WHY THERE IS A NEED FOR A WANDERING CULTURE
They say to wander – v. wandered, wandering, wanders is to move about without a ‘definite destination’ or ‘purpose’. But what if I disagree?
Well, ok I’m going to contradict myself momentarily because I agree about there not being a fixed destination. But as for ‘purpose’, well, I personally enjoy wandering for connection. To the place, people, experience, feeling, sights, sounds and culture. Do you too wander with a purpose, a purpose that is unique to you?
To give you a little insight into my so-called ‘purpose’, and that which brings me to my topic. I am going to discuss my first journey to an event named Wanderlust. Back then (Summer 2016) the first time I went to this event, I had actually been feeling quite disconnected. I was curious about what this all out mindful living celebration could offer.
My friend and I decided to journey together. Both practising yogi’s with very different weights of the world on our shoulders, my friend, especially so. I’ve always been a seeker. Housing a curious mind. An open heart. And believing in the truth of the beauty and magnificence that surrounds us, if we become still enough of course to see it.
But I had been feeling back then as though I had lost that connection. In truth perhaps even for a little while. Kids, work, life’s demands and enjoying something called ‘slow living’ or ‘wandering’ wasn’t exactly something that was on my daily agenda.
The best decision I ever made (thanks to my husband’s encouragement) was to make that journey and commit to finding my connection. Especially as I was going with a friend who I already shared such a beautiful bond with. I knew it would be an experience I would live to regret if I didn’t embrace the moment to go wandering.
WANDERING TO WANDERLUST
Wanderlust, it’s not a word I use lightly, I often reference it like people know what I am talking about! I have to remind myself that many people haven’t experienced what this all out mindful living celebration can do for you. We live in a time where we have never been as connected (yeah to the digital kind), yet disconnection is becoming increasingly obvious. We spiel about mindful living, connection, authenticity and the need to slow down. But do we? Really?
Wanderlust is an invite to reconnect. To meet you again, and as they say, find your true north. From the moment you begin to create your perfect schedule, whether you decide to go for 1 or 4-days you’ll be on your way, journeying closer to the very person you may have lost perhaps somewhere like me, along the way.
Since that summer I’ve now been to three Wanderlust events, having spent 12 days of my existence surrounded by an environment that holds you and makes you feel so safe to explore. Each time a beautiful experience offering something different and something deeper. I have had the pleasure of being in class with so many amazingly talented teachers. Have smiled so much my cheeks hurt, have felt so happy I wanted to pop from my skin, and have held space for myself to ‘just be’. Yet I have also cried tears from the most beautiful chords played on a single guitar.
So, how did I find me in all that? Well, oddly enough it was in my very first class called ‘Immersive Contemplation’. I had no idea what to expect and neither did my friend. There was a room filled with people, and as we rolled out our mats, each giving the other that look of excitement and anticipation, we took a deep breath, blindfolded ourselves (yes you read right), and dropped in.
There was not a single spoken instruction in that class. Only music by The Digital Shamans that transported us for the next 90 minutes. We received a multi-sensory experience, of music, smell, touch, voice, and movement. I hadn’t done anything like it, a group class like it, with an energy like it, or with as many people like it EVER! Yet I dropped in, connected and felt so presently me. But more than that, it was the first time that I felt energetically part of something much greater. It was more than any words could be used to describe it. I remember afterwards being quite silent, very moved and like ‘what just happened’. To this day when I think of that class I still can feel the wonder. Day 1. My first class. And what an introduction. This was the connection I had been seeking.
The following days that have ensued at each of these Wanderlust celebrations have been made up of vinyasa, slow deep flows, acro yoga, nature walking, surfing, SUP yoga, soulful meditations, lots of hugs, making new friends, enjoying new conversations and not to forget many a spontaneous dance!
There have also been incredibly knowledgeable speakers to listen to, dancing to live music, eating local, organic food, farm to table dining, lazing on the grass between classes listening, feeling and seeing the energy of your surrounds, and simply just mooching around admiring mindfully curated products.
In this environment, it’s hard not to think of how we must just be a sea of faces. Yet I have had the experience in a few classes where you can talk with the teacher afterwards. This only brings more enjoyment, understanding and an opportunity for growth and learning.
One particular class, I had with Maty Ezraty (I still laugh thinking about), one of her assistant teachers walking around the room, stopped beside me and asked me if I could straighten my arms. I always knew they weren’t as straight as others. Just one of my unique quirks! Hopeful, after that class finished I went and talked with Maty and remember what struck me more than her words of encouragement and talking about alignment, was that she took the ‘time’. The next day when I saw Maty she waved to me. Proof that these teachers are so inspired by their work and that is their offering, this is their passion. To connect with you, as much as you wish to connect with them.
HOW DO YOU EXPLAIN WANDERLUST?
The other week I did a really great online yoga class where the teacher was talking about the three Malas. The focus of this particular practice was on the Mayiya Mala that relates to our perception of difference. The separateness between us and the world that creates a comparison to others. You know the kind that can give rise to feelings of jealousy and anger. We’ve all been there!
It occurred to me in writing this blog, how could I best try and explain Wanderlust as I reflect on my experiences of these events to date? It turns out that that yoga class was rather timely!
Why? Because when you are in the environment of Wanderlust you are not experiencing Mayaiya Mala (being separate from the world and separate from everyone else). In fact, it is the very opposite. You can see and feel this line of unifying spirit that weaves magically through everything.
So, instead of diversity and separateness everywhere, we find the purpose of a connection. A connection that through the constant and consistent practice of yoga, breath, meditation, mantra, mindfulness, and nature over 4 days at Wanderlust lifts this veil. And you begin seeing and feeling this innate intelligence that aligns one person to another. From there this shift seems to occur on a deeper level that kind of touches a more permanent ongoing way of you being after you’ve left.
I believe we may wander with no fixed destination. But what about purpose? Well if you have it? Share it, live it, love it! Are you with me? Or quite simply perhaps try for the purpose of connection.
Whether you think its good to wander with a purpose or not I do believe when you see firsthand a connection like this, that an experience at Wanderlust provides it brings meaning and this my friends brings unity.
Let’s face it, right now, this is more of what the world needs. Connect with your inner wanderer. Then with your purpose go and create the ripple effect that illuminates a more permanent and peaceful way of being. Offer that to your friends, family and neighbours and see for yourself how we can elevate greater wellbeing.
WANT TO COME WANDERING WITH ME?
VOLUNTEER AT WANDERLUST? Wanderlust Festival is not possible without the help from dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers. In return of anyone willing to help, volunteers receive either 6 classes for 3 x 6hr shifts. Or, 8 classes for 2 x 8hr shifts. Plus, you’ll also have access to all music events during the festival! Wanderlust accept applications on a rolling basis until 2 weeks before the event! So you still have time.