Thursday, April 30, 2009


"All that I have seen teaches trust the Creator for all that I have not seen."

Wednesday, April 29, 2009


My first visit to Namibia was 12 years ago. I had had a series of unsatisfactory relationships and decided to 'escape' for a while. Travelling on the roof of a truck from Victoria Falls into Northern Namibia felt like a good plan. At top speed, with hair and camera flaying in the wind and a big smile, I was happy to be free for a while. I had always been drawn to the pictures of the large, Namibian skies and so was full of expectation.

'Everything will come out in the wash darling,' my mother told me...

Spending time in Namibia this time around, my mind replayed snapshots from my last visit.

On reflection, many things had changed...

Instead of going for the adrenaline sports for which Namibia is so well known, like sandboarding ("If you've got the need for speed - we've got the natural drug"), I now preferred to float around in a hot air balloon or go for a slow walk. A yoga mat replaced a camping mat on the side of my rucsac.

Instead of spending nights in the vibey Swakopmund bars, consuming more than my fare share of alcohol, I was happy relaxing around the safari lodges; talking with the other guests, reading, listening to music, writing, mucking about with my camera. This is just age you might say, but no, it was more than that...

Certain things, of course, remained constant..

On both trips I had a camera glued to my eye. I still loved to sit alone watching the animals trundle up to the waterholes to drink.

And I still loved to be away from the crowds at sunset, up a hill perhaps or sitting on a log next to a river.

My reading material was also interchangeable.

In the '90's I was reading Karl Maier's 'Into the House of the Ancestors,' a brilliantly refreshing take on an African Continent crying out for a 'new' Africa to evolve in the hearts of the indigenous people, free from the strong conditioning produced by colonial rule. This year I had my nose, second time around, in a George Allagiah book, 'A Passage to Africa'. Another quirkey and modern take on the continent seen through the eyes of this respected BBC foreign correspondant.

With technological changes, instead of the modern day blog (with twitter, even blog is old news!) I had a scrap book, still full of quotes, scribbles and inspiration, drawn from my surroundings as I saw them. The difference was that much of it remained uncommunicated. Metaphorically I felt bound and gagged.

Another thing that didn't appeared to have changed much was my taste in artwork.

I still loved the simple but striking hand painted woodcuts of Susan Mitchinson. I was amazed to see how her work had gained in prominence both in Namibia and throughout Africa.

In '97 I was attracted to DREAMS because of the stillness the couple seemed to be experiencing in their embrace. It looked natural and relaxing.

This time around I bought home LOOK AT ME. I liked the girl's slightly jaunty stance. Susan has managed to convey a confidence and freedom to me by just a few, simple shapes cut into a piece of wood.

What this passing of time shows me is that we experience the world as an external reflection of internal reality. In other words, we create the world in which we live. I'm always being told 'the world doesn't exist, it's just you here.' Maybe the truth of this is sinking in?

On the one level, I hadn't really changed at all, what was there was just partially obsured from my view for a while. That veil of maya cloaking the soul, those clouds in front of the blue sky....

On another level, how I am experiencing myself now is completely different. I can rely on a stronger connection to who I am. There was more of 'me' in this Namibia which passed across my screen this time around.

Reminiscing like this and posing myself the question 'is internal change really possible?' reminds me of the biblical quotation from Ecclesiastes 3:1..

"To everything there is a season......and a time to every purpose under the heaven."

Dark times/low points can serve as a wake up call, if we make use of them.

My mother was right, it did 'all come out in the wash'.....

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Saturday, April 25, 2009


"The lowest ebb is the turn of the tide."

Full Moon, Bright Sun

NEALE DONALD WALSCH, in the second part of his trilogy, CONVERSATIONS WITH GOD, beautifully describes the experience of human sexuality. The right and the left brain combines to form a vivid picture.

"To make a more vivid description, let’s imagine two people in a room. They are on the far sides of the room from each other. We’ll call them Tom and Mary.

No, Tom’s personal energy is transmitting signals about Tom in a 360-degree circle out in the universe. Some of that energy wave hits Mary.

Mary, meanwhile, is emitting her own energy – some of which hits Tom.

But these energies meet each other in a way you may not have thought of. They meet midway between Tom and Mary.

Here these energies unite (remember now, these energies are physical phenomena; they can be measured, felt) and combine to form a new energy unit we’ll call “Tomary.” It is the energy of Tom and Mary combined.

Tom and Mary could very well call this energy The Body Between Us – for it is just that: a body of energy to which both are connected, which both are feeding the continuing energies which flow to it, and which is sending energies back to its two “sponsors’ along the thread, or cord, or pipeline that always exists within the Matrix. (Indeed, this “pipeline” is the Matrix.)

It is this experience of “Tomary” which is the truth of Tom and Mary. It is to this Holy Communion that both are drawn. For they feel, along the pipeline, the sublime joy of the Body Between, of the Joined One, of the Blessed Union.

Tom and Mary, standing off at a distance, can feel – in a physical way – what is going on in the Matrix. Both are urgently drawn toward this experience. They want to move toward each other! At once!

Now, their training sets in. The world has trained them to slow down, to mistrust the feeling, to guard against hurt, to hold back.

But the soul wants to know “Tomary” now!

If the two are lucky, they will be free enough to set aside their fears and trust that love is all there is.

They are irrevocably drawn now, these two, to the Body Between Them. “Tomary” is already being experienced metaphysically, and Tom and Mary will want to experience it physically. So they’ll move closer together. Not to get each other. It looks that way to the casual observer. But they are each trying to get to “Tomary.” They are trying to reach that place of Divine Union, which already exists between them. The place where they already know that are One – and what it is like to Be One.

So they move toward this “feeling” they are experiencing, and, as they close the gap between them, as they “shorten the cord,” the energy they are both sending to ‘Tomary” travels a shorter distance and is thus more intense.

They move closer still. The shorter the distance, the greater the intensity. They move closer still. Once more the intensity increases.

Now they stand just a few feet apart. The Body Between them is glowing hot. Vibrating with terrific speed. The “connection” to and from “Tomary” is thicker, wider, brighter, burning with the transfer of incredible energy. The two are said to be “burning with desire.” They are!

They move closer still.

Now, they touch.

The sensation is almost unbearable. Exquisite. They feel, at the point of their touch, all the energy of “Tomary” – all the compacted, intensity unified substance of their Combined Being.

If you open yourself to your greatest sensitivity, you’ll be able to feel this subtle, sublime energy as a tingling when you touch – sometimes the “tingling” will run right through you – or as heat at the pint of your touch – heat which you may also suddenly feel throughout your body – but concentrated deeply within your lower chakra, or energy centre.

It will “burn” there especially intensely – and Tom and Mary will now be said to have the “hots” for each other!

Now the two embrace, and they close the gap even further, with Tom, Mary and "Tomary" all filling nearly the same space. Tom and Mary can feel “Tomary” between them – and they want to get even closer – to literally meld with “Tomary”. To become Tomary in the physical form.

I have created the male and female bodies a way to do that. At this moment, Tom and Mary’s bodies are ready to do that. Tom’s body is now ready to literally enter Mary, Mary’s body is ready to literally receive Tom within her.

The tingling, the burning, is now beyond intense. It is…indescribable. The two physical bodies join. Tom, Mary and “Tomary” become One. In the flesh.

Still the energies flow between them. Urgently. Passionately.

They heave. They move. They can’t get enough of each other, can’t get close enough together. They strive to get close. Close. Closer.

They explode – literally – and their entire physical bodies convulse. The vibration sends ripples to their fingertips. In the explosion of their oneness they have known the God and the Goddess, the Alpha and the Omega, the All and the Nothing – the Essence of life – the Experience of That Which Is.

There are physical chemistries as well. The two have become One – and a third entity often is created of the two, in physical form.
Thus, an out picturing of “Tomary” is created. Flesh of their flesh. Blood of their blood.

They have literally created life!

Have I not said that ye are Gods?"

Friday, April 24, 2009

Ostrich Trio on the Move

"I'm forever in pursuit and don't even know what i'm chasing."

Ben Cross played the intense and driven Harold Abrahams in the 1981 classic British film, Chariots of Fire. Abrahams was the 100m Olympic sprint champion in 1924.

The first time I heard these words at the age of 14, I jumped up from a lounging position in front of the roaring log fire and scribbled them down. I remember whispering the sentence to myself over and over again, so I wouldn't forget it. I couldn't find a pen amidst all my father's paperwork!

The quote encompassed exactly what I felt back then and continued to feel for another 20 + years.

Eventually I twigged, through my yoga practice, what it was that I was chasing. I was surprised to find that the source was much closer than I had expected.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


"Savasana is the silence of body and mind."


"The slave runs, but the king keeps quiet and remains still in his place."


"Simplicity allows the senses to rest from stimulation."

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Pillars of the Temple

The Prophet by KAHIL GIBRAN was published in 1923. In one of his 26 poetic essays, Kahil offers a suggestion of what a successful relationship could look like. 86 years later the onus is on us to sculpt, create, and then live, the how......

But let there be spaces in your togetherness.

And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:

Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.

Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup.

Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.

Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone.

Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping.

For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.

And stand together yet not too near together:

For the pillars of the temple stand apart,

And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Up, Up and Away

"The initial take-off is full of action. Clear and loud instructions are issued from our pilot, a female World Champion balloon flyer from Germany. The 20-strong team labour hard to keep the balloon grounded whilst we climb in. Once airborne, she asks, “Is everyone ok?” There is no reply. The twelve people standing in the basket are completely quiet.... The group talks in whispers throughout the 1 hour flight."

LS/Feb '09

Floating over the red Sossusvlei dunes fields was a spiritual experience for me. The expansive views reflect the limitless boundaries of the soul and the stillness of God within all of us.

In true form (although behind the protection of sunglasses!)my eyes started to stream. Tears for what was momentarily so apparent and tears of frustration for the time wasted.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Letting Go

"When the unnecessary, and even harmful struggle of 'becoming' that leads only to mediocrity stops, one 'is' and the immature grasping along the ladder of ambition disappears."


"There is beauty in the acceptance of what is."


"Is it possible to have a new intelligence, not imposed by authority, but born from interest, attention and sensitivity? One in which the body and mind, fused in one single action, are collaborating together?"

Friday, April 17, 2009

Holding the Space

"The most important medicine is tender love and care."


In human color psychology, red is associated with heat, energy and blood.

Other common connotations include love, anger, passion, stop, courage, guilt, hell, fire, socialism, sacrifice, sin,
violence, negativity, danger, warning, communism, blushing, honor, leadership, Valentine's Day and.....Namibia.

In Namibia the sand is red.

It has come all the way from the Kalahari Desert in Botswana. Carried by the Orange River, the sand is dumped into the ocean. The waves of the sea splash it up onto the Namibian shoreline. It dries there and gets blown inland.

Spectacular dune fields are made.

(RED) is also the name of Bono and Bobby Shriver's venture to engage the private sector in the fight against AIDS in Africa. The name has been chosen to represent 'emergency' as 4,100 die every day and many others are fighting for their lives.

(RED) is not a charity but a business model designed to create awareness and a sustainable flow of money from the private sector into the Global Fund.

Partners with (RED) include:

American Express (UK only)* Converse * Gap * Emporio Armani * Dell * Windows * Apple * Hallmark and Starbucks

If you are interested to find out more check their website

If each of us buy (PRODUCT)RED, the end of the road may not be so close for AIDS sufferers in Africa.


"The real wisdom is from the neck down."

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


"I shut my eyes in order to see."

Fairy Circles

The fairy circles of Namibia remain an unexplained mystery of science, a little bit like our crop circles.

They are found in the desert regions of southern Africa, in a belt which runs from Angola in the north, through Namibia into South Africa.

They make bizarre patterns on the landscape when viewed from above...

And they call for some yoga play...

They are such cute features of the Namibian landscape. In some places they cover whole valleys and are completely devoid of vegetation.

Often they are surrounded by a fringe of very tall grass.

Theories put forward include radioactive soil, toxic proteins left by poisonous plants, and termites eating the seeds. However, tests do not really support any of these ideas.

For now, the botanists are left with 'fairies' to explain this phenomenon.


"The still waters of a lake reflect the beauty around it. When the mind is still, the beauty of the self is reflected."
BKS Iyengar

Monday, April 13, 2009


"Ask not the other to set you free. Check your own wings and find that the tools for freedom lie within."
LS/Apr 09

Pain (2)

The poem below was inspired by Deepak Chopra and his book called 'The Deeper Wound.' It was written post 9/11 in a response to many letters from the general public asking him how they could heal the rift that they were feeling in the aftermath.

In the book he suggests that pain must be enquired into rather than avoided. I found the ideas and exercises of great assistance when working through my own pain. They are complimentary to the many teachings of Raja yoga.


What sound does pain make
When it creeps up, uninvited in the night?
Anguish has no voice,
Only shouts and moans, whispers and chokes
What sound does pain make?

What sound does pain make
When it has no apparent source?
Secretly standing, growing, unaddressed in the heart
Lifetimes roll by, I squirm, I force down
What sound does pain make?

What sound does pain make
When the pressure and panic builds?
Stories distract as they spin in, one on top of the other
Tension grips the skull and madness seems close
What sound does pain make?

What is this energy form of pain?
Can I 'hum' it out?
Can I wrap it in the sound of love?
Or is the warm breeze of my breath enough to expose it?
What is this energy form of pain?

What shape is this pain?
Is it a black ball inside, hard and stuck?
Is it sharp enough to cut or round enough to swallow?
Does it ache enough to make you cry out?
What shape is your pain?

How deep is this wound?
Where has it come from?
At the end of the road now, watching it IS enough
Keeping quiet company after all else has dropped away
How deep is your wound?

LS/Dec 08

Pain (1)

Your pain is the breaking of the shell than encloses your understanding.

Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.

And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of your life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy.

And you would accept the seasons of your heart, even as you have always accepted the seasons that pass over your fields.

And you would watch with serenity through the winters of your grief.

Much of your pain is self-chosen.

It is the bitter potion by which the physician within you heals your sick self.

Therefore trust the physician, and drink his remedy in silence and tranquility:

For his hand, though heavy and hard, is guided by the tender hand of the Unseen,

And the cup he brings, though it burns your lips, has been fashioned of the clay which the Potter has moistened with His own sacred tears.