I just landed back in Avalon after spending a month in Bali, having wanted to visit the “Island of the Gods” for 11 years. 11 years ago, I saw the movie “Eat, Pray, Love” in the cinema with two of my best friends. The story of the movie is based on the experiences of Elisabeth Gilbert who goes through an existential crisis and decides to take a sabbatical year and travel to Italy, India and Bali to find herself and redefine her purpose. This feel-good movie was like a glass of cold water in the face, I left the movie-theatre feeling that I was wasting my life with my purposeless existence but also, that there were many other options available to me. Something was awakened in me.
Sometimes wisdom can seep into our lives through seemingly unimportant and unplanned events. I believe life presents us with many opportunities to wake up and change our course. This is one example, but I have several examples of this throughout my life. Each time we are shaken and our circumstances allow us to question our life, we have a choice: we can tuck away our feelings until the effect of the event wears off and we and we can just go on as if nothing ever happened, or we decide to act and actually change our circumstances. For me this meant that I started saying “yes” to the opportunities life presented to me, even though they scared me. It meant I started to see life as filled with potential rather than filled with obstacles. One of the catch phrases of the film became the mantra I shared with one my best friends for years: “attraversiamo”, which is Italian for “let’s cross over”, a phrase we used whenever we hesitated to engage in a new adventure and decided to just go for it.

Secondly, I came to Bali because I wanted to give myself a break. I made some important decisions and vital changes over the last year and I wanted to give myself the time to reflect and integrate.
When we make big changes in our lives, it is important to take a break before engaging into a new phase to allow ourselves to integrate the teachings of experiences of the past and more importantly still, to allow ourselves to shift energetically. If we don’t do this and just jump from one thing into the next, we might change our circumstances, but we don’t change our energy and state of being, which means we haven’t learned anything and just continue on in the same dynamic. This is how you can find yourself in similar situations time after time again, even though you’ve changed your external circumstances.
Bali was the perfect place to process and reboot. I felt the energy of Ganesha during the first 10 days of my stay, helping me to shift my energy from the old to the new, removing the obstacles of my growth, allowing me to expand. I was helped in this process by the vibrant, healthy food, the beautiful weather, the abundance of sacred springs and water temples, the amazing massage therapists… Not a coincidence for Bali is called the global centre of purification. You can see it in the people that live in Bali: they are beaming with health.
After Ganesh was finished with me, I felt the healing influence of Saraswati and I was able to really nourish myself with the beauty, the kindness, the artwork, the crafts and the wisdom of Bali and start to weave my own energy into its fabric, unite with the energy of the island and share some of the magical energy of Glastonbury.
My last day on the island was the Galungan celebration which celebrates the victory of the good(dharma) over the bad(adharma) which seemed very fitting to conclude my journey of purification. At Galungan, the veils between our world and the spirit world thin and elaborate ceremonies are held in all of the temples to honour the ancestors and the gods by offering them gifts, making music for them. I really felt the presence and support of my ancestors as the whole island was calling them in. The temples and streets are beautifully decorated with colourful offerings and “penjor”, swaying decorated bamboo poles used as temporary shrines that symbolise a dragon called “Anantaboga”, meaning abundance and prosperity. I wonder if this dragon is a reminder of the dragon line Bali sits on, connecting it to other high altars in this world such as lake Titicaca in Peru/Bolivia, Glastonbury (UK), Mount Uluru (Australia) and Mount Kailas (Tibet).

Travel to me makes sense when it’s purposeful, when we allow ourselves to be touched and transformed by the places we go to, when we listen to the wisdom and teachings of the place and don’t just let our experience slide off us, but let it take root inside of us. On a personal level I was reminded of the importance of self-care, and my time in Bali reinforced my devotion and reaffirmed my dedication to what I see as my purpose: sharing the initiations that I received and upholding values that support Dharma such as authenticity, kindness, love, purpose, devotion and beauty. Supporting and sharing energies that uplift that elevate that raise people’s consciousness and vibration. Bali reinforced the resolution in me to make the world beautiful again. Very needed in times when adharma is the rule and people’s vibrations and energies are constantly being brought down by fearmongering around new viruses, terrorism, etc. As long as I live, I shall dedicate my life to steering people out of fear consciousness and into abundance consciousness. – Anaïs

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