"Where it´s Cool"
THE WINTER FESTIVAL 2015 :: A BLOG
At the end, Sashara said, “Thank you for an extraordinary group” – and so it was for all the ninety people who were there, no doubt about that.
On one occasion, one morning, Michael walked slowly up and down the aisle that the group made between themselves each time, very slowly, moving his arms and hands – and eyes – that was all, but of course it was a lot more and everyone present responded in an extraordinary way, just from that, on & on. Later one Wild Goose, Aminyuna, told Michael - and others, that she saw in this time amazing shapes and colours of the energy moving amongst us all, we were not surprised to hear it, it was clear it must be so even if few could actually ‘see’ it, but all felt it alright…
But every session was brilliant in its own way, no doubt about it. At one point Michael was saying that you could only find yourself through losing yourself – something that Jesus said too:
He who finds himself will lose himself, and he who loses himself for my sake will find himself. And it was clear in that moment that this was the case for Michael too.
The whole time in the group it was like that, or close to it.
The place where we held the Festival this year, Sampurna, beyond Wiesbaden, suited us fine, a big place, a converted school, lots of space, a beautiful grouproom, food fine – but vegetarian, so no turkey on the 31st, but it didn’t matter one bit, we weren’t there for that, and with the owner, Parvati, we had great love and closeness plus the fact that she was mostly also a member of our group activity. A big bond with her was made by us all, and also with Uwe, the administrator there. Now, home from home.
We go again there next year for the next Winter Festival, plus Michael and the X-Run will be there again for the last leg of this X-Run 7 in April.
There were plenty of talks, mostly short and to the point, one called The Silent Teaching, which it often is, and so how to hear it, and That’s Attainment – in case you were wondering about that, and also a wonderful Q&A – questions about anger, family ties, pain, body troubles (both of direct and current relevance to Michael) and living the energy flow: Name: The Family of All Who Are & Will Be.
On and behind the scenes Akali was taking care of much that needed taking care of. He also drove up from here, with Aranta, setting things up in the grouproom ready for us all – and many things beyond. Then of course as always Michael needed assistance in the grouproom, on his rounds and elsewhere too, so there was his Mishka to do this, as she’s been doing a lot recently during his pain-time, together with his very longtime close companion and top (and sometimes terrifying, but always loving), WG therapist, Tiago, plus of course Akali too.
Some new Wild Geese joined us as such, including Maja, who had already done an OPT Training, and a number of PEPs at the house here, and who is now Kamaranda, blissful being – and that’s exactly how she looked then and in fact the whole time (but she was by no means the only one).
There was of course the usual late night disco on the 31st. When Michael & Mishka left at 02.00 half the group was still at it, and the last to leave were Michael’s son and grandson, Kozan & Aranta – and that was at 07.30!
Michael says, “It was a wonderful time, for me, for all, great to have also son Kozan, daughter Wu Chi, who is also on the current OPT Training, & grandson Aranta, now on his 3rd OPT in succession, there also with me, plus other close people too, like Sandipa & Anuradha, my long term friends and students from Austria who have been organizing my groups there for donkeys’ years, Kali & Boaz also joining us for the NYE party, and a visit from Vikrant from Chile, with whom I’ve been in contact with for about 14 years in various ways including visits to us here and in Freiburg, and who made a two hour interview with me on the 31st for a book he is writing – in Spanish though – about the history of Encounter and other Growth Groups, going back to the early Seventies and into the Rajneesh movement too, and up to the present day – apparently a history in which I figure quite significantly – and then more than twenty from my current beautiful X-Run were part of it too.
But unfortunately it wasn’t all sunshine, my leg pain having diminished almost to zero, nothing much seemed to impede me from body movement any more, so when everyone was jumping wildly in the last session on the 29th, I joined in – to much cheering and celebration – my old jump, jump, jump, arms in the air when – Kerump! a muscle in my back tore, stopped me dead, so I had that to contend with for the rest of our time together, and so at the New Year disco I was just a rather sad observer, more or less. So now there’s more work for my new great body therapist beginning next week. I’m sure he will find a solution. And in the meantime some great massage sessions from my personal masseuse here, Simitra – just had one and it was sensational!
Before we began to eat the NY’s dinner they had prepared for us, Mishka gave a short speech of thanks to the people of the place who had supported us and created this open space for us to have our celebrations, so willingly and harmoniously and helpfully – almost like Wild Geese themselves. Then Jila – whom I’ve known for 35 years or more, and still a regular participant in many groups and X-Runs, took the microphone and gave little paeans of praise - to Parvati, Uwe, the cooks, Akali, Tiago, and Mishka, one after the other – straight out, taking her time, capturing everybody. Then she said “About Michael I will say nothing.” To that I said, “Thank you!” But as she went back to her seat she called out, ‘Who’s the coolest guy here?” And everyone shouted out “Michael!” So that was nice.
So, the morning of the 1st, regular departures, final settlements and goodbyes to be made, then by 13.00 we were off, Mishka driving, with me and Kozan alongside, the 3 hour journey home completed in just 2 hours (never seen so little traffic before on the A5, plus Mishka really hustling along at top speed).
And so we arrived home, here at UNACHO, had some lunch and then son & I straight into catching up with the football that had taken place whilst we were away. And also back into the hands of my wonderful carer Karanda: she practising her newfound English on me, and I dragging my Deutsch out of my cellar to practise it with her. A fun arrangement. And a message from Varuni, now in Australia, inviting me there again later this year – it’s been years since I was last there, the last of a dozen or more
great visits, and I’m dead happy to be going there again, once more. And Mishka immediately said, “I’m coming too!”
Now for some relaxing time, and some sessions with Edo, my wonderful Croatian therapist, and more massages with Simitra, before I meet some of you again for the new WOSP, here on the twenty-first of the month.
LOTS OF LOVE TO YOU ALL AND A GREAT 2016. I hope too we meet often this coming year and have great, happy – and enlightening – times together”.