I had the pleasure of pitching my tent near a cliff overlooking miles of pristine beach, Pt. Reyes peninsula, the distant Farallon Islands, hovering setting sunsets, and the steady ocean sounds that ranged from splendid susurrations to pounding, concussive crashes.
Earth beauty is verdantly abundant throughout the preserve and the land rises rapidly from the water in the textures of wind sculpted bays, ocean-bound streams, conifers, oaks, head-high grass meadows, spring-fed lakes and water falling through natural pools until its final descent at Alamere Falls.
Pt. Reyes is geologically unique, situated precipitously at the very boundary of the Pacific and North American tectonic plates. One famous trail in the preserve allows visitors to see a fence that once spanned the fault and was pulled 18 feet apart during the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake. I believe the power of the land at Pt. Reyes is unique for this liminal quality that allows one to exist, poised in the space between. Between Earth and Sky. Between Land and Ocean. Between the unfathomable power of the shifting Earth’s plates beneath one’s feet. For the meditator this liminal place on our planet is rich with infinite possibilities. And the power of Nature can be used as a springboard to launch one through the liminal space of being here on Earth to Being present with Spirit in Nature.
The greatest challenge we face on our path to awakening is the false sense that we are the body and that we are separate from others, separate from Nature. This single misperception is reinforced by the illusion of passing time so that we feel not only separate from Nature but we also perceive the effect of age and physical suffering. It is in fact quite easy to travel to a place of natural beauty and gaze appreciatively at the forms and colors of the earth around us yet never enter into that magical, liminal space beyond the illusion of time. Yoga and Meditation are simply tools that, when we choose to use them, open the door into the space between. Between body awareness and Self awareness. Between separation and spiritual unity. Between Nature and Spirit.
And this was my greatest gift at Pt. Reyes this year. All my practices were empowered by the land and its transformative qualities. As I performed the Energization Exercises I was lifted to the space between Earth and Sky. Each yoga posture became transformed by the power of the Earth beneath me. And by that power I was lifted up, into that liminal space between Ocean and Land. In meditation I found myself carried to that place where the Eternal Now exists between Nature and Spirit.
We are blessed to live in an area where all of us have the opportunity to tap into the abiding power of Nature to propel us beyond the everyday and into the exceptional potential to know that God is present now. God in Nature. God in one another. And most of all, God present within ourselves as Spirit.
Ananda Scotts Valley offers many opportunities to connect with like-minded souls. I encourage you to check out our calendar of classes and events at www.anandascottsvalley.org. Then join us for a yoga class, meditation series, study group or Sunday Service.
Blessings and Joy,