TAO – TOTAL ART OASIS. This could be a place to get lost. To lose yourself. Find yourself. Destroy yourself. Renew yourself. A place where everything is possible.
Again through WorkAway I was lucky to find the TOTAL ART OASIS. A place that takes your breath away. Directly by entering the grounds you feel that this is not a normal camping or seminar ground. The source of the Moselle (deutsch: Mosel) with a lengths of 544km is the second biggest tributary of the Rhine which is flowing over the grounds of the TAO. The Col de Bussang is the home of the source on approx. 900m above sea level. Not a surprise that the area of the TAO has such a special vegetation. The water is crystal clear and so refreshing. Drinking, watching, hearing the Moselle was something which I enjoyed a lot in the Vosges (Vogesen). To see the full circle of life was fascinating. Everything is connected, the water is flowing nourishing the plants, we were harvesting the plants, fruits, vegetables, we ate them and digested them…
True Nature and powerful Rituals
Feeling what resonates with my nature was wonderful and new for me during my stay at the TAO. In the early mornings most of the times I was longing for having a dance with myself. Moving to a rhythm, dancing like nobody is watching me. It was a feeling of liberation. No judgement. No right or wrong. Spinning and jumping around, lifting my arms to the sky, gratitude filled my chest. I was ready for a new, exciting day at the TAO. The main tasks during my stay were cooking, preparing rooms and cleaning. This was again the work of a host. And I felt that this is something which I love and enjoy doing. Taking care of guests, cooking and being the “Good Soul”. A Supporter, a servant. The groups that we hosted were special. As they were mostly doing energetic work and were also into spiritual topics I could relate and connect easy with them. We also got invited to join different ceremonies. Taking part in a traditional sweat lodge (Lakota Indians) was completely new and a transforming experience. Going on an inner journey guided by the forces of the nature and the spirits. Imagine you are in the womb of mother earth.
How would you feel? How would it look like? How would it smell? Who would you meet there? I want to share some words from the speech during the ceremony:
“Become a servant of Love. Thats our only goal in life.”
“If you want to be understood, understand.
If you want to be seen, see.
If you want to be loved, love.”
The messages are simple and clear. This is something what I find in most of the traditions, ceremonies, religions, spiritual paths…the center of their teachings is LOVE. Simple. But not easy.
Alone I can be strong. I can do that on my own. I don’t need any help. This is how I very often act when it comes to handle things, make decisions or travel around the world. I can hear a subtle voice singing “Independence, independence, independence…” and another voice singing “I don’t want to be a burden, no, no, no…” This behavior has advantages and disadvantages. A big advantage is that I learned how to handle so many different things on my own. I developed a broad spectrum on whatever needs to be done or clarified. But the disadvantages are there and I can see them clearly today. When I do things in a certain way I want them to be exactly that way. This is not the easiest and funniest thing for my environment. I am aware of that. But I am here to learn and to grow. And also to share these thoughts. There might be some of you nodding now and thinking “This sounds so familiar to me….”. Okay, awareness is there. Bringing this to action, accept things the way they are. Inhale. Exhale. I tried it. And it works for me. Most of the time.
And still I am between these two messages
Do not help someone until they ask for help. This was written on the door of the seminar house at TAO. I guess it was a leftover from another seminar group. It is interesting because I see a truth in that sentence and a reason to follow this rule especially when people are in their own processes. Growing, moving, thinking, being confronted by different situations. Learning to ask for help instead of always be in the comfort to have help around permanently.
By refusing someones help you take their opportunity away to be in service for you. Coming from a tradition were Service / Seva is the main act out of love and devotion it is obvious why help should never be refused. Because the happiness in sharing and helping is without any attachment or hope to receive something in return. The Service is selfless.
I feel like leaving you with these two thoughts. And I invite you to reflect these two ways of acting and thinking.
A love letter
The TAO is a home of different generations (1 to 69 years), with different experiences and backgrounds. People coming together sharing their knowledge about natural healing and herbal medicine, seeing how motherhood can also be, seeing how animals and humans interact. When I left the TAO I felt inspired by all these wonderful souls living there and contributing whatever they love and can. This is how I lost my heart. It’s the people. And it’s Better Together.
Devi Reith a wonderful singer