FREE Video Event Series
Wake Up Festival Pre-Festival Intensives
August 18–20, 2014
Malidoma Patrice Somé
Imagine that you and I are sitting at a plush wine bar that is draped with Red velvet curtains. We’re about to order our second glass of a spicy floral pinot noir,
when you suddenly lean in close,
and ask me to share my love story, and hold nothing back.
A Red-hot blush spreads across my body as I reflect on what it is you are asking.
Because my Love Story is an epic, really — most definitely a saga, for sure a spiritual soap opera. It’s dramatic and emotional, personal yet archetypal, mundane yet multidimensional, ancient yet modern, familiar yet foreign, hilarious and even cheesy at times (cheese comes with the whole love-story genre).
It’s filled with eccentric characters, such as Mary Magdalene, the Hindu goddess Kali, the Persian poet Rumi, the Zen mystic Ikkyü, the Buddhist teacher Saraha, some of the Hebrew bible bad girls (Eve, Lilith, and the Whore of Babylon), the Swiss psychotherapist Carl Jung, Gnostics, tantrikas, dakinis, witches — all mixed together with Red wine, tattoos, past lives, sex, heretical lineages, and quite a bit of fire, tears, and Red rose petals.
After my initial hesitation, I start talking — not because I especially want to talk about myself in this way or because I think my story is so special or unique or deserves the next three hours of your time, but because I know, deep down, past my insecurities and shyness and worries about what you’re gonna think of me, that if I actually tell you the truth, it will give you permission to tell your truth.
Because I know I’m not alone with All This . . .
and because I know the best way to get to know a Goddess is to listen to a
woman tell her story . . .
and because I know She can only roar through our voices when we stop
being so goddamned careful, spiritually correct, and hidden . . .
and because I have risked everything, and will continue to risk everything — including your friendship and opinion of me — for Her.
So, I want you to feel my gaze, see my flushed cheeks, smell my breath, and watch my body movements. I want you to witness my nervousness and occasional awkwardness, my openings and my closings, my passion and my pain, which always accompany sharing what’s real.
We will laugh our asses off, we will roll our eyes, we will let tears come and go, we will pause for long moments, just ’cause. We will take breaks to stretch our bodies and shake our booties. And, throughout it all, we will hold the space for the Divine to dance between us, massaging extra-tight pieces of us loose, rubbing our bellies, tickling us when we start taking ourselves or our stories too seriously, and grounding us when we are not taking ourselves or our stories seriously enough. We will honor the Divine in this way, and we will allow the Divine to honor us. For it takes a tremendous amount of courage to share our heart’s truth.
And there will be Moments,
like right now . . .
where I/She will reach toward you
and press my/Her warm palm against your beautiful Red heart . . .
We will Remember what words can never communicate.