After deciding not to embark on another teacher training course in Varkala, it became clear to me that it was time to move on. I had a great three weeks on this little cliff where I met some wonderful people and I think grew a lot through some interesting ‘spiritual’ encounters that I won’t discuss here for fear of giving you a fright. Let’s just say the intensity was sometimes uncomfortable and chaotic. But the ocean is a powerful source of inspiration. I knew there was one lesson the waves were trying to teach me but I couldn’t fully grasp it until I arrived in Mysore a few days ago. This is where the inspiration for this humble piece of poetry came from. Take from it what you will. My personal reflections are below.
Oh sweet wave of chaos,
I feel you rising.
I take a breath and dive straight through.
You fall and break above yourself.
Try to picture yourself in the ocean. The waves are pretty big and keep sending you under in consecutive strikes time and time again. Even if you see it coming, you’re in the wrong place at the wrong time and can’t escape this next bashing. But after a couple of blows, you come to see from where the wave starts to rise, and you know where it will crash. You position yourself at the wave’s entrance so you can glide through it’s smooth surface as it rises above you, and when you come through on the other side, you see it crash in all its glory.
From behind the wave, everything is so much clearer. You see, sometimes we don’t even realise we’re living in chaos until we take a step back from it. So, when you observe the wave from the peace of the ocean that lies behind it, you see it for what it is. Then it becomes obvious why everything felt so heavy before. You might even feel grateful for the lessons the chaos came to share with you.
You think you want life to be easy, but it doesn’t work that way. You have to learn to swim in the ocean and embrace the waves. And then you can decide what you want your experience to be. If you want to really feel it, hold your breath and let it shake you up a bit. When it settles, you will arrive on the shore. If you want to be free from it, you have to dive through and watch the waves rise and fall from behind. No way is right or wrong. So long as you know your place in the ocean, you will always be safe in the mist of welcome chaos.