Is this a Dream?

Trip Start Jul 19, 2005
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Guatemala  ,
Sunday, January 22, 2006

We've survived our first week of the Pyramid´s Meditation course! After a week of meditation, yoga and classes - instead of being more enlightened, we are just more confused/ instead of being more limber and stretchy, we are sore and tight/ and instead of calm, peaceful sleep, we are concentrating so hard on lucid dreaming, that in the mornings we wake up cranky and disappointed that we didn't succeed in "waking up" in our dreams to go traveling around! But, with all this said, we are loving the course and will probably stay the whole month.

We live in a little house with a loft that is shaped like a pyramid, which is all fun and cute except when you wake up at night and hit your head on the slanted walls, or have to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night and find your way down the stairs in the dark. But it is oriented with the cardinal points, and we are sleeping in the correct direction that is supposed to help you remember your dreams - which we've had some pretty strange ones.

We do an hour of yoga every morning at 7 a.m., and then have a MetaPhysics class at 10 a.m. that teaches you how to pay attention to your dreams, and what they mean in your life. Then the days are filled up with sunning ourselves on the rocks by the lake with friends, and then trying to invent as many different types of meals for lunch using the same 10 ingredients every day. Not hard to cook really yummy meals with such fresh vegetables and fruits, homemade breads (strawberry, banana, pineapple, coconut, carrot, etc.) that local ladies sell each day, and veggie tamales wrapped up in banana leaves.

At 5 p.m. we have a group meditation course where we sit in silence for 20 minutes and then usually have a guided meditation. Meditation is proving to be a lot more difficult than just sitting there. You are supposed to clear your mind and just listen to the sounds outside of the pyramid (which everyday consist of the two local churches preaching or singing their sermons into megaphones, trying to compete with each other for the Lord's attention).

About 10 minutes into sitting there, your legs start falling asleep and tingling, but you just have to sit still and not move, with your back as straight as you can, so that at about 15 - 20 minutes, your legs are tingling so badly you think they are losing blood, turning black and falling off your body. Not easy to be tranquil when you think you're about to lose two major limbs.

And the worst part is the crazy thoughts that creep into your head! If its not some forgotten childhood memory that you suddenly think its the perfect time to start thinking about, its some damn song that once it gets in, won't leave. But there are times when you find yourself perfectly at peace with a quiet mind, which usually after two seconds of actually being silent, I'll think, "I'm doing it! My mind is blank!" and then immediately, "Damn! That was a thought!" So its a struggle to say the least, but one that is doing us some good.

The place where we take classes and meditation is a HUGE pyramid (which symbolized creation and the four elements of life). Its a beautiful structure made out of 13 different types of wood, with symbols and candles all over. Whenever you're in there, you do feel a strange sense of peace, and because you're surrounded by newly met friends who are all there for the same reason, it feels really open and friendly as well.

Chatti, the woman who started the center 18 years ago, is one of the most fascinating ladies I've ever met. She speaks pretty good English, but throws in random Spanish words all over the place and usually coming up with crazy mixed sentences that make us all laugh. Every thing is "a poco strange" and when she talks about a person dying, they don't die, they "go to the funeral" like the physical body just decided to get up and head off to some funeral on its own.

She is a clairvoyant who began getting strange messages 18 years ago to build this pyramid and center of education, due to all the major events that would be occurring in our world within the next century. (The Mayan calendar that has charted time for thousands of years stops in the year 2012. The Mayans predict at this time there will be a great change in the world. If you start looking into it, its some pretty heady stuff - but that's all I´lm say about it here in the blog. I do recommend finding a book or something about it. Even if you don't believe in what is predicted, its interesting and thought provoking. At least good bathroom reading.)

She was told that when she built this center, people from the four cardinal points of the world would come to be enlightened - and so we are part of her vision. It kind of reminded me of the movie, "Field of Dreams." "If you build it, they will come." But instead of dead baseball players, she got us.

She's pretty famous and well-loved around Guatemala. About 10 years ago, there was an organization of people in Europe who were coming over to Guatemala and stealing children for adoptions in Europe. (Anybody remember this?) She would go out of her body in dreams and "go" over to Europe, find where these children were hidden, look around at the town and street signs and then when she awoke into real life, she´d call the police and they'd go rescue them and bring them back. With her supernatural powers, she ended up helping catch the thieves and stopping the kidnappings. This is just one of the few stories (she doesn't talk about her self that much, but when she does its a treat) she tells of her experiences that makes your hair stand up. She's been on quite a lot of Guatemalan talk shows and news things. If anyone has crazy sattelite tv and understands Spanish, flip the channels and maybe you'll catch her!

Friday night, we went out with a lot of people from the class went to a nearby hostel called La Paz to see a pretty popular band called, Kah' Nal. It was an incredible show! They performed back in the woods under a thatched roof cabana. They played lots of tribal drum beats with all sorts of other instruments. It was so much fun because everybody was just breaking it down and jumping around, while a girl from the band would either belly dance up front, or twirl flaming balls of fire around. It was a crazy good time.

So, we get another month of this, and I'm sure there will be more crazy stories to tell. I never thought meditation, and getting to know yourself, who you live with and have lived with your whole life, would be so hard. But we're both definitely learning things about ourselves that we didn't know where there. Its really great and refreshing - like meeting a long lost friend you didn't even know you had. How strange that you can be such a stranger to yourself in your life? So, we're liking the whole experience, just because its so new and completely foreign, but I'm glad we're here doing it. Now its off to the market to find 5 meals out of 10 veggies. Where's Rachel Ray when you need her? Take care everybody and till next time!
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