Lusaka in Zambia is the same amount of travelling time away from Johannesburg as it is to travel to Cape Town: a two hour flight away. That kinda blew my mind. Somehow, as a South African, the rest of Africa seems deep, dark, dirty, corrupt and far away. What’s up with that? I’ll pick ignorance and inexperience as the answers. My first trip into Lusaka was soul enriching and mind expanding. It came at just the right time too because I moved apartments and completed my Yoga teacher training in the same week. So I was ripe for a paradigm shift.
Here is what I learnt this week: Life is a dance between making it happen and letting it happen.
It is not always easy to discern between the two, especially when most of us are driven to do, achieve, accomplish and succeed – all the time. I know I fall into the category of materialising tangible results at a rapid rate and at a certain point in your mid thirties you realise it is all a bit much to constantly be measuring your life by incremental result after incremental result. Who invented this metric system anyway?
I took a moment to step out of that paradigm and honour the space between no longer and not there yet. It is an uncomfortable space between doing and being, a bit like being in limbo but in a more mindful and conscious way. Patience, discipline and focus are key. You do not act, but rather observe and take your cues from the natural unfolding of how life happens and be brave enough to go with the flow. Life happens while you’re busy making other plans, as the old saying goes (thank you John Lennon), so why beat yourself up about it? We always get what we need in the end, anyway.
So the trick is to be still and present enough to observe the connections between your experience of things and the natural unfolding of things, without the panic of realising that you are not in complete control of things and that everything is moving along as it is supposed to. I think it is called having faith and being in a humble state of grace. It is a sweet surrender.
We are lucky enough to live on a magical continent. I am looking forward to exploring more of it. And the more of the deep, dark continent I explore on the outside, the more of my own deep, dark inner world I explore on the inside. Once I wrapped my mind around that, I realised it is not so dark after all. It is actually quite glorious if you have an open enough mind and heart about it.
See you in class.