According to the Chinese almanac we are in the time of insects stir.
At home that means on the occasional warm night the spring peepers would be singing, followed by cold spells where the quiet falls again. Here in Bali the cicadas are loudly announcing the evenings and the air is alive with butterflies and dragonflies and so many other insects I don’t even know.
The Yin is beginning to recede as the Yang energy of spring gains traction.
Bali is a magical place and I am learning and experiencing so much in my time here already. The air here is thick with magic and humidity. Here is a country which lives their spirituality. Every morning their are offerings on the altars, in the doorways, in nooks and small places. Rice is laid out on banana leafs as offerings to the ants and other insects. Incense and flowers are everywhere. Each household has its own temple and mornings are time for prayers and meditation. Everywhere are reminders of the sacredness and playfulness of life.
Like the concept of the Dao in China, here in Bali, God is everywhere.
The local holy man explained that they believe we live in a big sea of God. There is no heaven and no hell other than that which we create here on earth. Each needing the other to survive.
Here the concept of Yin and Yang is alive in everything.
Balance is the key to harmony. Everyone from the holy man to the taxi driver comments that a little sin keeps one in balance. While they accept and admire vegetarianism, they also have a strong belief that a little meat keeps balance in the body. Prayer is a way of life, but so is laughter and joy.
My Balinese massage therapist Pan commented that a little sadness is always beneficial, but not too much. He notices that Westerners want all happy yet experience big sad. Not good he says, need to know how to have little sad and little happy. He tells me this in the context of revealing the loss of his only son just a year ago.
The key to little sad and little happy is the great big sea of God we swim in.
When your everyday is sacred and your sacred is everyday the lines of lines of what is good and bad blur. Not in the loss of principles, but in the gaining of the perspective that accepting both without judgement or resistance increases the flow of life.
Shakti they call it here. The creative and destructive life force, the feminine energy of the earth. The wild chaos of energy that brings about children and takes them back again and holds both the giving and the taking as sacred.
Today I contemplate the places in my life where I am resisting the ebb and flow.
Where do I cling to both the pain and the joy as if they were rare commodities. And how I can find the balance. How can I not cling to any one feeling, get stuck in any one paradigm, not stake out a claim on the serpentine river of life force that flows around me? When I hold onto any one feeling it causes stagnation. The life force cannot flow. Pan demonstrates this as he painfully presses down into my tight shoulders. See, here you hold onto big sad, no? Need to not have so much sad, hold little happy too.