Spiritual Journey~

TracyIf you decided to go on a “Spiritual Journey” where would you go and what would you do?

“Your life is a sacred journey. And it is about change, growth, discovery, movement, transformation, continuously expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your intuition, taking courageous challenges at every step along the way. You are on the path… exactly where you are meant to be right now… And from here, you can only go forward, shaping your life story into a magnificent tale of triumph, of healing of courage, of beauty, of wisdom, of power, of dignity, and of love.”
Caroline Adams

Spirituality has long been associated with religion, deities, the supernatural, and an afterlife.  Many equate spirituality with religion, but the two are separate entities, religion being one way man experiences spirituality.  Spirituality may include introspection, and the development of an individuals inner life through practices such as meditation, prayer and contemplation.

Spiritual Journey’s can change and enrich your life.  Whether you ride your motorcycle down to Monument Valley or Hike in the Himalayan Mountains a spiritual journey is a very personal exploration of ones self.  We usually embark on such quests when we are aware that our spirituality need attention.  It can be described as an “Aha Moment” even.  It’s when you venture out of your comfort zone and look inward for answers to questions we all have.  “What is my purpose or path in life?”

If I were to go on a ‘Spiritual Journey’ I would pick one of two.  I would love to spend time with Buddhist Monks to learn about Meditation, Intention and Karma and I would also like to learn about Kabbalah. I have always believed that meditation is a huge part of being spiritual and can calm our souls and shed light on issues we all have.  Meditation means awareness.  “Watching your breath” is meditation; listening to the birds is meditation.   As long as these activities are free from any other distraction to the mind, it is effective meditation.  Meditation is not a technique but a way of life.  Meditation means ‘a cessation of the thought process’.  By meditating you are able to let go of your physical self and get in tune with your metaphysical side.  That is the Spiritual Journey I would like to embark on!

Post Insert Jacquie When I was in my twenties I had small kids that needed to be taken care of and the journey I was on was one of survival.  Mine and theirs.  I believed it was my sacred duty to make sure these young souls felt safe, secure and loved.  Now that I’m no longer necessary in quite the same way, I’ve felt the need to find other  ways to feel complete.  I’ve decided for me that means reaching beyond my comfort zone, past established boundaries and out into the community I share with my global neighbours.

I could answer this question metaphysically, but what I really think Tracy is asking in this post is for a literal description of where I want my spiritual journey to begin, or take shape.  I’ve actually been looking into a place in the Kootenays, about 9 hours from Vancouver near Nelson, BC, called Yasodhara Ashram.  I’ve never been anywhere near this area but I’ve heard of it’s natural beauty and peaceful majesty.  Yasodhara offers yoga, meditation and spiritual guidance for beginners like me all the way up to advanced practitioners.  I would love to spend a week or two by myself totally immersed in the everyday Ashram comings and goings and at the complete mercy of the program.  I would arrive with an open mind and heart and actively seek enlightenment or whatever came my way.   My spiritual journey is about enriching my life with experience and knowledge and I know a stay at the Ashram will only begin to heighten my awareness of all the work I have yet to do, but it’s a good start.   Think of it like an all-inclusive for the spiritual cherry-picker.  It may take several pilgrimages to find what works for you, but each attempt brings you closer to your goal.  Keeping an open mind is key.

Bonnie Johnson's Post

There are many places in the world that are considered “holy” or “spiritual” places to visit.  Places like Jerusalem, Tibet, Machu Picchu, etc.  Eckhart Tolle, who wrote “A New Earth” and “The Power of Now” has said he felt that the west coast of North America and specifically around Vancouver, BC had a strong positive energy which he was drawn to in order to write about his own spiritual journey.  I don’t doubt this.  I have been in different places in the world that seem to awaken something deep within me.  But a true spiritual journey is really about going within your Self.  I don’t think it matters as much about the ground beneath your feet as it does about the degree in which you can tune in to your Source (God/Spirit/Universe/insert whichever label you are comfortable with).

I believe a true spiritual journey is one that inspires you to connect with your own spirit.  I have felt that way when sitting on a flat rock beside a babbling creek in North Vancouver, while floating in a canoe in an underground river deep inside a cave in New Zealand, while looking out at the ocean on a beach in Australia, while exploring our beautiful British Columbian outdoors, and even while watching a spider working on its web in my own yard.  If a place inspires and stirs your soul then it is worth a journey to.  It may be its beauty, its energy or simply a memory it stirs up for you.  Wherever that is for you I hope you are able to go there often.


Bucket List!

Alright Goddesses, what is one thing on your Bucket list you have yet to do?

TracyTracy has yet to~

I want to live in a Spanish speaking country until I can finally speak the language fluently~ At some point in the future I would love to live in either Spain or Mexico.  I love the sound of the Spanish language, so romantic, how could anyone not want to speak it fluently.  I would like a Spanish boyfriend who will have a Spanish argument with me just so we can make up passionately in you guessed it, Spanish.

When I was in high school you only had French or German to choose from.  I never even made it 30 minutes in French class, I walked out because my teacher was really bitchy from the moment she entered the classroom.  I had just been in France and saw first hand how the French ignored those who didn’t speak ‘real’ French so I didn’t really see the point in learning Québécois French. A teacher can make or break the learning process.  My only other options was German and since the people of Germany were so kind I decided to give it a try.  “Ich bin haben sie ein schriber.”  I have a pen is all I took away from a semester in German.  Not proud of that at all!

I finally signed up to a Spanish class last October at a local high school where the teacher was outstanding, Carlos Rabago.  Outside of the class the only person I could find to speak Spanish with was a friend of my sons, Richard, who was 10 years old.  He was really sweet and listened intently each time I leaned a new phrase.  He understood me and smiled as we had our Spanish conversation each day.  When my class was finished and life got busy again, Spanish was put aside.  Eventually all I could say was “Hola Richard”, he still smiled and always replied “Hola.”  It was never said out loud but we both knew I spent $100 bucks to learn how to say hello and it became a joke.  So as you can see by my track record I NEED to live in the country of the language I want to learn or it just doesn’t stay with me for very long.  Perhaps Ginkgo would help?

So I would love if someday I could live somewhere I had to speak this beautiful language everyday.  Hola Jake, can’t wait to hear what’s on your Bucket list!!

Post Insert JacquieJacquie still has to~

Isn’t a bucket list sort of the same thing as a vision board?  They’re both the physical manifestation of future wishes and dreams, right?  If that’s the case, let me just saunter over to the other side of my office and take a peek at my life’s blueprint as designed by me about 6 months ago, and which now hangs above my bookshelf  conveniently placed at eye level so I can’t miss it.   That cabin deep in the woods by a lake still hasn’t been built.  I have yet to run naked along the seashore confidently yelling ‘This is me!  Take it or leave it!’ and I’m still working towards getting my first solo art show off the ground one day.

I’ve got big plans and a mighty long list to get through but perhaps the most important bucket/vision board dream of mine would be to one day pack up only the essentials like paint, a sketch book, Gavin and a good road map, and take a few months to explore the Americas by car.  No, change that to one of those little vans with room to crash in the back for a quickie catnap (nudge, nudge,wink, wink).  I’d stop in pretty little towns and eat lemon meringue pie in friendly mom n’ pop cafes.  I’d visit art galleries and antique shops and wineries and explore side streets and back roads and downtown thoroughfares ~ all while searching for lyrical beauty in everyday spaces.  If I were truly adventurous (and I have been in the past) I’d like to think I would be able to continue the trip into Central America, down through Ecuador and Peru with Machu Picchu as the ultimate destination.  I know I’d have to park the van at some point and join a group on foot to get to the sacred city high in the Andes, but I’d do it in a heartbeat.   Something tells me it might be too dangerous to do the South American part of the trip on wheels so I might have to fly down, but one way or the other I plan on getting to the Incan site before I … kick the bucket ; )

* Come back on Monday and find out more about Peace One Day and the Machu Picchu connection!

Bonnie Johnson's PostBonnie is planning to~

I want to learn to speak french!!! I have to say that I did attempt to learn some languages during high school but I was not very good at any of them.   I took a term of Latin, Indonesian, German and French.  Dumped the Latin and Indonesian and tried to carry on with German and French.  I ended up taking French as far as grade eleven in high school to the frustration of many a french teacher.  I didn’t really see the point in any of it back then.  I was from the West Coast of Canada and had never been to the East Coast so really had no worries of needing to converse with any French Canadians much (except that one summer when that cute French Canadian guy and I…nah, still didn’t need the language).

Since then I’ve done a lot of traveling around the world and boy do I wish I’d paid better attention to those lessons.  As a Canadian I’ve decided that I really should make a better attempt at learning to speak french.  I love the way it sounds too.  Plus if you can speak french then you can figure out a little Spanish which is a bonus for those winters when we get to escape to Mexico!

So I’ve bought all the tapes and cd’s and I even own the aptly named book “French for Dummies” but I’m really no further ahead at this point.  I recently babysat where the child wanted me to read some simple books to him.  In french.  I had to fake it, and because he is only eight months old he didn’t catch on.  Phew!  I’m not giving up though.  I still want to parlez francais one day!

Ah, c’est la vie!