D-Day Landings & Yoga Vibes
I have just returned from an amazing weekend in Normandy where I had the honour to be a part of the Normandy Beach Yoga festival celebrating peace and union in a part of the world the has been witness, sufferer and survivor of the second world war.
I was struck by the beauty of the beaches, the space and massive horizon and how each and every day the sandy beaches are wiped clean of all traces of human activity. The conflict and blood-shed of all those years ago disappeared into the sea with the never ending tides…. But the memories still live on.
Photo by Isabelle Nègre
The town of Courseulles where the beautiful Juno beach sits is in many ways a monument now to this war time period of our history. The Juno Beach Centre – a brilliant Canadian funded and created musuem – a fabulous place to go and experience all that the war did, meant and should lead to now – is nestled along the sea front just next to Courseulles.
Both the town and the centre are looking forward to a future of wellness, peace and harmony for all. There is a definite desire to move on, not to forget but to move forwards with an attitude of positivity. The past events in this part of the world have for many years dominated their lives and even their tourist industry. Is it not time to use the lessons from the past and move into a differet phase ?
I would say a resounding yes but it is not always a message well received by local residents and town councils. Their modern vision seems to focus on the business side (as ever) of things – Macdonalds has just this year opened in Courseulles to big local applause ! – and the desire to still live from the past continuing to blast out the pomp and ceremony of the military. But the town of Courseulles has also just added to their title bien-être (wellbeing)…
Caroline decided two years ago to launch the initiative of the Normandy Beach Yoga – a gathering of yogis on the D Day Beaches who practice, breath and believe in a peaceful future as one. A moment of union, no conflict, harmony where there is no difference in religion, size, nationality, language. Where we greet each other as Mac or Alice or Rachid or Pascale without any other thought as to our beliefs and political tendances. Just people all doing the same thing – surviving, living !
Life is an incredibly precious gift and should be cherished – those souls who threw themselves bravely, naively into battle paid the ultimate price. We should not forgot them but we should also not dwell on the past and let the samskaras of such a hard and bitter era colour the future unless of course its full of positive harmonious future.
As I lead a meditation on Juno Beach on 9th May and encouraged all to root into the sands and send energetic strands of peace into the earth I felt the peace and positive energy of their bodies, minds and souls. The waves and wind were our friends, the early morning sun beat down onto us and a strange thing happened. We started our meditation a small group and by the end of the meditation when we opened our eyes we had tripled in number. Literally. It was such a beautiful moment.
We all chose a stone to take with us to write our seed intention of peace on it so that the sands and soil of Juno and its blood-ridden path may start to grow different strands of energy.
Those of joy, life, love and peace.
I close with this beautiful statement I once read « if a cry is the same in any language so is a smile »
Hari Om Tat Sat