I just returned from a weeklong Diamond Approach retreat at Asilomar in Pacific Grove, California titled The Magic of Being. My days there consisted of being with over five hundred people, all meditating at the same time, creating a powerful field that was palpable.
The teachings, the exercises, the connecting to likeminded people in an adult camp atmosphere, including singing by the fire pit, walking the beach and a dance with a light show made it an experience like none other. It was an amazing week filled with new ideas, internal and eternal experiences of presence and true nature, and deep connections with other human beings.
It is good to step out of our familiar selves from time to time and have a deeper experience of reality. Otherwise we can get caught up in egoic thinking of worrying about our survival in some form or another, such as money, competition for resources, and value of self by comparison. By stepping out of all of this, we can potentially have a different, more essential exploration of who we actually are and what this life is actually about.
It doesn’t even require being part of a group and going to a retreat regularly, although the support certainly helps. It can be as simple as dedicating 15-20 minutes in the morning to sitting in stillness, breathing deeply, quieting the mind and exploring our interior landscape.
…Ideally in the presence of nature. The presence of nature supports our shift from human doings to human beings. After all, nature is the epitome of being and so reminds us of our own essential state.
When we dedicate and honor this time consistently as sacred to our own well-being, we can discover new inner terrain of understanding, beauty and tenderness. The concern of looking inward and finding something that we don’t like is a red herring. We may have to go through layers of historical conditioning that feels uncomfortable, but when we bring a compassionate heart to those wounded parts, they eventually transform into essential qualities of beauty, love, tenderness, joy, power, intelligence, wisdom or so many other possibilities.
The magic of being is right here where we are. And if we are moving too fast, living in our heads, we will miss it and feel little satisfaction in our living. Don’t let this happen to you. Take the time to get you know the most important person in your life: you. The potential for intimacy is unlimited. And as we know who we are, we can share the benefits of those essential qualities that arise within us with everyone we come in contact with. And that, my friend, is a beautiful world in which to live for us all.
To see a world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand and eternity in an hour.