Facing Jaws In the Deep End - The Full Story Part 2

"Let Go With The Flow" ~ Robito the Buddha
Living to Be Happy 

On Mon 17th Feb I jumped on a buseta (small bus) from Taganga to Santa Marta and then another one to the small town of Palomino.

Unbeknownst to me, most of the beaches along the northern Colombian coastline have strong currents and are unsuitable for swimming. This put a dampener (no pun intended) on the whole 'swimming into deep water' experience, but going to Palomino proved to be a perfect decision for several other reasons.

Firstly, I ended up going to Hostal Aluna and meeting the lovely owner, Luciana, with whom I spoke lots of Spanish whilst being inspired by her giving and loving personality; it was like living with a loving grandma for a few days.

Luciana also has been carrying out a type of meditation for 20 years, and was kind enough to share the technique with me. In spirituality, we would say that this type of meditation is working on the principle of the law of attraction; namely that:

"When a person really desires something, all the universe conspires to help that person realise his dream."  ~ Paulo Coelho

To carry out Luciana's meditation you need to do the following:

1) You write a personal contract to your Self which you will read every day during the meditation.

2) The contract should read '[Your Location], [Date]. I [name] desire, in peace and harmony with the universe, the following:'

 3) Here you write a list of 25 things that you would like to happen in your life. They can be big or small (with specific dates and times if you wish), but of course they must be within the realm of possibility and they must not in any way express negativity (so you may not use the word 'NO')

4) After the list of 25 things, you write: 'In Peace and harmony with the universe' and then sign your contract.

"If we begin to imagine ... we will begin to have the feeling of this actually happening."  
~ Diana Richardson

5) In order to meditate, choose a time when you can meditate every day for 13 days.

6) Sit in a comfortable happy place in quiet and solitude, or imagine that you are sitting in that happy place if you find you have to meditate on a bus or something.

7) Close you eyes and concentrate on the breath coming in and out of your nose to relax and calm you.

8) Put one hand on your belly and feel it moving in and out as you breathe.

9) Continue like this until you feel calm. Then pick up the paper and read it out aloud or in your head.

10) When you get to the list, as you read each number and the desire, you must concentrate on imagining this desire already being realised. (eg. if you desire your car to be quickly repaired and drivable again, imagine yourself behind the wheel driving it)

11) Work your way slowly without hurry between each point and then read the end of the contract.

Luciana also said that you can walk around and meditate as well at any time by counting from 1 to 25 (just the numbers) and walking slowly and peacefully in harmony with the universe while counting. This is a form of mindfulness that calms you and keeps you in flow with the universe and your desires.

This meditation came to me at the moment that I really needed it, because meditating was a 'share the love activity of the week' which I had temporarily put to one side during the scuba diving course.

Palomino also proved to be the perfect place for me to try tubing. While I was slowly peacefully flowing down the river with other people from the hostel and surrounded by incredible nature, I had a kind of epiphany as the following saying just flowed into my head: "Let Go With The Flow".

I realised that although I am trying to let go, in order to 'walk through the door' and become enlightened,  I just need to stop holding back out of fear and fully let go of every opinion outside of my Self about how I should live - and then just travel along life's journey with my intuitive spirit being the river that guides me. Then I have truly let my Self go with the flow. 

I did the tubing one more time nice and early the following day in order to float down that river totally alone - and then I headed off to Costeño Beach. 

Costeño Beach, in a nutshell, did not impress me, but it did help me to think about why I sometimes feel like socialising (like with Andreas from diving and James, Tim and the Canadians during tubing) and then other times I literally start questioning whether I am losing the ability to relate with people at all.

While at Costeño Beach I realised that it has nothing to do with not being able to connect or relate to people any more. Instead it is simply that when you stop smoking, you stay away from social smoking; when you stop drinking, you stay away from bars; when you stop eating fast food, you stay away from fast food restaurants - basically, while you are re-programming what has become normal (Michael Anthony calls this your 'tape'), you need to stay in an environment that supports positive change. 

For me on a spiritual journey, hanging out in such a touristy place with people whose main interest is far removed from spiritual growth does not create a supportive environment for positive change.

In other words, I can relate. I am just on a different 'camino'. ;-)

This was confirmed in a surprising way because I found that after experiencing and then legging it from Costeño Beach, I was no longer wondering whether I was becoming disconnected from people around me; instead I was feeling much more enthusiastic about hanging around with other people again - only now I was listening to my intuition more clearly and simply chatting away with people I was being drawn to.

As I entered the countryside to find a waterfall, I found myself walking next to a third river (after the one in Palomino and the one next to Costeño Beach), and I was starting to feel like I was being taught a lesson using the motif water. I was very much 'in the flow' with all things around me at this point, and it seemed to me at this point that 'rivers' or 'streams' and 'going with the flow' were becoming a deliberate theme or lesson that the universe was presenting to me.

I found a place to pitch my tent and camp in nature - for free and completely alone, and the idea of doing so brought the feeling of being at 'peace and harmony with the universe' about within me (just as it had when I had found a potential free place to camp away from everyone in Palomino and Costeño Beach).

Next I headed into the Tayrona National Park - what an amazing place! I really really would absolutely love to one day take my tent and just live inside that park for several months, and although right now my spiritual journey is taking me elsewhere, I fully intend to go back there again one day to do just that!

I wish I could drag my brother, sister and step-dad into that park too because I think they would love it there getting all ruffed up in idyllic nature, and it would show them just why I love to travel so much when they experience first hand just how amazingly different the world out there can really be.

While in the park, I continued to re-live the lessons that have been cropping up since I started this blog.

For example, the concept of 'no time'. All the lights went out at 9pm in the campsites and I was with a Colombian/Canadian guy I befriended called Bernado waiting for 9pm to come one evening, and time had slowed down so much by our chilled out attitude that the hour and half until 9pm easily doubled in length.

Then as I was leaving the park, and needed to be out before the gates closed at 5pm, I remembered what Paola had taught me - if you just go with the flow and relax even if you are a moving to a time limit, and your intention to get somewhere without worrying about time will make sure that everything works out just fine without any worry at all.

I also finally got to skin dive to the corals at the beach called 'la piscina' (the swimming pool) and saw more beautiful coral and more beautiful fish than I had even seen while scuba diving! LOL

Although I am still conscious of what might be lurking in the deep, I am definitely no where near as fearful of Jaws, big fish, or some other unfriendly animal, coming to get me from below. This experience of 'flooding' has taught me a lot about my particular fear of deep water, but also about my own Self.

The whole adventure didn't end with my skin dive into the deep however; I think there was a much bigger lesson to be learnt from this adventure - the running motif of water, river, flooding, streams and going with the flow.

As I was leaving the park, I needed some water and was running out of money (not worrying about money was another theme that popped up but I will talk more about that in a future post soon).

In the end I got wonderful clean water from a stream in the ancient indigenous village of the Tairona people, Pueblito. A final reminder of the direct connection between flowing water and the Self; for connecting with the flow of nature is the most healthy way for us to live our life in a spiritual sense, but also in a physical sense as well - nothing is healthier or more important for us than the basic requirement for water, and the healthiest of all water found in nature is that which moves with a peaceful and harmonious natural flow.

When I think about the times that I have been happiest and most at peace so far on my Latin American travels, I think of camping at the beach in Tulum in Mexico, camping at the cabaña during my scuba diving course, camping at the family farm, tubing down the river in Palomino, and camping in Tayrona Park.

Every one of those moments has included water of some kind - stream, river or sea. I clearly love to be rooted within nature; I love to be close to mountains, greenery and especially water and the sea; I love to be in warm/hot sunny weather; and finally I do not need or seek to be around other people to feel the positive energy from such an environment, but I do enjoy spending time around like-minded people.

So after all this learning in such a short period of time, I think I owe it to my Self to absorb all that I have learnt over the last days and, other than continuing with the daily meditation, just to turn my brain off and enjoy nature for a few days

Therefore, tomorrow, Mon 24th Feb, I am off to the mountains, water, and natural beauty of Minca.

Be inspired ♥

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