I’ve been on quite a journey recently—a journey that has taken me to India, to Thailand, to the playa of Burning Man and back to India again, this being the fourth time in 14 months I’ve set foot on this holy soil.
What arose from a deep and desperate longing to escape a life that I could not find peace with, that I did not feel was right, that I did not feel was me, has opened pathways I could never before have imagined.
Both through my physical travels and my psychological and spiritual journey through yoga, writing and self-enquiry, I have unexpectedly embarked on the most important journey of my life: the journey to my Self.
I am slowly but surely peeling back layer by layer of the onion that is my personality (my ego) and in turn, I am re-learning who I am.
I am getting the strongest sensations of remembering.
At first they felt like déjà vu. What I realise now, however, is that I have been experiencing a coming home to myself—to the person I was before I was born into this world and into this body, back when I was just a twinkle in the sky, as my dad always put it. (So perhaps I always did know. My own father told me.)
But, before I was a star and/or after I was a star, I was many other things.
In this lifetime (the only one I am capable of remembering at this moment) I have been, for example, a digital and social media director, an American Studies student, an all-rounder at school, a dancer, a violin player, a thumb sucker, a touch-typer, a (horribly competitive) tennis player, a traveller, an artist, a blogger, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a lover and many, many other things, all of which have played their role in forming me into the person that I am—or rather, the persona of myself that I project to others and the image I’ve formed of myself in my mind.
The sum of such impressions and the million and one circumstances, thoughts, feelings, emotions, actions and events that conspired to bring them into being is…me. Or, is it?
Could “me” be, rather, the person I am remembering? The déjà vu?
The feeling of peace and wholeness that comes when I close my eyes, quiet my mind and forget everything I have been taught, told and conditioned to believe; the sense of knowing what is right, true and good from the depths of my heart—a Truth which needs no external validation, only trust, faith, openness and a willingness to surrender; the noticing of the Universe beating to my own drum, and me dancing along to its rhythm, in a way that feels familiar and easy and yet I don’t believe I have done it before in this lifetime; the way I feel energy within me and outside of me, making me feel at one with all that is, and empowering me to flow with life, rather than against it. To stop resisting.
When we flow together we create beautiful waves, the Universe and I, and the waves are bringing me to beautiful places and to beautiful souls riding on the same ocean.
We are going back to our roots, my fellow wanderers and I, to a simpler way of life free from pretense, fear and judgment.
We are picking away at our egos to uncover a purer essence within and discovering a place of openness, honesty and collaboration. We are connecting, heart-to-heart, as human beings, spiritual Beings, brothers and sisters. And we are forming community, co-creating, and living in harmony with nature (to an extent—there is a long way to go, a lot to learn.) At least one could honestly say that we are yearning to build a more peaceful global society and a safer, more joyful and abundant planet for our children.
The experiences I am having in India (and elsewhere in the world) have led me to a state of joy and inner peace that feels so good and real and pure that I am sure it is the frequency at which we should—and could—all be operating. It’s a place of love, compassion and openness that unites instead of dividing. It breaks down boundaries, removes the veil of illusion, and allows us to be One.
I believe it is the answer to all of the world’s pain, anger, corruption and fighting.
Operating at this frequency—of love—would bring us back together as nations, families, and as a species. And the amazing thing is, it is tangible: it is inside each and every one of us for the taking, if we are brave enough to embark on this journey of self-discovery.
We are living in terrifyingly turbulent times—times marred by war, hatred, greed, fear and pain. We are destroying our planet, ourselves and each other, and while it hurts us to witness, we feel powerless, trapped and alone. We have forgotten the incredible power we hold within.
The good news is that love is pervading over darkness. It always does. History teaches us this and we all know it inside. (Can you feel it?) But we must keep working. We must keep peeling back the layers of our onions. Dig deep. It is your only real duty while here on this planet! And it reaps the most beautiful rewards.
We know who we are. We are Love.
(That is what exists when you peel back the final layers of the onion.
Author: Olivia Wood
Editor: Emily Bartran
Photo: Author’s Own