Swallowing the Truth on Body Image

Over the years I’ve heard a lot of women talk about how they don’t like their bodies and how it has affected them in so many ways. Invitations to social events become a closet room torture session, sexual intimacy or nudity is revealed under a cloak of darkness and self worth a daily source of frustration and sadness.

I have struggled my whole life with having a low self love regarding my body. I tried hiding my (at times) disgust from my two daughters with the aim of instilling a sense of  respect and love of all peoples natural forms. To some degree I am sure I have succeeded but as they grow older my acting skills don’t match their wisdom.

I am out of time and you know what……I am just sick to death of giving myself a hard time. So much wasted energy, worry, anxiety, missed activities and loving embraces.

You cant make someone eat peas when their taste buds repel the texture and flavor so how can I make myself love something I don’t…….I cant and wont pretend any more.

I thought I had to live the rest of life just trying to accept who I was or what I believed myself to be. I only saw with eyes, not with heart.

Then just last week I had a massage from a beautiful soul sister. It was dark, no lights except a soft fire, due the kids being asleep not far from the massage mat. As the energy moved my tears flowed. Without any mental attempt I became aware of a knowing deep within…….I love my body for what is has given me, what it has done for me, the places it has taken me and the adventures it has taken me on. I’ve been lost and it walked me out, loved for days and risen to love more. My bodies been hit and hurt, raped and teased, nurtured life and cycled over many years. Its has worked hard, real hard and yet still feels soft to touch. My body keeps me afloat and harbors a soul yearning to do more for the world yet. Its incredible.

So like the peas I had watched my brother try to swallow as a child and into his teenage years, my body shape is something I may never like but I can appreciate and choose to like all the other qualities that makes a pea a pea other than its flavor.

All my life I have been looking at my body from the outside in with its dimples and blemishes, scars and increasing silhouette size.  How could I ever get to the good bits on the inside when I stopped my journey towards self love at the very first step, at the very first layer? My quest to value and love what I had been given, a remarkable assemblage of loving vibrational cells that could grow life itself was self sabotaged from the very beginning. Without insight, without the ability to become aware of our many layers, we build up a wall of resistance and self loathing. I now choose to begin my meditations from the inside out.

Now, here in the dark, in the safety of a true friend I met my inner self. I saw past the first layer and found so much more. Like focusing on the positive or choosing to see the brighter side of things I saw into all the crevices, between the folds and even through blood and air. I became aware of how my body has supported me when I believed it was the other way round (me supporting others). I became aware of a flowing energy surging through the gaps of my cells that is connected to all things and how insignificant our body size is too this universal source of truth and its movements and natural place in our physical world………so eat the peas and know their truth, know their true uniqueness and value.

It might take a while longer to get to know myself but from now on I can teach my girls how to really see themselves. I can show them how to value their existence from a place of truth and love…..how to love themselves.

May all beings see themselves for who they really are.

Much metta and much gratitude for my massage in the dark.

 

 

 

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Gypsy Life

For last 5 weeks we have been doing what most people do all their lives, or at least aspire too. Live in a big, well maintained and electronically connected house, with pool, gardens, Netflix, unlimited wifi and views to soothe most souls. But not ours.

We’ve walked the other side of the fence for too long now, bathing in free waters and basking under Australian skies. The body was first to complain of walls, humming electrical currents and toxic chemicals….headaches, gut complaints and lethargy not to mention a very distinct lack of creativity and motivation. Its been years since this has occurred…….so with another 7-8 weeks of house sitting to go we did what every human should do once a month……..go bush.

For us it was Inskip, South East Queensland beach territory.

 

For the first day we soaked in salt water, laid on grass (and sand), listened to the gulls and drew on the beach until the moon cast shadows on our tracks.

The next morning, after copious amounts of chai around the fire, we all fell into laughter about absurd happenings….. kids farts, adult farts, men in sarongs, mating dances of wild birds and games that only kids are good at. Its these moments I realise that our family thrives. Our hearts burst open with gratitude.

 

Just a few days in nature an we are ready to serve again….food, love and life to all.

Much metta, hope to see you on the road soon.

Whats Running Through You Now?

Recently we moved from bush camp to a many walled (and mirrored) house sit and although I am not complaining about hot running water, soft lounges, electricity and yep …….Netflix, it has become obvious it’s affecting me in ways I do not like.

Meditation this morning was like a war zone in my mind. The once tranquil, soft intermittent conversation between mind and breath turned to a formidable force of chattering about recent TV shows and required cleaning regimes to maintain the upkeep of such a big house. Then, when I finally got a handle on the incessant noise I realised my bodily sensations or frequency was being disrupted constantly. Aaah. Revelation. The electricity, wifi, lights, pool pump…..I could feel it all……around me and through me like a mosquito under my skin, swimming through my blood.

After 5 years in a forest, 2 years on the road and a settled year near a peaceful Vipassana community my body was reacting to all these new electrical frequencies. I understand this lingering headache now.

Finishing meditation, I make a ginger tea and begin to type. I know most of you probably realise what we eat, we become but also what we surround ourselves with, we also become. I had forgotten.

All of our senses take in tiny weeenie particles or input for our mind to rearrange. Our perception of the world is built around what input we receive – what we surround ourselves with. Body, mind, world is all the same but many choose to disconnect from the natural world and reconstruct their own image, one that pleases their own perception or ego. One that eases the physical burdens of life usually.

I feel like I have lived many lives within just this life, numerous jobs, hundreds of passions but for now, in this moment, I realise nothing is more important than how we treat ourselves and everything within this world – living and non living.

It is so import we give all our efforts to raising the vibration of our soul through pure, connected living. From this all else will flow. We will not wish to harm the earth, our bodies, our children or our mind.

We will want to live again.

Much metta.

 

 

Bodily Reined

Flowing fast, a source of constant connection to all wavers in my body

I feel everything, see nothing and taste the scent of lavender on the rim of my nostril

Quiet times scarcely come so I work hard to stay centered, to stay adrift in the field of a timeless now, scanning the physical with a mindful intention

Questions come and go like the breeze against skin, changing direction just as frequent

bodily reign

There are no answers in this realm just truths, undeniable truths from within that alter the course of this human existence

Go deeper, be still, breathe soft

The more awareness, the more that flows

All I am now is what I am, nothing more, I become the soul of every place I stand

Keep trusting, keep walking this path and hopefully friends will march alongside, spurring each other on, to become aware not just of themselves but each other, each microscopic occurrence

world love 2.jpg

One family of earth, bodily reined

United in love and open to all

 

We, the Gentle Believers

I realise that our lives are not like most although I am seeing a rise in people leaving behind mortgages and stressful jobs to chase dreams. I see them under shady tress in parks, basking on rocks during full sun and dancing on hilltops while the blue moon swells. We, the movement of gentle returners are going back to a simple way of living, connected to the ebb and flows of natures guidance. We, the movement of gentle believers, ride out the storms of life with a sacred breath and open heart.

We know there is more to life than the infinite cycles of birth and rebirth, more than the daily cycle of wake, work, eat, sleep. Attached to nothing I am free to follow my souls desires and what I chase is freedom….but what is freedom?

Last year, while travelling in Morocco we met some permanent South American gypsies who were filming some of their adventures. At the end of each short clip they ask the same single question to people they have met. “What is freedom”

At the time they filmed us we had just come through customs (8 hours) and was camping with several other crazy western travelers on the concrete compound of boarder control waiting for first light as no-one spoke English,  there was no GPS and we had no idea of what lay ahead.

What is freedom he asked?

Holding up my portable toilet bucket I answered “freedom is being able to shit when I like, where I like.” I guess the gypsy life had me in her grasp because all I could think about was being to free to move, to explore. Now, some 18 months later and freshly off a Satipathana {Vipassana} course I have a new concept of freedom. Freedom for me is being able to follow my souls desires or at least its needs when it arises.

So if you are wanting to feel free and happy I guess you need to find your deepest souls requirements and I doubt that a huge house, new car or plasma TV would make the list.

For people who know me {us} they would understand already our trust in the divine, in having the ability to uproot and leave behind what most cherish and value. For those who don’t then the story is simple – stressed out life turned to 5 years retreat on indigenous forest lands, sold everything, traveled everywhere with family in tow, and returned to Australia not knowing what to do. Now I listen to the wisdom’s that come through meditation and live in love and service to mankind, earth and all beings, finding balance between work, rest, play and family.

So back to this attachment thing. What is attachment? Anything that you feel you cannot lose or live without is attachment. Your watch, excess clothing, emotions, children, house, money, sex, food…….the list is endless really but for now I seek balance and commitment. I commit to letting go of all I can on any given day because the further I go into spirit the less I realise I need and this list includes emotional and non material apsects also.

How much of your life is simple clutter? How much are you willing to sell, give away or return to earth for the sake of happiness? For the sake of freedom.

My top suggestions for happiness.

Do a Vipassana course

Get rid of everything you can part with, downsize, sell off, work less

Help others and be in service once a year

Love and let go that which doesnt bring lightness to your life or the life of others.

With loving metta.

Underestimating Natural Schooling and its Value for Future Employment Options

Some years ago I went for a job within the NSW National Parks. A dream job for me but I was under qualified and lacking any experience. I had just completed my second year of Environmental Science and had to travel about 6 hours from the Sunshine Coast each weekend for work IF I was given employment. The odds were against me.

I made it somehow through to the final assessment and attended a weekend with about 14 other people to narrow it down to a team of 6. As we sat around talking wombats, fire trails and public toilets, I felt every eye upon each other, sizing up the competition. Most of my opponents had formidable beards and a repertoire of unusual birds calls that was used at unusual times of the conversation. I knew none of them. All held degrees (literally) and all knew the area well.

The young dark-haired man beside me had nothing but a smile and a blank piece of paper in front of him. He talked, and laughed, making everyone feel pretty good about themselves I believe. He asked to hear the bird calls, listened when the stories were told and not once took his attention elsewhere.

I guess you can imagine where this is going. He got the job. I did too but only just  – at least I got to talk to him again.

He was in his early 20’s, could barely write and maths was something you used to count the lettuce he picked for his Mum before market harvest. He had lived in rural NSW on community all his life, never attended school or gone to Tafe – just lived. He helped the people he lived with, chatted with the locals at the weekly produce sales and traveled a little when he was 19, woofing and couch surfing before realising he had something so simple to share. His love of the earth and the people upon it. He didn’t even know a bird call.

For the next several months I watched various employees of the National Parks cater to his best attributes and pick up the pieces where necessary. He was an asset to our Discovery Team and when I asked about his life and his job he told me…………

“I found what I loved and wanted to share it with the best of intentions to as many people as I could”

Its been years since I worked with the dark-haired man. I know have kids of my own (12 and almost 14). We are natural schoolers, change our interests and learning methods as much as the moon fulls and whole heartedly believe we can raise aware, conscious, happy and employable children bu following our hearts.

So often I hear stories of mothers that question their own teaching methods or abilities daily,  grandparents that don’t understand the possibilities of open learning or spouses that think you wont get a good education if you don’t get a degree.

Good people get good jobs – if that’s what you want.

Raise our kids with the mindset that anything is possible and we will change the world.

Help our kids to be the best possible human being they can be and they will find happiness – with or without a piece of paper that says they are qualified.

Think outside the normal entry requirements and you will find a way in – then we can change the shape of that box from the inside out.

Every time I doubt myself or stress about the level at which my kids are developing I remind myself of this story – of the man who knew no bird but smiled his way through.

With much metta, Tamika.

Transparency within the Dream

To live a dream, you first need to know what it is you desire.

How to do it depends entirely on what you dream for.

I only know the path we chose and it was one that lead us to let go of everything we owned and had once worked for……I think this path is easier than trying to acquire more. If you dream of driving a Ferrari and being waited on hand and foot for your retirement then this story is probably not for you.

But if you dare to find happiness in the peace of each days sun rise then read on.

Recently I saw a post by someone who has in the past inspired me to give more openly. He was asked by someone how he survives if he earns no money…….was he on the dole? They wanted transparency in his actions so that they too could live as he does. They were inspired but doubtful they could live in a similar way.

He replied with some offence that his monetary affairs was no-ones business and that he lived with little money or exchanged work for goods. I too am often asked what do we do for money and most times try to avoid it but how can I be promoting a life of freedom and happiness if I don’t tell you how we came to be.

 

 

 

It starts like any other “normal life” school, work, some more schooling and some more work. Family was gifted to me and while I raised our girls, my husband continued to work. A lot. What we earnt, we spent. The holidays were never long enough and our spirits never content. We decided to change our perspectives and our location.

We sold our renovated Sunshine Coast house and bought a farm, hand-built a home and carved out a magical existence relying heavily on the food we grew or animals we butchered. We connected to land and ourselves but the mortgage was still there. Several people who had come to stay with us on the farm as helpers mentioned a meditation course. Vipassana. Both my husband and I sat the course and our lives were changed forever.

We sold without hesitation, everything we had worked for, became vegetarians and left Australia with nothing more than a backpack each. Two adults, two preteen girls.

The money we acquired from the sale of our farm set us on a global journey to help others and in the process help ourselves but it doesn’t take travel to change a person, nor money, but the freedom of enslavement to a system that kills the spirit.

Removing yourself from the habitual working every day, week in, week out to obtain more things is what set us free. While having a new plasma, car or home might give a quick fix….no material object can fill the soul.

Yes…. we still need money. We have not found a community or new world that nurtures or provides a platform of free-living so we work (occasionally) or volunteer at spiritual centres or get the dole (occasionally). At the moment we are finishing a mobile bus café that will hopefully provide a little income to support out gypsy way of life and keep us completely out of the government system. with the ability to still help others. The more I learn and teach our children about the fundamnetal requirements for life the more I hope to remove ourselves from dependancy of any monetary system……food, shelter, land and peoples are our focus.

The world cannot support our increasing population if we continue to live as we do now. I often wonder are people too ignorant to see that our children will suffer if we continue to impart such materialistic beliefs upon them? Or are we just selfish, stubborn and greedy without forsight to imagine a planet and our minds in the next 50, 20, even 10 years if we continue down the current path.

I believe we are born free but have been too wiling to accept the voices of others instead of listening to our own, instead of listening to the voices of our great indigenous ancestors. We have forgotten how to care for ouselves and our families as they age. We have forgotten how to heal and how to connect with the energies of the land.

Lets start changing ourselves so that we can change the world for the lives of those to come.

 

Much metta to you all.

 

 

 

On the Road Again

I love the township I am leaving for now, the sweet sisters and brothers I have met, the children that have shared their laughter with my children. In love I leave and in love I will return but for now I need to listen to the calling of my heart and my land. What I wouldn’t give for a quick coffee with friends from my favourite Spill da Beans though. (I don’t do coffee on the road – can’t afford my addiction).

It’s a hard feeling to describe, ITCHY FEET. He’s a crafty bugger. Creeping around my campsite for weeks now, sneaking into my days. He’s been teasing me with flashes of red earth, forest green and cleansing waters. What is it exactly that creates a yearning to move, to be somewhere not visited before, to discover something unseen, connect with life and self.

I cannot really justify travel right now when I look at our world in chaos but travel makes me stronger. It makes me more available to assist others and makes me more grateful for everything. Travel also stimulates me to teach (natural school) the girls differently. I allow my reinvigorated sense of wonder of our world to flow into my daily teachings and often I come up with more creative ideas.

With travel, comes guilt (justification of time, resources and money) but since completing my first Vipassana course some 4 years ago I know that in service ( helping others) I can tip the balance in my favour………or at least level the karmic playing field.

So here we are, packed and full of excitement. Destination unknown and money dwindling. Time no real concern. The itchy feet are about to be set free to walk on new lands. Australian lands. After 12 months of global travels in 2016 I can honestly say there is no place like Australia. We are so truly blessed. We have an indigenous spiritual culture that surpasses any other for its ability to connect with nature and self, for we are all one, of one energetic source.

Australia and her lands are magnificently harsh and expansive, surrounded by a coastal vegetative strip that seems to nourish, support and soften her wilds. This sets her apart from most other countries. The openness of Australia’s land has shaped my psyche and in line with her expansive quality I too hope to expand my beliefs, my knowledge and my connection with its people.

Travel sets me free to bring me home.

I truly hope to see you on the road and in my home (bus). May we all connect and share our stories, love and food, under the stars, our ancestors, our families.

Metta and safe travels.

 

 

Another Week of Living

Natural learning for my two daughters has become more about living and enjoying life to the fullest as a family than about how much you do or worrying about what level they are at.

I used to feel like I never did enough for my children in regards to their education. Enough maths, enough science or enough history. Now I realise all we need to learn is all around us and within us.

Learning lies within the stories told by elders, the walks you take at first light in new forests or the recipe you follow to prepare a balm with ingredients you grow or collect. Learning lies within life itself and having the ability to bring each moment into an awareness that suits the specific age of the child you hope to awaken. Along the way we often discover that we are the ones slowing down our children’s progress…….they will show you what and when they are ready to learn, we just need to be there to steady the foundations.

The last 2 weeks we have spent in the garden, making balms and lotions, swimming and camping with friends. We had a birthday, shared some worms, listened to the owls at night and created music. We have cried a little, watched parents drift apart and start the journey back towards each again. We have bled and marked the time on the moon and discussed how the cycles of seasons can affect us, the animals and what grows in the garden. We learnt some limitations of our bodies and the effect of too much weight on a rope. We learnt that good food fuels our body better than shit food.

We learnt that true friends are sacred, valuable and something to treasure.

What haven’t we learnt that’s appropriate for the last 2 weeks in our life?

Hope you are all learning as we are and realising that life changes just as quickly as we think we have mastered it.

Much metta.

Today’s Fire

You ask me can I come, an arranged celebration of life some months in advance. I do not know for the fire burns only this morning after we have collected the wood.

You ask will I be ready Monday, but today is Sunday and all the seeds I sowed in the moonlight need watering this day.

You need to know the promise I made 17 years ago to your heart grows stronger the longer we are untied but I barely know my own heart……can we love today in separation…..will that be enough for you.

Can I honour myself in this moment while I watch and feel those around me that do not. I want to love them, sit with them and talk of death.

You ask me how did I come to be this way, this happy, this content and full of time?

I dreamt myself to recognition. I dreamt back to lands once burnt with black love and replenished all that I once thought I could be from the winds, water and songs. I opened all I could….eyes, ears, heart and hands to take in the essence of country.

Today, this day I invite you to share the fire that burns inside us all.

Today I realised I will not be ready for you any time soon for I am ready now. I will not love you any harder for I love you all I can today. I wont be ready next month, or next year for I am waiting in this moment.

I am love.

I am black.

I am white.

I am.