Happy Valentine’s Day. From my heart to yours.
When I was eighteen years old I read the book the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho and heard the message, “If you follow your heart, the world will conspire on your behalf.” I decided I would live my life as an experiment to see if that was true and if it worked out, I imagined a life I would love. If not, I would simply reassess and try something else.
Fifteen years later, I stand before you as a woman whose heart has led me on many adventures- inner and outer, in a way that is non-linear but everyday seems to reveal another layer of synchronicity and magic beyond what a strategic plan could predict or control.
For example, this week, I was teaching my weekly Qoya community class at Alternative Apparel in Los Angeles. I have loved their clothes for years, so when the opportunity presented itself to work more with them in the development of their Move line, which is their activewear line, I was honored. Before class, I was walking around the store and saw a film playing telling the story of how in search of the softest cotton, they went to Peru, to a place called Pumomarca, near Puna, near Lake Titicaca. I watched the video and then almost fainted as I saw pictures of a family in the video that I had met when I was in Peru. I pulled up the pictures in my phone and showed the people working there- look! see those people in the movie, I met them when I was in Peru too. Come back and click here to see the Alpaca Wool video on this page and the family in the picture to the right around 1:41 in the movie!
The thing is, I met this family on one of the most powerful days of my life. I had been sitting in meditation and continuously receiving a message that said, “Go to Lake Titicaca! Go to Lake Titicaca!” I was irritated because I didn’t have enough time to stay there more than one night. It was more than I wanted to spend. And, I didn’t know “why” I was going there, other than this nagging sense of insistent intuition. However, I understand the power of the call and eventually surrendered, booking my flights to Puno and a tour guide to show me around Lake Titicaca for some yet to be revealed reason. I got there and it was lovely, interesting and the people were kind. I saw their man-made islands, we sang songs together and they dressed me up in very colorful costumes. At the end of the tour, my guide suggested that we wake up early before my flight and make a special trip to go to a very spiritual place that she thought I would like that isn’t on the normal tour. I agreed and when we got there, I couldn’t really believe it when she said, “And these are the Qoya tombs” The what??? I had never told her my business or work in the world was called Qoya.
I asked, “Qoya like Queen?” Which is the definition of the Quechuan word I was familiar with. She said, “Yes, Qoya means Queen, but it is also the name of a pre-Incan civilization who were devoted to reverence and the only place they ever lived was here in Lake Titicaca.”
There are times in life where synchronicities, miracles, grace, whatever you call them are so magical and I wonder, how do we get there? How do we enter that realm of pure possibility beyond what our imagination can even conceive?
The two ways I know are:
1) Follow Your Heart
2) Do Qoya
I’ll start with Qoya. Beyond the physical practices of yoga, dance and sensual movement, you are training your ability to feel the physical sensation of truth, of resonance, of your intuition, of your wise, wild and free self not just in class, but class is a safe and sacred place to explore so that you can feel that deep sense of inner knowing as you go through your day and more in your life. Your ability to sensitize yourself to the messages coming from your body is going to help you decipher between the voice of your heart, of your soul, from that of your ego or your mind. The more embodiment practices you can do, the better. Click here to see free Qoya videos to practice or here to join us on the fifth annual Qoya Retreat in Costa Rica March 29- April 5, 2014 to be fully immersed in a Qoya lifestyle of meditation, breathing, 2+ hour Qoya classes, healthy delicious meals, afternoon adventures and evening rituals. It’s important to note, access to this realm is not through thinking, judging or analyzing. It is through feeling. Through the body. It’s time to get in your body.
In my experience, I’ve found that when you follow your heart, when you follow that intuitive nudge that you can feel in your bones, when you allow yourself to be guided from within instead of searching outside yourself, THAT is where the magic, synchronicities, miracles, grace and flow are. The other component for me in following your heart is asking for help and being humble enough to pray for guidance. Pressing pause and asking the divine to guide your way allows some space for special insights to appear. There is a unique fulfillment available to you when you simply follow your heart and following your heart is a gift you give yourself and all of those around you. Your courage in action in the direction of your dreams models a possibility of a world where this is how we can live, evolving past the fear and into the co-creation of our own version of heaven on earth. As long as we are here, why not create more opportunities to experience beauty and love in this world?
On Valentine’s Day today and on all days, I invite you to go a little deeper into your heart and listen for the call. What is the pulse of your own passion? The heartbeat of your desire? Wherever it is, I encourage you to follow it. I really do believe, when you follow your heart, the world conspires on your behalf. May it be so!
I’m sure you’ve heard of it, but just in case, it’s important to know that V-Day is an amazing day to come together to join Eve Ensler’s movement to Rise. Release. And Dance! Be sure to Visit One Billion Rising in person or online today!
Retreats are one of my favorite ways to share Qoya because the magic begins the moment you decide to come. As you invest your time, energy and resources in honoring the importance of taking time in life to reflect, go deep within, be immersed in nature, learn empowering tools, sit with the sacred in rituals and connect with like-minded and like-hearted women from around the world, you get stronger. You get softer. You get back to you. There is a unique opportunity when you indulge in the biggest luxury in our lives- time. Time to explore the gratitude and gifts of the past. Explore the power of the present moment, in conditions that are easy to savor. Explore your capacity to dream bigger dreams and continue to go beyond what you know. I bring my history of yoga, dance, sensual movement, shamanism, rituals, community building, traveling to 30+ countries and love of life to every retreat and invite you to join us.
February 15-22 The Goddess Process in Nayarit, Mexico (starts tomorrow!)
March 19-23 Everything is Within Qoya Retreat at Aro Ha in Queensland, New Zealand
March 29- April 5 The 5th Annual Qoya Costa Rica Retreat at Blue Spirit
May 2-5 Qoya Retreat at the Standard in Miami, FL
June 21-28 Qoya and Dolce Yoga Retreat in Tuscany, Italy
July 6-12 Qoya in the Amazon Jungle with Four Winds Society
July 18-30 Hike the Holy Mountain Salkantay in Peru with Marcela Lobos of the Four Winds
August 26- Sept 1 Burning Man Festival in Black Rock City, Nevada
October 3-5 Qoya in Austin, TX
October 24-26 Pay What You Can Qoya Retreat in Woodstock, NY
November 10-21 Qoya with Marcela Lobos of the Four Winds in Chile
November 29- December 6 House of Loveness and Qoya Retreat in Zimbabwe