I’ll write about Stairs For Breakfast and Hay House in a mo.
First, I want to talk about Guayrapa (the meditation retreat in Spain) because it’s a life-changing experience.
I initially went for 2 weeks with the intention of staying until the end of November but it was fully booked in November, so I stayed until 31st October. Nevertheless it was an amazing experience – which took a few days to get use to.
My first impression of it was it was like a prison camp; the dining had long wooden tables and benches – and everyone ate from metal plates and bowls! When I asked for a black tea with 2 sugars, I was informed “There’s no sugar here”!
Before I got there I thought the retreat was on top of a mountain – it’s in fact on the side of a mountain – and it was far too steep and spread out for me to get around the retreat on my own.
As my old self, I was like “I’m independent,..I don’t need any help…” but I did need people to help me.
One of the first lessons I lessons I learnt there is: once you let go of something with is bothering you, it doesn’t bother you anymore. Hence when I accepted that I needed help getting around, it was easy and joyful. Thank you Satta for teaching me that.
My 30-year-old wheelchair (which I never use at home) wasn’t fit for the bumpy and steep terrain – so the retreat centre bought a wheelchair!. It took 2 people to take me down the steep slope and 3 to push me up the hill.
There were 80-100 people at the retreat. It’s amazing how quickly you get to know so many people (from all around the world).
As it was my first time in Guayrapa I was in the Newbies group. There were 15 of us and we had a meeting in the mornings. Our teacher Manyu is one of the funniest guys on the planet!
Everybody was brought together for the evening meetings. At first I was daunted by saying anything in a room of 100 people – and realised that it was just a case of feeling the fear and doing it anyway. It wasn’t long before I relaxed and was my inspirational and humorous natural-self again.
Ascension meditation is about watching the thoughts of your mind – and not grabbing hold of any thoughts – just letting them pass through your mind. The phrase “You are not your thoughts” is so true. Ascension automatically brings you into living in the present moment.
The mind and body are connected – and ascension relaxes the mind. One of the incredible things I’ve found is the more I ascend, the more my body relaxes – making my walking and talking physically easier. It’s like magic 🙂
At home I fall over about once a month. In Guayrapa, at first, I was falling over twice a day. But as I became more relaxed I stopped falling over.
I see my Cerebral Palsy as a gift because I help and inspire people just by being my natural self.
I used to think that asking for help was weakness – but I’ve learnt that the opposite is true. Wanting to help people is a natural human experience, which gives people pleasure. By accepting help from people, you are expanding your world and theirs too.
It was great being surrounded by so many people – all there for the same reason – peace, love and joy. This blog update would be much longer were I to name everybody who helped and inspired me! Not only all the teachers but also everyone on the mastery course. Everyone is there to help each other.
I would particularly like to thank:
– Virendra,:for inspiring me to go to Guayrapa, for his help and for being a good friend.
– Prakasha and Maitreya, two teachers who took it upon themselves to help me get around and who got me breakfast, lunch and dinner every day
– My roommates, for the great conversations and helping me.
– George, a newbie who took it upon himself to help me every day. My first recollection of George was him coning over to help me when he saw me sitting on the ground (after I had fallen over walking down a slope).
– Everyone I interacted with (ie everybody else!)
Don’t listen to what your mind says about you. Instead listen to the reflections people are giving to you.
I used to think I was just a regular guy who hadn’t done much in life. Meditating and surrounded by over 80 people for a month, all calling me an amazing person and an inspiration. I now appreciated that the latter is definitely true 🙂
Having been home for nearly a month now, I’m noticeably more peaceful and joyful person. Also, I’m drinking less tea and more water (partly because my metallic teacup was accidentally left in Guayrapa!)
I’m planning to go back to Guayrapa next year – with some electric wheels!
As I said, Guayrapa was a life-changing experience, I can write a book about it (and I’ve got the title for it).
I had a nice surprise when I got home from Spain. My friend Paul Apps (who I know from the Brighton ascension group) said he had sent a copy of my book to his contact at Hay House in America.
Having spoken with them, they like what I represent. They want to re-master Stairs For Breakfast and take my book(s) and me to the next level. Exciting stuff – watch this space 🙂
I often say that inspiration is a two-way thing. Thank you to all of you who help and inspire me.
It’s interesting looking back at what I’ve done over the last 5 years; took a chance and left my IT job, ventured into property investment, written and self-published a book and found ascension. At times it has been emotionally and financially difficult but I’ve learnt and changed so much.
I am amazing 🙂