By Anna Maybritt
I am writing this in the beginning of the autumn, the days are still sunny and the sky is blue, but the nights are cold and the wind is sneaking around in the streets in my city.
It seems that summer is leaving now, and that we will soon be kissed by storms and rain. But summer is still a sweet sweet memory for me this year – summer and the Summer Camp for the Awakening of the Soul.
When I decided to sign up for the camp, I was kind of reluctant – and I was sure that I would probably not go through with this crazy plan of going to the summer camp – because I am 'just' a beginner in tantra, I have no long history of yoga practice and meditation – I am quite new in perceiving my life as something I can shape and change. I have been a Catholic for some years, and have had a status quo-like perception of my life as a victim's life, and I felt that happiness for me would probably be to accept that I had ruined my possibilities, and now was too late to change that, but there was still the possibility of learning to accept my misery and loneliness, and then I could hope for some kind of rest after this life.
I had no idea whatsoever about my potential – I had been a student in tantra class for about six months, but had listened to the teachings with my ears closed, as I felt that all these magnificent things were not for me, but for everybody else.
I felt that it was all too late for me – but I wanted to go to the camp to maybe meet new friends and also to see if I could overcome some of my shyness.
Or so I thought. With my mind...
Then came the day where the camp started. I drove with a friend and another camp participant to Concordia, and was welcomed and found my place to sleep – it was very hot and humid, and I chose a mattress under an open window. No problems.
In the evening we had sweet friendly party games, and I was warm inside with the feeling of all the kind people all around me – and I felt very much that this would be an 'easy' camp for me, because I felt 'on top' of the situation – maybe shy and a little silent, but that was okay, because normally I talk a lot, and I wanted to do something else than I usually do, to see if I could then change the results and feelings I have.
Then the first challenge came. In the middle of a party game, I fell and twisted my foot, and hurt it badly. And for the rest of the camp I was constantly limping around. I wondered very much why I fell like this on the first evening – it was like I wanted some kind of 'excuse' for not being able to participate fully in the camp. It felt a little bit like I had already met my own inhibitions, in the shape of seeing myself as somebody who shouldn't be able just to relax and enjoy and to just feel good about myself.
And that also meant that the things that are most difficult for me – like dancing, walking gracefully in the feeling of being a feminine woman, moving with sweetness – were out of reach, as I constantly longed for sitting down or something to support my other leg with.
Well... still the next couple of days went okay, I enjoyed the atmosphere of the house, the activities and teachings, the very high level of teaching, the yoga, the wonderful people all around.
Then the next challenge came. In one of the activities, I misunderstood the intentions and behaviour of one of the teachers completely – I felt as if he didn't like me at all, and as if he wanted me to be on a long distance from him – and it hurt me very much, as I considered him to be very close to me before.
And that made the darkness close in on me. I felt like I fell into the depths of all the loneliness I had felt for my whole life, and like I was invisible to everybody, and like no one could ever love me, and like I was sitting in a deep hole in the ground, just me and all my pain.
I wanted so much to climb up the hole, so I could participate in the camp equally with the others – or at least that was what I thought.
But in reality, I wanted to be a Good Girl – that is: I wanted to be nice and sweet and shallow and not authentic. I wanted so much to be something I most certainly was not – someone that everybody would want to love for my sweet heart, and who would never feel any feelings that would hurt me, and who would never have to make the world aware of my needs and longings. I wanted to lie. And pretend.
But after that activity where I felt so misunderstood by one of the teachers, and afterwards felt so alone, it seemed like everything crashed for me. I felt so angry inside, I felt so alone and miserable, I felt like no one could understand me, and that no one could see that I really needed to talk. And I fought so hard to find happiness again, but it was way out the reach of my will and mind.
I think I had three or four days in constant suffering – where I woke in the morning, crying in my sleep, and cried in every meditation, yoga asana, or in every social activity. I really broke down.
But in a strange way I felt kind of proud because I did so – because it told me that I was ready to really give something of myself, to really give up my old patterns, to really try to create my life anew, to leave everything I perceived as being 'me' in the search of something …. more.
I felt very much alone – and every embrace felt like fire, because it reminded me how difficult it was for me to trust and to just... be present.
But slowly I gave in.... and I surrendered to the Divine. I felt that all this happened out of pure love, and care for me. I felt that God really saw my deepest needs – all the ones that I would never tell anyone about, I felt that I was healed in all the places that hurt the most, all my deepest wounds – because I suddenly saw that I was ashamed of my hurting, of my insecurity, of my feeling of not being feminine, of my reluctance to reach out to people and say: Hey, I'm sad – would you please hug me?
I wanted so much to have other problems than I did – maybe to feel shy if I had to talk in front of a lot of people, or something. But all the suffering I went through in those days clearly told me about the things that were really blocking me: my self-hatred, my denying myself of relaxing, trusting and receiving love, my fears of being unworthy of even the slightest love.
I realised that God or my Higher Self didn't want to heal the things that I would admit – but the things that I needed to heal. And that all the sad feelings I had in the camp came from my own fighting this.
And then I slowly began to feel grateful that I could not hide from my self anymore – and that all the misery I felt inside could finally have a voice, and be recognised, and then... released.
Then we had a meditation which was guided by Mihai. And in that meditation I had a very beautiful experience of my soul, my inner calmness, my divinity. I saw the space within the atoms of my body as being penetrated by Spirit, or Consciousness... God.
And it felt so wonderful that this experience of God was not flimsy-fluffy etherical, but within my own body, in the innermost core of what I perceived as being me.
When I came back from the meditation, I knew something had changed... and I felt so much longing to experience that state again – the state of deep relaxation, of peace, of being a witness, of just... being.
In the next days I observed that I had changed my point of view – I was suddenly aware that all the situations where I felt hurt were created by my Higher Self so that I could begin to let go of my attitude towards other people – an attitude where I didn't trust their love or good will, but just clinged to being hurt. And I realised that I protected myself from being vulnerable by always being hurt – because if you choose to believe that everybody will hurt you, you never open up to really giving them the possibility of doing so, because... you have already hurt yourself.
I faced my defence mechanisms in thousands of different ways – and later on I realized that the camp was supported by a very intense and wonderful energy field that allowed all of us not only to meet our inhibitions, limitations, prejudices about ourselves and others, but also to transform them by becoming aware that they were not real, and that they were obstacles in the way of our longings of self-realization.
So I didn't just suddenly fly like a butterfly – but I began a process where I knew that my cocoon was a very little and sad world compared to the one waiting on the other side of the walls – and I also realised that 'safe is not always the same as happy' – because often safe is just a decision to block all the things we think we can't manage og control.
I also realised that I wanted to feel the sweetness of living in the present – instead of my heart being held hostage by my mind.
And I realised that the more I managed to live in the present, the more secure I would actually feel... because then I would be founded in my eternity, not my mortality.
During the last days of the camp, things changed again... I felt a rush of happiness, joy, bliss, love... I could see in my meditations that I let go of a lot of defence mechanisms, and things came up from the subconscious – and they were not all the time nice to meet, but everytime I felt happy that I had relaxed so much that I could just let them pass.
I also felt a strong gratitude towards the school for providing me with this possibility of changing my life in a very radical way – and towards the teachers for pouring so much energy and wisdom into it.
And I felt very grateful towards myself... that I had come, despite of my fears and all my good excuses for not going. I was really amazed at the experience that I could step aside from my inner stage... because I clearly saw that somebody much bigger than my mind was working on my bliss and transformation.
I felt a lot of love.... and I felt I could have danced during Copenhagen in the rain in the nights, just singing about love and simple joys. I felt my heart awakening – and I don't mean a heart that is preoccupied with being a Good Girl who is never a burden – I mean a heart that longed to explore her true nature, and to love the Goddess in herself as well as in nature, in her sisters in God, in all feminine. I also had wonderful sensations of the energy of the masculine – and began this exploring by breaking up with my old lover in the last days of the camp. And that was almost the most obvious fruit of my transformation in the level of my everyday life. And a change which I had longed for for quite some time.
I would like to say something about the program for the camp – most of all, I felt that the teachers took us for adventures in our inner worlds, but also in the outer – for example in the nature. I really liked the activities – there was a lot of laughing, playing, feeling good, feeling love – but also very profound experiences in the innermost parts of our hearts.
I think the program gave us the perfect conditions for our own transformation – and one of the things I was surprised at, was to see how much it meant that we had long days, and then slept together – that is: the women together, and the men together.
Normally, when I have been to a class or weekend course, I have taken the opportunity to go home at night and sleep in my own bed – but that also provides me with the possibility to rebuild my defences every night – and that is sad, really.
I knew in camp that if I broke down, or refused to participate in something, or hid from the others, or got angry with somebody – that the others would still be there....
And that really helped me understanding that we were all in a process, and that my issues were not more shameridden than the issues of the others. I really felt like the others were my brothers and sisters.
And then I have to mention that being a teacher myself, and a Virgo, I was extremely impressed with the teachers. Normally, I am easily turned off by unprofessional teachers, but in this camp I constantly felt a very high level of knowledge, and also readiness to answer even the most difficult questions, and also willingness to share from own experiences.
And more: a deep respect from the teachers towards our process and our Light.... that means: if I came with a question or a feeling that maybe seemed stupid or low to me, I would get an answer that would show me that I was regarded for my asking, for my openness and that the teacher also learned from answering me. That really pleased my heart as a teacher myself.
In the last days I looked very much forward to going home – not to escape from the learning or from myself, but to see how much I would be able to implement in my daily life, when I was not supported from the energy from my teachers, school and our aspiration.
I must say I am amazed... I still feel the changes very much, and I feel my whole perspective has changed. And when I feel sad, I feel so much more patience with my own process, and gratitude towards myself for my courage to break up from all the things I thought I would never be able to change.
I feel less religious – but with much greater trust in God. And in my own life, and my abilities to transform it.
And now the autumn is calling – and I look forward to evenings in front of my altar, with candle lights, and doing asanas when I hear the wind in the streets whirling dry leaves up in the air, and then I smile and look very much forward to Winter... and the New Year's Camp – And to finding out what my Higher Self has planned for my transformation then.