Well, my life has changed and now I’m one of those people who travels the world sharing my message about pleasure, teaching and training others in the art of spiritual development and healing.
September was Tokyo - two workshops, amazing students, and days of back-to-back sessions in between. It can sound very exotic and exciting and it is AND here’s the back story: long flights, jetlag, hotel rooms, a demanding schedule, and everything conducted with translators.
I’m learning how to do this well and I’ve got to say that the actual experience of facilitating, teaching and the sessions were extraordinary! I was really on and I think carried by strong benevolent forces, as the work part, was easeful and deeply pleasurable.
But then there’s the part where I would trudge back to the hotel, find some food, unwind and try to replenish. What I noticed is the things that give me pleasure are transferable and even in small doses, can make all the difference. It doesn’t take much!
There wasn’t a lot of time or space. But lucky for me the hotel where I stayed, which was not five stars, but had this amazing spa. In Japan, the public bathing ritual is an intricate part of their culture – women and men in separate areas; we all vigorously wash before entering the pools naked. Numbers of hot pools and one very cold (a la Spa Nordique) an amazing steam room and dry sauna. The dry sauna had a new twist for me – they have a television in it, and you can watch cooking shows and reality TV Japanese style while sweating out the day!
As well, I wandered through neighbourhoods to and from work, and took in the daily comings and goings of people in their ordinary lives. I enjoyed this so much. Here are some of the scenes…
The bicycle is king in Tokyo, at least in my neighbourhood, Shinagawa in south west Tokyo – a mom with a kid on the front and back in carriers and one in a snuggly on her front. Now that’s skill and stamina! The small Shinto Temple where I often stopped to make a prayer offering for the day, glancing down little alleyways with interesting tiny shops selling food, sake or herbal medicines; the very good quality food available even in small convenience stores made eating – one of my great pleasure – easy and nourishing.
The Greatest Pleasure
But the greatest pleasure was feeling my skill and capacity, knowing I was touching people’s lives, across culture and across language barriers. It felt so good to be masterful. A life time of practice and experience made it easy to show up and have an impact.
So often our pleasure is connected to the fulfillment of our real needs – the real needs of an adult - one of needs being to make a meaningfully contribute to the world. This is what I did and it felt very satisfying and fulfilling.
More to come on this experience that I’m still processing inside of me. I will share as lessons emerge!
Next entry: The Choice of Pleasure
Previous entry: Key to Pleasure: Less and Slower
“As I step into the classroom with Madeline, I am aware of a spaciousness that few other facilitators offer, giving adequate time for self-reflection and digestion of the material. The spaciousness is well-supported by experiential learning and practical teachings. Madeline’s work—both within her own life and in facilitating others—speaks clearly through the profound space she holds for learning, and healing, to happen.”