the Universe, and at the same time every one of us has a special flavour to her essence.  At one point in between our chanting, our fire-keeper (also a woman) went from sitting to lying down on her mat, opened her legs and showed her yoni to the sacred fire in the middle of the circle. Can you imagine how relaxed she must have felt? Being natural is what happens when you shave off of shame.

As this was my first sweat lodge ever, I didn’t know what to expect and I felt a bit of tension. However, everything turned out amazing, though: Svarun visited me and talked to me about our mission, and at a certain point I even had a totally unexpected vision of a totem animal. All of this was possible because of surrender. During the second break, where we delved deep into the relationships with fellow humans, I felt the urge to run outside and lie on the ground, tummy side down. In the moment when the cold, humid grass kissed my hot body, I had this transcendental experience of not being totally in the body anymore, but somewhere in between. It was then when it crossed my mind: “The Indians really knew how to push their bodies to the limit and make them surrender to the experience, so that the soul could have a spiritual experience.” All in all, we had an amazing time.

As we were closing the circle this morning, one of the women said: “I wish I knew how to keep this elevated feeling forever, but it always vanishes after a few days.” I remembered my experiences of flying high and then crashing down low when reality hit in with bills to pay and things to take care of. It’s a contrast. One day you’re all centred, calm, hyped up and blissfully aware of all and everything, and then the next day you’re back in a non-tidy home, back in all of the relationships and back running out of time to do your yoga. Abraham says we should love this contrast, but sometimes it seems like a really hard thing to do, doesn’t it? I mean, who wouldn’t want to be high-flying all the time? The thing is, if we were flying high all the time, it wouldn’t even seem that high anymore. Until there is a contrast, we can’t really grasp how high we actually were. Life doesn’t go straight down the road, it goes in circles so that we are able to: a) appreciate how high we can get, and b) train ourselves how to go back up as quickly as possible. Practicing how to get on a higher vibration gives us power, gives us strength, and it convinces us that we are the captains of our boats.

How do we do it? The best way is to be mindful when something awesome is happening by closing our eyes and becoming aware of everything that we are feeling. A tingling in your nose? Mouth corners up? A beating excitement in your chest? Stardust on your crown chakra?

Consider it all.

Memorize how it feels when you are flying high, and where in your body you feel it.

Practice applying the indicators when you don’t feel on top of the world anymore. The will is the key.

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With my dear sister Nika, who took piano lessons with me in third grade. Our friendship started thus 20 years ago.

Getting Warmed Up

This post usually starts downloading in the morning.

When I come out of my meditation and start to run errands, the inspiration comes flowing down, so I’m taking notes with one hand while making breakfast with the other. The inspiration always comes from the Universe, Source, God or whatever you want to name it, but I can hear it via many different routes: in a talk or an interview that I’m listening on YouTube while working, in a book that falls out of the shelf, in a social encounter, or in a memory. I really like it when downloading takes place throughout the whole morning, because then I really feel like I’m nesting in the energies of the daily topic. And when I nest in a specific topic, that’s when more and more pieces of information come and round up the message. You know, like attracts like.

So today I got the inspiration to talk about how to get going: how to get on a path of personal growth, spiritual development and self-discovery.

  1. Loosen up + Laugh

I used to be so serious because I thought that if I wanted to grow as a person, I needed to be stuck up most of the time. The truth is quite the opposite, actually. All of the people who are of inspiration to me laugh constantly. They laugh at life, at themselves, and they laugh at jokes; brace yourselves – yes, even the nasty and black humour ones. I used to feel so bad when I would laugh at nasty jokes. And while I will not say you need to embrace black humour, I will however encourage you to laugh more, whatever the cause. That doesn’t mean you need to be happy-go-lucky all the time; I am after all a woman, and a Pisces at that, so the amplitude of emotions is my primary navigational system. Just … embrace happy and funny into your day to day life. Like, right here, right now.

There is this joke that I’ve felt guilty to tell or laugh at, although I think it’s witty. And before I tell you about it, I need to explain it because it only works in Slovene. It involves thyme. I’m sure you know thyme, the herb, right? Ok, so there’s this species of wild thyme here in the Mediterranean with tiny pink flowers, that we call materina dušica, which in literal translation means mother’s soul. Me and Svarun were just picking it yesterday, and we need to take another foraging trip very soon because it’s in bloom right now. Now you know, here goes the joke: What do you get if you put a baby into a cup of boiling water? The materina dušica tea. “Ha, and you call yourself a mother,” my mind is telling me and trying to lure me into guilt as we speak. But I know better than to go that way. I’m loosening up and having a laugh, that’s all.

  1. Breathe

I’ve talked about breathing before and I will do more because breathing is always up to date, isn’t it? It’s the very fact of our existence. It is the first indicator of our aliveness. It is also the indicator of whether we are living or not, which is not the same as alive,  because to live means to take full responsibility of our experience. The way we breathe tells the story of our lives. If our breathing is shallow and fast, we are surviving. If we take deep and long breaths, we live our lives. Your breath is your birth right, and besides, a conscious breath is the best tool to bring you into the here and now. If you are aware of your breathing, you are present. If you are present, you live your life from moment to moment. If your breathing is on autopilot, the events of your life pass you by, and before you know it you’re old and alone and wondering:”Where did everybody go?”

I’m not going to tell you to start breathing, because if you’re reading this, the odds-on are that you are already doing it. The question is, are you conscious of your breath? Various disciplines like yoga, meditation, tai chi, chi gong (and many more) really help you focus on the breath, so you might want to undertake one or more. I really like practising vinyasa yoga, a dynamic yoga flow, where your movement follows your breath, and yin yoga, which in my opinion is the most meditative yoga, because you hold postures for up to 5 minutes and in that time, you really need to let go of the mind and just – breathe. If you’re not yet practising, I highly recommend meditation to everyone. It not only clears your mind, but also catapults you to a creative universe, where all of the magic happens and you get to be the boss of your existence. Not for you in this moment in time? In case you don’t want to get into yoga or meditation just yet, at least commit to your breath by regularly taking me-breaks throughout the day. Whenever you catch yourself breathing shallowly, start taking deep relaxing breaths with eyes closed, and check up on yourself by asking yourself: “How do I feel?” Shallow breathing can be the result of big emotions or the autopilot you had turned on. Notice it, thank it. Then imagine inhaling golden rays of positivity and exhaling all of the negativity that has gathered in your body. This visualisation alone will do wonders, I guarantee.

I’ll be talking about this more, and until I do, I wish you all good night.

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Invitation: Let’s Do This Together

I’m not perfect. I’m not. Quite honestly, I’m highly imperfect. You can ask anyone who knows me and they’ll tell you how my insecurity gets in the way of my strength and will oftentimes. Or how my fears dare me to trust. Or how the hole from a belly button in my navel literally exploded when I was pregnant with Svarun and now looks like … well, as though it had exploded. So yeah, pretty much imperfect.

I’ve been thinking about “perfect” lately. What is perfect anyway? It means separate, actually. I had a boyfriend with a golden heart, a lot of compassion and an awesomely working mind, who could make a wonderful leader one day. But because he considered himself perfect, he was always in conflict and everybody eventually ran away from him. Us humans can’t relate to perfect because being perfect as we know it is not humane. I said “as we know it” because we use the word perfect as an outside evaluation of an internal criteria. Etymologically, the word perfect comes from the Latin word perfectus, which meant “to bring to full development”. What happens when we bring something, including ourselves, to full development? The end. When we are perfect, there is nothing more for us to do or be, and when that happens, there is no aim, no inspiration, and no path for us to walk. Nothing. Perfect is the ultimate end of the road.

And being human is about the road, it really is. Just think: what happens when you get somewhere you were dreaming or you get something you really desired? There is that initial flow of excitement, sure, but after that? You want something else. And the way you are going to get it will outweigh the thing, or place, or a relationship you’re going to get. It always does.

Before I became a mother, I would turn my back and go away whenever I felt restless. I’d go somewhere else and when the initial excitement there burnt off, I was left with myself, again. And then I’d go somewhere else, but nowhere else was fine, because everywhere else would tell me the same old thing: where you really want to go is INSIDE. And at first, I was left terrified at what I may find. But I’m here now. Are you?

Are you ready to dig deeper? The way within is the way to happiness, wholeheartedness, harmony. To love, to expression. And I’m here, inviting you on this journey with me, because we’re all in this together. Haven’t you noticed that the people around you go through many similar things? The fact that we’re all so intrinsically connected so as to bring into fruition the same sort of things at present … both amazes and inspires me. And forces me to stand up and stand out and share my experience of self-discovery. Through my writing, through my songs and music, through my motherhood, through my food and movement. Through all of it and more, but right here – through my writing. Sara, whom I take for my teacher, says: “Whatever I recognize in others, it’s because I own it, too. There are pieces of me in everyone else. When I realize this, I can be free.”

So. Do you wanna grow with me? Right here, ritually, every day?

 And you know what? Let’s ditch the word perfect for true. True is being able to look at the places in us that we’ve tried to hide. I’m talking about really looking, confronting the shadows. And then alchemically transforming them into … light.

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Bathing in the sunLIGHT at the river Dragonja. Photo courtesy of my dear soul sister Anja Orian, who made the wonderful linen skirt I’m wearing. You can check out her masterpieces on https://www.etsy.com/shop/InteriorHandmade?ref=l2-shopheader-name.