Here, in The Netherlands, the stormy and warm Prince Autumn slowly makes place for the arrival of King Winter. He is approaching from a distance, wearing a cloak of mist and silence, and a hat of crisp and crystal-clarity. Can you feel him approaching?
Beloved, how are you feeling?
Right now at this moment, reading these words?
And in the greater moment of time, what is happening in your body and being now that King Winter is gently making his way to our door?
In this season of the year, I often encounter one of my greatest demons:
The conviction that ‘The Show Must Go On’.
Confession time →
I have the tendency to follow my passion and enthusiasm to great extremes. And honestly, it has brought me in the greatest, unexpected, and radically profound situations I wouldn't have wanted to miss for a lifetime.
But… It comes with a price.
The price I pay for acting upon my genuine enthusiasm is that of always running two (or more) steps ahead of myself. And though that might work just fine for the short-run (I go great on deadlines for example), it’s a hugely destructive pattern for the long run.
Last week I concluded two big projects, both are extremely close to my heart, both ask for radical space-holding to happen.
This work shows me time and time again that it is my nature to invest myself fully. I cannot help but fall in love, head over heels, with the teachings and the participants. A blessing and a curse. For in my great passion to give, I may forget to recharge my own battery, and from time to time the balance gets lost. Now is such a time.
Do you recognize this?
In the exhalation of these two projects, I already felt ‘the next big thing’ knocking on my door: the ‘Rite of Passage’ winter retreat. And although my passion for this project is no less than the others, anxiety overtook me.
With trembling knees, I called my support system with the request for unfiltered mirrors (‘hurray!’ to great intimacy and truthfulness in relationships!). Each voice spoke kindly and clearly to me, what I had already heard resounding from inside: ‘Chris, it’s time to S.T.O.P.’
So here I sit, writing you this newsletter, with great grief and great relief for I have decided to do just that: To stop. To pause. To breathe. To dance. To allow space for nothingness, for no ‘thing’ -ness.
Practically, that means that the ‘Rite of Passage Winter Retreat’ will be canceled for this year. It also means that you might receive a late reply through mail / social media. I’m still with you, and I need to be with me too.
I make this choice with the dragons of self-doubt sitting on both shoulders, breathing fire in front of my eyes. And yet I know, that precisely in order to continue this work, to be able to transmit these profound teachings that are so intimately close to me, I need to stop. It is for the integrity and sovereignty of my being and offerings in the long run that I dare to trust this intuition.
I choose to listen to my body and energy the way I teach others to do so.
I choose to bow for life.
I choose surrender over security.
I take the risk to ‘fail’.
And I deeply invite you to do the same, in your fashion; to stop and recalibrate.
What is it that wants to move us if we leave space for the mystery of life?
If we leave space to breathe and dance?
I believe the world is waiting for just that.
So what can you expect of me?
In the upcoming months I’ll be working on the foundation of ‘Unveiling Intimacy’ so that in the future, there is less of ‘running 2-15 steps ahead of myself’. But mostly, I’ll be creating spaces for me to just BE. To be in nature, to dance and sing, to paint and write.
By the way, did you know I love to write? And that it brings me great fears and excitement to share this beyond the ears and welcoming presence of my mom and cat?
So here I make a statement, it’s vague but true: I will also use this time to birth written creations in yet unknown forms to a greater public - stay tuned.
And evidently, I’ll use this time to deepen my personal study, practice, and relationships with my loved ones and my partner.
This path has brought me great ravishment and great liberation, in gratitude I bow to it and allow space for its continuous unfolding.
Now, what WILL happen?
The Mantra Vigil! Yes, if 'the big C' allows for it, we will sing, meditate and pray from sunset to sunrise, December 19-20. This is truly a rite of passage in and of itself, a rite of passage into the season of winter. You are most welcome to join us, there are still tickets available for this unique and transformative ceremony.
Behind the scenes, we are working on the development of ‘Your Yoni Journey’ and ‘Wild & Wise’ - both of which will feature again in spring 2021. And I hope that in my next newsletter I can already announce the dates for the ‘Intimacy with Life’ summer retreat. And there is so much more beauty cooking... waiting to be born.
So no, I won't stop.
But right now, this is what is there:
The need to stop.
To make space.