I think I have waited so long to write this post because I knew how challenging it would be to put into words the totality of my experience volunteering and participating in the Bali Spirit Festival of 2017.
Sure, incredible writers can do that, but I am no Ralph Waldo Emerson. I am just someone who loves the written word, not always using words themselves correctly nor placing them in the most appropriate places. But, I try. And, today, I will again, and of course, in butterfly detail.
By late December 2016, Anastasia had finalized most of our plans for the first two months of our trip. China, South Korea and then Indonesia (Bali more specifically). One day, I was at River Flow Yoga and Wellness, in Columbus, GA, where I am blessed to teach. I was chatting with the owners and my great friends Ben and Alee Link and shared with them my rough itinerary for my trip. Speaking in unison, they said I should look into the Bali Spirit Festival if I was going to be in Bali around March/April. They suggested, that like they had, I could volunteer my time at this amazing festival.
Hopeful, I jumped to my computer as soon as I got home. I saw that the core value that guides the festival is the Balinese Hindu mantra, Tri Hita Karana, which means to live in harmony with our spiritual, social, and natural environments. As you know, this is my mantra and a core principle which I lead with, always doing the most I can to BE in harmony with everything around me and within me. So, the decision was easy. Whatever it took, I would be at the festival. Volunteering or just as a participant. I would be there. I quickly sent in my volunteer application, and then directly after made a small ceremony in my apartment, manifesting this dream as a reality- volunteering at #BSF2017. The power of manifestation is incredible. Within just a couple weeks, I got my acceptance letter as a volunteer. I literally jumped for joy!
After being accepted as a volunteer, not much news came through until a couple of weeks prior to the festival. While in China, Dali to be exact, I was able to tap into the internet (even Facebook semi-illegally through our hostel) and make plans for my trip to Bali. On March 17th, I left my friends Anastasia and Lauren in Busan, South Korea, and headed for the solo section of my trip.
There are so many wonderful and interesting things that happened, just on the travel day to Bali, but if I went in that kind of detail, you would stop reading this post. So, short story is, I arrived in Bali in my beautiful hotel that I booked a couple days in advance. For $55 dollars a night, I had a king sized bed, 2 bathrooms, my own private pool and room service for 3 days! On the night of my arrival, I finally got my first call from Rob while he had been in Ranger School. At the end of this first phase for him, he had an 8 hour break before going into phase two. He had only time to shower, wash clothes, eat a whoooooole lot, and sleep for 2 hours. So, our call was only about an hour, but it was such a relief to hear from him and to know that he passed “DARBY” phase of Ranger School. This meant one section of his course was behind us, and only two more to go. So, after my 1am call with him, I slept until about 5, waking up to head to volunteer headquarters for #BSF2017 at 6am. With only 4 hours of sleep, you would think I would be dreading waking up, but I was so jazzed I didn’t even ask for coffee.
My driver Nick and I headed from downtown downtown Ubud, to the day venue, Bhanuswari Resort and Spa. Wow. What a great choice for our gathering. The resort is absolutely stunning, eco-chic and carries that same spiritual air that hovers over Ubud. Eventually, all of us volunteers were present, smiling, introducing ourselves and 100% feeling the positive vibrations of the event and so many magical wonderful creatures gathered together to be a source of good, promoting COMMUNITY, YOGA, LOVE, DANCE, HEALING SOUND, SUSTAINABILITY, PRANAYAMA and KINDNESS. So amazing.
In our volunteer meeting, we heard from Meghan and Kadek, two of the three beautiful founders of the festival. We also were given directions and laughs from Colin and Sunny, our volunteer coordinators.:) The week for me was morning classes and activities of my choosing, and afternoons 1-5 volunteering at the Grove, with evenings free to join in on all the juicy music of the festival. Straight up perfect schedule.So thankful.
I could really go on forever about the experience of being at Bali Spirit Festival, but what I really want to share about it is this: GO. Seriously, just GO. The festival is going to be held April 1-8, 2018 next year.
And why should you go?
GO- for discovery of how your home community could thrive, in harmony with the earth and all beings in it. And how you are so vital to making that happen!
Go- to be with people who believe that we all can make a difference. Who see and love the power of you, in your authenticity.
GO- to learn how to activate YOUR voice at a higher frequency. To be empowered to be YOU.
GO- to learn from others. To learn about yourself.
GO- to have So much fun!
GO- to dive deeper into your understanding of the healing power of sound and dance. To dance your self into laughter.
Go- to harness your Chi.
GO- to learn new ways of practice. TO move with grace through your own inner compass.
GO- to meet and fall into the feeling of DEEP gratitude for your own authentic self.
GO- to BE an integral part of our good vibes and peaceful will community.
GO- to feel the energy, the hum of Ubud.
Go- to learn more of what your LIKE and what you DON’T.
Go- to breathe in new soul fuel.
Go- to heal.
Go- for you.
Go- because it is your destiny if you are reading this post.
GO to Bali Spirit Festival 2018 and let it change your world!
The biggest most heartfelt thank you to the community of Ubud, Bali Spirit Festival Creators , Spirit Team and wonderful participants. What an incredible week I had! I feel so blessed, rejuvenated and inspired by each of you, and all the beauty, kindness and love that was shared in March. BSF definitely had an incredible line up of teachers, healers, movers, monotony shakers, and givers. I am so grateful for this experience and can feel how much goodness will be shared out into our world because of BSF- each of us bridging BSF back into our own home communities!
Thank you to Sunny and Colin for bringing all us volunteers together and letting us put our energy to use! Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!
Photo Credit: BSF Spirit Team capturing morning yoga with Sri Vijay Gopala of Yoga Gita, Mysore, India