One week ago I was saying goodbye to people that just a week before I haven’t even met, though it felt like I was saying farewell to people I knew for years. For a week (18-24 July) I was in what my eyes and my heart saw and felt as paradise. It was the Ängsbacka’s Yoga Festival 2011 in Sweden. If you would have asked me about it before December 2010, I would have looked at you with open eyes in surprise and remain silent trying to guess what you were saying. Thanks to someone who helped me open a big crack more my door of awareness I now can say that this was the best week of my life.
There, together with 300 more people, I practiced yoga from 7 am, discovered new spiritual paths, made friends I can call brothers and sisters, ate amazing food, sung beautiful bhajans, danced like crazy, I had a collective tantric orgasm, and felt the energy we all share and that connects us all, love. Then in the middle of all this, a person in Norway full of hate killed dozens of people, many of them children and teenagers. At the same time I became aware of the power of love, of what we can build together, I felt how destructive hate can be. Then there is cynicism. That feeling that tells you that change is not possible, that thinking of love as a positive force that can make change real is naive, that the real thing is violence and hate, that we need to be prepared for the worse.
I stopped being cynic, for I became aware of things that changed my way of looking. I became aware that together we can make our world better. I became aware that the connection between all human beings, all life on Earth and the Earth itself is so strong and powerful, so beautiful that there is hope for a better future, not a one which we are slaves of a hierarchic machine of domination, addicted to technology that’s distracting from our feelings we don’t want to have because they may be painful. I became aware of love, the energy that connects us, brings us together, bind us as one. I really felt it all around my body. Our world needs a change, but it won’t come with domination, imposition or convincing. It will come from those that change as persons capable of be the change. As my teacher of teachers said, “be the change you want to see in the world”. In my case, the first step was to become aware of love, start loving myself to be able to love others dearly.
I would like to leave you with some wise Og Mandino’s words that I hope will guide my life…
“Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness, and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.”