Silence loves me…
Sometimes silence is much more than just the absence of sound. Sometimes silence has it’s own life, a being, a spirit, a place to be. A beloved. Sometimes you just don’t talk – but sometimes silence starts talking back to you. It speaks from your heart, tells you who you really are, beyond all the words, beyond all the thoughts, beyond all your ideas about what to do in this life – it feels like it reminds you that you are much more than you think. You are not ever what you think you are.
Before I went to silent retreat with Natha Yoga Center on Stevns Klint, I was wondering what I would experience. If I would reach exciting states, if I would have a lot to tell afterwards, if it would change me. If I would get scared when I met the silence. When I met myself – the one that I really am.
My body reacted with symptoms of illness before the camp, and I was a little nervous – but also looking forward, I felt like I was going to meet a love done after a long time, after having missed him for a long time. I felt I would start a love relation with my own soul, after having been very focused on other people’s thoughts and opinions for my whole life, and on what to do to be good enough. I felt I would finally meet my own heart – but I didn’t realise how radical the consequences would be.
The frame for the retreat was that we were in mauna, where you don’t speak or communicate, during the camp, and that we had several hours of meditation every day, and tried to be as introvert as possible. That we would do something else than we usually do. We were in Stevns Naturcenter, which is placed in the most beautiful nature, with the sea almost just outside the door, and with tall trees, lots of birds, endless skies. The nights were blessed with stars and beauty. And the days were filled with the sound of the rain, the fragrance of the wet trees, and the longing for the sea. We were a lot of people there, but the point was to give us a possibility that elsewhere we would have to go to a cave in the Himalayas to find – that we could live so introvert and be so quiet inside that we could focus on our true nature.
In the first week, we worked on understanding who we are NOT – that we are not the mind, with it´s thoughts and feelings, but also that we are not the body. Vi had fantastic lectures where we heard how some of the great spiritual masters have travelled from an ordinary life to a life in Light – an enlightened life. We meditated on the words and teachings, and in this way their experiences built a foundation in us, and settled in us.
Before the camp, I was concerned if I could take it – if I would meet a lot of inner ghosts, that would scare me, or if I would suddenly begin talking or do other unconscious actions that would ruin the retreat for me. I was also afraid to produce beautiful experiences or inner images that would be more in the category ’astral dreams’ than real experiences of something more profound, something higher than the astral realm. I was afraid to stay in a svadhisthana-spirituality (Svadhisthana is the energy center in our being, that is connected to the erotic and creative energies, and to desire and the search for pleasure), where I would have pleasant experiences, that would satisfy my ego very much – but where I wouldn’t actually open towards God.
In the first days, I was very very blissful – I was happy to put all my social insecurities aside and to be allowed just to be in my own world, and in the night time I would lie in my bed and look at the stars in the sky and just feel… happy. And we learned how to de-identify regarding to all the things, we are not – and I understood, it was so obvious to me that I have never seen reality, only my own images of it, and these images come from the one I think I am. And who is strongly attached to prejudices, judging others and myself, a closed heart, lack of surrender, and always preoccupied with thoughts of either the future or the past. I was so ecstatic to see all this! It felt like being an innocent child, that can sit by the feet of God, and just be the one I am – and in full confidence and with trust in the heart give it all to Him, without any thoughts if He can and will help me – because He is omnipotent and He is Love! I felt no desire to keep anything to myself, hide anything – I just wanted to surrender it all to Him.
We learned some fantastic techniques to see how we identify with what we are not – and I was just so happy to see that I was not and am not all the nonsense, that haunts my mind.
We also learned about some of the cosmic powers, Mahavidya (In traditional tantrism, it is understood that God manifests through ten aspects, symbolized as ten goddesses, and they are called Mahavidya or the ten cosmic powers) and their special gifts of grace to the ones seeking Atman – the ones seeking the revelation of Reality. It was a true journey in joy and mystery, and I felt so blessed.
I also felt great irritation and anger – the slightest noise or disturbance from the others could make me extremely irritated and angry – and I watched my resonance to see if it would then dissolve. And I was angry with myself for not ’just’ opening my heart – and I saw how it became more and more difficult for me to surrender to the present moment. At the same time I was very happy to see this anger – because I learned that it cannot harm me, it cannot touch my soul, or Atman. I could see that the anger came from my mind, but also that no matter how much place it took on my inner ’screen’, I was still united with endless love. That was tremendously healing for me – because normally I run away from the feelings, I don’t like, for instance anger, jealousy or envy – but at the same time, I run away from all the people or situations, that could trigger these emotions, and trigger the risk to feel them, and then I lose so much. I shut off for love. And i learned that exactly the feelings, I find the most difficult to live with, can be the most wonderful and unexpected gate to unconditional love, to unity with all human beings, and to an open heart.
In the next part of the retreat it was time to go deeper in the meditations. I was very sleepy and tired, I was not able to sleep much at night, 3 -4 hours, and some of the meditations I just spent staying awake. But at the same time I had a feeling that now I had consecrated the meditations and received an answer, then also this was integrated and a part of the divine plan – and now, after the camp, I understand that I had to fully let go of my desire for spiritual experiences, so that God could hold me in His hands.
I understand that I had to come down on my knees and feel totally lost in order for Him to be allowed to have access to my being.
And sometimes in the meditations I surrendered so much, let so much go of all my ideas of what was supposed to happen now, and I just welcomed everything, totally relaxed – that I became witness, became heart, became Mother, became love, became Present Moment, became the one I really am.
There were states with no desires or identification with the mind, there were states of eternity and unity with All, there were states of deep peace – not as feelings, but as observations.
And I experienced that a lot of new nuances were available – it was as if the silence made it possible to perceive much more subtle nuances in reality – as if eternity and unity is hidden between all the phenomena, I know from my senses and perceptions.
I had wonderful moments with Grieg, our spiritual guide. One of the things that surprised me the most was experiencing how I stopped focusing on his words, his teachings, his physical appearance – and was allowed to see him as the one, he has always been and will always be. And I remembered the first time I came to the school for tantra class, and saw his picture, and was told that he was the one who had founded the school – and I kneeled before the picture and thanked him for giving me the possibility to go to this school and learn so many wonderful things. I didn’t know anything about what else he is at that time – I just felt a deep gratitude. In these moments in the camp where I experienced him beyond all appearances, beyond body, age, teaching, expression, I felt that he had found me in the middle of the ocean of people, and called me, and led me to this moment – and I knew that since he had loved me forever, then also I was eternal. And i knew that also I will reach enlightenment in the right moment, because I am in his hands and love – it can only turn out for the best! I felt so blessed, loved and full of gratitude – and full of trust. And that it is fantastic that I am exactly where I am now – for this is my starting point for my further journey.
Sometimes I experienced how everything I think I know, dissolved in front of me – and I had moments where I said goodbye to everything, I thought I knew, everything, that I thought that I loved. I said goodbye to parents, sister and brother, family, friends, ambitions, talents, dreams, attachments, pains, identifications, self-hatred – and there were moments of deep loneliness, because nothing was as I had always thought it was. But these moments transformed into deep bliss, when I saw that the deep pains that I have always carried, and thought I could never release – dissolved in front of me. I realised that the confirmation, I have always wanted from others, was in fact impossible to have – because other people don’t exist, I only see my image of them. The person, I see as X, is not X – I only see my image of him. I realised that when I am angry or jealous, it comes from things in my own mind, because I do not see reality – and therefore there is no reason to feel bad about it. I felt so many times that I chose to feel bad about things that are not real – because since I was never born and will never die, and since I never saw reality, but live in a hall of mirrors – than the state of Witness is the only true place to be. And that it is unrealistic to feel bad about anything – because the things I feel bad about, never happened, and they are not happening now either, and they will never happen.
The present moment is always sufficient and abundant and ecstatic – it contains all.
There was a special moment that I like to return to now afterwards, with hope and longing. I realised during the camps that I long so much for loving in perfect freedom and without conditions, like God – but also that I fear it deeply. Because if I didn’t, obviously I would already love in that way. But at one point I had a very strong experience of having a glimpse of how it will be to have a totally open heart – and how I through empathy would be able to heal others with no boundaries, let go of my own low resonances and set others free – and how I would be able to release their hearts. This moment is till very clear to me, as something I desire very much and deep in my being.
To be able to let go of the fear to love unconditionally, so I can reach that state of empathy.
When the retreat ended, I wanted to get home fast – I didn’t want to start talking to the other participants about our experiences, because I didn’t want my ego to cut this silence into small appropriate pieces, that might make me happy, but that would also be so interpreted by the ego that I would not be able to transform. I wanted to contain all the things I had learned inside, and not ejaculate it. And I wanted more silence. So I left in a hurry – but happy.
In these days after the camp, I have felt a great longing for meditating, and meditating for long periods, and for getting to know my heart even more, and getting to know it so well, that it will be a gate to the one I really am.
I have also felt that is is immensely much easier for me to center in the heart – and release any desire to center anywhere else. I feel a lot more self-confidence – I guess it did my Manipura (the energycenter or chakra connected to will power, self confidence and the ability to transform your life) well to show up for all the meditations, no matter if I was tired or ill. Anyway it has become easier for me to say what I see, and say what I think.
And I have a strong feeling that I am facing big changes in my life. My mind has no plans, but I can feel that my heart is strong and that it leads me – and I don’t really think about where it is going, I fully trust it will take me to the best position for both my and the world outside. Karma yoga (which is when you offer the karmic fruits of your actions, and your actions, to God, with love) has turned into a true joy for me, and even though my mind creates stress when I see how much I am supposed to do, then I also feel full confidence in my heart, and I see that time is shaping so I manage to overcome it all in magical ways, and that I have strength to do it. It is truly amazing to see – love in action.
I am deeply grateful for the retreat – I am so grateful for having shared those days with wonderful people, and many times during the meditations I saw all the beautiful souls that surrounded me with light, and I saw the angels supporting us, surrounding us with love and kindness. I feel immensely grateful to Grieg, and I love to feel him as the other half of my heart. I am deeply grateful for the possibility to love him so much more – I could not have received any better presents for Christmas. I also feel deep gratitude towards Natha Yoga Center – and I am still really amazed that it is possible for find so profound, transforming and authentic teaching in the middle of my Januarylife in Denmark – you know, I am just an ordinary human being. That it is possible for me to find teaching that leads me to the depths of my heart and to see glimpses of the Source – reality.
Silence became my Beloved during the retreat. I have always dreamt of obtaining inner peace – as long as I didn’t have to release my attachments, and if i could be allowed to be the same, if I could be allowed to ’sleep at the steering wheel’ in my life. I dreamt that God would make it so that it didn’t hurt that I was ignorant. But silence became my Beloved during the retreat – the silence, the neutral point within – and I feel I am flirting with life, with reality, and I see how the layers of reality and illusion mix, and I get seduced and fall in love with this game – also when it hurts. I take the response, but I don’t take it so personal.
I know I was never born and that I will never die – I don’t know this because somebody told me, but because I found it in my heart. By releasing all the things, I weren’t, and releasing all the things I wanted to be – and instead I was just a little fool, who was sitting trying to stay awake in meditation – but at the same time, I was One with the Supreme – in a magical way.
I look so much forward for meditating again! And for every moment of yoga, every moment of giving myself to others, every moment of what life is really about.
And every moment of resistance – for that is exactly where I meet the one, that I am not – and then the One, that Is forever, can be revealed.