“It Never Rains in California…”

“It never rains in California, but girl don’t they warn ya. It pours, man it pours.”  Albert Hammond’s song was going through my head as I looked out the window this morning.  Of course, his song was not about the weather but of a struggling songwriter who moves out to California to pursue his dreams, never does, and begins his downward spiral.  Nonetheless, if I stay inside today my mood may begin to deteriorate to the color of the sky – gray.  So before I can  talk myself out of a chilly walk on the beach, out the door I go.

Heading north up the beach, this is what the sky looks like.  I just hope that Mother Nature decides to wait a bit before releasing her fury in the way of big, bone-chilling raindrops.  Right now it is not looking too promising,

I decide to make a stop at the Meditation Gardens at the Self-Realization Fellowship on my way up the beach.  Looking up at it from the beach, it appears as a little oasis on the hilltop, and it is. The real treasures are hidden inside the grounds, lush gardens of flowers, burbling little waterfalls cascading over rocks and koi awaiting feeding time.

After spending a little quiet time I continue up the beach, enjoying the beauty of the constantly changing colors of the sky and the ocean, as the sun shows herself for brief periods.  When it is time to turn and head towards home, the sun decides once again to make herself known, this time in the most unusual of ways.

With the sun shining on foam that has been washed up on shore by the churning of the ocean, a rainbow of colors appears.  I am instantly taken back to my childhood, standing outside on a warm sunny day, blowing bubbles. This image brings a smile to my lips, no matter what the weather outside.  And the best news of all, I am still dry when I step back into the RV.

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A Contemplative Kind of Day

Spiritual awakening is about waking up from your ego. It is not about awakening the ego.   ~  Sampo Kaasila

The day started with a 45-minute sit and the instructor discussing the practice of Drishti, which is a technique that develops focus.  She asked us to focus not just on what we wanted or needed for ourselves but for compassion and abundance for all of humanity.  Imagine what our world would look like if we awoke each day thinking about others instead of ourselves, particularly those who we struggle to understand or even like.  Imagine a world where we attempted to see another’s point of view instead of holding on so stubbornly to our own.  This was a great way to start my day.  Yoga and a walk on the beach followed.  Ahhh, utter bliss!

Ever since I read the book Autobiography of a Yogi some years ago, I have wanted to visit the Self-Realization Fellowship Hermitage in Encinitas, CA.  This is the center that was founded by Paramahansa Yogananda in 1937, the revered yogi who brought India’s great science of meditation to the West.  He tirelessly devoted his life to uniting East and West in spiritual understanding.

Terry and I walked into Encinitas from our campground, toured the meditation gardens and the temple.  It was a lovely extension of my morning and I am looking forward to participating in some of the meditation sessions offered.  Our walk back proved to be just as joyful, as we were able to watch a pod of whales spouting offshore and a school of dolphins playfully riding the waves in.  I think we could get used to this place.

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