The other night Napo and I were talking about our experience building Oasis. We walked to the upper level of the property during the early evening. The brick walls of the first floor of the largest building are now complete.
We stood in front of the building and Napo asked me. “How many bricks are in this wall?” I had no idea. He said, “There are 400 bricks in this wall.” Knowing Napo I asked, “What does each brick signify?”
He said, “Every brick is a dollar, a tear, and a drop of our blood.”
When I looked again I saw something completely different. No longer was I looking at a structure with walls, floors and columns. I was now seeing how each brick was an element in a complete transformation process. Through our money, tears and blood we transformed a piece of dry, lifeless land into a sacred space where others will come with their wounds, with their dreams and with their hopes to share their story in community.
There will be tears but not tears of suffering but tears of rebirth.
This building I now see before me is the manifestation of my own rebirth back to the core of who I came here to be and what I came here to do. Every brick was laid by a person who now is also transformed by having the money to feed his family, the chance to teach his sons the trade that they practice and the inspiration to do more for their own community.
We are not building a retreat center.
We are building a sacred space for inner and outer transformation, individually and collectively, and it is in each brick and in each column. And all of that is in us too.
You go through your life seeing what is obvious, what is directly in front of you and you don’t question what is beyond that. You may be experiencing a challenge or a change in your life that leaves you disoriented and fearful of the unknown. There arises a tension between letting go and moving on.
You experience this as a loss when it is actually the continuation of your personal journey.
When you make transitions in your life you are also changing your sense of self, your identity. With your evolution your old identity begins to fade away and it feels like you’re disappearing. For a while you can’t find yourself and you don’t really know who you are in the absence of what defined you previously.
That is when the ego panics and fights for it’s right to stay safe and unchanged. It wants to protect what it is and all the beliefs and assumptions it carries as the substance of your life. To feel like you are disappearing and not understanding why transitions feel like this causes even more distress and disruption. Despite knowing that there is another step in your journey you fight to stay where you are even as you continue to walk your path.
It’s a terrible feeling, this feeling of disappearing.
Shift how you relate to this feeling and notice that it is a softening around your old ways of being in the world to make room for a more expansive way of expressing yourself. Like the caterpillar in the chrysalis you are dissolving and transforming into someone new and beautiful, ready to take flight into the unknown possibilities that lie ahead for you.
When you look beyond what is happening in your life you shift your perspective and the interpretation of the circumstances. You begin to loosen your grip on what you have known in order to consciously evolve.
Change happens on multiple levels. On the physical level we focus and suffer the transition effects while the ego fights to stay in power. On the energetic level, whose natural tendency is to flow with the universal movement of change, anything is received graciously and gratefully as an opportunity to evolve into a more conscious spiritual being.
This is hard work and it is uncomfortable but discomfort is a small price to pay for the freedom to be all of what you are capable of being. Even as you empower yourself in the physical world to do that things you must do to make a shift in your life, simultaneously you surrender to the universal movement of conscious evolution so that you can step into a profound connection to the source of who you are essentially.
As the sun dropped behind the mountain and into the ocean we embraced knowing that this moment was another lesson and a blessing in our own evolution. Standing on our hill, on this place of transformation for us, for this Ecuadorian community and for all the future visitors who will come here to heal and renew, we experienced deep gratitude and peace for the gift of life and love and the opportunity to share our work.